10 Best Places to Visit in Zambia

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Zambia is a beautiful country, located in the heart of the African continent. It is a premier travel destination, filled with stunning wildlife, vast untouched landscapes and the friendliest people you have ever met. Zambia has some of the best national parks in Africa and is home to the iconic Victoria Falls. From the markets and excitement of Lusaka to wildlife-rich national parks like Kafue and South Luangwa, Zambia will not disappoint. So grab your binoculars as we explore ten of the best places to visit in Zambia.

Lusaka

Lusaka is the best place to start your adventure in Zambia. Located in the south of the country, Lusaka is the capital, economic center and is home to more than 2 million people. Lusaka is a great place to orient yourself to southern Africa and relax. Try the many excellent restaurants, such as Bongwe Pub & Grill, a favorite meeting place for tourists and ex-pats. To sample the local wildlife, go to the outskirts of the city and visit the Lilayi Elephant Nursery. They work with the rescue and rehabilitation of orphaned elephants from Kafue National Park. Here you can see them being fed and treated.

If you're in town for the weekend, check out the Sunday craft market and explore the variety of hand-made souvenirs, such as jewelry, artwork and crafts. All prices are negotiable, so improve your negotiation skills. Other highlights of Lusaka are National Museum of Zambia and the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.

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Victoria Falls

You cannot have a list of the best places to visit in Zambia (or in southern Africa) without including Victoria Falls. This imposing waterfall is located on the Zambezi River, between Zambia and Zimbabwe. Vic Falls are over a kilometer long and fly at a height of 355 feet, but you will not find the falls on any list of the largest or largest waterfalls in the world. It is the legend of the Victoria Falls, combined with the perpetual mist that rises from the falls, that will take you back to the time when Dr. Livingston first saw Mosi-oa-Tunya (“Smoke that thunders” in the Tonga language) and said: "such lovely scenes must have been contemplated by angels on their flight".

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Adrenaline junkies can try white water rafting, bungee jumping and enjoy the rainbow view of the falls from a helicopter or micro flight.

Victoria Falls

Southern Luangwa National Park

If you want to go to where the action is, go straight to Southern Luangwa National Park. The park has one of the largest concentrations of wildlife on the continent, including large numbers of elephants, giraffes and Cape Buffalo. South Luangwa National Park descends from mountain peaks and enters the Luangwa River valley – home to vast populations of crocodiles and hippos. For the best chance to observe a lot of wildlife, go to the park during the dry season (July to October), when the animals gather on the banks of the Luangwa River. Just be prepared to see lions and leopards trying to catch dinner!

Check on Croc Valley Camp for one of its famous walking safaris, where you can fully immerse yourself in this untouched desert. As you walk through the African desert, expert guides teach you how to track animals and report on government efforts to combat poaching and conservation.

Wildlife in South Luangwa National Park
Henning Borgersen on Unsplash image

Kafue National Park

Kafue National Park it is the crown jewel of Zambia's national parks. Founded in 1924, Kafue is the largest and oldest protected hunting area in the country and the second largest in Africa. The park measures 22,400 square kilometers in central Zambia. At the northern end of Kafue is the Busanga Plain and the wetlands, home to vast herds of antelopes, wildebeests, zebras and the elusive cheetahs. The Kafue River is home to hippos and some of the largest crocodiles in southern Africa. Here it is also possible to spot wild African dogs in the tall grass, while watching the large elephant population roaming the savannah.

You can easily reach Kafue by road from Lusaka and Livingstone. If you stay in Musungwa Safari Lodge, you will be treated to car rides, boat trips and walking safaris.

Sunrise in Kafue National Park, Zambia

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Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park

If you are visiting the city of Livingstone, stop by Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park. The park has two parts: the Victoria Falls area and the wildlife section (this area is less than 3 km from Livingstone).

The highlight of the park is its population of white rhinos. The best way to see them up close and in person is to book a walking tour of Livingstone Rhino Walks. Since Mosi-oa-Tunya is free from predators, you can drive on your own and get great views of elephant, giraffe, zebra and a variety of antelopes, while driving between Livingstone and Vic Falls. Once you have worked with courage, you can walk through the narrow platforms of the Knife-Edge Bridge, which crosses the falls!

White rhino

Baixo Zambeze National Park

O Bass Zambezi it is an incredibly beautiful reserve that stretches along the sparkling waters of the Zambezi River. There are many great places to stay in the area, but the best way to see the park is to go on a canoe safari at Baines & # 39; River Camp. A stay at Baine & # 39; s will give you a private African escape from your dreams.

This untouched desert contains a variety of landscapes, from pastures, forests and floodplains, all of which support a huge variety of wildlife. Lose yourself in the romantic waters as you pass submerged hippos while Nile crocodiles bask on the banks of the river. Specialized guides will ensure that your trip is safe and peaceful. You can also enjoy fly fishing, take guided hikes and enjoy a sunset river cruise.

Baixo Zambeze National Park

Lake Kariba

Lake Kariba wins the award for being the largest artificial reservoir in the world. It was created when the Kariba dam was built in the Zambezi River basin in the late 1950s. Lake Kariba is over 139 miles long and shares the coast with Zimbabwe. The lake really stands out in Zambia, with no coastline, and you would think you were looking at the ocean.

A popular activity on Lake Karib is to stay in a houseboat. Views of hippos, crocodiles, birds and elephants are common as you have fun enjoying the view. A stay at the Lake Kariba Inn will put you in the middle of the action. In addition to world-class restaurants and spas, you can take an evening cruise on the lake or visit the nearby Siavonga market to learn all about traditional Zambian cuisine.

Lake Kariba at sunset

Shiwa Ngandu manor house

If you find an English-style country property out of place in Zambia, you would not be alone. Shiwa Ngandu is located in the northern province of Zambia and was built by a young British military man named Stewart Gore-Browne. He did this after being struck by the natural beauty of the land. You can book a stay at the mansion and enjoy a wide variety of things to do, such as hiking, boating, fishing and even going on horseback safari. You can fly to Lusaka's private airstrip or, if you're on safari in South Luangwa National Park, you can get there at Mfuwe Airport.

Shiwa Ngandu, Zambia
Image of Marcus Rozbitsky via wikipedia.org (CC BY 2.0)

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Mwela Rocks National Monument

Mwela Rocks is off the beaten path, but if you are a fan of archeology, it will be worth the trip. There are several caves containing about 700 well-preserved 2,000-year-old rock paintings left by Stone Age hunter-gatherers, Twa. The National Park guides will provide information about the life of the cave dwellers and will do their best to interpret the meaning of rock art. The area is beautiful, but if you're looking for luxury, you won't find it here.

If you are staying overnight, Kalebalika Cottages in the nearby town of Kasama offer comfortable accommodation at a reasonable price. Getting to the city's monument is accessible by taxi. While you're in the area, check out gorgeous Chishimba Falls, found across the city.

Chimfunshi Wildlife Orphanage

If you need a break from all the wildlife you find on a safari, about 40 miles northwest of the city of Chingola in Copperbelt is Chimfunshi Wildlife Orphanage. Sheila Siddle and her daughter manage this really neat chimpanzee sanctuary, which houses about 130 adult and young chimpanzees. Most of the chimpanzees were rescued from hunters and traders in the DRC or other parts of Africa. Even if this is not a reservation, it is still worth the trip to see chimpanzees frolicking and playing in a protected environment. Entrance fees help keep the orphanage financially viable and save the lives of many exploited chimpanzees. If you have time, you can volunteer at Chimfunshi, but you need to confirm at least two weeks.

Baby Chimpanzee

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James Stewart

James Stewart

Professional writer

Jim is a travel writer and retired professor of African Studies. He is a lifelong self-described trekker and his career as a U.S. Air Force officer has given him a chance to experience incredible and exotic destinations in Europe, Asia and Africa. He's at home with a good Wilbur Smith book or anywhere there is a story to tell … [Read full bio]

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