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Zambia | Bats and Bills

This adventure takes place in the Central and Northernmost provinces of Zambia, through the Kasanka National Park where we will witness the biggest & most dramatic migration of land mammals on the planet before going into the Bangweulu Wetlands in search of  the prehistoric looking, and elusive African Shoebill

tour duration 15 Days
from R26,392
next trip 15 Nov 2020
Enquire now

Starting in Livingstone and taking the Great North Route towards Serenje and up to Kasanka National Park, our adventure takes place within the Central and Northernmost provinces of Zambia – where the water quite literally, meets the sky.  Although one of the smallest national parks, Kasanka is home to a diverse population of mammals that includes buffalo, Burchill’s zebra, bushbuck, common tsessebe, elephant, hippo, hyenas, jackals & migrating lechwe amongst others.  It is however, in the dense papyrus swamps - often referred to as Kasanka’s crown jewels – that one of Kasanka’s most famous residents seeks refuge - the shy Sitatunga, Africa’s rarest and most aquatic antelope.

We will adventure into the heart of Zambia and witness one of nature’s most jaw-dropping spectacles – the Kasanka Bat Migration where millions upon millions (quite literally) of straw coloured fruit bats migrate to Mushitu’s swamp forest in northernmost Kasanka.  This natural phenomenon takes place every year between October and December and is witness to the greatest migration of mammals on earth.

From Kasanka we traverse north-east to the Bangweulu Wetlands in search of the elusive and rare shoebill stork.  Here we will also encounter vast herds of black lechwe, spectacular scenery and birding that is out of this world!

 

Included

Activities at Nsobe Camp
All meals
Professional guide
Tented Accommodation

Excluded

Border Crossing fees & road taxes
Guide Gratuity
Out of country medical emergency evacuation cover

Tour Dates

15 Nov 2020 - 29 Nov 2020 - R26,392.00

Day 1

Departure

We meet just outside Livingstone at Camp Nkwazi, our camp for the first night.   Set in shaded woodlands & nestling on the banks of the mighty Zambezi, Nkwazi is one of the finest campsites in Southern Africa (Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence 2015, 2016 & 2017) and by the time you arrive, your tents would have been pitched and our bush chef will be preparing the first of the culinary delights you will be enjoying on this safari.

For those of you who arrive early (and who are avid anglers), there is excellent Bream and Tiger Fishing as optional activities (speak to Nkwazi Reception to arrange).

The evening will be spent socialising around the fire and getting to know each other as the sun sets.  During the course of the evening, the Bhejane guide will elaborate on the adventure that starts the next da

Day 2

Making an early start after a hearty breakfast, and after you have all been issued with two-way hand-held radios, we take to the road and leave for Lusaka.   Driving over 500kms we will reach Lusaka in the afternoon. Our campsite is at Eureka campgrounds, 15 minutes outside Lusaka, set in beautifully shaded natural surroundings.  Eureka is a rustic camp but does provide clean camping and clean showers and hot running water

This evening, dinner is spent around the campfire enjoying one of many delicious meals prepared by our bush chef – don’t be surprised by the occasional visit of a giraffe or zebra who are known to frequent this lovely campsite

Day 3

Depart after early breakfast heading north to Mkushi. Stop en route at Serenje to refuel the vehicles as well as fill our necessary fuel containers in preparation for the next leg of the journey. An additional 20 litres of fuel is required for this leg of the trip. Continue to our overnight campsite destination at the Forest Inn, conveniently situated alongside the Great North Road. This sanctuary within 160 hectares of protected indigenous forest is equidistant from Harare, Livingstone and the Tanzanian border! Enjoy a piping hot shower before settling down with a refreshing drink and dinner to be served by our bush chef around the campfire.

Day 4

This morning we breakfast early, pack up and leave for Kasanka National Park, our first day in this beautiful national park.

Our campsite this evening is located in a remote and tranquil spot of this wild paradise at the edge of the rich floodplains of the Kasanka River, offering some of the best game viewing in the park.  Kabwe is a small campsite, quiet and peaceful with a beautiful setting overlooking a peaceful stretch of water, midway between the Bat Forest and Bufumu Forest and as a result, the wildlife and birding on offer, are a treat!  There is ample time to relax and enjoy the scenery today.

The campsite is small with basic toilets and showers. The camp attendants supply heated water to the ablution facility using buckets. There is no power outlet but you will be able to make use of the Bhejane power source in order to charge camera and phone batteries.

Dinner is served in this unique African setting around the campfire. Your tour guide will explain what the rest of the trip entails.

Day 5 and 6

This morning we rise and breakfast at a leisurely pace.  We have the morning to enjoy the complete mix of wildlife and birding Kasanka has to offer before meeting at our next camp – Pontoon 1.  Arrival at Pontoon just before lunch shows this stunning location to be set in an evergreen forest overlooking a swamp clearing favored by Sitatunga.  It is also in very close proximity to the Bat Forest and Fibwe Hide – our vantage point perched 18 metres high in an African Mahogany tree and perfect for observing both the shy Sitatunga in the early mornings and the Fruit bats at twilight, as they leave their roost in the adjacent forest and fill the sky in all directions to feed at night.  This is one of Africa’s most amazing and unusual wildlife spectacles and is never forgotten by those lucky enough to witness it.

During our two days at Pontoon Campsite, we are able to enjoy activities with local guides who take us to see the bats, birds and animals of this unique region.  Hiking with the local guides enables us to gain real insight into this ecosystem and fully experience the wilderness of Kasanka while supporting the local communities of the area.  Another optional activity is biking as there are bicycles to rent, although limited in supply.

Day 7, 8, 9 and 10

Depart early after breakfast travelling north east to the world-renowned Bangweulu Wetlands.  Bangweulu is a designated Ramsar Convention Site recognized as one of the most important wetlands in the world. Nsobe Camp will be our stay for the next 4 nights.

Experience the peace and serenity of the African bush whilst either exploring the park at your own leisure, taking guided bird walks, or paddling in mokoros in search of the elusive, magnificent shoebill stork.

Day 11

Depart after breakfast for the Kundalila Falls, a National World Heritage Site. The drive can be hot and dusty and the overnight campsite is quite rustic with limited facilities but is set against the most magnificent backdrop.

The Bhejane crew will take control of the tent pitching and whilst dinner is being prepared you can enjoy some refreshments and savour the memories of the days gone by.

Day 12

Enjoy breakfast and watch the sunrise over the beautiful Luangwa Valley. Followed by a hike down to the Falls for a swim in the icy cold water at the foot of the Falls. Return to camp for a light lunch before heading back 214 kms along the Great North Road towards civilization and the Forest Inn campsite, in Mkushi where we overnight.

The campsite will be ready upon your arrival with the coffee pot brewing on the campfire. Dinner is enjoyed around the campfire sharing memories of the trip with a feeling of contentment.

Day 13

Long drive back to Lusaka via the tarred Great North Road to the Eureka Camping Park where you can enjoy hot showers and an ice-cold beer in the shaded campsite, sheltered from the heat.

Day 14

Depart after breakfast for Camp Nkwazi for our final night together. Dinner can be enjoyed whilst listening to the sounds of the grunting hippos and soaring fish eagles.

Day 15

After a hearty Bhejane breakfast, it is time to say goodbye.

And for those of you wanting to squeeze in another day and simply delay going back – Nkwazi also affords the opportunity of visiting Victoria Falls (a mere +- 20 minutes drive from Livingstone) or enjoying the host of activities that this phenomenal African adventure will leave you with.

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Central & Northern Zambia

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To be confirmed

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Camp Nkwazi, Livingstone

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4×4 with good ground clearance
Carrying an additional 80L fuel a necessity

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Trailers are not advised on this tour

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Hot showers & flushing toilets: Nights 1,2,3 & 12, 13, 14
Nights 4, 5, & 6 – Kasanka Camp sites are small with simple toilets and showers. There is no power outlet at the camp but you will be able to charge your camera & phone batteries through the Bhejane power source. Heated water is provided by the camp attendants who will bring it to the ablution facility in buckets.
Nights 7, 8, 9, 10: Nsobe Camp is rustic but offers hot running water
Night 11 at Kundalila is very basic. No hot running water or flushing toilets

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Not in Kasanka, Bangweulu or Kundalila

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Not in Kasanka, Bangweulu or Kundalila

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You are required to bring your own alcohol.
We recommend bringing enough for the first couple of nights and then replenishing while in Zambia

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Not required for South African Passport Holders
Passport must be valid for at least 6 months with at least 2 blank pages