Because some species are shy of humans on foot, and in other cases you must keep a safe distance, you will also mix in some game drive opportunities to allow for photography and close up viewing of a diverse number of species. As dark approaches when it is no longer safe to walk you will take to the vehicle for night drives illuminating by spotlight the secretive nocturnal creatures including the possibility of locating stealthy leopards. The camps are small and there will be no more than 6 guests on the walks ensuring an amazingly intimate safari. Zambia Bushwalking Safari, 7 night walking circuit in South Luangwa National Park.
Your trip will begin in Mfuwe, the gateway to South Luangwa National Park. This park is a valley formed by the South Luangwa River, which teems with hippos and crocodiles. The park is the birthplace of walking safaris, pioneered in the 1950’s and the area remains the ideal location for a safari on foot.
You will acclimate to your new surrounding staying at Mfuwe Lodge inside the park with afternoon and morning game drives before starting your walking circuit between 3 bush camps, Bilimungwe, Chindeni, and Chamilandu. These small camps (3 to 4 chalets/tents each) are run by The Bushcamp Company, known to have some of the best walking guides in existence and the camps are ideally placed for a walking circuit in a remote area of the park where you are unlikely to see any other people or vehicles – truly the ideal way to commune with the wild.
Your morning game drive out of Mfuwe will travel to Bilimungwe. Here you will explore the area on foot and stay for two nights before walking to Chindeni Camp. You explore Chindeni for two nights and then walk onto Chamilandu. Following two nights at Chamilandu you will game drive back to Mfuwe and then onto the airport.
Typical Day: Each morning you will rise early with the sun, eat fruit, cereal, biscuit, etc. with coffee or juice and head out for a 3 to 4 hour walk. Walks are at a relaxed pace, necessary for safety reasons but also so you can learn about the environment and it’s inhabitants, track wildlife, and just explore. A trained park ranger carries a rifle for protection and walks first. The ranger works with your highly trained guide to deliver an outstanding experience. Following the morning walk you will have a large brunch and then a couple hours of downtime to relax in camp.
Around 4 p.m. you will gather for tea and then head out on the afternoon walk. As the sun begins to set a camp vehicle will be brought as you honor the tradition of the ‘Sundowner’ and savor both your favorite beverage and the setting sun. You then board into an open sided vehicle and use a spotlight to search for wildlife before returning to camp for dinner.
The Lodging: Mfuwe Lodge is home for just your first night. The lodge is situated in the South Luangwa National Park with 18 luxury en-suite thatched chalets, each with a private decking area that overlooks a lagoon that attracts abundant wildlife and game from the African bush. A fascinating aspect to the lodge is that elephants commonly walk through the lobby to access trees in a courtyard that are a historical feeding location that predates the lodge. This is in the central area of the park that is known for its outstanding wildlife concentrations.
You will have an afternoon/night game drive as well as a morning drive to view the plentiful animals in this area before moving to the more remote walking area. Each chalet is decorated with superb attention to detail and is equipped with everything from refrigerator to shampoo and mosquito repellent. Sunken bath tubs have private views of the lagoon. Dinner is sometimes served by lamplight on the poolside deck overlooking the lagoon.
Bilimungwe Camp is nestled in a riverine forest along the picturesque banks of the Luangwa River. This is a remote and unspoilt area and an ideal base for walking safaris. The rustic dining area and fully stocked bar are constructed on raised decking with views of Bilimungwe’s permanent waterhole and abundant game. The camp is made of 4 very comfortable reed and thatch chalets with en-suite shower, toilet and double vanities. Each chalet has two queen sized beds with mosquito nets.
Chindeni Camp lies nestled on the apex of a permanent oxbow lagoon, offset by the magnificent Nchendeni Hills. This camp is located in the middle of the walking circuit with fascinating routes to Bilimungwe and Chamilandu camps. Raised on wooden decking Chindeni’s four en-suite tented chalets are sheltered by a shady ebony grove. Each chalet has its own private raised veranda from which you can view the resident game and enjoy the serene tranquility of the vast lagoon. This is the ideal spot for both the avid and intrepid game spotter. The lush and wide lagoon, which stretches out from just beneath your own private balcony, ensures that you need make little effort as you lazily watch the abundance of game that parades into view.
Chamilandu Camp offers comfort, class and beauty in one of the Luangwa Valleys prime remote river locations. A series of 7 ox-box lagoons yield a diversity of abundant wildlife. Chamilandu's authenticity resonates the personal touch. Offering the African connoisseur comfort, class and beauty in a remote corner of the park, Chamilandu hosts the perfection that is magical Africa. These unique raised-house chalets are elegantly designed with a tasteful blend of modern classic decor and provide a bird's eye view over the waters of the Luangwa River and Nchindeni Hills.
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