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If you have been looking for a taste of the “real” Africa - untamed, exotic, and beautiful beyond anything you’ve imagined - then Zambia might be the ideal destination. Most people can’t even pick this Central African nation off a map (let alone travel to it!), but intrepid voyagers have never let a jaunt off the beaten path deter them from fresh adventures!
Zambia is best known as prime viewing ground for Victoria Falls, one of the continent’s highlight attractions. “The Smoke That Thunders” is one of the world’s great wonders, a mile-long cascade that has invited comparisons to the divine since the first explorers laid eyes on its torrenting majesty. See double rainbows in the mist rising between basalt and water, get your thrills whilst bungee jumping or abseiling from spectacular heights, or treat yourself to a helicopter ride over the fall for the best view ever!Lest you mistakenly assume that Zambia is about little more than the falls, however, know that this place is wild and wonderful in the best of ways! The walking safari originated here. Make like Dr. Livingstone and tramp off into the bush, where some of Africa’s most-beloved big game awaits: elephants, giraffe, hippos, crocodiles, zebra, and lions… just to name a few! The raging Zambezi river crosses through on its way to the Indian Ocean, affording plenty of cruising and fishing opportunities in addition to action sports of all kinds!
Zambia Top Attractions
The traditional gateway to Vic Falls, as well as the old Rhodesian capital, Livingstone is as colonially quaint as its name (which was formerly Maramba!). Dotted with Victorian architecture, the city center is compact and very walkable. The local market provides a fascinating glimpse of local life, and tasty bites of the freshest produce around! You can ride an elephant at the local reserve, walk with lions, or book a helicopter ride over the falls and the town - everything wild and wonderful. Don’t miss the Zambian Museum, which fills one in on the country’s history and is filled with unique and curious artifacts.
The majesty and power of Victoria Falls is unlike anything you’ve ever seen. It may not technically hold the title of the world’s largest waterfall, but, with over a mile of cascades surrounding you, you’ll be too overwhelmed and awestruck to notice! Visiting the falls from the Zambian side (as opposed to just over the border in Zimbabwe) allows visitors the chance to wade in the Devil’s Pool, a naturally-enclosed pool right at the lip of the falls! If simply soaking in the visual beauty of this World Heritage Site doesn’t do it for you, try out bungee jumping the falls (geronimo!) or a bit of pulse-pounding white water rafting to the basin of the cascade. Bring some wet-weather gear and a waterproof camera, because you are almost certain to get soaked!
A full tenth of all Zambians call the national capital home. Lusaka is one of Africa’s most burgeoning big cities, and visitors are routinely surprised by how cosmopolitan this place can be. It is awash with malls offering all manner of opportunities to shop and, at nighttime, it comes alive with a vibrant and unexpected nightlife. The Munda Wanga Environmental Park is a standout, as one of the foremost wildlife education in this part of Africa. Native wood carvings and collectibles are plentiful in the markets here, making Lusaka one of the country’s best places to pick up souvenirs.
This is the world’s 2nd-largest freshwater lake, in addition to being its longest - Tanganyika is huge! Over four hundred species of fish call the lake home, including some 250 varieties of cichlid, many of which are prized by aquarium enthusiasts. The tropical waters of the lake make for outstanding diving, and overall outstanding visibility despite its depth. Swimming, lakeboarding, kitesurfing, and snorkeling are all excellent… and it should go without saying that the fishing is phenomenal as well. Tanganyika is among the country’s best spots for game viewing: hippos, crocodiles, and cobras join the colorful, lively sealife to make this quite the hotspot!
Lower Zambezi National Park
The untouched beauty of nature is the overriding theme within this national park, which is largely undeveloped. The fertile valley of Africa’s 4th-largest river system teems with wildlife, including lions, leopards, and huge herds of elephants! The flora here is also extraordinary: fig, acacia, and ebony trees line the twisting path of the river. Booking a river cruise is, by far, the best way to spy all the wonders of the Zambezi while kicking back and snapping plenty of incredible photos! Walking safaris are also popular, and plenty of licensed guides are on hand to ensure you don’t miss a thing. The fishing is especially magnificent in this part of the river, enticing anglers both novice and pro.
|Primary Airports: Lusaka International Airport (LUN), Livingstone Airport (LVI)|
|Currency: Zambian kwacha (ZMK)|
|Population: 14,001,000 (2012 est.)|
|Electricity: 230V/50Hz (multiple plugs)|
|Time Zone: UTC + 2|
Zambia Travel Reviews
Elephants, Hippos and Bungee jumping!
This trip is one that I will remember all of my life. We went to Zambia in early Africa and the babies were everywhere! Some of the little ones were only a few weeks old our guide told us. We booked our tour through Robin Pope Safaris. We were a group of 6 with little kids, so we stayed in the houses with a private guide/jeep. We went fishing, on morning and afternoon game drives, shopping at the market, on a helicopter tour and bungee jumping in Victoria Falls! What an experience. Seeing the wildlife out in the wild, with no fences between us and them, it was incredible; breathtaking really. I hope to be able to return one day!