South Luangwa hippoSouth Luangwa hippo

Lower Zambezi and Mana Pools – 10 Days

From: $5,300.00

Journey into untamed nature with this 10-day trans-country adventure. This safari takes in two exceptional national parks in two countries. The Lower Zambezi National Park is one of Zambia’s finest ecotourism destinations, while Mana Pools is renowned as one of Zimbabwe’s wildest and most beautiful reserves. It includes the south bank and islands of the Zambezi River, which forms the border with Zambia. Canoe trips down the river will take you closer than ever before to hippos, crocodiles and fish eagles.

 

Description

We will visit two spectacular reserves on this 10-night tour – Lower Zambezi National Park and the legendary Mana Pools. These lie in Zambia and Zimbabwe respectively, on opposite sides of the Zambezi River.

Lower Zambezi National Park is in southern Zambia, on the Zimbabwean border. The Zambezi River valley teems with large game, including buffalo and elephants, while hippos and crocodiles wallow in the river. In the east, the river passes the striking red cliffs of Mupata Gorge, with its fish-filled waters. North is a steep and rugged escarpment. You will experience the region’s wild beauty on game drives, while sunset boat cruises reveal the river’s resident wildlife.

It is no wonder Mana Pools is one of Zimbabwe’s top safari destinations – its dramatic beauty and rich game make it an unforgettable place. There is high wildlife visibility beside the river and in the flood plains. Large populations of elephants gather regularly at sunrise at the reserve’s waterhole, while lions are also drawn to the prey that comes to drink there.

 

Getting There

By Plane

You can fly directly into Lusaka with either Emirates, Ethiopian Airways, Kenya Airways or South African Airways. On arrival in Lusaka a driver/guide will be waiting for you in arrivals, he will have a small board bearing your name.
Contact Us for travel advice.

Full Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrive Lusaka

On arrival at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport you will be met and driven to your guest house for the evening. If you arrive in Lusaka in the morning there will be time to visit the Lilayi Elephant Orphanage. Pierre will meet you at the airport and ensure you are comfortable for the evening. (D)

Day 2 – Lusaka to Mvuu Lodge

The team will collect you from Zebra Guest House, we will have packed the vehicles with food and fuel. A half days drive from Lusaka lies our campsite for the night. Nestled in the trees on the banks of the mighty Zambezi River. We will spend the afternoon relaxing on the water’s edge game viewing from the comfort of a deck chair. (BLD)

Day 3 & 4 – Mvuu Lodge

For the next 2 days we will spend time discovering the magic of this game rich safari destination. We will be doing game drives into Lower Zambezi National Park (no camping is allowed in the park itself), birding tours by some of the experienced guides, canoeing, fishing and of course the obligatory African sunset cruise. Three game drives, 2 sunset cruises & a birding tour are inclusive of your tour cost. Relax and unwind, watch the elephants drift by, listen to the hyena whoop at night and soak up the serenity! (BLD)

Day 5 – Mucheni Camp in Mana Pools

With an early start we will depart Mvuu Lodge and drive for 3 hours to the small town of Chirundu where we will fuel up & purchase groceries. Crossing the Zambezi River into Zimbabwe there is a half days drive to our next campsite set on the banks of the river where we will be camping in the heart of this RAMSAR site. It’s an IBA (Important Birding Area), a World Heritage Site and is listed as one of the top 3 safari destinations in Africa. We will visit the park offices to get our entry permits and then drive to Mana Pools National Park gate. We will have exclusive use of the campsites we have booked ensuring you get an unsurpassed experience. (BLD)

Day 6 & 7 – Mucheni Camp

Mana Pools is WILD!!! There are no fences whatsoever at any of the camp sites, so, no matter the time of day we will have to be vigilant of animals passing through the campsites. We have booked exclusive use of the campsites giving you a fantastically unique experience to this incredible wildlife paradise. At night it is inadvisable to leave your tent or wander about. A strong LED torch is very necessary.
Don’t forget your binoculars. You must have, or purchase, a good set as besides the wildlife there is fantastic bird watching and the view over the river is vast making binoculars a very important piece of equipment for this tour.
During the drier seasons there is very little water around, so all the wildlife must come down to the river for sustenance. This is precisely why we only run these tours during the best game viewing season of October and November. It may be hot, but this makes for a real bucket list experience! (BLD)

Day 8 to 10 – Ndungu Camp

Today we will move to a new campsite and a new perspective. Situated a fair distance to the West this is the furthest campsite in Mana Pools and once again we will have exclusive use of the area for the 3 days that we will camp here.
We Will do game drives each day in the many loops that surround the campsite and into the deeper parts of the park. (BLD)

Day 11 – Mana Pools to Lusaka

After a leisurely start to the day we will break camp and exit the park. We will cross the border back into Zambia at the same point & continue on to Lusaka city. We will arrive in Lusaka mid afternoon and check into the same guest house as on your first night in Lusaka. (BLD)

BLD – Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner

Included/Excluded

Included:

Meet & transfer from Lusaka Airport to Zebra Guest House

2 nights’ accommodation at Zebra Guest House – one night before the tour, one night after the tour.

All fuel costs (+ – 3000km’s)

Vehicle use for the duration of the expedition driven by your personal guide

All National Park entrance fees’

Private Chef preparing all meals (Our chef has 25 years’ experience & will provide delicious meals with silver service dinner table dining)

Accommodation (roof top tent)

Bedding & linen Safe, clean drinking water for the duration of the tour

All meals (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner while on tour)

Breakfast:  Bacon & Eggs with toast & cereals

Lunch:   Sandwiches with fruit

Dinner: Salad, Main course & Desert

All camping site costs in Zambia and Zimbabwe

Selected South African wine at dinner (2 glasses per person per night, red or white wine)

After dinner liqueur (double tot of Amarula)

All guiding & driving by professional guides & 4X4 experts

Camp set-up & dismantling of equipment each morning & evening (a local camp manager is employed for this)

Satellite phone – medical emergencies only

Charging facility for camera batteries

Your own private guide – 2 guests to each guide & vehicle making this an incredibly personal experience

Mosquito repellant

Pre-dinner snacks with sundowners

A head torch – to be returned at the end of the tour

Should you wish to do personal laundry whilst in the bush we will provide  water & detergents as well as a washing line

Biodegradable soap & shampoo

Excluded:

Personal travel insurance

Local and international flights

Any additional or optional activities not listed above

Any items of a personal nature

Gratuities of any kind Malaria medication – please consult your Doctor

Any drinks over & above the wines included at dinner

Visa Fees’ for Zambia & Zimbabwe