Zambia 2011 - Mutinondo Wilderness & Kasanka National Park

We'd been told that the northern part of the Great North Road in Zambia was slow going because of potholes - and discovered this to be true as many of them couldn't be avoided. The road edges were also in a bad state so passing lorries wasn't a pleasant experience - and there were lots of lorries as this is the main road to Tanzania.

we also saw plenty of broken down lorries, I reckon that about 10% of the lorries that we passed were breakdowns.

Skid marks in the road often warned us of potholes.... this one.

We stopped at Mpika, the first town that we'd passed through since crossing the border, intending to get some cash so that we could buy fuel. However neither of the ATMs that we tried worked - we tried 3 different cards as well. We decided that we had enough fuel to visit Mutinondo and Kasanka (once again we were glad that we'd got a second fuel tank) and hoped that we'd be able to pay for our accommodation with US dollars - which we were. We eventually got fuel at Mkushi, we put 100 litres in the tank which didn't fill it!

Mutinondo Wilderness

This a relatively new enterprise 25km from the Great North Road. We went to the lodge and then decided to camp at their wilderness camp (S12 23.498 E31 19.383) rather than the one at the lodge.

In retrospect we should have stayed at the lodge as the all the walking trails started there.

The reserve consists of indigenous miombo woodland with occasional granite iselbergs and dombas (swampy areas)


A domba in the foreground with a couple of granite inselbergs in the background.

We had the wilderness camp to ourselves and were helped by Harrison who looks after the camp - he brought us water from the river and wood for our fire.

We went on a short walk from the camp to these rapids.

Kasanka National Park

We had a lovely campsite at Pontoon camp (S12 34.387 E30 14.084) in the Kasanka National Park overlooking a river and dam.. There were always puku around the grassy areas and also saw some warthog. There were also plenty of birds about.

Puku grazing near the campsite.

Shongololas are very common - they're like a big centipede.

Huge sacks of charcoal for sale at the side of the road are a common sight in Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique. The problem is that massive amounts of woodland is being destroyed in order d to produce this charcoal. We used wood and charcoal for cooking but try to be economical with it and rarely buy these bags as they are too big for us to carry.

We saw plenty of other items for sale at the roadside.

Making a wooden door

Pigs for sale.

We stopped at Kabwe for cash and to buy provisions as I'd seen on the GPS that there was a Shoprite there. On returning to the Prado I noticed a pool of liquid under the engine...... not a good sight at 2pm on a Friday afternoon. However we were very lucky as Casey, a local pastor, came to our aid and phoned a guy he knew. We were able to buy a water pump at a nearby shop and were then towed to a workshop where they replaced the damaged water pump and we were on our way by 5pm!!

Travelling to Malawi:

Botswana - Nata bird sanctuary & Senyati.

Victoria Falls from the Zambian side.

South Luangwa National Park.

Travelling back from northern Malawi:

Kapishya Hot Springs & Shiwa Ng'andu.

Mutinondo Wilderness Area and Kasanka National Park.

Diary (Word document).

Getting the water pump replaced.



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