Zambia 2011 - South Luangwa National Park

From Livingstone we travelled north to Lusaka and then north-east to Chipata which is close to the Malawi border.

On the way there were lots of roadside stalls selling a wide range of foods.

We stopped at a couple of good places on the way to Chitipa, firstly at The Moorings Campsite (S16 11.624 E27 32.600) for a night and then Pioneer Camp (S15 23.766 E28 27.038) just East of Lusaka - it took us an hour to drive through Lusaka because to the amount of traffic.

We passed a lorry that had shed one of its paraffin containers. There were lots of people there with plastic drums scooping up the spilt paraffin - some of them just using their hands.

After a night near Chipata at Mama Rula's (S13 34.939 E32 36.591) we headed for South Luangwa National Park. According to the tourist brochure I'd picked up it was ' 120km on a good gravel road' - well that might have been the case a few years ago but it took us 4 hours to cover the 120km as there were lots of roadworks followed by long stretches with potholes( which were filled with water so it was impossible to know how deep they were) and areas of standing water.

We stayed at Croc Valley Camp (S13 06.010 E31 47.644) which is just outside the entrance to South Luangwa National Park and is right next to the Luangwa River. We were the only people camping there.



Sunset over the Luangwa River.

As we'd been told that many of the of the tracks in the Park were impassable after the rains we went on a morning drive with the Croc Valley tour and were lucky enough to see wild dogs, which are very rare nowadays.

Much of the Park had dense vegetation but there were a couple of area where it was more open.


Puku - similar to impala but chunkier.

One day we did go into the Park on our own but just kept to the main track and I spent lots of time trying to photograph birds

Our best sighting was of this eagle owl with its prey.

Crowned cranes.

After visiting South Luangwa we stopped at Mama Rula's again. On our second visit we were surprised to see lots of police cars outside the Lodge. We later discovered that the Zambian President, Rupiah Banda, was staying there for a few nights.

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 '97 document).

In the evening he spent several hours in the bar watching a UK football match on a huge screen on the back of a lorry. Kevin introduced us to the President and asked if we could have a photo - he duly obliged.


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