A truly wild African adventure to Zambia's premier South Luangwa National Park, one of the finest wildlife havens on the planet.
The first few days on safari are spent exploring South Luangwa Park on open 4x4 game drives with expert guides while staying at a charming tented camp near the park. Then this affordable Tented Camping Safaris takes you on extensive game walks in scenic South Luangwa, the birthplace of African walking safaris. We embark on game walks to our remote bush camps with porters carrying your luggage and armed guides leading the way, enabling you to experience the untamed bush on foot, getting up close to the abundant wildlife and birds of this pristine ecosystem.
This incredible wildlife and wilderness journey includes accommodation at the exclusive camps, all meals, road transfers, game drives and bush walks, optional cultural excursions and return flights between Lusaka and Mfuwe.
At the start of this Budget South Luangwa Safari, you fly from Lusaka to Mfuwe, near South Luangwa National Park in Zambia. Your safari guide collects you from the Mfuwe airport and transfers you to the nearby camp.
If you arrive at camp during the morning then there is time for you to have lunch and settle into your luxury tent. For those arriving later, we have tea in the courtyard at about 15h30 before embarking on our first wildlife adventure. At about 16h00 we head into South Luangwa Park in an open 4x4 safari vehicle, ready to encounter African animals and birds in the wild.
At sunset, we stop in a scenic spot to enjoy sundowners in the bush. After witnessing our first dramatic sunset we climb back into the vehicle and carry on with our game drive. Using a spotlight to find nocturnal species we make our way back to the camp, listening out for animal and bird calls as the darkness deepens.
Back at the tented camp by about 20h00, we have dinner in the thatch-roofed restaurant or outdoors, then you are free to relax in the bar or retire to your comfortable safari tent.
Over the next few days, we explore the untamed South Luangwa National Park on early morning game drives (and/or optional game walks in the dry season) and on sunset game drives that last into the night.
Mornings get off to an early start, kicking off with a light breakfast served at about 05h30. The light breakfast is your choice of tea or coffee with cereal and toast.
By 06h00 we are onboard our open game viewer, venturing through the African bush! Mornings are ideal for game viewing, so keep your cameras ready for interesting sightings in the soft morning light. Alternatively, you can set off on a guided game walk in South Luangwa (in season) or do a combination game walk and drive, split into two hours of game viewing by vehicle and two on foot. Whether you decide to walk or drive the expert guides are there to ensure your safety every step of the way and help make the most of your time in the wilderness. Drawing on years of experience in the national park, the guides are able to identify animal calls, tracks, scat and other signs of activity, using their skills and knowledge to track down wildlife and birds. Your qualified guides share their insights and interesting facts about the Zambian bush and its inhabitants with you, adding to your unique adventures!
At about 10h00 we return to the tented camp for brunch, consisting of a good selection of tasty breakfast and lunch style dishes. Brunch is followed by leisure time at camp, leaving you free to nap, swim or sit back and relax in nature. Later, after tea at the camp, we set off into the bush again.
We venture into the wild habitat of South Luangwa Park on a sunset game drive in our open 4x4 vehicle, eyes open for roaming animals and darting birds. Along the way, we stop to marvel at the serene sunset, sipping on cold drinks as the colours of the sky and surrounding bushveld intensify and then fade into darkness. Then we drive back to camp, game viewing with a spotlight en route. Scan the bush carefully as night falls and you may be rewarded with nocturnal sightings of leopards, lions, porcupines, genet and civet cats, owls and hyenas. At about 20h00 we have a hearty dinner at the camp restaurant and spend the remainder of the evening unwinding beside the campfire or at the bar.
If you are interested in the local culture and rural life in this remote part of Zambia, visits to the nearby Mfuwe village can be arranged. Such visits typically include a stop at the Luangwa Community & Conservation Fund, where the local anti-poaching unit and community projects are based.
On day four we are up early, luggage packed and ready to set off for our next camp by 06h00. Driving to our next camp through South Luangwa National Park, we watch for wildlife action along the way.
At about 10h00 we reach the rendezvous point where we meet up with the new camp's guides and the porters who will carry your luggage from here. Depending on the day you either walk from the meeting place to the first bush camp or you are ferried further along the river by boat and then cover the last stretch to the second bush camp on foot. The order of our stay at the bush camps is determined by availability and may thus change. Either way, both of the remote bush camps can only be accessed on foot, so the last leg of the journey entails walking through the bush.
An official, armed scout of South Luangwa National Park escorts you through the bush, along with your guide and porters. Walking to camp you get your first taste of being in immersed in the wilderness, without being weighed down by your baggage. You need only carry a few essentials - camera, hat, sunscreen.
Arriving at the first camp, there is time for you to settle in and take a short rest. Later on, we venture out into the bush on an afternoon game walk. We return to camp by dusk for sundowners, followed by dinner under the stars. Dinner is a delicious barbecue style meal, cooked over an open fire by your skilled bush chefs.
Waking up early the following morning, you can watch the sunrise over the waterhole, watching for wildlife and birds. Then we depart on our four-hour game walk in the wild African bushveld. We walk during the cool hours of the early morning, avoiding the hottest part of the day. The walk is conducted at an easy pace, enabling you to tune into the details of the bush. Your guides stop to show you interesting sights and tell you more about the fascinating flora and fauna of the micro-ecosystems around us. During our bush walk, we break for tea and coffee, prepared on the open fire. Soak up the unspoilt bush surroundings as you sip on your refreshing tea or coffee, giving your legs a rest. Plenty of drinking water is provided on the walk, so you can keep well-hydrated.
As the heat subsides this afternoon we continue our walk, keeping an eye out for the animals that begin to stir as the day cools down. We explore the area on foot, returning to camp by dusk. Settle down around the cosy campfire before falling asleep in the middle of the undisturbed wilderness.
This morning we walk to our next bush camp, arriving in time for a tasty brunch.
The porters carry your luggage from one camp to the next, leaving you free to enjoy your morning walk unburdened. After brunch at the riverside camp, you can settle into your elevated chalet, where your luggage awaits. The chalets are set amid the trees, raised about three metres in the canopy, providing sweeping views over the surrounding plains.
Take it easy at camp, resting in your treehouse and enjoying the beautiful views. Later in the afternoon, as temperatures begin to fall, we head back out on a game walk. Immersed in the game-rich African bush, we discover a new area of South Luangwa, marvelling at the unique ecosystems encountered up close.
We walk back to the bush camp and watch another blissful African sunset with sundowners in hand. In the evening we have a final dinner together, relaxing around the campfire under the stars.
Today we head out on one more early morning game walk in South Luangwa.
Our last walk takes us to the meeting point, where you are ferried across the river to the transfer vehicle. You are then driven back to the airport in Mfuwe to catch your flight back to Lusaka, capital of Zambia.
National park entry fees are subject to alteration by the Department of National Parks and Wildlife and thus may increase without notice. Any increases in the park fees are not included in the tour price.
This South Luangwa Walking & Wildlife Safari is ideal as an add-on to our short Victoria Falls Safaris, making an affordable and easy combination adventure. We highly recommend our Victoria Falls Adventure Tour Package (Zambia), or our Victoria Falls Budget Tour Package (Zimbabwe), for either before or after your South Luangwa Safari.
Our tented camp near South Luangwa offers comfortable camping accommodation in luxury safari tents. The camp is located near Mfuwe, just outside South Luangwa Park, on the banks of the Luangwa River. The tented camp is surrounded by natural habitat and has its own restaurant, bar, outdoor seating areas and swimming pool.
The safari tents have en-suite bathrooms that partially open out onto the bushveld surroundings. The bathrooms are fitted with hot showers, flushing toilets and basins. The rooms consist of walk-in canvas tents with large windows on three sides, all with screens to keep insects out, whilst immersing you in the wild setting. These spacious tents feature small deck areas looking out over the Luangwa River, where roaming wildlife and birds are commonly sighted.
Furnishings include beds with linen and overhead mosquito nets, bedside tables with lamps, safes and a hanging rack for clothes. The rooms have self-service stations for making tea and coffee. There are also electric power points (plug sockets) for charging batteries, as well as electric lights and fans for your comfort.
The remote bushcamp accommodation used on the walking safari days lies deep in the bush and is only accessible on foot. Both of these secluded camps offer an intimate bush experience, fully immersed in nature, but with some comforts and lots of charm. The camps cater for at most six guests, keeping the atmosphere personal and exclusive.
One of the bush camps features en-suite chalets raised up in the trees, providing beautiful views over the acacia-studded plains. The other features chalets nestled in a grove of ebony trees, overlooking a waterhole. The chalets are built of natural materials, blending in with the bush around them. The en-suite bathrooms have flush toilets and showers. Hot water is provided upon request.
The morning walks last for about four hours setting off early to beat the heat and stopping often so that you can take in the details of the wild ecosystems. Along the way, you break for snacks and tea, which the camp's tea-bearer carries and prepares in the bush. The afternoon walks are shorter and leave camp after tea at 15h30, returning before dusk.
Excellent 4-day Victoria Falls Budget Adventure Package (Zimbabwean side of Vic Falls) with hotel accommodation. Enjoy a Zambezi River Sunset Cruise, canoeing trip, Chobe National Park Safari, helicopter flight and village tour.
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