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We’re all looking forward to a brand new decade. But before we say goodbye to 2019, it’s time to celebrate the good things in life. So, in true Zambezi style, we have a handful of news snippets and safari nuggets from Africa to share with family and friends.
And, top of our Christmas list – Peace and stability across Africa
- Peace and stability have been created all across Africa by African Parks, an NGO which works tirelessly to turn around ‘problem’ parks and create peaceful and stable environments for both humans and wildlife. From Chad to Congo, Malawi to Mozambique – in 11 countries and 16 parks they have re-introduced crucial species such as black rhino, elephant and cheetah
- In addition they’ve stopped poaching and created jobs and schools. We’ve visited their HQ in Chad and seen the incredible turnaround there for ourselves. Now we’re thrilled that they have a 20 year contract to help Matusadona National Park turning it into a leading safari destination. Always a Zambezi favourite, the park is going to provide sanctuary for black rhino once again.
- To read more about African Parks and the work they do read our Chad blog. To visit their parks …. speak to the Zambezi elves!
- Rumours of a dry Victoria Falls are untrue, take it from us… the same reports do the rounds every year and although water levels are low, it’s now raining. So if you haven’t visited Victoria Falls – you must! It’s the hottest safari ticket in town.
- Malawi have been ‘gifted’ 500 elephant and four more cheetahs to Majete National Park. And that’s in addition to four previously to Liwonde and the reintroduction of lion. Malawi is once again a Big 5 destination. With its famously friendly people and clear blue lake, Malawi is a wonderfully quiet safari and beach destination.
- Rwanda has received 5 black rhino into Akagera National Park – with the re-introduction of lion earlier, Rwanda is the only African country where you can view the Big 5, Gorillas and Chimpanzees in a week.
Goodbye to 2019
A 2019 news round up from a few of the Zambezi team in the UK and Africa
Mark Pearson has just returned from a 2 week self drive in Namibia , quite a road trip from Swakopmund to Hoanib where he reports that the Hoanib River is flowing again! He also spent time with the Himba people. Look out for Mark’s report and photos in January. In the meantime, here’s a little taste of what’s to come…
Many of you will know Liz Ferreira. Liz sends seasons greetings from a sunny, hot Kariba in Zimbabwe and she’s had quite a few visitors! “One of the highlights of my year was having a lioness on the low wall by our swimming pool one night at 11pm. It was terrifying and amazing at the same time. This was the first time we’ve had a lion in our garden! Elephants, baboons, bush babies, duiker and mongoose are fairly common with the odd leopard, but never a lion! At last, it’s raining and the dry, brown bush veld is turns to a lush green overnight. The transformation is truly one of mother natures miracles. So the elephants have moved to higher ground and the baboons are no longer raiding our kitchens!” Discover Zimbabwe in 2020.
Amanda De Simone in Chad. “My highlight of the year has to be Chad! And the catchphrase of the trip “No shaggy animals in Zakouma” may have been true but I came home with some of the best memories of elephants and lion chasing buffalo in the camp; sundowners by one of the pans with a huge herd of buffalo and hyenas nearby and finally visiting African Parks HQ. But there were funny moments too… especially the turban tying lessons which had us tied up in knots! And going out on the town in N’Djamena to find that the whole city had been partying all weekend and the liveliest joint was empty with no band! Finally to Harrogate… It was my first time visiting Harrogate for the Safari Show. What a beautiful city! Everyone was so friendly and it was great meeting new people and talking about safaris.” Look out for our 2020 show schedule.
What’s hot in 2020 – some diary dates you won’t want to miss…
- 18 April 2020; 25 April 2020; 17 April 2021; 24 April 2021 – Explore Zakouma – it exceeds all expectations! Join our very own Chris Worden, expert naturalist guide on the safari experience of a lifetime!
- 6-14 September 2020 – first come first served in Zimbabwe – away from the main tourist routes. – Ancient history, wilderness and wildlife.
- For the ultimate big game, scenery, cultural and birding trip, all in one… sign up for our 13 nights Big 5 Luxury safari to Zimbabwe, Zambia and Botswana.
- Don’t forget the Congo – not your standard African safari! But a journey into the remote rainforests of the Congo Basin to trek gorillas – a must for keen photographers. Not for first-timers!
- Join our small group guided safari to discover the wilderness and wildlife of Namibia. Running throughout 2020, between 2 and 7 guests can experience this fragile environment from the coast to the iconic red dunes of Sossusvlei and beyond.
- One of the best game experiences – visit the iconic Victoria Falls and Hwange National Park – as popular as ever!
- Push the boat out in Botswana, home to prolific wildlife, unspoilt wildernesses and top notch professional guiding.
- Zambezi Safari & Travel 2020 photographic competition, look our for details in our next newsletter
and hot every year – migration madness
The migration is always ‘hot’! The wildebeest attract the crowds, so timing and location is everything when planning a successful migration safari. Here’s where the elves can help! For other epic migrations yet without the crowds then you should consider visiting Nxai Pans and Liuwa Plains.
Rupert Finch-Hatton added Hoopoe guide Tito’s clip of the migration crossing near Kogatende (Serengeti, Tanzania) during the September equinox.
So if you’re planning to explore Africa’s remote places in 2020, perhaps to see lion, elephant, fauna, flora and everything in between then take a peek at some reliable blog material
- “going beyond the obvious” – how to plan an extraordinary safari for first timers and seasoned travellers
- our “secret seasons” – how to beat the crowds and get the best possible deals
- going “beyond luxury on safari“, or more correctly how to go about getting some honest African dirt between your toes
- Luxury on safari is easy – getting the full experience is about being in the right places, at the right time, with the right people!
- Meet some people making the difference on your safari
Some holiday fun to share
It’s time for a workout!
Andy Hogg shows how the Mfuwe elephants deal with an itch!
The elephants in the room
Every year between late October and mid December in the Luangwa Valley, Mfuwe Lodge elephants stick around camp and use the lobby to get at their favourite wild mango fruits. Here’s another from Andy Hogg…
So we hope you’ve all had a great year. As for us? We think it’s been a roaring success!