South Luangwa National Park – Home of the Walking Safari
My beautiful home country of Zambia has so much to offer to the traveller, whether you want a city break, lake break or safari break. One of my favourite things to do in Zambia is to get away on safari because living in the city can take its toll on you and I am a bush baby. In this edition I talk about the Mfuwe in South Luangwa safari experience. Out of all the national parks I have visited this is probably my favourite and the main reason is the wildlife. In just 2 or 3 days away in the national park, you’re likely to see lions, leopards, birds, hyenas, leopards, giraffes, elephants and the numerous antelope family animals which is brilliant! Especially if you only have a few days to spare and may not be able to safari for a long time to come, then this is the place to be.
South Luangwa national Park is located in the Eastern province of Zambia and can be reached either by road which will take about 8hrs from the capital city, Lusaka on a decent road until you get into the national park where I would advise you use a 4×4 car or by air from Lusaka which takes 45mins. The cost of flying to Mfuwe is usually quite costly unless you find saver prices, but if you are pressed for time it is worth it. I have both flown and driven down on a road trip which was fun admittedly, but I love the ease of just getting to your destination in a short amount of time.
With both of my visits to Mfuwe, I stayed at Chichele Presidential lodge (which is currently under renovation). I absolutely love it! The first time was a birthday surprise from my now husband and the second time was a visit as guests of the owner, so I have no clue on price, but it is a luxury lodge with pristine rooms, service and food! Occasionally one must treat themselves to a good time. Do note that there are also a few medium budget accommodation options, for example Marula Lodge and Croc Valley lodge. Ultimately, you’re seeing the same thing in the park regardless of where you stay, so don’t be put off even if you are on a budget.
Do note that South Luangwa national park is the pioneer of the walking safari in Zambia so that is something to tick off your list, and the park is also home to the Thornicroft giraffe which is indigenous to the area. Chichele lodge organise morning, afternoon and evening safaris to afford guests the best opportunity to see all the wildlife and I would recommend you go on as many safaris as possible. Different animals have varying sleep patterns etc so you can’t guarantee a sighting of all the animals on your list at the same time.
You’ll also be stuffed throughout your safari experience because as well as having delicious and filling breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner they’ll also have packed food and drinks for you on the safari. I mean, what is better than a G&T on safari watching nature pass you by?!