Lower Zambezi

The Lower Zambezi is one of the most attractive & rewarding safari destinations in Zambia.


A Lower Zambezi safari is magical, not only for its beauty and wildlife, but because of the sheer range of game-viewing activities. Safaris takes place on foot, in open 4×4 vehicles, by boat and, most characteristically, by canoe. You can glide silently among animals quenching their thirst at the river. But without disturbing them. Tiger-fishing on a catch and release basis is also an enjoyable, if sometimes frustrating, option to try out.

The Lower Zambezi National Park lies on the northern banks of the magnificent Zambezi River in Zambia. The Zambezi River offers a natural boundary on one side (with 120 km of river frontage). With a dramatic wooded escarpment on the other. This escarpment not only provides a picturesque backdrop for your photos but, more pertinently, it’s a natural break on wildlife movements.

Beautiful stands of leadwood, ebony and fig trees lie In between the floodplains. Under these trees the bush is relatively sparse. So in practical terms, this means game-viewing is a little easier. Thus a Lower Zambezi safari offers some of the best game-viewing in Southern Africa. Especially in the dry season (June to October). When this rich and mesmerizing river is a particularly vital source of water for wildlife.

Lower Zambezi safari - canoeing

Great herds of elephant, buffalo and impala, and small groups of warthog, zebra and baboon are drawn to the river. Excellent tiger fishing is also available on a catch and release basis. Birding is superb in the Lower Zambezi with over 500 species recorded here.

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Why you may love it

  • Excellent predator sightings especially lion and leopard.
  • Huge herds of elephant and buffalo & hippo pods galore.
  • Romantic safari destination, perfect for honeymoons.
  • Canoe excursions on the Zambezi’s channels.
  • Boat cruises at sunset.

When to visit Lower Zambezi

Mid-Nov to mid-April

Summer Rainy season in Lower Zambezi

Most of the Lower Zambezi is closed for safari visitors during the summer rainy season as the Zambezi River spills out over its floodplain where the camps are located. A few of the lodges focused on fishing remain open but activities are confined to boat-based game-viewing and fishing

Mid-April to May

Safari season in Lower Zambezi

This is the start of the safari season in the Lower Zambezi. The landscape is still green and lush but the grass is still quite long so game-viewing is a little tricky. The sunsets are superb as the skies are clearer. This is quite a mosquito time of year so ensure you have taken malaria prophylactics and cover up at night. Because of this, safari prices are keen during this time.

June to August

Dry season in Lower Zambezi

Traditionally this is the best time to visit as the dry season continues. The bush becomes less dense and the animals flock to the Zambezi River to drink. The days are sunny and dry and the Malaria risk declines as there are fewer mosquitos around. But the park, being relatively small can get a little busy by Zambian standards. Note that June is often a time of slightly lower safari prices still so it could be a good option of you are on a budget.

September to mid-Nov

Very hot prior to summer rains in Lower Zambezi

It is hot, hot, hot in late September and October prior to the start of the summer rains. October is known as suicide month here! So make sure you are comfortable with heat! Game-viewing remains very good though the very high temperatures in late October make for uncomfortable game-viewing and some distressed animals.

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Tasha Eygelaar

Africa Travel Specialist

Hi I'm Tasha, I'm here to help you plan your ideal holiday experience
Did you know
  • HistoryWas the President's private reserve until 1983
  • LocationOpposite bank of Zimbabwe's Mana Pool National Park

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