Zambia

Capital:
Lusaka

Currency
Kwacha

Best time to visit:
The climate varies according to the region, but the ideal times to leave are the so-called middle seasons (March, April and September to November) when the heat remains within acceptable temperatures.

In a word:
Muli shani (good morning)

Vaccines
Recommended Antitific, Prophylaxis Antimalarial (chloroquine-resistant)

Essential experiences:
Live a day in game drive, both day and night, in South Lwangwa NP; Admire Victoria Falls from the sparkling Livingstone; Immerse yourself in the chaos of everyday life in the capital Lusaka

Truck adventure

Truck journey in the footsteps of Livingstone; safaris in South Lwangwa NP will make you fall hopelessly in love with this land and its nature

In this great adventure we rented a truck 4 × 4 in Johannesburg, South Africa and slowly we began the journey north to the mighty Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe crossing boundless landscapes, savannas, rivers, still virgin islands and some of the most beautiful parks in all of Africa. We will sleep almost every night in tents, we will cook using our camping kitchen.
In Zambia we let ourselves be lulled by the slow and wonderful rhythm of their days marked by the movement of the sun; we immersed ourselves in its most vivid nature by falling in love with one of its most important national parks: South Lwangwa NP to the vibrant border town of Livingstone embellished by Victoria Falls!

Our suggested itinerary (10 days)

three days:

South Luangwa NP (day and night game drive)

three days:

Chipata, Lusaka 

three days:

Livingstone (visit to Victoria Falls)

one day:

Transfer to Zimbabwe or Botswana overland

06 october South Lwangwa NP (Zambia)

Malawi is just over our shoulders.

His flag waving greeted the disappointment painted on our faces.
Yet it happened!
Bribes that move the world.
The careful customs guards of the Malawi-Zambia border noticed an irregularity on our visa, duly paid: some had a visa for 14 days, others for seven ... yet we had all bought the visa together upon entering Malawi ... How come some had a different validity? The thing smells like cheating! Stupid and naive we who had not checked! 

We discuss, explain, try to make our good faith understood but after an hour of negotiations the policeman shamelessly asks for 50 euros to turn a blind eye ...  

Our tired truck trudges along the dusty dirt roads of Zambia, every now and then the engine sobs until it decides to abandon us.
We are in the middle of nowhere, in an unspecified place in Zambia, along an uninhabited and sandy road ...

The red dust rises to the sky and fills the air ...
It colors our khaki T-shirts and shirts and soak our nostrils ...

Suddenly, dozens of children with torn clothes come out of nowhere, curious ...
It doesn't happen every day that ten white people stop with a big and strange truck in front of their huts!

Fannie swears while untangling between one part of the engine and the other ...
Stefy and I take the opportunity, after having made some friends with the children, to visit their huts ...
A hut of mud and straw inside which there is a blanket lying on the bare ground, two pairs of flip-flops, some pots and some clothes attached to the wall ... a child is asleep ... the landlady asks us for a photo with her four children ...
He smiles showing the upper incisors that she does not have... she is 25 years old, she looks 40 ...  

There are some children with beautiful facial features. I look at them, I observe them and inside me I feel sad thinking about their difficult future ...

At 16-17 they will already have a couple of children with another poor Christ from their village, they will build a small hut of straw and mud and begin to survive alone ...

Fannie is stained with grease and oil.
The thermometer of my watch shows 42.2 ° ...

I see mirages of frozen Coke cans everywhere ...

Our truck just doesn't want to depart.
A truck carrying corn stops; pulls us for $ 50 ...  

40 km on the trailer of a truck sitting on sacks of grain…  

I still had in my eyes, in my heart and in my mind the time spent with those people in their little world.
I thought of the woman to whom I had given a soap and whose first action had been to bite into it believing that it was eating or the joy of the child in discovering that the toy car I had given him was actually a pencil sharpener!

South Luangwa National Park is truly picturesque!
A tall giraffe walks next to us ... just five minutes to set up the tents we are already in the jeep for the night safari with Wilson and Said!

We are exhausted from the long day but as soon as the sun sets we immerse ourselves 100% in the life of the savannah ...

What an emotion!
Wilson points the spot light on an immense plain ... slowly various antelopes and impalas appear as in a show ... who grazes, who rests, who watches us curiously ... suddenly a spotted hyena appears cautiously ... head down, looks around and heads for the impalas ... the herd thins out in seconds ...

We drive around with our jeep for hours, we meet crocodiles, elephants, hippos, monkeys until along a small road, hidden between two bushes, I see a spot different from all the others ...
Said and Wilson go on indifferent ... I make the jeep stop ...
We go back a bit and a wonderful specimen of leopard appears before our amazed eyes!

A few hours later at dinner we do nothing but tell us our feelings!

"Beware tonight!” - the Dutch Eef who works in the Park tells us: “hippos and elephants usually walk near our tents, don't go out”!

Instead I decide to sleep in the open with Stefy and Anna.
The sky is super starry, there is a cool breeze that caresses your face, the soundtrack is taken care of by the hippos swimming a few meters from us ...

The night everything changes! It is as if the animal kingdom takes possession of its kingdom again. Some braver impalas venture too close to the river to drink, hoping not to end up in the mouth of the crocodile on duty ...

I stay chatting until 2.30 am when I hear noises not far from my shoulders ... I click and point the flashlight. I only notice four eyes watching me ... I can't understand what animal it is ... Moments of thrill until the ranger arrives and we discover that they were two frightened impalas who came to take refuge there to escape a leopard sighted not far away ...
However, he advises us to change places because of a cobra that occasionally emerged right there ...

Everyone in the pool! Struggling with mosquitoes we collapse for an hour, just long enough to admire a wonderful sunrise!

07 october Chipata (Zambia)

We leave very early for the safari in South Luangwa National Park!

This is without doubt the best nature park visited so far.
Thanks to the skill of our friend Said, we are able to meet all the most well-known animals but even to photograph them from a few meters away!

Hyenas devouring a buffalo carcass, warthogs, baboons, zebras, giraffes, hippos, elephants and even 5 lionesses!

In the afternoon we return to Chipata, not far from the border with Malawi.
There is a small pool and while we relax to soak ... we notice a lot of military and bodyguards ... shortly after the president of the republic: chubby, classic black trousers and white shirt, greets us as he passes, he is going to the funeral distant relative in the town that hosts us today!

08 october Lusaka (Zambia)

Capitals, a bit like borders, always fascinate me.
Maybe every time I think about it, I see myself as an elementary school child sitting on the bed in my room with my father who asks me about all the capitals of the world ...

That's why every time I set foot in a capital I almost have the feeling of knowing it for a lifetime!

Lusaka has been disappointing!

Urban traffic, smog, high rises, western shops, "musungu" everywhere! Shopping at Spar among Western products, well-dressed people ... where has my Africa gone?

09 october Livingstone (Zambia)

Livingstone is a small town on the border with Zimbabwe and 60 km from the Botswana.

A bit too westernized for my tastes ...

We go to the discovery of the Victoria Falls!

Unfortunately, the water flow is minimal, considering the time of year: we are in the dry season! Furthermore, from Zambia you can only have a limited view, which is why a little disappointed, despite the somewhat excessive costs, I decide, with Stefy, to cross the border and enter the Zimbabwe, the last stage of this unforgettable adventure in Africa!

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