Falling in love with Zambia's Lower Zambezi
Home to Victoria Falls (the magnificent waterfall that is shared with neighbouring country, Zimbabwe), Zambia is brimming with wildlife and believed to be the ‘pioneer’ of the walking safari. Zambia is a true paradise for nature lovers, as those who have visited will agree.
The country resembles ‘Botswana when it was less commercial’. These were Sandra’s words when she returned wide-eyed and swooning from her trip to African Bush Camps’ new Lolebezi Safari Lodge in the Lower Zambezi. This is where the Zambezi River slows, expands and transforms into a tranquil haven for all types of birds, fish and animals such as tigerfish, waterbuck, kudu and spoonbills. According to Sandra, Zambia is wild. It’s the untouched wilderness that many tourists are seeking.
But what do we mean by ‘wild’? Sandra explains it well: You’re the only game vehicle at wildlife sightings. You wake up in the mornings and there are impala and baboons drinking from your private pool and there are elephants blocking the common areas at the lodge. It feels as if you can reach out your hand and touch the wilderness.
Sounds simply blissful, doesn’t it? Read on for more insights from Sandra on her recent adventures in Zambia.
HOW DID YOU GET TO LOLEBEZI?
I left Cape Town at 05h45 and arrived at 16h00 at the lodge. I flew from Cape Town to Johannesburg and then on to Lusaka. My last flight was to the Jeki airstrip, which is a 30-minute drive from the lodge. It’s definitely best to fly directly from Johannesburg if at all possible!
WHAT DOES LOLEBEZI LOOK LIKE?
Lolebezi is set along the Zambezi River and is ideal for solo travellers, couples and families with children over the age of 10. All the wooden walkways are solid and brand new, and the architecture is modern with classic finishes. Inside, you’ll find six rooms with two family suites.
The public areas have a bush feel but with a modern edge. For example, the ceiling is decorated in woven rugs and there are banana leaf curtains. All the rooms have air-conditioning (you need it—it’s hot out there!), and the mosquito net has a ring light around it, which certainly comes in handy.
The sunsets are simply breathtaking.
An added bonus is that there are elephants everywhere in the park, and they happily walk around the lodge. Talk about getting close to nature!
HOW ARE THE GAME DRIVES IN THE LOWER ZAMBEZI?
At Lolebezi, they will only take six guests at a time in the 4×4 vehicle, and the game viewing is phenomenal! An example of an amazing sighting was seeing a leopard carrying a dead impala up into a tree. The animals really do come up close. The guides are renowned for their expertise, and they even converted me into an avid birder!
HOW DO YOU EXPLAIN THE BEAUTY OF LOWER ZAMBEZI?
It’s remote with only a few lodges, so even when you fly in, you can see the vastness of the wilderness.
WHAT ACTIVITIES ARE THERE FOR THE GUESTS TO DO DURING THE DAY?
It’s fantastic for foodies—tasty brunches and lunches await. There are motorised boats with swivel chairs for the photographers, and catch and release fishing is on offer. In the mornings, we went for game drives and in the evenings, we enjoyed the epic Zambian sunsets.
WHO IS THIS FOR?
Anyone looking to experience Zambia in all its glory, especially honeymooners looking for an intimate, secluded escape.
Republished with permission from GiltEdge