Kafue National Park is the second largest national park in the world, and still one of the wildest….with many parts of it still to be discovered. Because there are not many operators in the Park, your experience there will be very special and exclusive, often not seeing any other vehicles whilst out on your activities.
Kafue used to be one of the most famous national parks back in the early days of safaris, up until the 1980’s. Since 2000, after 2 decades of neglect and poaching, it has steadily regained its former reputation, and rightfully so. 10 years later, after a lot of hard work, the introduction of low impact tourism and a close corporation with the Zambia Wildlife Authority, Kafue National Park has truly revived and transformed into one of the most beautiful parks, teeming with wildlife.
The breeding herds of elephant have settled down and the large predators are back in numbers. Among them several prides of lion, cheetah and leopard. Also packs of the endangered wild dog regularly pay a visit. Other animals that you are likely to encounter are buffalo, zebra, hippo and various antelope species like impala, puku, sable, hartebeest, bushbuck, roan and waterbuck.
The diversity of habitat makes Kafue National Park also one of the best locations in Africa for birding. The Kafue River, wetlands, savannah and woodland boast an impressive 478 of Zambia’s 733-recorded bird species. Among them African Wattled and Crowned Crane, Fish Eagle, Woolly-Necked Stork, Saddle Billed Stork, Goliath Heron, Ground Hornbill, African Fin Foot, Pel’s Owl, Purple-Crested Lourie and Chaplin’s Barbet amongst others. Most of them are found on the Busanga Plains in the north of the park. Busanga is a flood plain dotted with small and big islands overgrown with huge palm trees. When the water levels finally drop after the rainy season, Busanga Plains is accessible for three to four months a year. This is a truly spectacular and untouched place. Large pods of hippo live in the rivers and pools. Big herds of wildebeest, lechwe and buffalo roam the plains. They are preyed upon by lion, leopard and cheetah making for exciting game viewing activities. Wilderness Safaris operate a Hot Air Balloon out of their Camps in the Busanga during August – October, and this truly has to be one of the most special experiences, flying early morning over the Busanga Plains, and finishing up with a Champagne breakfast and eggs cooked to order on one of the Islands.