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Lion at sunset, Busanga Plains, Kafue National Park, Zambia

Landscapes and Wildlife of Kafue National Park

  • TAILOR-MADE HOLIDAY IDEA

Duration

9 Days

Prices Start from

$8,382 ex. flights

Explore Zambia’s largest park, Kafue – a vast but little-visited wilderness. Venture deep into the wilds of this captivating park, spotting plains game, big cats and incredible numbers of birds. Finish with the majestic landscape of the Busanga Plains, where lion prides stalk rare red lechwe.

Key Highlights of this Itinerary

Hippo yawning, Busanga Plains, Kafue National Park, Zambia 1

River Safari

Spot hippos, crocodiles, elephants and numerous birds from the Kafue River.

Busanga Bush Camp Front view of Camp, Kafue National Park, Zambia 2

Busanga Plains

Admire the herds of antelopes and stalking lions on the floodplains of Busanga.

Balloon over Busanga Plains, Kafue National Park, Zambia 3

Balloon Flight

Float silently over the green, watery landscape of the Busanga Plains.

African Wild Dogs, Zambia, Southern Africa 4

African Wild Dogs

Track packs of endangered African wild dogs from Konkamoya Lodge.

Why we like it

Often overlooked in favour of Zambia’s smaller parks, Kafue is a sleeping giant. This journey offers a chance to explore the depths of this fascinating park. Staying at select, small, beautifully positioned camps, discover the hidden treasures of Kafue. The Busanga Plains, with their rich predator population, are an undoubted highlight, but the quieter central and southern sectors of the park offer a very different – and arguably wilder – experience.

Don't forget, we will customise this journey to suit you.

Explore our suggested itinerary

  • Day 1
    Lusaka - Kafue National Park - KaingU Lodge
  • Days 2
    KaingU Lodge
  • Day 3
    KaingU Lodge - Konkamoya Lodge
  • Days 4-5
    Konkamoya Lodge
  • Day 6
    Konkamoya Lodge - Shumba Camp
  • Days 7-8
    Shumba Camp
  • Day 9
    Shumba Camp - Kafue National Park - Lusaka
Kafue River Sunset
Kafue River, Zambia

Central Kafue and the Kafue River

Begin on the eastern fringes of central Kafue, at the beautifully positioned KaingU Lodge. This small, traditional camp sits beside the swirling waters of the Kafue River, with the wild landscape of the park just a boat ride away.

Explore the central portion of the park – carpeted with miombo woodland that is interspersed with rocky stream valleys and dry kopjes – on foot, by boat or in a 4×4. The waters of the river attract thirsty game, including leopards, elephants and hippos.

Puku, Kafue National Park, Zambia
Kafue National Park, Zambia

Southern Kafue and Lake Itezhi-Tezhi

Drive south, along the shores of the man-made Lake Itezhi-Tezhi, to the remote Konkamoya Lodge. Sitting on a promontory that juts out into the lake, it sits amongst mahogany and ebony trees, interspersed with gnarled baobabs.

To the south, some of the wildest, least explored areas of the park can be found. Explore this wilderness, where verdant thickets merge with recovering teak forests. Low granite hills disrupt the landscape, which eventually returns to grasslands, at the very southern tip of the park.

The varied terrain attracts a diversity of wildlife. Spot lions and cheetahs stalking plains game, look out for leopards hiding amongst the rocks, watch herds of pukus flock to the lake and track packs of wild dogs as they hunt their prey.

Lion at dawn, Busanga Plains, Kafue National Park, Zambia
Kafue National Park, Zambia

Northern Kafue and the Busanga Plains

Finish with the park’s most iconic region, the Busanga Plains. These rich floodplains attract an incredible variety of wildlife. Stay at the perfectly placed Shumba Camp, which sits upon a slightly raised island under a canopy of aged fig trees.

Take guided game drives, bush walks and boat trips through this area. Most – if not all – of the park’s 21 antelope species can be spotted here, including rare red lechwes. Consequently, numerous predators, including prides of lions, can be seen stalking this bountiful landscape.

To get an idea of the scale of this enthralling region, take a hot air balloon ride (at an additional cost) over the Busanga Plains. Float silently over the green, watery landscape below; this airborne perspective offers unrivalled views of Kafue.

Accommodation

Below you can see some of the wonderful places we recommend you stay on your journey.

Konkamoya Lodge £££££

  • Zambia
  • Safari and Wildlife Lodge

Konkamoya Lodge lies on the southern shores of Lake Itezhi-Tezhi, positioned on a quiet promontory that juts out into the lake’s calm waters. Looking out towards the sunrise, the camp blends into a patchy sea of mahogany and ebony trees, dotted with ancient baobabs and African spear plants. Accommodation consists of five large tents, all raised on wooden platforms and facing the lake. Constructed from cool green canvas, the tents feature a bedroom, sitting room area and en-suite bathroom with hot and cold running water. The central area of Konkamoya focusses on a pair of large Zambian lapas. These traditional structures are built as communal meeting places. Open sided, they allow views of the star-studded night sky and are warmed by a wood fire.

View Property

KaingU Lodge £££££

  • Zambia
  • Safari and Wildlife Lodge

Positioned on the beautiful slow-moving Kafue River, KaingU Lodge is situated on the eastern edge of Kafue National Park. Traditionally styled, this small camp centres on a thatched boma. Beside this, a redwood deck looks out over the river, shaded by overhanging trees. At night a stone fire pit warms the deck, which is the perfect place for dining, sipping sundowners or simply relaxing. Six Meru-style thatched chalets, with canvas walls, dot the surrounding area. All feature en-suite facilities, as well as stone-built outside showers that face the waters of the Kafue River. The tented chalets sit on raised private decks and are lit by solar-powered lights.

View Property

Shumba Camp £££££

  • Zambia
  • Safari and Wildlife Lodge

Shumba Camp sits at the heart of the Busanga Plains – an area rich in plains game. This beautiful camp stands upon a slightly raised island, encircled by fertile grasslands. A canopy of fig trees shades the tents, with the camp afforded stunning vistas of the surrounding landscape. The camp contains just six luxurious safari tents, each one raised on wooden stilts and featuring a private veranda. The camp centres on an elegant central building, incorporating immaculate wooden decking, comfortable recessed seating and a dramatically positioned plunge pool. Inside the tents, the furnishings incorporate a rustic safari feel. Comfortable sofas are positioned to face the plains, whilst four-poster beds sit upon the smooth wooden floors. All tents feature en-suite bathrooms with hot and cold running water, with hot-water bottles provided on cooler nights.

View Property

A note on price

Prices will vary depending on the time of year you are travelling. Prices do not include international flights. Please ask one of our Travel Experts for an accurate quote. Flights purchased through Steppes Travel departing from the UK are ATOL protected.

This Itinerary
Price
From $8,382 Per person

When to travel

Zambia in January

There are three seasons in Zambia – the cool, dry winter season, the hot, dry summer season and the rainy season, which is in fact even hotter. It will depend on your activity preferences and the destinations in Zambia you are travelling to as to the best time to visit the country.

Zambia in February

Similarly to January, February will experience heavy rainfall throughout the country. Some destinations and accommodation will be open to a variety of outdoor activities, but it should be noted that the majority will remain closed.

Zambia in March

Throughout the winter months, it can be a perfect opportunity for bird watching although some wildlife may be more difficult to spot with the thick vegetation flourishing after the rainy months. You can expect temperatures of 23°C with heavier rainfall at the start of the month.

Zambia in April

As the rainy season comes to an end, both April and May are the best months to visit Victoria Falls, where temperatures are marginally cooler, averaging 21°C and there is less rainfall than previous months.

Zambia in May

Zambia will experience the cool, dry winter season from May until September making it the best time to travel to Zambia as the wildlife is in abundance. Temperatures are pleasant at the beginning and end of this season and there is considerably less rainfall.

Zambia in June

For the best game viewing in Zambia, it is suggested to travel from June to October although safaris are an all-year-round activity. In June temperatures will average 25°C during the daytime and remain cooler through the evening.

Zambia in July

July is one of the peak months to travel to Zambia as temperatures range from 22°C to highs of 30°C. Zambia will experience the least rainfall during July and all accommodation and destinations throughout the country will be fully open, with opportunities to partake in all the activities.

Zambia in August

From June to September, Zambia will experience its peak season as it can be one of the best times to visit the country when both travelling for the wildlife viewings and to see Victoria Falls. It is a popular time to travel to Zambia and so accommodation should be booked well in advance.

Zambia in September

During the month of September, temperatures will begin to rise and can reach highs of 28°C in certain regions of the country. Like July and August, September can be an ideal month for safaris in Zambia, with higher chances of regular wildlife viewings on game drives.

Zambia in October

During the months of October and November, Zambia will experience the hot, dry season, particularly in the river valleys of the Zambezi and Luangwa where it will become very hot. Game drives during the day can sometimes become uncomfortable due to the humidity and high temperatures.

Zambia in November

As the dry season comes to an end in the months of October and November, water levels are low and so can be an ideal time to visit Zambia to see the magnificent rock formations yet not the most ideal time to visit Victoria Falls, which is better viewed in April and May.

Zambia in December

From the month of December until April, Zambia experiences the rainy season, which is in fact much hotter than the summer months of October and November. Temperatures can rise to highs of 28°C in December and as rainfall becomes more regular, Zambia will start to experience the lush, green vegetation – harder for spotting wildlife!

Holiday Inspiration

Our experts have created and curated these tailor-made holiday ideas to get you started. Take the time to search through them and find something that is the spark for your unique adventure.

Why Choose Steppes?

Our knowledge and expertise sets us apart. So too our curiosity. A curiosity of the world and of you, and your passions. It is this that drives us to create a journey that is really bespoke to you.

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