Zambia covers 750,000km square and sits squarely between the tropics. Most of the country is part of a high undulating plateau, deeply incised by the great valleys of the Zambezi, Kafue, Luangwa and Luapula rivers. Due to the country’s altitude and rainfall, the climate is moderate, largely avoiding the tense heat normally associated with the tropics.
Formerly Northern Rhodesia, independence came to Zambia in 1964. The country was declared a one-party state in 1972 only reverting to multi-party politics in December 1990. The peoples of Zambia numbering about 12 million, are acclaimed for their charmingly hospitable dispositions and are represented by 72 distinct tribes.
Comparatively late in developing its tourist industry, Zambia is blessed with vast tracts of pristine wilderness and has successfully retained an authentic essence of the wild – beautiful and slightly unpredictable. The natural environment is predominantly a mosaic of large and small miombo woodlands, interspersed with open, verdant spaces. The interior is dominated by Lake Bangweulu and surrounding floodplains, the site at which Livingstone finally hung up his hat allowing Africa to retain his heart and spirit.
Zambia has the largest water resources in Southern Africa – massive lakes, magnificent cascades and plentiful rivers yielding lush natural vegetation capable of supporting high densities of game. A profusion of 750 bird species, resident and migrant, makes Zambia a birdwatchers paradise. The many protected wildlife areas offer excellent habitats for herds of elephant and buffalo as well as other predators. Leopards do exceptionally well here. Zambia’s herbivores are particularly fascinating for the range of endemic races that have evolved over time due to isolation from neighboring populations.
Zambia is one of Africa’s safari gems, relatively underdeveloped and unexplored, where the true spirit of safari is alive and well. This land of the authentic ‘walking safari’ accentuates the feeling of stepping back into a lost Africa.