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Updated by Joanna James on Feb 27, 2020
Headline for Top 5 National Parks to Visit in Zambia – Explore Africa’s Wildest Corners
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Joanna James Joanna James
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Top 5 National Parks to Visit in Zambia – Explore Africa’s Wildest Corners

There are certain iconic scenes that spring to mind whenever the African bush is brought up – from sprawling plains full of herds of wildebeest to the scenes of a lion pride on the hunt. If you're in the mood for the quintessential African safari, here are the top five national parks in Zambia.

1

Kafue National Park

Encompassing an area the size of Wales, Kafue is Zambia's oldest national park and among the largest in the world, surpassing even the famed Kruger National Park of South Africa. Its massive size means there are a variety of landscapes within the park, from seemingly endless grassland to dense shrub forests and lush floodplains. These biomes are often teeming with wildlife and herds of hartebeest, zebra and African buffalo are a common sight. Kafue National Park is also one of the best sites to catch a glimpse of Africa's popular spotted cats – the cheetah and leopard.

2

Lower Zambezi National Park

The Lower Zambezi National Park is a fantastic destination for game viewing despite it being Zambia's newest national park. As the name suggests, the park lies along the Zambezi river with the Mana Pools Reserve on the other side. These two parks combine to create a large stretch of fertile floodplains that's perfect for large grazing animals. As such, the Lower Zambezi is ideal for long unobstructed viewing sessions of elephant and buffalo herds, as well as pods of wallowing hippos.

3

South Luangwa National Park

Perhaps Zambia's most famous national park, the South Luangwa National Park is renowned for its walking safaris which offer a unique and exhilarating way to experience the African bush. Here you can walk through designated game trails and track creatures both large and small under professional supervision. The park should be a highlight for birdwatchers, as there are over 400 species of avifauna within the premises.

4

Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park

Though considerably smaller than most other Zambian national parks, its location along the upper banks of the Zambezi, just above the Victoria Falls, offers the chance to go on scenic game drives along the river. Interestingly, the park lacks any large predators, meaning that grazers like zebra and impala are far more relaxed and make for easier photo opportunities. If you're planning on seeing the falls, the best time to visit would be right between the rains of April and May. Several safari lodges and hotels can be found within easy reach of the park which speaks to its popularity; these include properties belonging to international hotel group chains such as the likes of Minor Hotels.

5

Liuwa Plains National Park

The Liuwa Plains often goes unmentioned when discussing Zambia's national parks – this is its main draw. The park's relative obscurity means it's rarely visited and in fact has no major roads or visitor facilities; this makes the Liuwa Plains the perfect destination for safari-goers that truly want to be alone with nature – just make sure to take an experienced guide with you! This is the perhaps the best opportunity you'll have to spot some of the more elusive denizens of the African bush like the shy serval cat and the endangered painted dog.

  • A true believer that the pen is a mighty weapon, ventures into reaching the minds of every reader with the earnest hope of leaving an indelible stream of thought.

    A travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.

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