Budget trip in Zambia?
Replies: 6 - Last Post: Feb 26, 2013 2:11 PM Last Post By: raka
Feb 18, 2013 12:23 PM
Budget trip in Zambia?Hello,
We are planning a trip in Zambia in August-September. We should have about 3 weeks. It will be our second time in Africa (we have been to Namibia before) so we dont have that much experience there.
Before planning our itinerary, we would like to know how expensive the trip will be. We would like to rent a car and we are fine with camping. I have seen it is possible to camp in the National Parks, so I think that will be fine. My biggest issue is actually about the safaries. I have a couple of questions:
1. is it possible to move inside the National Parks with your own car or is it compulsory to join a safari? (In Namibia we visited Etosha on our own. That was both great and cheap).
2. in case it is possible to do it on your own: are chances of seeing animals still reasonable?
3. is there some kind of "very expensive must see" I should be aware of?
Thanks for your help
Feb 18, 2013 10:18 PM
1Stay at Track and Trail river camp right by south Luangwa National Park entrance. Its about $6 a night to camp on raised platforms and they have elephant, giraffe, leopard, lion, hippo etc etc on camp almost daily, certainly you will be camping with Elephants every night.
You can take your own car into the park yes, it used to be $35 per person and a smaller charge for the vehicle
You will see lots of animals but lions and leopards will be very difficult and usually require a guide to track 'off road' but you may be lucky.
I would say a must do would be the devils armchair on vic falls if it isn't too far out your way as i doubt you can do that anywhere else in the world
Feb 18, 2013 10:54 PM
2Twice when I have crossed Kafue National Park I have seen lions on the road.
Feb 18, 2013 11:15 PM
You can travel by yourself inside the NP. It’s a question of luck to see some animals (leopard, lion, …) but you will, at least, plenty of others (kudu, zebra, …)
You have a lot of things to see and to do. It depends of your own aims. Try to read the Bradt guidebook. It will be helpful and give a lot of informations.
In 2012 (spring), outside the airplane ticket, I paid 2500€ for a month (Kafue NP, South Luangwa NP, Mutinondo, Victoria Falls, Lake Kariba). I travelled by my own and using public transports.
Have a nice trip.
Feb 19, 2013 2:21 AM
4Self driving in Zambian parks is very different from Etosha.
You will need a 4x4 and, depending on the season, probably some skill driving it.
The easiest park to self drive in is South Luangwa where as Ric says it is very easy to camp at the gates and drive in. There is an all weather road system but some of the smaller tracks can be challenging.
Kafue is huge and large parts of it are not for beginners with deep sand/mud (depending on the time of year) and no fuel for long distances (you will need a long range tank and/or jerry cans (160-180L capacity). Also some off road driving experience. There are now pretty limited options self driving in northern Kafue as there is no camping only high end lodges. Best option for you would be to access the park from the tarred Mongu/Lusaka road that bisects it and visit a couple of camps not too far from the road eg Mukambi and McBrides.
Lower Zambezi may also be challenging driving wise. Look at staying at Zambezi Breezer and doing a canoe safari.
North Luangwa and Liuwa can be fairly hardcore if you are novices off road and access is also seasonal.
Zambia is generally not cheap to safari in (certainly not comparable to Namibia). Park entrance is $30pppd and $15-$30 pd for the vehicle (depending on whether it's above/below 3 tonnes). Camping outside SLNP is pretty cheap - it was $10pp last time I was there but in Kafue it will probably be more eg McBrides is $25pppn.
South Luangwa is definitely the place to head for if you're on a budget.Beautiful scenery, great game, relatively easy driving and easy on the pocket.
Feb 19, 2013 3:23 AM
Feb 26, 2013 2:11 PM
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