Visit Kafue National Park

5 Reasons to Visit Kafue

  1. Wild and Vast: At 2.2 million hectares, Kafue is the largest national park in Zambia, offering immersive and off-the-beaten track safaris, far from the crowds.

  2. Diverse Wildlife: With a diversity of landscapes from open savannahs to riverine forests, Kafue offers exceptional game viewing experiences with excellent opportunities of seeing elephant, lion, leopard, cheetah, wild dog, hippo and crocodile. Overall, the park is home to 158 mammal species – of which 21 are antelope – along with 70 reptile, 71 fish and 36 amphibian species.

  3. Scenic Beauty, Exciting Experiences:  Spectacular landscapes with breathtaking views include the meandering Kafue River, the wild and remote Lunga River and the immense Lake Itezhi-Tezhi – providing beautiful waterways for productive fishing and boating experiences.  Game drives and safari walks showcase the rolling granite hills and the picturesque and sweeping Nanzhila and Busanga floodplains and wildlife experiences.

  4. A Birder’s Paradise: Kafue’s 515 bird species include the Black-Cheeked Lovebird, African Finfoot, Pel’s Fishing-Owl, Wattled and Crowned Cranes, and many of the large raptors and vultures.

  5. Tradition and Cultural Engagement: Kafue has a rich traditional history and culture. Visitors can immerse themselves in the local culture of the area by interacting with nearby communities and gaining insights into traditional customs.

Kafue Travel Information

When to Visit

The best time to visit Kafue National Park depends on your preferences and what you want to experience. Here are some general guidelines:

Dry Season (May to October)

- This is the peak tourist season as wildlife is more concentrated around water sources.

- The weather is dry with daytime temperatures ranging from 20°C to 30°C (68°F to 86°F), and vegetation is less dense, improving visibility.

- October can be extremely hot with daytime temperatures occasionally exceeding 35°C (95°F), so be prepared for high temperatures.

Wet Season (November to April)

- This period is characterised by lush greenery and is the birthing season for many animals.

- Birdwatching is excellent during this time as migratory birds are present.

- The landscape is vibrant, and there are fewer tourists.

- Daytime temperatures during the wet season typically range from 25°C to 35°C (77°F to 95°F).

- Nights are generally milder, with temperatures ranging from 10°C to 20°C (50°F to 68°F).

Rainy Season (December to March):

- This period sees the highest rainfall, and temperatures are warm, ranging from 20°C to 30°C (68°F to 86°F)

- Some lodges may close during this time due to impassable roads and heavy rainfall.

- Wildlife can be more dispersed, and some areas of the park may be inaccessible.

Ultimately, the choice of when to visit depends on your interests. For those interested in game viewing, the dry season is recommended, while those who prefer birdwatching and photography may find the green season  more appealing. Always check current conditions and park accessibility before planning your trip. Keep in mind that wildlife sightings are never guaranteed, but visiting during the appropriate season increases your chances of a rewarding experience.

Health Essentials

Zambia is a malaria area and although Kafue is a relatively low-risk environment, we recommend taking anti-malaria medications and that you consult your doctor for a solution that best suits you.

Tsetse flies are present in some areas, being more abundant along woodland verges than other areas. Camps and game drive loops are generally free of tsetse flies. The risk to visitors of sleeping sickness is exceptionally low. However, they can be a nuisance and bites do itch. We suggest bringing along an over-the-counter antihistamine as a precaution. In addition, on Game Drives, guests may choose to wear long sleeve shirts and long pants.

Kafue National Park is not a known Yellow Fever area.

Travel Essentials

English is the official language in Zambia and is widely spoken throughout the country. Zambia is a linguistically diverse country with over 70 ethnic groups, each having its own language or dialect. Bemba and Nyanja are among the most widely spoken indigenous languages.

The local currency is the Zambian Kwacha. However, there are multiple exchange bureaus and ATMs available in Lusaka and Livingstone. The majority of shops, restaurants, and accommodation suppliers accept debit card, credit card and other digital payment systems. Park fees and lodges do charge in US Dollars, while the Kafue Main Gates accept Kwacha, USD, debit and credit cards.

Visitors to Zambia are entitled to a complimentary ninety (90) day visit in any period of twelve (12) months from the date of first entry into Zambia while business visitors are entitled to a complimentary thirty (30) day visit in any period of twelve (12) months. The majority of nationalities can easily obtain a 30-day tourist visa when arriving at the airport in Lusaka, Livingstone or Ndola. A single-entry tourist visa will cost US$25. Most citizens of African countries are exempted from visa requirements to enter Zambia.

Safety Essentials

Explore Zambia's Welcoming Atmosphere: Experience the warmth and friendliness of the Zambian people as you embark on your journey. Enjoy the freedom to drive solo across the country, including the breathtaking Kafue National Park, with confidence in your personal safety. While Zambia is generally safe, it's advisable to exercise caution in larger towns and cities where theft incidents may occur. Stay vigilant during your walks, especially if you're carrying valuable items, as pickpocketing can happen. Keep your vehicle locked at all times, and avoid changing money on the streets for a worry-free exploration of Zambia's beauty.

How to Get There

Only four hours’ drive or a one-hour flight from Lusaka or Livingstone, Kafue National Park is easily accessible to both local and international visitors.

Proflight Zambia offer a scheduled domestic flight from Lusaka to Chunga Airstrip in Kafue National Park three times a week from 1 June to 31 October. For those who seek greater flexibility, air charters are available from Kenneth Kaunda International Airport (LUN) in Lusaka or Harry Mwanga Nkumbula International Airport (LVI) in Livingstone.

Alternatively, overland travellers can either drive or utilise public transportation from multiple locations. The road trip from Lusaka and Livingstone typically takes 3-4 hours. There are multiple car rental options, however, it is essential to ensure you have a reliable map or GPS navigation due to potential variations in road conditions.

Kafue Main Gate is 298km from Lusaka, along the M9 through Mumbwa. From Livingstone, follow the T1 to Lusaka, before turning off at Kalomo and onto Zimba before reaching Dundumwezi Gate, a total distance of 204km.