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Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

Los Angeles...
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Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

We are planning an end of May/June trip. We will be going first to Botswana..Kwando Lagoon and Savuti..to hopefully see the dogs.

I would love to see more dogs in June in Zambia. I am looking for a different experience from Botswana (been there twice)

I am thinking about the Wilderness Camps in Kafue along with the lower Zambezi (providing the cost is not really high) or different areas in So Luangwa.

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

Thank so much.

Mfuwe
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1. Re: Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

Try Mana Pools in Zimbabwe. It is denning season and they have had regular sightings in the past couple years.

West Australia
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2. Re: Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

All three Zambian National Parks that you mention are nice and have their own differences and special features. If you want something different from Botswana, I would probably recommend South Luangwa as being the most different (others may or may not agree).

Mana Pools (in Zimbabwe) is also a great destination, it probably has less options for accomodation than Lower Zambezi (across the river in Zambia) but it is probably also less expensive.

Edited: 18 April 2011, 08:45
SOUTH AFRICA
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3. Re: Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

I stayed at the Wilderness camps in Kafue about a year ago....they are all amazing, and the wildlife experience was superb...definately a great combo with Kwando!

Tanya * owner * Africa Direct

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4. Re: Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

Thank you all for the information. Our plan is late May/June...Luangwa..probably Tafika camp..not sure on the rest..off to Bots Savuti and Lagoon.

london
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5. Re: Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

With that choice of camp in Botswana you will be highly likely, probably guaranteed to see dogs, but I wouldn't plan your Zambia trip around seeing wild dogs. There are dogs around but they are not seen that often.

I spent 3 months in South Luangwa last year, in the northern part of the park, and I didn't see dogs once. I saw the wild dog researchers around and think a pack of dogs were denning somewhere in the north (possibly in the Luwi area) but exactly where was a closely guarded secret! I have visited Tafika before and I'm on their mailing list and I think they had a handful of sightings all season. My impression was the best part of the park to see dogs was around the central area and towards the south where the Bushcamp Company's camps are based but seriously I wouldn't count on it. Also in general I would avoid the central Mfuwe area as it gets very busy.

Go to South Luangwa for the cats, especially leopard, and count yourself extremely lucky if you see dogs.

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6. Re: Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

I am now thinking about what is best for the May/June time frame. Perhaps it is better to go to the Mana Pools area and then to Botswana. I am trying to keep the cost down as much as you can in Africa. I will continue my research and see how the news reports come in. Thanks so much. Also I appreciate the heads up on the area being crowded. I know the wilderness camp looks remote.

Los Angeles...
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7. Re: Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

Thank you. We lover Wilderness. How do you think the weather will be in late May/June? Would it be cold for that area? I am so torn between the areas in Zambia and Zimbabwe. I don't want to spend lots of air travel running around to too many areas.

Los Angeles...
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8. Re: Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

Did you go to Kafue? I think we are set on the Botswana portion. We are still very up in the air regarding...Zambia, Zimbabwe and what the best combo is for the Bots portion.

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9. Re: Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

I live in the South Luangwa and work for Norman Carr Safaris (we have 5 properties in the South Luangwa) and this area is known as the premier park for viewing wildlife in Zambia. The wild dogs are certainly seen here, although as others have mentioned they are not common, which is part of their allure!

We have a pack which often dens in between two of our bush camps Nsolo and Luwi and last year we had the dogs run right through our camps separately a good half dozen times each across the season (May - early November). May/June is a good time to come as the park isn't too crowded and the weather is nice and mild (it does get cool overnight and in the early mornings but warms up around 9am) and most importantly you can access all of the Park as the rains are well and truly over and all the bush camps are open.

Happy to give you any more information you need - please feel free to ask.

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10. Re: Lower Zambezi,Kafue vs. So Luangwa

Thank you. Do I book direct or use US agent if I decide to book? I have decided on Zambia. I would imagine we would book 2-3 different areas for about 3 nights each. I may even consider an additional 3 nights at Flatdogs just to save some $$ and the chance to, stay longer.

I am thinking about end of May in Botswana for about 6 days..on to Zambia early June.

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