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Overland Travel? Lusaka- S.Luangwa / S.Luangwa- Vic Falls

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Overland Travel? Lusaka- S.Luangwa / S.Luangwa- Vic Falls

I plan on being in Zambia for about 8-10 days with two goals: Safari in South Luangwa and see Vic Falls.

I'm aiming to fly into Lusaka. I then go to Croc Valley and camp 3-4 days, and then leave to see Vic Falls for 1-2 days before flying out of Livingstone...all OVERLAND via public transportation, tour companies, mini-van, or hitch hike.

Are these distances too far overland for me to pull it off?? What do I need to know about the drives and best modes of land transport from Lusaka - S.Luangwa and S.Luangwa - Vic Falls??

I realize they're long distances, but I'm figuring I can at least break up the southern portion by staying the night on the way to Vic Falls somewhere. I don't have the money to books flights for these routes.

Thanks

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Zambia
Zambia
Africa
Lusaka
Lusaka
Lusaka Province, Zambia
london
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for Zambia, Selous Game Reserve, Ruaha National Park
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1. Re: Overland Travel? Lusaka- S.Luangwa / S.Luangwa- Vic Falls

Livingstone to Lusaka (or vv) is the easy bit. There are frequent decent bus services and the journey takes about 6 hours. No need to stay a night on the way.

Lusaka to Mfuwe is more tricky. You'd need to get a bus to Chipata (I believe about 8 hours) then a mini van to Mfuwe. That last leg used to be about 4 hours even though the distance is only about 120km, but the road was really bad. I've read recently it's been tarred. It used to be not really possible to do the whole journey in a day, you'd have to overnight in Chipata. I think some minivans used to leave Mfuwe about 3am in order to make the return journey to Chipata in time to catch the Lusaka bus. Maybe the journey is slightly less horrendous now. But I'm not sure I'd count on being able to do it in a day.

Time is not on your side here. I think 8 days is not enough. 10 days maybe just.

South Luangwa is actually much more accessible from Malawi, but that won't help you if you're set on seeing the falls.

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Lusaka
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Lusaka Province, Zambia
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2. Re: Overland Travel? Lusaka- S.Luangwa / S.Luangwa- Vic Falls

A friend and I recently did something similar (Vic Falls/SLNP) in ten days. This was how it worked out for us:

1) land in lusaka (11pm at night)

2) lusaka

3) lusaka

4) bus to livingstone/see falls via birdge

5) day at falls

6) bus back to lusaka

7) bus to chipata

8) get picked up by safari company and taken to SLNP

9) SLNP

10) SLNP

11) leave SLNP, return to chipata with safari co, onward travel to lilongwe (in your case, back to Lusaka)

We took a couple of days in Lusaka to adjust (we were both meeting up from very different parts of the world so it was nice to have a couple of days to rest after very long flights/take some time to flip our sleep schedules). If you cut out those days, however, you could push it and make both destinations work in 10 days. It sounds like a lot of buses. And it is, but we still had a blast.

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3. Re: Overland Travel? Lusaka- S.Luangwa / S.Luangwa- Vic Falls

We did the trip by bicycle last year:-). You can catch the bus to Chipata - you have to stay at Mama Rulas, or hitch a lift (very easy in Zambia). Hitch hiking in Zambia is easy and safe. Trucks will stop all the time for you. Tip: the town of Victoria Falls is much more vibey and authentic to stay in than Livingston. You can walk over the bridge between the two countries. All the locals are great in Zambia and don't mind if you camp in their gardens.

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Victoria Falls
Victoria Falls
Matabeleland North Province, Zimbabwe
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4. Re: Overland Travel? Lusaka- S.Luangwa / S.Luangwa- Vic Falls

Any updates on this please? - I'm particularly interested in the Lusaka - South Luangwa and back again section!

Thanks.

Edited: 21 October 2014, 16:45
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Lusaka
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5. Re: Overland Travel? Lusaka- S.Luangwa / S.Luangwa- Vic Falls

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6. Re: Overland Travel? Lusaka- S.Luangwa / S.Luangwa- Vic Falls

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