Pick and mix bush and beach – Zambia and Lake Malawi

September 23rd 2019  |   Malawi, Zambia  |  by   Charlotte Opperman
Chiawa Camp aerial by the river

Combining the safari areas of Zambia with some R&R on the shores of Lake Malawi is a cracking combination, and flights between the two mean you can get from one to the other in the space of half a day.  You’ll get wildlife by the bucket load and safari activities to keep everyone happy – all combined with the exquisite scenery of Lake Malawi. It’s one of our favourites and the perfect pick and mix of bush and beach.

Walking safari in the South Luangwa National Park, Time + Tide Safaris

Walking safari in the South Luangwa National Park, Time + Tide Safaris

Beach bar at Pumulani, Lake Malawi

Beach bar at Pumulani, Lake Malawi

Here’s what to expect:

Zambia – Busanga Plains, Luangwa Valley, Lower Zambezi National Park

Zambia’s national parks are rich in wildlife, offer a wealth of activities yet are relatively little visited.  Safari highlights include the Busanga Plains in the northern part of Kafue National Park, and the Luangwa Valley, one of Africa’s finest wildlife regions  and home of the walking safari.  There’s also the chance to canoe amongst hippo and crocodile in the Lower Zambezi National Park and to try any number of adventurous options around the Victoria Falls.

Sunset overlooking the Busanga Plains, Shumba Camp

Sunset overlooking the Busanga Plains, Shumba Camp

Among likely wildlife encounters are lion, leopard, wild dog, elephant, buffalo and huge numbers of plains wildlife.  The safari activities on offer are as varied as the wildlife with wonderful walking, canoeing, boating, and fishing alongside day and night vehicle based wildlife drives.

Lion cubs on game drive from Chiawa Camp, Lowe Zambezi Valley National Park  

Lion cubs on wildlife drive from Chiawa Camp, Lower Zambezi Valley National Park

Accommodation ranges from simple bush camps to luxurious lodges and private safari houses.  What you will find throughout are super guides who know their patch of this wilderness inside out.

Authentic bush camp accommodation at Nsolo Camp, South Luangwa Valley National Park

Authentic bush camp accommodation at Time + Tide Nsolo Camp, South Luangwa Valley National Park.

You could stay in Zambia for weeks exploring but it would be shame to miss out on some of the other splendours in the region.  So we’d highly recommend taking the short hop to Malawi and its eponymous lake.  Easily doable in half a day you’ll arrive at your lakeside lodge in time for sundowners and a complete change of scene.

Malawi – Lake Malawi, Liwonde National Park and Majete Wildlife Reserve

Lake Malawi’s crystal clear waters at Mumbo Island Camp

Lake Malawi’s crystal clear waters at Mumbo Island Camp

There are luxury lodges, castaway style eco-camps and private houses to choose from.  Spend a few days indulging in various watery activities and eating glorious food and it’s the perfect finale to your holiday.

Sunset over Lake Malawi from Ndomo Point private house

Sunset over Lake Malawi from Ndomo Point private house

If you’ve still got the safari bug, Liwonde National Park and Majete Wildlife Reserve are starting to rival those of their more famous neighbours and are well worth a visit.

Wildlife viewing in Majete Wildlife Reserve, Mkulumadzi

Wildlife viewing in Majete Wildlife Reserve, Mkulumadzi

Any questions on Lusaka to Lilongwe?

If you’ve got this far and not found an answer to a question you have that we should have included, please ask in the comments section below, or pop us an email. We’ll be sure to reply and may amend the article to include our answer.

What next?

We would be delighted to help you plan a holiday, or answer any questions if you’re at an earlier stage. Our team of experts have travelled widely throughout Africa. They can offer expert advice on every type of safari from family and beach holidays to riding and primate safaris.  If you would like to talk to someone who has been there and done it, please just send us an email or give us a call.

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