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WPCS 2.1.3
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Liuwa Plains Mobile Safari

“A remote and incredible mobile experience in Liuwa Plains NP, a photographers dream-come-true”

Budget level: Mid-Range
Country
Zambia
When to Go
Nov & Dec
Property Type
Camp Temporary
Location
Liuwa Plains National Park
Kids Min Age
14

The Liuwa Plains NP is a remote and little visited wildlife area in the remote Western province of Zambia. One of the oldest protected wildlife areas in the whole of Africa it is home to the second largest wildebeest gathering and arguably the best hyena viewing in Africa. Birdlife is prolific in Liuwa, a staggering array and volume of birds can be found here, flying over and feeding in the dozens of seasonal pans of water, which at certain times of year are lined with the most beautiful wildflowers one can imagine.

For the Liuwa Plains Mobile Safari, J&M Safaris brings their own staff, game drive vehicles, experienced Liuwa guides, food and drinks, guest tents and linen and offer four-night safaris on this ‘mobile camp’ basis. They typically offer two set-date departures per year, which folk can book onto (6 spaces max, 4 min.) but likewise they are able to cater for small group trips on an ad-hoc basis too. Depending on the date of the safari departure it will dictate which of the community campsites is applied for use of – the time of year affects the wildlife movements and each camp has it’s unique associated wildlife and habitats.

Seasonality in Liuwa – The Plains are generally inaccessible from around January to the end of March. The wildebeest (with new calves) head South from their dry season grazing grounds early to mid-November, with this gathering in the short-grass plains, along with the dramatic skies of the start of the rainy season (and associated bird and plant life) comes one of the best times to visit Liuwa, November and December. After the floodwaters recede in March, another great time to visit is April/May/June before the wildebeest begin to head North again.

Transfer information – Simply put Liuwa is not easy to get to. Historically there were seat-rate scheduled departures to the airstrip nearest Liuwa (Kalabo), these have now ceased and do not look likely to return, as such the best transfer option is utilizing a charter flight into/out of Kalabo Airstrip – itself apprx. 3-hour drive from the camp locations. The relatively high cost of a charter to Kalabo (it is a far as one can get in Zambia!) are off-set by the minimum number of pax we need for these trips to run, four, and whilst charter prices vary and are related to group size (therefore size of plane), you can look at approx. $1000 per person each way. Combining Liuwa with the Kafue – Many guests prefer to combine Liuwa and the Kafue NP’s (as the Kafue is between Lusaka and Liuwa) and as such folk will often start with a stay at Musekese Camp and then head on to Liuwa – the plane which takes guests to Kalabo can stop-off in the Kafue and collect guests from Musekese on route (or drop them off after!).

Why we like it

  • Some of the best guides in Zambia.
  • Fully inclusive and catered mobile experience.
  • Incredible photographic opportunities with dramatic clouds.
  • Far off the beaten path, a real adventure!

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