Enjoy Zimbabwe and its wildlife by vehicle, on foot and from the water on this all-encompassing safari that focuses on the country’s best national parks and wilderness locations.
You begin in Mana Pools National Park, exploring both the waterways and also venturing inland in search of the park’s prolific wildlife. This iconic park in Zimbabwe is famed for its elephants and wild dogs, but there is much more to see, such as lion, buffalo, hippo and spotted hyena. From here, you fly to Lake Kariba where you can immerse yourself in the incredible seclusion and admire the wonderful sunsets over the water.
To end, you stay at Zimbabwe’s other premier wildlife destination – Hwange National Park. This part of the country is often referred to as 'the Land of the Giants' due to its huge number of elephants. Based in a luxury tented camp, you explore the park by vehicle and on foot to see its wildlife. Apex predators, such as wild dog, cheetah and leopard, are regularly seen. However, there are also chances to see some of southern Africa’s less frequently seen species, including serval, honey badger, civet and African wildcat.
Day1: Depart UK
Depart the UK on an overnight flight to Harare via Johannesburg.
Day2: Arrive Harare, transfer to Mana Pools
On arrival at Harare, you'll take a light aircraft flight to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Mana Pools, where you will be met and transferred to your luxury mobile tented camp, set on the shores of the Lower Zambezi River. Depending on your time of arrival, there may be time to join one of the afternoon excursions for your first opportunity to see some of Zimbabwe’s wildlife.
Accommodation: Zambezi Expeditions Camp, 2-nights
Day3: Mana Pools National Park
Today, you have the whole day to enjoy the wildlife and various activities that Mana Pools has to offer. You head out on an early morning and late afternoon excursion whether it’s a game drive, a canoe safari or a walking safari, there are plenty of ways to explore this region of Zimbabwe.
Days4-5: Mana Pools & Kanga Pan
In the morning, after breakfast and a game drive, you will transfer to your next destination in Mana Pools. Driving away from the Zambezi River, the transfer to Kanga Pan will take around an hour. However, the time of this transfer will really depend on the wildlife sightings you have on the way because this transfer is effectively another game drive in the national park. Kanga is the only private concession in Mana Pools, so you are unlikely to meet anyone else when out on wildlife-viewing excursions, and you will get a true sense of privacy and exclusivity.
Accommodation: Kanga Camp, 2-nights
Day6: Transfer to Lake Kariba
After a morning excursion and breakfast, you will be transferred to the airstrip for your light aircraft flight from Mana Pools to the shores of Lake Kariba which takes approximately an hour. On arrival, you will be met by your guide and transferred to your camp.
Accommodation: Bumi Hills Safari Lodge, 2-nights
Day7: Explore Lake Kariba
You have the whole day to enjoy the wildlife and various activities on offer in the Lake Kariba area. Alternatively, you may prefer a day of relaxation in this stunning location that provides fantastic seclusion.
There is excellent wildlife to see here and the best sightings are usually found along Lake Kariba’s southern shore with boat and canoe safaris being a particularly good way of seeing animals.
Day8: Transfer to Hwange National Park
Following a relaxing morning by Lake Kariba, you will return to the airstrip in time for your short charter flight to Hwange National Park where you will be met by your guide who will take you on a short game drive on route to camp.
For the next two days, you have a whole series of early morning and late afternoon game drives in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe’s largest park and a haven for over 100 mammal and 400 bird species. Also, if you prefer to stretch your legs, then you may wish to do a walking safari instead. During the day, you return to camp for your meals and to avoid the heat of the day.
Day11: Fly to Victoria Falls & depart
Today you will have the opportunity for a morning activity from camp before a light aircraft flight to Victoria Falls. From here, you can either connect to your overnight flight home to the UK or extend your stay in Victoria Falls at one of the excellent hotels in the area.
Day12: Arrive UK
You should note: Prices shown are based on travelling in shoulder season (April, May & November). Prices for travelling between June and October will be higher.
Our trip ideas are offered to inspire you and can be tailored to suit your requirements.
Duration and price including flights from/to UK: 12 daysfrom £5,725 pp
Duration and price excluding international flights: 10 daysfrom £4,825 pp
When to go: Apr-Nov: The dry season in Zimbabwe lasts from late April until early November
This UNESCO World Heritage Site beside the Zambezi has fine views towards Zambia’s Lower Zambezi and the Rift Valley escarpment. Its woodland and open plains contain a huge variety of wildlife, including large herds of elephant. It is famed for walking and canoe safaris, and offers a secluded experience.
Where: Mashonaland West Province
Ideal for viewing: Cape buffalo, African elephant, lion, Nile crocodile, roan
Excellent for: Walking safaris, Vehicle safaris, River safaris
Bordering Botswana, Zimbabwe’s largest park is a haven for over 100 mammal and 400 bird species. Formerly occupied by San bushmen, it became a national park in 1928. The diverse landscapes of teak forests, sandveld, ilala palm islands, savannah and woodland offer a rewarding and interesting wildlife safari.
Where: Matabeleland North Province
Ideal for viewing: African wildcat, honey badger, leopard, sable, wild dog
Excellent for: Walking safaris, Vehicle safaris
Straddling the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia, Lake Kariba feels like an inland sea. It stretches to 280 kilometres in length and is 40 kilometres at its widest. The lake is mightily impressive, especially when the sun starts to set, and much of the surrounding land is protected for wildlife.
Where: Zimbabwe – Zambia border
Ideal for viewing: Nile crocodile, African fish eagle, hippo, saddle-billed stork, waterbuck
Excellent for: River safaris
Suggested accommodation options are shown below.
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Standing on a hilltop with a commanding vista of Lake Kariba, this elegant and exclusive lodge makes a wonderful location for rest and relaxation. The infinity pool is breathtaking, animals graze along the shore, and activities include wildlife viewing in the concession and watching the legendary Kariba sunset.
This intimate camp lies in the Somalisa concession in Hwange, Zimbabwe's foremost national park. Tucked away on an island, its location virtually guarantees encounters with African wildlife from the moment you step out of your tent – you may even find elephants drinking from the plunge pool!