The Traveller's Friend : Travel the Zambezi - Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Sunday, 30 June 2013

New airport tax in Zambia

Please note that National Airports Corporation of Zambia has now introduced an Infrastructure and Development charge which is effective immediately.

This tax is applicable for all passengers departing from Livingstone, Mfuwe, Lusaka or Ndola Airports on domestic or international flights. The new tax will be applied to all tickets for scheduled flights issued or amended after 15 June 2013. The new tax will also apply to all private charters and will be payable along with the departure taxes.

Anyone with a ticket issued before 15 June 2013 is exempt from paying the tax.

The Infrastructure & Development charge is KR27 (Zambian Kwacha Recbased - approximately USD5) for domestic travel and KR53 (approximately USD10) for international travel.

The tax will be applied for all passengers including infants.

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Zambezi Traveller Issue 13 June 2013 - Contents Listing

New issue of the Zambezi Traveller is now available to read online.

Zambezi Traveller, Issue 13, June 2013

Contents listing and quick links direct to each story:

Cover Story

Paradise unveiled, by Peter Comley

Image credit: Tom Varley

Standing on the lip of the Victoria Falls and gazing with profound awe at the tumult of water cascading into the gorge below, you are not only experiencing the breath-taking beauty and power of one of the world’s most impressive world heritage sites, but you are also at the epicentre of the most extraordinary wildlife destination in the world. Read full article here.

Feature Story

Wildlife wins as people team up, by Alan Sparrow

The Kavango Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area (Kaza TFCA) aims to link the protected areas and cultures of the five countries of Angola, Namibia, Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The Kaza TFCA contains the largest remaining natural elephant population in Africa. Estimates are that there are about 200,000 elephant. Most of those elephant are found in Botswana, Namibia and Zimbabwe. Half of those live in Botswana. Read more here.

Conservation in Action

Creating Community Value in Conservation

Easements for Education

Conservation-Driven Enterprise

The Back Page

Image credit: Tom Varley

Zambia & Zimbabwe hailed in the region

What is UNWTO?

Also in this issue

Victoria Falls

A short history of the Falls

Countdown to UNWTO

Healing for a hurting land

Zambezi rafting veteran reflects

Tantalising the palate

Image credit: Jessica Dawson

An aardwolf is rescued

We are apes after all!

Stretch your skills and search your soul

Making tracks of her own

Craving something different

Sprayview Hotel refurbished

Masters of their craft

The Big Tree

Leather goods showroom opens

Bulawayo & Matopos

The sacred hills of the Matopos

Under new management

Image credit: Paul Hubbard

Khami - The forgotten capital


Joining the dots

Camelthorn breaks new ground in Hwange

Camelthorn Acacia - an invaluable natural resource

With the seasons in Hwange


Rainforest riches

Author, artist and woman of courage

Rich symbolism in Zambia’s heraldry

Biking accross borders with US Ambassadors

Image credit: Tom Varley

Zambia’s waterborne pageant

History of the Litunga uniform

That versatile chitenge

New Patrol launched in Livingstone

The first newspaper in Zambia

Zambia’s national anthem: a history

Dr Livingstone, I presume?

The smoke that thunders

Cultural festival on the Zambezi


Image credit: Dana Allen for Robin Pope Safaris

Valley of abundance

The lioness and the hostess


Image credit: Mawimbi Advrenture

Superlative and unexplored

New bush camp in Kafue


The great enigmas

Elephants in town

The baobab’s secret


Africa’s grand anomaly

Territorial pride in Savuti

Field research station opens

The guide learns – to follow his own advice

Kimple comes to Africa


Dancing for conservation

Top surgeon for Bones the lion

Kariba & Middle Zambezi

Image credit: Steve Edwards

The Middle Zambezi

Pioneers of crocodile farming

Innovation on safari

Mana community centre opens

Image credit: Chongwe Safaris

Because of the rivers

A conflict of interests

Chirundu wildlife corridor plans reborn

Celebrity hippo flies to new home

Cahora Bassa & Tete

Image credit: Gigi Guimbeau

Succulent folds of grey

Calling for a national debate on employment policy

Eyeing the future of lake tourism

The Zambezi’s final triumph

Funding your investment in Mozambique

Diversification equals success

Granny Teresa’s work continues

We welcome winter

Image credit: Gigi Guimbeau

Wintering in Tete

Capturing Tete

Activities for visitors to the Zambezi region

Activities for visitors to the Zambezi region

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Trees for Zambia: Earth Fest 2013

Come celebrate Greenpop’s Trees for Zambia action event with Earth Fest – a two day music and sustainability festival on the banks of the Zambezi River and under the spray of the Victoria Falls in Livingstone, Zambia!

Greenpop will be in Livingstone 7 - 28th July for the second year hosting Trees for Zambia – a three-week action event based on getting people active about making sustainable changes with the main event, a music and sustainability festival, Trees for Zambia Earth Fest 2013 on 19 - 20th July,

About Earth Fest

The first of its kind, Earth Fest is more than an ordinary music festival – it aims to highlight the tree-mendous musical talent that graces Southern Africa while also bringing together like-minded, forward-thinking individuals who hope to see a greener future for Africa.

The weekend will start off on Friday 19th July in the evening with a party Train Ride from Livingstone train station to the Victoria Falls Bridge (DJs and all drinks included). Fest goers can meet at the Livingstone station at 16:30 sharp.

On Saturday 20 July, the festival will move to the Greenpop Village at Livingstone Safari Lodge where, from 15:00, attendees can participate in sustainability workshops. They will have the chance to learn more about what Greenpop is doing in Livingstone and get a taste of a full week’s activities. Music starts from 18:00 and will include performances by Jeremy Loops, Chikenbus Band, Yes Rasta, Black Light Panda, Pat McCay, Tribute Mboweni and more.

Pricing and Details

Fri 19th Train: $40 or ZKR 230 (Zambian Kwacha Rebased)
Sat 20th Concert: $15 or ZKR 80
Double deal (Fri and Sat parties): $50 or ZKR 270
Early Bird Saturday Special: $10 or ZKR 50
Camping at Greenpop Village at Livingstone Safari Lodge on Fri 19th and/or Sat 20th: $10 or ZKR 50 per night (bring your own tent & dinner will be on sale)

Book by calling or emailing:   / +26(0)96 954 0817

Tickets on sale at:
Victoria Falls Steam Train (Victoria Falls)

Zimbabwe Tourism office (Victoria Falls)

Shoestring backpackers (Victoria Falls)

The Spot (Livingstone)

Zambian Tourism Office (Livingstone)

Livingstone Backpackers (Livingstone)

Shearwater Adventures Bridge and Main office (Victoria Falls)

About Greenpop:
Greenpop is a social enterprise that believes greening and sustainable living can be fun, POPular and accessible for all. They believe in inspiring a greener, more conscious, inclusive movement and do this through tree planting projects, green events, education, social media, voluntourism and activating people to start DOING! 

Since its inception in September 2010, Greenpop has planted over 24,000 trees in over 230 beneficiary schools, crèches, orphanages, old-age homes, community centers, and deforested areas. Creative tree-care programs have been implemented and children, community members, corporates and volunteers are getting their hands dirty, learning a lot and loving it.

About Trees for Zambia:
Zambia has one of the highest deforestation rates in the world and this issue affects the whole of Southern Africa – climate change and deforestation are not country-specific challenges. In 2012 Greenpop launched Trees for Zambia, a reforestation and eco-awareness project which began with a 3-week tree planting event and was followed by an ongoing campaign to inspire awareness about deforestation, climate change, tree planting, environmental sustainability and alternative energy sources.

Trees for Zambia 2013 will be the second action event hosted in Livingstone to boost the project and plant 5,000 trees in schools, on subsistence farms and in reforestation sites. Again we’ll host educational workshops for school children, subsistence farmers and volunteers. Trees for Zambia is a holistic awareness campaign based on getting people active about making sustainable changes.

Activities at the project include planting indigenous and fruit trees, working to set up micro-nursery enterprises in surrounding communities, implementing conservation education at local schools, promoting conservation farming techniques and fire prevention among small-scale subsistence farmers, promoting alternative energy sources such as solar cooking in order to reduce the region’s dependence on unsustainable charcoal burning, and a radio and video awareness campaign.

If you would like more information on the Earth Fest event or Trees for Zambia as a whole or would care to request to cover the event in your publication, please contact Lauren O’Donnell via or +27 (0) 21 461 9265/+27 (0) 83 412 8006/+26 (0) 96 954 0817. We greatly appreciate all promotions and coverage. For other queries about Greenpop or this particular Trees for Zambia event, please email, and we’ll make sure to answer your message promptly or pass on your message to the appropriate department.

Read more from the Zambezi Traveller:
Planning to re-green a country(ZT, Issue 12, March 2013)
Planting for a greener future(ZT, Issue 10, Sept 2012)

Read more about the region in our destination guide:
Victoria Falls


Monday, 24 June 2013

Zambezi Traveller Issue13 out now across the region

New issue of the Zambezi Traveller out now across the region, watch out for your copy!

The latest issue features a special series of articles showcasing some of the globally significant World Heritage and Ramsar Sites within the Zambezi Basin. A special introductory welcome to the best of the region to delegates of the United National World Tourism Organisation General Assembly, to be jointly hosted by the towns of Livingstone, Zambia, and Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, this coming August, and of course all our regular readers and Zambezi traveller's from across the world. Packed with all the latest local tourism news and features, from the key destinations of Victoria Falls, Livingstone, Chobe, Kafue, Hwange, Okavango, Luangwa, Bulawayo, Harare, Kariba and the Middle Zambezi, Cahora Bassa and Tete, the Zambezi Traveller is your complete tourism guide to the region. We hope you enjoy!

Watch our website,, follow us on our Zambezi Traveller blog or through social media such as Facebook and Twitter - the new issue will be available to read online and download as a pdf file soon!

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Poachers, Not Animals, Pose the 'Real Danger' in Victoria Falls National Park

From: DIPNOTE The US Department of State Official Blog
By: Sharon Hudson-Dean
Date: 13 July 2013

Link to source webpage here.

“We’re going to fan out, like a ripple moving through the bush.”

With those instructions, our group of American diplomats made a long line, carefully stepping through the long, yellow grass of the Victoria Falls National Park. We were less than five miles from the spectacular Falls, but in the park it was hot, dusty, and dangerous.

The park is home to elephants, African buffalo, lions, leopards, warthogs, and many other animals. While the animals certainly pose some danger, the real dangers we were looking out for were snares. Using nothing more than copper wire, often stolen from telephone lines, poachers fashion crude but effective nooses looped between scrub trees to catch animals. A snare can bring down a 600 pound Kudu antelope, leaving it disabled and exposed to the elements where it will take three or more days to die of dehydration. Snare poachers are generally local villagers -- an estimated 1.9-3.5 million tons of illegal bush meat come from snares each year in Africa -- but the locals share the bush with well-equipped commercial wildlife traffickers after elephant tusk and rhino horn for the lucrative Asian market. In addition to animals, wood and other natural resources are also illegally taken from the national park, leading to large-scale habitat degradation. One local conservationist estimates that 80 percent of curios bought by tourists are made from wood stolen from national parkland.

The Victoria Falls Anti-Poaching Unit (VFAPU), a partnership between the private sector tourism industry, the National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority, and the Zimbabwe Republic Police, is working hard to rebalance the area in favor of both local people and animals. Since its formation in 1999, VFAPU has removed 22,000 snares and arrested over 600 serious poachers. They have successfully lobbied for more stringent laws against poaching and helped destitute locals who might otherwise have become poachers find other work. VFAPU conducts scout trainings and reaches out to schools and tourists with education programs.

Though these efforts have made a great difference, the long-term answers to this problem are sustainable development, education, and community involvement. U.S. Embassies throughout sub-Saharan Africa are working with African authorities to build effective, integrated approaches to wildlife conservation. Fighting wildlife trafficking, which is directly tied to transnational crime, is a U.S. foreign policy priority.

“The whole thing with poaching,” says Charles Brightman, founder of VFAPU, “is that it is not sustainable - there is no thought for tomorrow. No wildlife means no visitors and no jobs.”

Link to source webpage here.

See also the Victoria Falls Anti-Poaching Unit's website.

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

World Environment Day 2013 Celebration, Dete

On the 5th of June, the African Bush Camps Foundation commemorated World Environment Day with the five Primary School’s comprising the Dete Cluster, being St Francis Primary, Main Camp Primary, Sir Roy Primary, Mambanje Primary and Chezhou Primary Schools.

The day commenced at St Francis Primary School with a welcome by the Principal, Mr Tembo, performances by the world-renowned Dete group Ingonyama and an inspiring environmental speech by Dominic Nyathi from Painted Dog Conservation. Local stakeholders were greeted and welcomed by the day’s MC Derick Phiri who is also the teacher sponsored by the ABC Foundation at Mambanje Primary School.

After the elaborate and entertaining welcome, the five school’s and community members and stakeholders started on a very thorough clean up campaign, each school covering their delegated area of the community including the clinic, police station, commercial shopping area and National Railways. The clean up campaign ended with all school’s gathering at Sir Roy Primary School, situated on the other side of Dete where we were warmly welcomed by the Headmaster, Mr Ntini and his staff of teachers and SDC committee members.

The highlight of the day was without doubt the presentations given by the schools. Each school entered under the three categories of competition, being Banner, Drama/Song and Poetry competition. The children presented outstanding art work and performances, very entertaining but also meeting the criteria of communicating and addressing the theme of this year’s World Environment Day being Eat, Think, Save.

The competition was adjudicated by three well respected members of the community who had the very challenging job of judging the performances of the day.

First, second and third prizes were handed out for each category of Environmental Science Text books and stationary. Refreshments were also provided for the attending guests and local stakeholders and the children were provided with lunch.

Transport was also provided for the three school’s who are located outside of Dete, being Main Camp Primary, Chezhou Primary and Mambanje Primary School who are all over 10km from Dete, Mambanje being the furthest and most remote being 15km away.

As a part of the celebrations, tree’s were planted at all of the five participating primary school’s as well as the Dete Old Age Home, the Dete Clinic, Dete Business Centre, ZRP, NRZ. The schools were challenged by a competition for the best growing tree’s, which will be judged and awarded at the 2014 World Environment Day Celebration.

The 2013 World Environment Day celebrations was a really wonderful day enjoyed by all who witnessed it, attendance was overwhelming by both the school’s and the community. We especially send out big thank you’s to all those who helped make it such a success including St Francis Primary School and Sir Roy Primary School for hosting the WED’s Celebrations, the wonderful judges panel, all local business people and stakeholders who attended, Dominic Nyathi and Painted Dog Conservation, Ingonyama for their performances and participation in the day and Derick Phiri as MC of the event. Everyone there was left truly inspired and challenged to not only make it a day to commemorate but a lifestyle to adopt and spread through the community.

Zambezi Traveller Directory:
African Bush Camps

Sunday, 9 June 2013

All aboard the Zambezi Explorer

09 June 2013, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe.

The Zambezi Explorer entertains businessmen and women from Victoria Falls on its maiden cruise on the Zambezi River, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe.

The Zambezi Explorer arrives to meet is passengers.

Guests and dignitaries boarding the Zambezi Explorer.

The Captain and Crew of the Zambezi Explorer.

Enjoying on the bottom deck.

Enjoying the comfort of the Zambezi Explorer.

A another beautiful sunset on the Zambezi River.

Zambezi Traveller Directory
Zambezi Explorer

Friday, 7 June 2013

Little Makalolo wins TripAdvisor award

Photo Credit: Mike Myers

Wilderness Safaris' Little Makalolo Camp, in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe, has been awarded a TripAdvisor 2013 Certificate of Excellence, placing it in the top-performing 10% of all businesses worldwide on TripAdvisor which consistently earn high ratings from travellers.

For latest news from Little Makalolo, see here (external link, opens in a new window).

Zambezi Traveller Directory:
Wilderness Safaris Little Makalolo

Thursday, 6 June 2013

Wilderness Safaris Celebrate 30th Anniversay

May 2013 marked Wilderness Safaris' 30th birthday as one of Africa's leading ecotourism company. This video, narrated by Map Ives, Wilderness Safaris Environmental Manager for Botswana, highlights its incredible journey through the eyes of a few special people who helped make it all happen. From humble beginnings in 1983, the company has grown substantially over the last 30 years -- not only in size but also in its ability to make a difference in Africa. We'd like to thank everyone who has made this journey possible. Together, we can all continue to positively impact Africa, its wildlife, people and guests through responsible and visionary ecotourism.

You can also visit the Zambezi Traveller You Tube Channel


Zambezi Traveller Directory:
Wilderness Safaris Little Makalolo
Wilderness Safaris Davisons Camp

Wild Horizons launch Victoria Falls Gorge Canopy Tour

We are apes after all!
by Frances Jackson

From the forthcoming issue of the Zambezi Traveller (Issue 13, June 2013)

Local tourism provider Wild Horizons launched their new Canopy Tour on 2 June 2013, a new activity set in the Batoka Gorge below the Victoria Falls. Zambezi Traveller Editor, Frances Jackson, was there with the family to test the ropes.

Swinging from tree to tree like a bunch of happy little monkeys was the Jackson family and some special friends one Sunday as we joined in the Wild Horizons fun day for Victoria Falls residents.

Wild Horizons director Clive Bradford invited the town to experience the Canopy Tour and we all came out in force and were not disappointed. Two hours of spectacular views and, yes (for me anyway), adrenalin, as we swung through the canopy around the gorge, and walked along high-rise boardwalks.

I never really mastered the art of gently braking in the trees, and felt sorry for Knowledge, our trusty guide, as a large human orangutan came swinging toward him at speed. That said, I still got from A to B and Knowledge was never knocked off his feet!

My twin daughters were natural apes and it was ooohs and aaahs all the time. Dear friends Joan and Gail, one adventurous granny who went first all the time and showed us how it should be done, and daughter who promptly said to Knowledge, "I want this job. I want to work here every day!" Kari, who was cautious until the penultimate swing which was the scariest then cast caution to the wind and whizzed through at great speed.

A really memorable morning. One thought as we all headed home for Sunday lunch: 'We are so lucky that we live here'.

Zambezi Traveller Directory:
Wild Horizons Activities

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Carnival comes to Livingstone

Rhythm, music, arts and drums will be showcased in the streets when carnival comes to town with the inaugral Livingstone International Cultural Arts Festival and Street Carnival (21-22 June). The event brings together Zambian culture with that of other nations, including Kenya, Egypt, Seychelles, Zimbabwe and the UK, and it is hoped the festival will become an annual event on the international calendar. Kenyan Airways will mark the launch of direct flights from Kenya to Livingstone with sponsorship of the Festival and will be flying in a group of traditional Masai dancers to join other cultural acts from around the world.

Festivities kick-off at the Victoria Falls with a photoshoot of the Zambian Maramba Cultural Team, Kenya’s Masai and other dancers and drummers on the Victoria Falls Bridge, the banks of the Zambezi River above the Victoria Falls, and also it is hoped Livingstone Island, on the very lip of the Victoria Falls and the location where David Livingstone first saw this most magnificent of natural wonders.

“There will be a wonderful cacophony of music, drums and dancing, as the street carnival winds its way slowly up through the centre of Livingstone on Friday afternoon, with participating countries processing along Livingstone’s main street,” said LACSEDO chairman, Belinda Hodge. “Over these two days, we will be celebrating the vibrant and colourful diversity of culture not only from here in Africa but also from elsewhere in the world.”

Live bands will perform at the Golf Club in the evening, and elsewhere in Livingstone foreign dignitaries will be invited to attend a gala dinner.

On Saturday the Festival continues with live performances, pavilions showcasing participating nations through culture, art and tourism, Zambian masked dancers, African drumming, cultural dancing, arts, crafts, food and music.

With Safari Par Excellence sponsorship, The Melodians – a renowned UK-Caribbean steel band – will be taking part, adding a lively calypso rhythm to the Festival, yet one that has its roots in Africa too. They will also perform at The Zambezi Waterfront.

“We want this to be a community festival, so we are encouraging the people to come along, bring a drum or buy a drum at the festival, and join in on Saturday afternoon, when school children and students will form concentric rainbow circles around the central stage prior to the prize giving and finale,” said Felix Chaila, MD of the Zambia Tourism Board.

The Festival is a collaboration between LACSEDO, the David Livingstone Bicentenary & Livingstone 2013 Initiative and the Zambia Tourism Board.

Zambezi Traveller Events:
Livingstone Bicentenary 2013

Monday, 3 June 2013

Proflight Zambia launches its first international flight tomorrow (Tuesday, June 4) with an inaugural flight from Lusaka to Lilongwe.

The new three-times-a-week service is expected to boost ties between the capitals of the two neighbouring countries, providing convenient connections for tourists who wish to visit both countries, and boosting trade and business travel too.

“This is an important milestone for Proflight Zambia, marking our first scheduled international flight since we began operations 22 years ago,” said the airline’s Director of Government and Industry Affairs Capt. Philip Lemba. “And we also have plans to add additional international routes in the coming months.”

Flights to the Malawian capital will operate on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, departing from Lusaka at 15:30 and arriving in Lilongwe at 17:10. The return flights leave Lilongwe on the same days at 17:55, arriving back in Lusaka at 19:35.

The service also provides seamless connections to and from Emirates flights, which arrive in Lusaka from Dubai at 14:25 and depart from Lusaka for Dubai at 21:25 daily.
Return fares from Lusaka to Lilongwe start from around KR2,000 and will operate initially with Proflight’s 29-seater Jetstream 41 aircraft.

Passengers can book online at, through travel agents, or through the Proflight Reservations Department on +260 (0) 977 335563; Email:

Zambezi Traveller Directory:
Proflight Air Services, Zambia

Celebrity hippo flies to new home

In the March 2013 edition Zambezi Traveller reported Conservation Lower Zambezi’s orphaned hippo rescue. After three months intensive care by CLZ the calf was successfully relocated by the Zambian Wildlife Authority, with the help of Proflight Zambia, to Chipembele Wildlife Trust in South Luangwa where she starts her journey back to the wild.

'Doug' and carers

Hippos are listed as vulnerable on the IUCN Red Data List and although Zambia has more hippos than any other country in the world, and they sometimes seem common here, Conservation Lower Zambezi undertook the daunting task of saving one orphaned hippo with the intention of returning it to the wild as soon as possible.

Christened ‘Douglas,’ although hippos are notoriously difficult to sex and it is now thought that Douglas is actually 'Douglina', the calf was cared for by a dedicated team of four carers, 24 hours a day, at the CLZ premises in the valley. Thanks to Ross Breeders she enjoyed two egg yolks with her three hourly bottle of 1.5 litres of milk and supplements. Along with a good diet CLZ also had to ensure that the calf had safe and suitable surroundings, and a second pool was built for her after she outgrew the first within a few weeks.

CLZ and the Zambia Wildlife Authority decided to relocate the hippo to Chipembele Wildlife Trust in South Luangwa, where Anna and Steve Tolan, experienced wildlife rehabilitators, committed to caring for her and to ultimately reintroduce her to the wild hippo population in the nearby Luangwa River.

Doug and Oliver swimming

The question was, how to get her there? A road journey would be stressful for the calf and so a shorter journey by air was advised. Proflight Zambia took on the task and Doug was given a higher chance of survival in a purpose-built crate in the back of their Caravan aircraft. Accompanied by one of her carers from the Lower Zambezi, Oliver Chinuka, and ZAWA vet Dr. David Squarre, Doug arrived at her new home in Mfuwe in good condition.

Ready for boarding

Doug currently requires 12 litres of milk a day as well as supplements, and has three keepers with their daily expenses. Chipembele Wildlife Trust welcomes any assistance with these costs.

Zambezi Traveller March 2013:
Orphan Hippo Rescued

Zambezi Traveller Directory:
Conservation Lower Zambezi

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