Exploring South Luangwa National Park in Zambia

By on Published: December 28, 2017 | Last Updated: December 29, 2021 in Africa, ZAMBIA with 0 Comments

South Luangwa National Park - A Photo Essay {Big World Small Pockets}

Crazy as it sounds, but after 2 months safari-ing in Africa, South Luangwa National Park in Zambia is still my favourite place!

That’s beating Tanzania’s Serengeti and South Africa’s Kruger even!

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Zambia, South Luangwa NP, Entrance

Yes, this little, off the beaten track and remote national park in the Southern Africa country of Zambia packs a seriously mean punch when it comes to the sheer concentration of animals and the proximity at which you can view them.



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Zambia, South Luangwa NP, Zebra Butts

South Luangwa National Park is a good day’s drive from Lusaka – at least it was in our huge Absolute Africa overland truck – but was certainly worth the adventure and you could spend at least 3 days exploring all this amazing place had to offer.

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It’s definitely the best Zambia National Park in my opinion.

Zambia, South Luangwa NP, Lionness



#1 Good Mirrorless Camera and Zoom Lens – I love my Sony A6000 and 210mm Lens, whihc I;ve used throuhgout my travels in Africa.

#2 Binoculars – Don’t think they have to cost the earth. My cheap Eurohike pair were perfect for my time in Zambia.

#3 Insect Repellent – I recommend a 30% DEET repellent – and 30+ SPF sunscreen.


Zambia, South Luangwa NP, Solo Zebra
We undertook 2 game drives in South Luangwa National Park, one in the morning and one in the evening and both were fantastic.

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Zambia, South Luangwa NP, Eagle

If push came to shove, I’d have to say I preferred the morning game drive when we saw (and this is not an exhaustive list!) zebra, giraffes, hippos, warthogs, monitor lizards, crocodiles, buffalos, impala, mongoose, snakes, baboons, vervet monkeys and elephants!

We also saw a good number of female lions and cubs, extremely close up. Some of them were even suckling!

Zambia, South Luangwa NP, Lion Sisters

Zambia, South Luangwa NP, Lion Cub

But the jewel in the crown had to be the leopard we spotted only a metre or so away!

There she was in all her regal glory, calm collected and seemingly unaware (or not bothered) by the excited array of humans around her!

What memories!



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Absolute Africa, Zambia, Leopard


South Luangwa National Park Accommodation

My tip insider tip if you do travel to South Luangwa National Park is to stay at the wonderful Croc Valley Camp.


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Perched right above the river, we literally camped on the banks here and spent a lot of time with our binoculars just staring out at the wildlife around us.

As such, we got the most incredible view of hippos, monkeys and crocs right from outside our tent door and several elephants even wandered into our camp at dusk to say hello!

Zambia, South Luangwa NP, Hippo Pod

More scary however was the hippos in the middle of the night.

I swear they were less than a metre from us, munching, snorting and grunting away – eek!

Croc Valley Camp also had an awesome pool area – just what was required in the heat – and excellent wifi, which was well worth the nominal amount (sorry blogger life!)

Compounding the idea that this really is a wildlife camp was the fact we even saw a snake eating a frog right by the bar!

Nature on tap!




Honestly, South Luangwa National Park really is one of the best Zambia National Parks, if not the whole of Africa!


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About the Author

About the Author: Creator of Big World Small Pockets, Stephanie Parker is a budget travel addict! Originally from Jersey in the Channel Islands, Stephanie backpacks the world collecting tips, advice and stories, to share with a smile .

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