RCGS: The Zambezi Valley with Travis Steffens

8 days
from
Loading...
Wildlife
Activity level:
Moderate
Activity Rating - Moderate
Trip code: 
WZR
Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Private Group Adventures
Activity:
Wildlife Holidays
Group size:
4–12
Ages:
16+

Experience a magnificent wildlife experience canoeing and walking in the Zambezi Valley with RCGS Fellow Travis Steffens 

Dr. Travis Steffens, Naturalist, Primatologist and Professor of Anthropology and Executive Director of the charity Planet Madagascar. Travis is a Fellow of the RCGS and Explorers Club and is also a member of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature Primate Specialist Group.  

Embark on an exciting and intimate wildlife experience, canoeing and walking through the Zambezi Valley hosted by Dr. Travis Steffens with one of Exodus’ award winning expert local guides. The mighty Zambezi is an excellent location for a canoe safari, taking all the excitement and thrill of a safari into an active adventure. Camping out on secluded beaches, the days are spent relishing magnificent scenery and abundant game, while passing the ever-present basking crocodiles and hippo pods. Away from the water there is also plenty of time for game walks and drives to experience the diverse wildlife and remarkable scenery this region has to offer. 

Travis loves the outdoors and photography and is sure to capture some incredible Zambezi wildlife shots and has spent over 15 years leading wildlife expeditions, safaris and conservation projects across South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Madagascar, Belize, Costa Rica, Canada and Russia. His intimate knowledge of wildlife, cultures, and environments helps others understand the connections between people, wildlife, and their shared landscapes. 

Highlights

  • Experience the peace and tranquillity of canoeing on the Zambezi
  • Camp out under the stars on secluded islands
  • Game drives in Chiawa Game Management Area, renowned for its elephant sightings
  • Game walks and canoeing in the Lower Zambezi National Park
  • Special Departure with Travis Steffens 

Key information

  • 4 nights semi-participatory camping with either limited or no facilities, 3 nights camping in tented camp with shared facilities
  • Travel by open canoes on the Zambezi River
  • No previous experience necessary
  • Countries visited: Zambia

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 7 lunches and 7 dinners
  • All accommodation
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
020 3885 9102
Call for private group trips:
020 3885 9103
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

Expand all
  • Day 1

    Start Lusaka; transfer to the Zambezi River.

    After the arrival of the group flight in the early afternoon, we transfer to the Zambezi River. Most of this road transfer to the start of the safari is on tar road with the last section of the journey being along a bush dirt track making a change to a 4WD vehicle is necessary. Depending on the time we arrive at the Zambezi River we will cross over to our evening campsite on Nyamumba island by canoe or motor boat . Dinner is prepared by the guide.
    Please note: Clients must not book flights arriving after 12PM.
    Accommodation: Wild Camping
    Semi-participatory Camping

    Meals included: Lunch Dinner
  • Days 2-4

    Three days canoeing and wildlife watching on the Zambezi River, camping on remote islands.

    We have three days canoeing with early starts as it is often better to canoe in the early hours when it is not so hot, and more importantly, when the easterly head wind is at its weakest. The pace is gentle to allow us to make the most of wildlife viewing opportunities. We look out for elephant feeding on the banks, basking crocodiles and numerous colourful bird species including the magnificent African Fish eagle. The list of species we spot may include buffalo, baboon, Vervet monkey, Pied kingfisher, Goliath heron, Carmine Bee eaters and maybe even lion! We will frequently pass pods of hippo basking in the deeper water who will no doubt be keeping an eye on us! There are few signs of human habitation throughout our time on the river. Lunches and breakfasts are either taken on islands or on the banks of the river.

    Accommodation: Wild Camping
    Semi-participatory Camping

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 5

    Morning canoeing; afternoon game walk and drive in Game Management Area.

    We canoe to the Chiawa Game Management Area, which is situated 18 kms from the Lower Zambezi National Park just opposite the Mana Pools, where we spend the night in our fly camp based on mainland. This is an area rich in wildlife and is renowned for the numerous elephant sightings. It is also home to warthog, waterbuck, impala, kudu, and rare Samango monkeys, with many riverene bird species including the Lilac-breasted roller. We have an afternoon game walk or game drive through the reserve where we hope to spot other nocturnal species such as genet, civet, hyena, porcupine, aardvark and if really lucky, the elusive leopard.

    Accommodation: Fly Camp in Game Management Area
    Comfortable Camping

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 6

    Canoe to Lower Zambezi N.P.; morning game walk; afternoon game drive back to camp.

    Today we canoe from the Chiawa Game Management Area into the Lower Zambezi National Park (approximately 8km downstream). We have a morning game walk with a guide, and then have lunch in the park under the shade of the trees or on the banks of the Zambezi River. After lunch we will be taken on a game drive through the park back to our fly camp on the banks of the river in Game Management Area. If river water levels are too high in the winter months (May – July), due to excess water being released from Lake Kariba, we may use a boat transfer as certain road crossing may be flooded.

    Accommodation: Fly Camp in Game Management Area
    Comfortable Camping

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Transfer to our riverside camp.

    We are transferred by road from our bush camp in the Game Management Area to Zambezi Breezes today. Should river conditions necessitate we may use a boat transfer back to Zambezi Breezes where required.

    Accommodation: Zambezi Breezes or similar
    Semi-participatory Camping

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    Transfer to Lusaka; end.

    An early start today; after breakfast we transfer approximately 4-5 hrs to Lusaka where our tour ends in the late morning. Those on the group flights will be transferred to the airport for the flight to London.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Zambia

British, European, N. American, Australian and New Zealand passport holders require a visa to enter Zambia. Single entry visas are available at all ports of entry. The visa fee for British nationals is currently USD50 for a single entry visa.

Vaccinations

Zambia

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. Malaria prophylaxis is essential and we suggest that you seek advice from your GP or travel health clinic about which malaria tablets to take.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 7 lunches and 7 dinners included.

Meals are prepared for you but group members are asked to assist in preparation and washing up.

Typical meals

Breakfast: Cereals or coffee and toast plus a fried breakfast on most days.

Lunch: Fresh salads, cold meats, cheese, bread, condiments, fruit.

Evening meal: Biggest meal of the day, stews, pasta, curry, local cuisine.

Vegetarians can be catered for but given the difficulties of preparing different meals while wild camping, the variety of food may be limited.

Please indicate special dietary requirements (e.g. vegetarian or allergies) when booking. We will supply the following drinks: fruit squash served throughout, and tea or coffee served with breakfast and dinner.

There is always a plentiful supply of chlorinated water available (sometimes even chilled!) and we encourage you to drink water throughout the day to avoid dehydration.

All other beverages will be at your own expense and can be purchased at the supermarket in Lusaka prior to travelling to the river.

Weather

With its exceptionally mild winters Zambia is best enjoyed during the dry season. This period extends from May to early November. The days are generally dry, hot and sunny with day time highs around 25ºC, however nights can be cool (down to 10ºC). From June to August it can be exceptionally cold. September and October are the hottest months where daytime highs are regularly 35º+ and temperatures at night can be in the low to mid 20s. Rainfall is generally confined between the months of November and April. Rains normally occur as heavy showers, but they tend to clear rapidly with sunshine still predominant.

Lusaka, Zambia

Is this trip for you?

This is generally a comfortable participatory safari but, as it goes through some wild country, you should come prepared to be flexible and expect delays or inconvenience.
Travel is by Canadian-style 18ft. two-person canoes and open backed safari vehicle. No previous experience is necessary but you should have a reasonable level of fitness on what is an active trip. An ability to swim is recommended.

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Call for general departures:
020 3885 9102
Call for private group trips:
020 3885 9103
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Camping

On this tour we spend 4 nights camping in two-man dome tents and 3 nights in a set up bush camps with showers, toilets and large tents.

The camping is semi-participatory as participants are asked to assist with camp chores and you will have to erect and dismantle your own tents whilst on the canoeing safari. Most nights are spent wild camping with no facilities provided. All camping equipment is provided.

Call for general departures:
020 3885 9102
Call for private group trips:
020 3885 9103
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Experts

Contact a member of staff who has done this trip

Call for general departures:
020 3885 9102
Call for private group trips:
020 3885 9103
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

Have you been on this adventure? Tell others what it’s like by writing a review.

Dates & Prices

Please provide as much information as possible below so we can best help with your holiday requirements.

Fields with * are mandatory.

Please call one of our experts to discuss your private group requirements on 0203 993 4668, or fill out the form below and we will give you a call back.

Please provide as much information as possible below so we can best help with your holiday requirements.

Fields with * are mandatory.

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: sales@exodus.co.uk

Trips you might also like