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Zimbabwe Safaris

Zimbabwe is our choice for an avid safari-goer who does not want to break the bank. The guiding is unquestionably the best in the whole of Africa, the game equals anything else on the continent and the private concessions means you can get all the privacy and intimacy of a Botswana safari, but quite literally, at half the price. Zimbabwe should be on the seasoned safari goers hit-list as it offers one of the best safari experiences in Africa. 
Many years ago Zimbabwe used to be our largest market, and it is fantastic to see interest in this wonderful country rising again.  The dollarisation of the country has made an enormous difference, as has investment in infrastructure - Wilderness Air now flies the routes that Air Zimbabwe used to fly (from the Falls and Harare to Hwange, Mana and Kariba).  We’re delighted once again to be sending guests to Zimbabwe on safari.
 

Why choose Zimbabwe for your safaris?

 
1.      Remote and truly wild, the private concession areas in Zimbabwe have some really amazing accomodation options to explore this canvas of wildlife and beautiful scenery from. The private concessions mean you feel alone in the wilderness, and offers a really personalised safari. 
 
2.      Diversity in activities is a real plus for a Zimbabwe safari. Lake Kariba means that you do not have to travel far at all for a welcomed relaxing break from safari with many other activities on offer. Also, fishing at Mana Pools is not to be missed – this is one of the world's most rewarding destinations for tiger fishing. 
 
3.      The guiding in Zimbabwe is absolutely the best throughout the whole of Africa. Anyone who has been on safari before will know how very important it is to have a good guide on your safari - they will be your tour guide throughout your stay, and the Zimbabwean guides' knowledge and interest in the African bush makes the whole experience hugely more rewarding and worthwhile. 
 
4.      As previously stated - we cannot stress enough how much you get for your money in Zimbabwe in comparison to a more expensive, and similar itinerary from Botswana and Zambia. You do not have to compromise accommodation luxuries for good game viewing spots, which makes the whole safari more memorable. 
 
5.      Victoria Falls. Yes we know it’s not a traditional wildlife-viewing spot, but it occupies a well-deserved space on almost every Zimbabwe itinerary and it’s just so incredible that we have to include it in our Zimbabwe top 5!

Which are the best safari lodges in Zimbabwe? 


Linkwasha is a new build by Wilderness, based in Hwange National Park in a private concession area. The beauty of this from a safari perspective is that it overlooks a fantastic waterhole, so you can admire the fantastic wildlife from the comfort of this stylish and contemporary lodge. 

Another all-time favourite of ours is Ruckomechi, which is in a private concession area bordering Mana Pools. For a different safari perspective, this wonderful and luxury lodge offers some of the best walking and canoeing in Africa. A really amazing choice, you will have an extremelly diverting, intimate and one-of-a-kind safari here. 

For your Lake Kariba stay, look no further than the view from Bumi Hills which is absolutely stunning. It's raised positions serves the lodge extremely well. Also, from Bumi Hills you can enjoy some of the best fishing around, as well as many adventurous pursuits for those looking for different safari experiences. 

Pamushana is located in one of the most interesting flora and fauna spots in Zimbabwe, the Malilangwe Wildlife Reserve. For those who are not only seeking big cat sightings, it is well worth staying here for the dramatic and unusual up-side-down baobab trees and the rare and magnificent black rhino. You are not sacrificing any luxury for this experience either, with sweeping views from the lodge and real luxury. 

The best safari lodges in zimbabwe

Our top 3 Zimbabwe safari destinations


1.      Mana Pools: some of Africa's finest walking and canoe safaris can be experienced along the Zambezi River in the Mana Pools National Park. 

2.      One of our favourite safari destinations is in the north of the country: cruise Lake Kariba aboard a houseboat whilst hopping ashore to spot lion in the Matusadona National Park.
 
3.      Hwange National Park is absolutely vast and is Zimbabwe’s premier game viewing location where the absence of permanent surface water means that game viewing is exceptionally good around the waterholes.

Zimbabwe Safari itinerary planning


Our most popular Zimbabwe safari itinerary takes in Hwange National Park and Victoria Falls: 3-5 nights in Hwange spotting the Big 7 (buffalo, elephant, rhino, leopard, lion, hippo and crocodile), then on to Victoria Falls for adventure and adrenaline – or just relaxing!
 
Hwange certainly has enough to keep a safari enthusiast happy. Wilderness run three great camps here; Davison’s, Linkwasha and Little Makalolo, each in a private concession and all offering Wilderness' usual high standards of accommodation, service and guiding.  However, for those wishing to combine parks we recommend starting off in Mana Pools, then heading south west to Hwange and ending up at Vic Falls.
 
A safari in Zimbabwe can be combined with a beach break by flying to the Tanzania Coast (Zanzibar Island is our pick!), or indeed over to Mozambique, with great connections departing from Victoria Falls or Lusaka.

Our favourite safari parks in Zimbabwe

How much does a Zimbabwe Safari cost?

With the removal of the Zimbabwean Dollar in 2009, the country has adopted a multi-currency system for payments. Hard currencies such as US Dollars (no specific series), GBP Sterling, Euros and South African Rand are accepted widely and you are encouraged to carry small denominations for ease of trade. All the safari lodges and hotels in Zimbabwe are priced in USD.
 
Zimbabwe offers a real range of accommodation options where safari prices start at around $350 per person per night and span right up to $1,100 per person per night. Whilst on safari, the rate includes all your game viewing activities, meals and drinks plus all park fees - no nasty hidden costs to worry about! We would arrange your internal flights which as a guide, costs about $250 to $350 per flight per person. To get an idea of different types of itineraries check out our itineraries page.
 

When is the best time to take a safari in Zimbabwe?

When to go to on safari in Zimbabwe is a tricky question to answer, there are so many factors to consider.  As a general guide, the best time (and peak season) is from June to September.  This is peak season not only because of school holidays, but also because the rains have passed and the sun is shining, and the land is starting to dry up meaning that game viewing is excellent.
 
From January till early April large numbers of zebra, wildebeest, eland, giraffe, buffalo and impala move into the clearings around Makalolo and Linkwasha to give birth to their young and feed on the sweet grasses.  Inevitably, the predators follow, and opportunities for superb wildlife viewing abound.  This is a great time for a Zimbabwe safari.
 
The two rainy seasons you'll probably want to avoid (unless you’re a birder) are usually October and November (short rains), and late March to late May. You’re unlikely to spot a great deal of game during rainy seasons because the bush is thick and animals like roaming around in the rain about as much as we do. 

However, this being said, there are particular pros and cons for each season, depending on the type of safari you are after! So please do clal one of our experts to dicsuss a Zimbabwe further. For more information on the seasons, please visit out when to go page
 

Top 5 Zimbabwe safari tips

Zimbabwe’s geography, diverse landscapes and habitats mean that a varied and exciting itinerary can be arranged without lugging yourself on a long flight, and its location allows easy access to other African countries. Adding on a bit of time in winelands of Cape Town is is easy, and also very tempting... 
Zimbabwe isn't just about the classic jeep safari experience... why not give bungee jumping a go to ge the blood pumping, or more sedate options such as canoeing or fishing. There is so much to do, it would be a shame to waste it!
Zimbabwe has some of the best quality safari experiences in Africa and in terms of value for luxury it is one of the hardest to beat in Africa! So if you are pushed on money, but don't want a commercial experience, the Zimbabwe is your one. 
Don’t try and do too much! As tempting as it is, safari is probably the best holiday you can do but can be quite full on... So it is much better to have a shorter (3 night safari) somewhere decent rather than a longer poorer quality safari!
Ask us about a camp that offers you a once in a lifetime opportunity of sleeping under the stars!
 

Tented vs Lodge based safaris 

There are many ways to explore Zimbabwe, some are certainly on the more rustic, adventurous side of things such as walking safaris in Hwange National Parks and Mana Pools, where you are camping under the stars in some of the most pristine wild areas in Africa. For those seeking pure luxury Zimbabwe has some of the finest lodges in Africa in some of the most remote locations. The elephant's favourite camp, Ruchomechi could easily be described as the hidden gem of Zimbabwe. Set on the banks of the majestic Zambezi, it is one of Africa's best kept secrets. Wildlife viewing is excellent, with large concentrations of buffalo and elephant along the river's edges, while predators such as lion, wild dog and leopard are often spotted over a G&T... better than Attenborough viewing. If you are a group of avid safari-goers, Ruckomechi also has a smaller camp called Little Ruckomechi. Here, you are treated to your own private spot on the banks of the mighty Zambezi. You have free reign over your activities and schedule so perfect for groups with specific safari interests!
 

What type of safaris does Zimbabwe offer?

Zimbabwe offers a wide range of safari activities including, game drives, night game drives, walking safaris (widely considered some of the best in Africa!) and boating safaris down the thunderous Zambezi. Possible activities vary from park to park, so ask us and we can point you towards which areas suit your specific preferences the most. 

A lot of people ask about off-roading in Zimbabwe, and whist it is not always officially allowed, they usually allow it if the sighting isn't very visible from the main tracks. If walking and boating off the beaten track sounds like your thing, then Mana Pools is best for you. Walking in Hwange National Park is also very good, but generally you are centered more around vehicle based safaris.
 

Zimbabwe safari Vs Botswana safari

Zimbabwe and Botswana are both amazing safari destinations and have a similar style of high quality, low tourism private concessions. We tend to lean towards Zimbabwe as it is much better value when compared with Botswana. You get a very similar experience and the camps are right up there with the best of Botswana. Also, Zimbabwean guides are considered some of the best trained and most qualified in Africa which is vital to a safari of a lifetime. 
 

What should I combine with a Zimbabwe safari?

Zimbabwe is a landlocked country surrounded by South Africa, Botswana, Zambia and Mozambique. If you are looking for a bit of  recuperation, the shores of Lake Kariba gies you a bush and beach experience, with brilliant fishing and some stunning lodges. Alternatively, Zimbabwe is well linked with South Africa making it easy to connect with the beaches of Mozambique, Mauritius and the Seychelles. For a bit of beach and culture, there is no other city in the world that does this better than the captivating Cape Town.
 

Zimbabwe Safari further details:

Between us here in our office we have visited almost every lodge or hotel in Zimbabwe that is worth talking about. So the best way to book a Zimbabwe Safari is to get in touch and have a chat with us. Email us on [email protected] or call through on 1866 356 4691 or the UK on 020 8704 1216

Client Reviews

[100% based on 5 reviews]

A very happy new year to you. Just wanted to let you know that we had a great time over new year! It was wonderful being back in Zimbabwe and was utterly magical .. Linkwasha is best camp we’ve ever stayed at! Saw tons of game, including lion, leopard, cheetah and a wild dog kill! Spectacular.
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itineraries


Although we tailor-make all our trips we have reproduced a number of popular itineraries here

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Map of Zimbabwe

Map of Zimbabwe Zimbabwe - Mana Pools Zimbabwe - Hwange Zimbabwe - Lake Kariba Zimbabwe - Victoria Falls
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