Kafue National Park, Zambia
After visiting Hwange National Park, our next destination was Kafue National Park in Zambia. I admit that I had wondered whether it would just be a continuation of our Hwange experience, but I learned that each ecoregion had unique and fascinating characteristics.
We traveled to Kafue by bus, plane, and Land Rover. On the way, we visited a small village and an elementary school.
|An unexpected experience at the terminal in Livingston Airport, Zambia.
|We donated a bag of mealie (corn meal) to a village family.
|Lisa with local women.
|Caroline asking girls to translate English words into the local language.
|My fault... I was the first to demonstrate a goofy face!
|Water is the magic ingredient that attracts animals in this part of the world.
|A treat on the way to camp! Well, for us, not for the hippo.
Okay, before I go on, I have to note that I had four wishes before setting off on this African trip. The four wishes were:
• Finally figure out where the Southern Cross is and how it is used for navigation.
• Hug a baobab tree.
• Watch a dung beetle do its thing.
• Hear and feel an elephant rumble.
I ended up completing two of these, partially completed one, and failed on one. Stay tuned for my successes and failures.
Again, we arrived at camp at night, and were told to stay in our tents until about 6:30 am, when we could see any animal still roaming the premises. The morning gave us our first view of this camp, alongside the Lufupa River.
|"Now, where are all those hippos that were grunting and groaning all night?"
|You have to dress warmly for breakfast!
|Old hippo skull at the entrance to our camp.
|Hugging a baobab!
|We took a boat trip on the river to scope out the hippos and Nile crocodiles.
|From the river, we saw this massive baobab tree, supposedly 1500 years old. It is called Kondanamwali, the tree that eats maidens.
|View at a "sundowner" (drinks and a view of the sunset).
|Hippo tracks in the mud.
|Another well qualified safari guide!
|One of only a few tsetse flies we noticed (this one on Lisa's back).
|Evening fires were always pleasant.
|The Land Rovers had a burn can hanging at the rear. These cans held elephant dung, and were burned to repel tsetse flies. One morning I asked Caroline whether my coat smelled like wood smoke. She replied, "No, it smells like burnt elephant dung!"
|I think these are wattled cranes.
|Kafue really featured hippos.
|There are 80-100 hippos here, mating, demonstrating their open mouth display, and vocalizing. Not a bad background for an evening social!
|Off to Botswana!