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Take a chance to visit the four marvels of Africa: Kenya, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Botswana.
Kenya is the land of the Masai Mara, of wildebeest and zebras migrating in their millions with the great predators of Africa following their wake. But Kenya is also home to the read elephants of Tsavo, to Amboseli elephant families in the shadow of Mt Kilimanjaro and to the massed millions of pink flamingos stepping daintily through lake shallows. Africa is the last great wilderness where these creatures survive. And Kenya is the perfect place to answer Africa’s call of the wild.
The survival and abundance of Kenya’s wildlife owes everything to one of Africa’s most innovative and successful conservation communities. Through some pretty tough love – Kenya pioneered the use of armed rangers to protect rhinos and elephants – Kenya stopped the emptying of its wilderness, bringing its wildlife back from the brink after the poaching holocaust of the 1970s and 1980s. More than that, in places like Laikipia and the Masai Mara, private and community conservancies bring tourism together with community development and wildlife conservation in a near-perfect marriage. In other words, if you want your visit to make a difference, you’ve come to the right place.
Step into Zambia, and get out into the bush where animals, both predators and prey, wander through unfenced camps, where night-time means swapping stories around the fire and where the human footprint is nowhere to be seen. The rewards of travelling in Zambia are those of exploring remote, mesmerizing wilderness as full of an astonishing diversity of wildlife as any part of Southern Africa – where one day you can canoe down a wide, placid river and the next raft through the raging rapids near world-famous Victoria Falls. Though landlocked, three great rivers, the Kafue, the Luangwa and the Zambezi, flow through Zambia, defining both its geography and the rhythms of life for many of its people.
Tourists come into Zimbabwe to spot the Big Five strut their stuff around spectacular parks, discover World Heritage–listed archaeological sites and stand in awe of the natural wonder of the world – Victoria Falls.
A journey here will take you through an attractive patchwork of landscapes, from central highveld, balancing boulders and flaming msasa trees, to laidback towns, lush eastern highland mountains and a network of lifeblood rivers up north. Along the way you’ll receive a friendly welcome from locals, famous for their politeness and resilience in the face of hardship.
Blessed with some of the greatest wildlife spectacles on earth, Botswana is one of the great safari destinations in Africa. There are more elephants in Botswana than any other country, the big cats roam free and there’s everything from endangered African wild dogs to aquatic antelopes, from rhinos making a comeback to abundant birdlife at every turn.
This is also the land of the Okavango Delta and the Kalahari Desert, at once iconic African landscapes and vast stretches of wilderness. Put these landscapes together with the wildlife that inhabits them, and it’s difficult to escape the conclusion that this is wild Africa at its best.
Botswana may rank among Africa’s most exclusive destinations – accommodation prices at most lodges are once-in-a-lifetime propositions – but self-drive expeditions are also possible. And whichever way you visit, Botswana is a truly extraordinary place.