How does this sound to you: sitting in traffic, fighting through crowds, queuing up for a peak at a big tourist attraction, and then getting back in the car and working your way through unfamiliar streets. It is no wonder that the best part of many vacations involves returning to the hotel! Now, how does this sound: seeing exotic animals that few people see outside a view as you ride on the back of an elephant, watching millions of wildebeest migrate in the Liuwa Plains, or watch nature's most fierce predators stock their prey. Better, yes? This is Zambia, and this is everything vacation is supposed to be.
Safaris, fishing, bird watching, walking, rafting, bungee jumping, jet boating...all of these are excuses to get out and gape at Zambia's natural beauty. What can the observant visitor see? Elephant, rhino, buffalo, leopards, hippo, giraffe, zebra, warthog, antelope...no, we're not even close to done yet. There are spotted hyena, with the sharpest teeth in the wild kingdom, cheetah, with the fastest legs, lion, with the biggest reputation, and crocodile, with a built-in suit of armor and razor sharp teeth. Most bodies of water in Zambia support a wide array of fish life; more than 300 species have been documented, including giant carp, bream, and vudu - but who knows? Perhaps you will discover one yourself.
That takes care of land and sea; so what about the skies? Visitors will have the chance to see some of the 749 bird species - an incredible variety that will thrill any bird watcher. Spot doves, cuckoos, parrots, kingfishers, hornbills, woodpeckers, crested guinea fowl, black-breasted snake eagle, and many more. Even casual observers can't help but notice, and admire, the impressive array of fine feathered friends.
Zambia is home to Victoria Falls, one of the most magnificent falls in the world. Here, you have the opportunity to canoe, fish, river surf, and ogle at the incredible views. This is a great place to go on safari, try some tiger fishing, and keep on the lookout for the many wildlife species that are supported by the lush greenery surrounding the falls.
Thirty percent of Zambia's land is taken up by game parks and reserves, and an astonishing number of species calls it home. Natural beauty and wildlife is abundant, but it is also treasured by Zambia. You will instantly see why Zambians are so rightly proud of their gorgeous corner of the world.
Enid Glasgow is a travel writer who recently visited Zambia.
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