This unique, peanut-shaped country, once known as Northern Rhodesia, offers visitors an authentic African experience complete with adrenalin pumping adventure sports, a variety of fascinating cultural activities, and an abundance of indigenous wildlife, which finds refuge in Zambia’s vast national parks.
Spend your evenings enjoying the spectacular site of the world’s largest waterfall, the Victoria Falls, while sipping on sundowners after an exhilarating day of whitewater rafting down the rapids of the mighty Zambezi River. If that sounds a little too adventurous for your taste, take a houseboat cruise along the exquisite Lake Kariba while watching wild elephants drink at the riverbank as you try your hand at catching the elusive tiger fish.
However you choose to spend your time in this unique country, you are bound to leave with a heavy heart and a desire to return again soon to this exceptionally beautiful Southern African country.
Zambia has a wide range of accommodation options from mobile camps that move every few days (some have flushing loos, others have "long drops") to super luxurious "glamping" options and five star hotels that have every modern convenience, including air conditioning. Take a look at our Zambia catalogue.
The Center for Disease Control maintains an excellent source of health information for travelers.
Electrical sockets in the Republic of Zambia are Type G (BS-1363) and Type C (CEE 7/16 Europlug) and Type D (BS-546). If your appliance's plug doesn't match the shape of these sockets, you will need a travel plug adapter in order to plug in. Travel plug adapters simply change the shape of your appliance's plug to match whatever type of socket you need to plug into. If it's crucial to be able to plug in no matter what, bring an adapter for all types.
Electrical sockets in the Republic of Zambia supply electricity at 230 volts AC / 50 Hz frequency. If you're plugging in an appliance that was built for 230 volt electrical input, or an appliance that is compatible with multiple voltages, then an adapter is all you need. If your appliance isn’t compatible with 230 volts, a voltage converter will be necessary.
Baht (THB; symbol ฿) = 100 satang. Notes are in denominations of ฿1,000, 500, 100, 50, 20 and 10. Coins are in denominations of ฿10, 5, 2 and 1, and 50, 25, 10, 5 and 1 satang.
The import and export of local currency is limited to ฿50,000. The import and export of foreign currency is unlimited, but amounts over US$20,000 must be declared.
Foreign currencies can be exchanged at banks (which have the best rates), hotels (which charge high commissions) and bureaux de changes can be found in larger towns (generally open 0800-2000). Outside large towns and tourist areas, high value notes may be difficult to exchange, so visitors are advised to carry small change.
Banking hours: Mon-Fri 0830-1530.
American Express, MasterCard and Visa credit cards are widely accepted. ATMs are found in all major cities and almost all provincial banks.
Travellers cheques are accepted by almost all banks and large hotels and shops. To avoid additional exchange rate charges, travellers are advised to take traveller's cheques in US Dollars, Euros or Pounds Sterling.
The rains in Zambia come mostly in December, January, February and March though the further north you are, the earlier the rains arrive and the later they leave. Eastern areas and higher areas generally receive more rain than western and lowland areas.
By April and May most of the rain has faded away, leaving a landscape that's still green, but starting to dry out. Nighttime temperatures start to drop, especially in higher and more southerly locations.
In June, July and August the nights become much cooler, but the days are clear and warm. Make sure you bring warm clothes to wrap up if you're out at night, as some nights get very cold! Most of Zambia's small 'walking bush camps' open at the start of June, when the roads have dried out sufficiently to allow access. This is the start of the 'peak season' for these countries – with often cloudless days and continually increasing game sightings.
Into September and October the temperatures climb: the lower-lying rift valleys – Lower Zambezi, Mana Pools and Luangwa Valley – can get very hot in October. However, you'll see some superb game as the animals concentrate around the limited water sources.
November is variable; it can be hot and dry like October, or it can see the season's first downpours. Often it's a very interesting month as you can see both patterns on successive days.
Zambia has mild winters and the summer days can be scorching hot. Lightweight casual clothes can be worn all year round, with a jacket or jersey for early winter mornings and evenings.
On safari, keep clothes to neutral colours - khakis, browns and greens. A sunhat, sunscreen, sunglasses and insect repellent are a must.