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DETAILS: Zambia

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Sunday, April 27, 2008

GETTING THERE: Flying from Washington to Zambia's capital, Lusaka, can take up to 26 hours and generally costs between $1,500 and $2,000. British Airways flies from Washington Dulles, through London. South African Airways flies from Dulles through Johannesburg.

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GETTING AROUND: Most safari companies will arrange transfers from Lusaka to game parks and reserves. Lower Zambezi National Park and Kafue National Park can be reached by car from Lusaka within two to three hours. Driving to South Luangwa, however, takes many hours on a fairly bad road. The best option is to fly from Lusaka to Mfuwe on Proflight or Zambian Airways; fares start at about $166 round trip. Your safari operator will pick you up at the airport.

WHERE TO STAY: Norman Carr Safaris (telephone 011-260-216-246015 or 011-260-216-246025, http://www.normancarrsafaris.com) operates Kapani Lodge outside South Luangwa National Park and four bush camps within the park. Rates are at the high end of the price range: The lodge costs $400 per person double per night during the rainy season and $575 during dry season. Bush camps start at $595 per person double per night; only one is open during the wet season, at $540 per person double. Rates includes all meals, game drives and walking safaris.

Flatdogs Camp (011-260-216-246038, http://www.flatdogscamp.com), just outside South Luangwa National Park, offers one of the least expensive options in the area. Chalet packages, including meals, game drives and park fees, are $225 per person per night during high season; the same package in a safari tent costs $205. Without meals or activities, chalets are $55 per person per night during the high season.

Mukambi Safari Lodge ( http://www.mukambi.com), just outside Kafue National Park in western Zambia, offers chalets and safari tents, and runs games drives, walks and boat rides. Chalets cost $110 per person per night, while safari tents run $70 per person per night. Each game walk or drive, or boat ride, costs $25 per person, plus park fees.

WHAT TO DO: Zambia has three major national parks popular for safari-goers -- South Luangwa, Kafue and Lower Zambezi -- as well as several other smaller and more remote national parks and reserves, such as North Luangwa and the Bangweulu Wetlands.

Livingstone is home to Victoria Falls, one of the seven natural wonders of the world, and also bills itself the "adventure capital of southern Africa." Bungee jumping, white-water rafting, helicopter rides and more can be arranged around the falls and the Upper Zambezi. Most of these activities cost between $70 and $100 per person.

The capital city, Lusaka, has few cultural attractions but features several quality craft markets, such as Kabwata Cultural Village, where you can also have a traditional Zambian lunch. For the more adventurous, local marketplaces are worth explorings.

INFORMATION: Zambia Tourism Board, http://www.zambiatourism.com. Bush Buzz Travel Agency, 011-260-1-256827, http://www.bush-buzz.com.

-- J.J.S.


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