Great North Road
North Eastern Zambia: Waterfalls, Lakes, Museums, History, Fishing, Boating ,Game Viewing, Caves and more. This is a dream self-drive holiday!
The Great North and Luapula Province is wonderful and has great distances, so do try to take the maximum time to explore and enjoy this special part of Zambia. Remember to refuel wherever you can and be prepared to use your hooter well in advance. People on the roadside in this remote part of Zambia are not very road savvy. It's a great idea to keep in touch along the way.
Proposed Itinerary (all depending on your time available)
- From Lusaka head North
- Fig Tree Cafe: the perfect toilet stop or a place for a quick bite.
- Kapiri Mposhi: refuel here.
- Mkushi: Alongside the Great North Road this charming Forest Inn is a sanctuary within 160 hectares of protected indigenous forest and a birders delight. Sightings have been made of Chestnut Mantled Sparrow Weaver, Boehm’s Flycatcher, Fork Tail Drongo, African Pied Wagtail, Hoopoe, Loerie , just to mention a few. Kundalila Falls is 1 ½ hours drive from here and is one of Zambia's most beautiful waterfalls (Kundalila are means 'cooing dove'). It's set in forests where the clear Kaombe River drops off the Muchinga Escarpment. There are spectacular views of the water cascading into the valley below .
- North of Kundalila is Nsalu Cave is a huge, gaping arch halfway up a 100-metre-high granite outcrop, in the middle of nowhere. The rudimentary paintings, made by late Stone-age and Iron-age settlers, form a giant curved mural, perhaps twenty metres wide. Geometric lines and swirls, ladder-shapes and sun images overlapped in red, white and buttermilk yellow.
- Kasanka National Park: see the world's largest mammal migration and do visit the David Livingstone memorial where his heart is buried. (You can continue North towards Bangwelu and Mporokoso. Camping only. Not for the fainthearted.)
- Kasama: Refuel here. Numerous Bed and breakfasts, nearby Chishimba Falls and Mwela Rocks which has over 700 rock art sites.
- Mbala is home to the Moto-Moto museum and Lake Chila
- Mpulungu: Niamkolo Church is the oldest stone Church in Zambia and was built between 1893 and 1896 by the London Missionary Society and is a National Monument. From here Isanga bay lodge or Kalambo falls lodge will collect you by boat. A good walk for the fit will get you to Kalambo Falls one of the world highest falls.
- Waterfalls: Sanzye and Kalambo Falls.
- Lake Tanganyika: Catered lodges on Eastern and Western shores. Lodges will collect you from here for boat transfers.
- Mbala: Moto Moto Museum tells of the history of the Bemba people of Zambia as well as Father Joseph Dupont, a missionary who came to Zambia in 1895. It also contains many relics of World War I and information about Paul Von Lettow-Vorbeck, the General who led the East African forces during that war. Have lunch at Lake Chila Lodge and do visit the pioneer / polish cemetery.
- Chambeshi Bridge: Driving south on the banks of the Chambeshi River is the Von Lettow -Vorbeck Monument where the last shots of World War I were fired on 13 November 1918, two days after the Armistice in Europe.
- Kapishya Hot Springs: A lodge with a charm of its own or book a side trip into North Luangwa.
- Shiwa Ngandu Manor House is a destination in its own right; a magical English manor house overlooking a picturesque lake, that's steeped in history. Since 2002 it has been carefully restored and it's one of the continent's most original and fascinating places to stay. (also easily reached by air as an add-on to any safari which visits the Luangwa Valley).
- Mpika: refuel here
- Mutinondo Wilderness: IBA and stunning hikes and walks (also reached by a short flight from the Luangwa) the Mutinondo Wilderness is a private 100km2 reserve near the edge of the Luangwa escarpment, this pristine area protects verdant woodlands and wetland areas sprinkled with granite whalebacks (large smooth hills), crystal-clear rivers and stunning waterfalls. Visit the rustic but beautiful Mutinondo Wilderness Lodge to explore on your own, or we can arrange for a guide to accompany you.
- Back south to Mkushi, Kapiri and onto Lusaka or Copperbelt.
For more ideas please visit www.zambiaselfcatering.com