Formerly known as the Caprivi Strip this lush area of tropical rivers and wildlife has been renamed the Zambezi Region after the river that forms Namibia’s northern border with Zambia. A thin strip of land between Angola and Botswana, this is a region of flat floodplains and rivers, a complete contrast to the vast tracts of desert that dominate Namibia.
The main safari parks feature a mixture of woodland and riverine floodplains with abundant animal and bird life. At the western end of the strip is Mahango Game Park which borders the Kavango River and is a small but scenic reserve with Savannah, floodplains and woodland studded with baobab trees. The bird watching here is superb, particularly during and after the rains, and among the animals found here are numerous antelope species such as sable and kudu as well as elephant and hippo. Nearby by is Popa Falls, more of a series of rapids than waterfalls, but a pleasant spot nevertheless for exploring the islands or enjoying a sundowner. Further east the woodlands and reed beds along the Kwando River of Mudumu National Park support a wide variety of wildlife including buffalo, sable, elephant and hyena and is best explored from Lianshulu Lodge.
At the eastern end of the strip, Impalila Island lies between the Chobe and Zambezi Rivers close to the point where four countries – Namibia, Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe – meet so there is easy access to Victoria Falls and Botswana. The island is a base for fishing, bird watching and boat trips to Chobe National Park and it is also possible to explore the river on a luxury cruise boat such as Zambezi Queen.
Bird watchers should head for Mahango which has Namibia's greatest variety of bird life. Fill up where you can as it can be a long way between stops with available fuel.
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One of the highlights in this area would be taking a cruise down the Zambezi, which allows you to see the stunning scenery that this region has to offer.
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