Zambia is the 39th-largest country in the world (after Chile) and is slightly larger than the US state of Texas. It consists for the most part of a high plateau, with an average height of between 3 000 and 3 600 ft above sea level. The highest point is Nyika Plateau, at above 7 000 ft. Zambia is blessed with an abundance of water, with the Zambezi River and its major tributaries, the Kafue and Luangwa Rivers, being the largest. In addition, there are three great natural lakes, all located in the northern part of the country, namely Bangweulu, Mweru and the southern end of Lake Tanganyika. Lake Tanganyika is the second deepest natural lake in the world. Lake Kariba, along the southern border of the Zambia, is the largest man-made lake in Africa and the second largest in the world. It is about 280 km long and 40 km across at its widest point.

Zambia has 19 national parks and 36 adjacent Game Management Areas. Collectively, they cover 23 million hectares, or about 30 per cent of the country, and this does not include private fenced and unfenced game ranches and conservancies, that range from a 1 000 hectares to over 30 000 hectares. The GMAs, or concessions, are sufficiently large enough to include a variety of habitats, with most of the big-game species available. The national parks function as game reservoirs for surrounding areas through the natural movement of animals from areas of high density into areas of low density. Most GMAs are between 3 000 and 6 000 km2, although the largest exceeds 10 000 km2. Game ranches and conservancies attract a lot of interest and offer old-style hospitality, not to mention an amazing array of species, including big game and wing shooting opportunities.

Official language:


Estimated population (2016):
16 591 390

Capital and largest city:
Lusaka (estimated population 1,43 million)

Zambian Kwacha (ZMW)

Total km2: 752 618; Total mi2: 290 587

Under Zambia’s new wildlife policy, local communities, along with the safari operators, are responsible for the management of GMAs, regulated and supervised by ZAWA. The main economic benefit arising from wildlife management of the GMAs is revenue from fees for commercial safari hunting.

There are two main seasons, the rainy season (November to April), with daily rainfall making it difficult, if not impossible to move in the bush. The dry season (May / June to October / November), corresponding to winter, is subdivided into the cool, dry season (May / June to August) with cooler temperatures from 15°C to 27°C, and morning and evening temperatures dropping to as low as 6°C to 10°C. During the hot season maximum tempera- tures may range from 27°C to 38°C (September to
October / November). The average monthly tempera-tures remain above 20°C (68°F) over most of the country for eight or more months of the year.

Check with your Outfitter regarding visa requirements before you travel. Visas are required for visitors from most countries in Europe and North America. These can be issued by the Zambian High Commission in your country. If you do not have a High Commission, single and double entry visas are available at all ports of entry (multi-entry visas are not available and can only be obtained through the Zambian High Commission in your country). If you plan to get a visa on arrival, make sure you have the correct amount of cash with you, as change may not be available. If you enter through Kenneth Kaunda International Airport you can now make payment for single and double entry visas via credit or debit card at the Zambian Immigration desks. For further information about entry requirements, visit the website of the Zambian High Commission in London or visit the Zambian Department of Immigration. Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months from the date of entry into Zambia and have at least two blank pages.

Yellow fever vaccination is required for travelers who are arriving from, or who have transited through countries with a risk of yellow fever transmission.

Zambian Airways –
British Airways –
Delta Airlines –
Lufthansa (Germany) –
South African Airways –

Contact your GP around eight weeks before your trip to check whether you need any vaccinations or other preventive measures. Taking a prophylactic for malaria is a good idea and your GP can advise you on this; information and advice is also published by your Embassy or Foreign Affairs Department. Medical facilities and communications in Zambia are poor, especially in rural areas. Even basic drugs and clean needles may not be available. Emergency services are limited but your Outfitter / PH will have details on which company is the best. Make sure you know your blood group and ensure that you have adequate travel health insurance and medical evacuation coverage for your trip.

Zambia does not have a minimum equipment requirement for rifle hunting of plains game and relies on the common sense of the hunting fraternity. Calibres in the .270 range will be well suited for some of the smaller plains game in Zambia.
The minimum equipment requirement for rifle hunting in Zambia of dangerous game such as leopard and lion is .300 calibre.
The minimum equipment requirement for rifle hunting in Zambia of dangerous game or big game such as elephant, buffalo and hippo is .375 calibre.
Zambia does not require a minimum energy (Eo – muzzle velocity) for the calibres used.
If you plan to bring your firearms along for the hunt, you will need to obtain a Temporary Firearm Import Permit (TFIP) from the Zambian Police. This must be applied for well in advance through your Zambian-based Outfitter, so that it is at the airport on your arrival. There is a limit of three firearms per hunter and approximately $2 USD per cartridge. There is no limit to the amount of ammunition, although airlines usually have a limit on what they will allow you to carry on-board. You will be required to provide proof of ownership of the firearm(s) you wish to import.

Zambia does not have any minimum equipment requirements for bow hunting, so common sense will apply here as well.

Tracker with recovered buffalo trophy

Luangwa river: German client looking to take a crocodile
Hippo hunted on the banks of the Luangwa river
Buffalo hunted in Luangwa valley

Many companies advertise hunts in Zambia, most of them through legitimate agreements with Zambian safari out-fitting companies. It is important to understand that there are several ways in which you can legally conduct a hunt in Zambia. It can either be on:
• Government concessions, called ‘Game Management Areas’ (GMAs) or;
• Private land, which can be either a fenced or unfenced game ranch or conservancy.

Regardless of which one you wish to hunt on, the laws of Zambia require that you must hunt with:
• A Zambian-based Outfitter in possession of a Outfitter’s License for either a GMA(s) or a game ranch;
• A Zambian-licensed Professional Hunter (see our website for a list).

It is illegal to conduct a hunt in any other way, so make sure you check this out before confirming your booking.

(The information above was obtained from the Professional Hunters’ Association of Zambia. For any more information, please contact them at: Postal address: P.O. Box 50146, Lusaka, Zambia; Email:; Website: ASM

Sable hunted in the Lower Zambezi valley