Did you know: We will refund your deposit if you're unable to travel. Read More Can't travel? We'll refund your deposit. Read More

Relaxed holiday in Zambia

Just about every kind of holiday in Zambia is intrinsically relaxing – there’s something especially rejuvenating about spending time in such wild, pristine wilderness. That said, there’s perhaps nothing more quintessentially relaxing than a fishing holiday, and a fishing holiday on a fully-catered houseboat is hard to beat. Whether to fish or not is completely up to you of course. You could just as easily sip cocktails on the deck, watching the fish eagles fish instead, in between more drinks and naps. Lake Kariba is a wonderful place to unwind like this, and the sleepy town of Siavonga is where most of Zambia’s houseboat fleet is based.

A houseboat on Lake Kariba is a relaxed way to sped time in Zambia

Many of Lake Kariba’s houseboats operate from the Zimbabwean side – Kariba town itself is the focal point for houseboat adventures. The lake is enormous and big enough to accommodate hundreds of vessels without feeling crowded, but the Zambian side is certainly the least busy, with even less chance of seeing other boats as you cruise. On multi-day voyages, you’ll explore the lake’s many inlets, then drift out towards the centre to take in the vast scale. Hippos and crocodiles are common along the lake shore, but they rarely venture out to disturb the deeper waters.

A lazy hippos basks in the afternoon sun

Smaller launches can be towed behind the main houseboat allowing anglers to search out fishing spots more easily. There’s good fishing on Lake Kariba throughout the year, but locals say that months containing the letter ‘r’ are best for tigerfish. September and October are particularly good for tigers and the season continues throughout the summer months when fishing on Zambia’s rivers is banned. Most operators will provide fishing gear and bait, but you’ll need to check carefully when booking and place any orders in advance.

Houseboat holidays are ideal for larger groups, with most offering cabin berths for between 10 and 30 people. They always come fully crewed and fishing guides can be arranged. It’s up to you whether you’d like to self-cater or hire a chef.

Dotted around the lake are also a number of excellent, laid back fishing lodges – another very tranquil option if you’re not in a group. Again, fishing is not compulsory and you can always relax by the pool or take a sunset cruise. But do try and get out on the water at some point during your stay and let some of Kariba’s magic sooth of your tensions away.

Popular Zambia Safaris

These popular itineraries can be customised to match your budget and travel dates

 | Best of Zambia Wilderness Safari (10 days)

Best of Zambia Wilderness Safari (10 days)

With some of the wildest and most remote game areas on the continent, and a remarkably low population in a massive country, Zambia has an aura of mystery waiting to be uncovered....

 | Luxurious South Africa and Zambia Honeymoon Safari (10 days)

South Africa and Zambia honeymoon

Explore the romantic Atlantic Ocean with it's multi-cultural heritage and a Big Five safari in the Sabi Sands, finally ending off at Victoria Falls from the Zambian side...

Victoria Falls | Grand Zambia Wildlife Safari (9 days)

Grand Zambia Wildlife Safari (9 days)

Combine water and wildlife in a journey that takes you from the Victoria Falls to Kafue and South Luangwa national parks – Zambia at its best...

Romantic view | Deluxe Honeymoon Safari in Cape Town, Kruger and Victoria Falls (10 days)

Deluxe Honeymoon Safari in Cape Town, Kruger and Victoria Falls (10 days)

Combine three of Southern Africa's most loved destinations into one romantic getaway and you'll share the memories forever...

 | City and Safari in Southern Africa (14 days)

City and Safari in Southern Africa (14 days)

Majestic wildlife and the riches of Africa. ...

Camp fire | Victoria Falls, Okavango Delta and Chobe Safari (7 days)

Victoria Falls, Okavango Delta and Chobe Safari (7 days)

This three-in-one journey will show you the majestic Victoria Falls, the massive elephant bulls of Chobe and the natural wonder that is the Okavango Delta...

Boating on the Chobe River | Quick Victoria Falls and Chobe Experience (5 days)

Quick Victoria Falls and Chobe Experience (5 days)

Visit Livingstone, Zambia, to marvel at the Victoria Falls – or 'the smoke that thunders' – before going on safari and a river cruise in Botswana's Chobe National Park...

 | Jewels of Zimbabwe and Zambia Safari (9 days)

Jewels of Zimbabwe and Zambia Safari (9 days)

Fall under the spell of three prime attractions in Zimbabwe and Zambia – Victoria Falls, Hwange National Park and the Mana Pools ...

 | Wilderness safari in Kenya, Zambia and Zimbabwe (10 days)

Wilderness safari in Kenya, Zambia and Zimbabwe (10 days)

Why not visit more than one exciting African destination? See the Great Migration, Victoria Falls and wildlife-rich Hwange National Park...

Boat at sunset | Luxury Zambian Odyssey (7 days)

Luxury Zambian Odyssey (7 days)

One week safari to three Zambian national parks, including the flagship South Luangwa, and end in style with a visit to the remarkable Victoria Falls...

You might also like

Have some ideas?
Contact us and get a customised no-obligation itinerary

+27 (0)21 422 3498
    Mon - Fri: 8AM - 9PM GMT+2