Lake Kariba in Zimbabwe

enter image description here

Lake Kariba is landlocked Zimbabwe’s answer to the seaside: a massive manmade lake that provides a magical combination of water and wildlife. Situated in the north of the country and sharing a border with Zambia, Lake Kariba is best explored by a slow cruise on a houseboat over a few days. Whiling away hours spotting birds, hippos and crocodiles from the deck couldn’t be more relaxing, but you can also spend your days on smaller tender boats or canoes going fishing and spotting wildlife in Matusadona National Park on the lake’s shores.

Highlights

Cruising Lake Kariba on a houseboat is one of Zimbabwe’s top experiences. Spending a few days on a boat is the perfect way to unwind and soak up the magic of this vast watery wilderness and its beautiful islands.

enter image description here

Matusadona National Park lies on the southern shores of Lake Kariba and is home to the Big Five, as well as the rare roan and sable antelope and 240 species of birds (herons and saddlebill storks are particular highlights). A highlight of visiting Kariba is the water-based game viewing you can do from the lake in small boats or canoes, which allows you to get thrillingly close to elephants and other animals.

enter image description here

Fishing for tigerfish and bream is another big attraction of the lake, and there’s an international tigerfishing tournament held here each October. Houseboats offer fishing trips, or you can book a specific fishing safari.

Practical advice

  • June to October is the best time to visit Lake Kariba for wildlife viewing, although be aware that September and October are extremely hot months.

  • Don’t be tempted to swim in the lake, and be careful when you’re fishing on the shoreline because of the threat of crocodiles.

  • Malaria is present in Lake Kariba and the risk of contraction is highest during the rainy months from November to April – take the necessary precautions.


Our Recommended Itinerary

Zimbabwe Wildlife Expedition (7 days)

day 1 to 3

Welcome to Zimbabwe

day 4 to 6

Explore Mana Pools National Park

day 7

End of service!

View Full Itinerary

Popular Zimbabwe Safaris

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



You might also like

Luxury Zimbabwe safari

Zimbabwe has many excellent luxury safari lodges and high-end camps dotted around the country, with a concentration in Victoria Falls and Hwange National Park. If you only have a short time to visit the country, then focus your time on these two destinations, where you’ll have a choice of luxury lodging options, each of which will offer a host of activities to fill your days. On a…

Family safari in Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe’s astounding natural wonders, untamed wilderness areas, abundant wildlife and plethora of exciting outdoors activities and adventures make it a wonderful choice for a family holiday. In the country’s most popular destinations, you’ll find a host of family-friendly lodging options, from well-equipped campsites, rustic lodges and self-catering chalets to luxury camps.…

Zimbabwe in February

February is low season in Zimbabwe – it’s rainy and wet, and it’s difficult to see wildlife because of the thick bush and abundance of natural water sources, but it is a perfect time for birdwatching. Some camps, lodges and park roads are closed. The water level in Zambezi is high, and so while Victoria Falls are in full dramatic flow, the amount of mist and spray can obscure the view. ...

Zimbabwe in April

The rains are coming to an end and skies turn blue in April, a month when the lodges and camps that have been closed for the rainy season usually re-open. Mana Pools National Park also re-opens after closure since the end of November. This is the last month of summer for excellent birdwatching. ...

Zimbabwe in September

Temperatures start to warm up in September, another dry month and an excellent time to go on a wildlife safari. This month the annual game count in Hwange National Park takes place, and for a totally different wildlife experience you can volunteer to take part in the census, helping the park rangers to count animals in the reserve. ...

Changing money in Zimbabwe

The currency in Zimbabwe is the US dollar. Some places will accept South African rands, Botswana pula, pounds and euros but you may get a bad exchange rate. Since 2016, the country has been experiencing a shortage in cash. Bond notes – worth the same as US dollars – were introduced as legal tender and can be used for any purchases in Zimbabwe but have no value outside of the country…

Hwange National Park

One of Africa’s top national parks, Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe’s northwest should be on any safari lover’s bucket list. Roaming Hwange’s savanna grasslands and woodlands are the Big Five and 100 other species of mammals – the park has the biggest diversity of mammals out of the world’s national parks. The Belgium-sized park is also home to some 50 000 elephants and is…

Best time to visit Zimbabwe

Like many other southern African countries, Zimbabwe is best visited during the dry winter months of June to October for optimal wildlife viewing. During this time when water is scarce and the vegetation is sparse, animals congregate around rivers and waterholes, making viewing particularly easy. Out of the winter months, July to September is the busiest period for tourists. The rainy…

Ready to start your adventure?

+27 (0)21 422 3498
   discover.africa
    info@discoverafrica.com
    Mon - Fri: 8AM - 9PM GMT+2