Travelling to Zambia with Wilderness Safaris

Travel Advice for Zambia

Zambia is a landlocked country surrounded by Democratic Republic of the Congo, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia and Angola.

Full name: Republic of Zambia
Capital: Lusaka
Population: 15 million (2015)
Geographic coordinates: 15 00 S, 30 00 E
Area: 752 614 sq. km / 290 587 sq. mi
Time: +2 hours GMT

Climate and Seasonality

Zambia has three distinct seasons. December to April: warm and wet; May to August: cool and dry; September to November: hot and dry. Average temperatures in the cities in summer range from 25° C to 35° C and in winter from 6° C to 24° C.

What to pack

  • Sunblock, sun hat and good quality sunglasses
  • Camera with waterproof/dustproof bag/cover
  • Good walking shoes (tennis shoes are fine)
  • Malaria tablets (if applicable)
  • Warm Anorak or Parka and scarf / gloves for winter
Download Packing list in PDF

Health and Safety

Zambia is a stable democracy; however, it is sensible to take basic precautions whilst travelling anywhere in the world. We advise that you ask Tourist Information Officers, camp/lodge and hotel staff and local residents about areas to avoid.

Wilderness Safaris camps in Zambia are situated in malaria-risk areas; please consult your medical practitioner regarding any anti-malarials. Please check with your health department/travel clinic prior to departure, in the event there have been changes in the health regulations of the country you are visiting.

Passports and Visas

Visitors to Africa must have a passport that is valid for at least 6 months beyond your intended departure date, together with onward travel documents, proof of accommodation and sufficient funds for the duration of your stay. Please also ensure that you have sufficient blank visa pages (not endorsement pages) in your passport, with at least 2 consecutive/side by side blank pages. Our recommendation is 3 pages (or even 4 if you are travelling through more than one country on your journey).

Please speak to your Africa specialist to ensure that you have any appropriate travel documentation before departing on safari.

Visas are the responsibility of the traveller. Those nationalities that require visas to enter Zambia may have to apply for these in advance; however, some nationalities are able to obtain these on arrival at the port of entry. Costs also vary depending on the nationality of your passport so please contact your travel consultant for exact details relevant to you. Visit the following website for additional information – Wilderness Safaris is not responsible for the content thereof:

NOTE for those travelling through South Africa or Botswana: All passengers under 18 years of age will need to present an unabridged birth certificate as well as a valid passport when entering, departing or transiting South Africa and Botswana. A sworn translation (certified/authenticated) in English should accompany all documentation that is in a language other than English.

For single parents, or those travelling alone with their child/ren, the following must be provided:

- An affidavit (no more than 3 months old on the date of travel) in which the absent parent gives consent for the child to travel, or
- A court order granting full responsibilities or legal guardianship of the child, or
- The death certificate of the absent parent.

Banks and Foreign Exchange

Zambia banks, as well as Wilderness camps, only accept US Dollars, GBP Sterling, Euro and South African Rand in cash. Travellers’ Cheques in any of the above currencies are also acceptable. MasterCard and Visa are usually accepted throughout Zambia, but Diner’s Club and American Express are not. The currency is the Kwacha (KR), however US Dollars are accepted widely.


Over 72 African dialects are spoken in Zambia; however, the official language is English.

Recommended Reading

We recommend the following books specific to the Zambian region. A further list of recommended books is contained in our main pre-tour information.

  • Zambezi - The River of the Gods - Jan & Fiona Teede
  • African Thunder: The Victoria Falls - Jan & Fiona Teede
  • Zambia - the Bradt Travel Guide - Chris McIntyre
  • Birds of Africa south of the Sahara - Ian Sinclair, Peter Ryan
  • Kingdon Pocket Guide to African Mammals - Jonathan Kingdon
  • The Kingdon Field Guide to African Mammals - Jonathan Kingdon
  • Trees & Shrubs of Miombo Woodland  -  Paul Smith, Quentin Allen
  • Common Birds of Zambia  -  Zambian Ornithological Society
  • Important Bird Areas in Zambia - Peter Leonard
  • Africa House - Christina Lamb
  • Victoria Falls: The Insider’s Guide - Ian Michler
  • Field Guide to the larger mammals of Africa - Chris & Tilde Stuart
  • Zambia Then and Now - William Grant