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Discover Kasanka National Park in Zambia

AboutKasanka National Park

Kasanka is one of the smallest national parks in Zambia, it’s also one of the most beautiful, boasting an incredible biodiversity that.

There are a few wildlife phenomena that really stand out as extraordinary events like the Kasanka Bat Migration. Up to ten million “straw-coloured fruit bats” converge upon Kasanka National Park as the fruits of a local tree ripen. These bats roost in a specific woodland and literally cover the trunks of the trees like thick icing. Then at sunset they all take off and fly out to forage. The sky is thick with bats. You can view all this from the 60 ft high hide, in a tree top, next to the woodland. And from this hide, during the day you will see many sitatunga in the swamp below.

Being part of the Congo Basin, the area ecologically is in between the dryer well-known safari destinations in eastern and southern Africa and the rainforests of central Africa. There is an enormous diversity in habitats, including rainforest, papyrus swamp, wet grassland, plains, forested rivers and miombo woodland. Puku occur in big numbers and the park has the densest and most visible population of Sitatunga.

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Slideshow Items

Misty mornings at Kasanka National Park
Sunset in Kasanka National Park

The Kasanka National Park region

Kasanka National Park

Camps & Lodgesin the Kasanka National Park region

There are a few wildlife phenomena that really stand out as extraordinary events like the Kasanka Bat Migration!
Mary G about Kasanka National Park

More aboutKasanka National Park

Kasanka National Park is one of the smallest national parks in Zambia, but it’s also home to an incredible biodiversity that makes up for its small size. It’s located in the Serenje District of Zambia’s Central Province. The average elevation of the land ranges from 1,160 meters (3,810 feet) above mean sea level. The land mainly consists of rivers, lakes, forests, swamps, lagoons and grasslands. The diverse landscape is the habitat of many species of animals, birds and fish.

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General information
When British expat David Lloyd visited the park in 1985, he heard gunfire everywhere for days. The animal life here had been almost totally eradicated. He concluded that if there was still poaching, there must still be wild animals and started an initiative to save the park. He worked with a local farmer, sought funding, and applied for official permission to rehabilitate the park with a lot of his own money. They built camps, roads, and bridges to allow people access and then set up Kasanka Trust for fundraising for this community project. Slowly but surely money started coming from tourism so the costs could be covered. A few years later, the department of National Parks and Wildlife Services signed an agreement with Kasanka Trust for a decade on behalf of the local community to develop tourism further.

Wildlife
Large herds of elephants and predators such as lions and cheetahs will rarely be seen here. However, you will enjoy the beautiful nature and Kasanka is the habitat of some of Zambia’s rarest animals. During walks or game drives you can enjoy populations of hippos, sable antelopes, puku and hartebeests. In November and December, large clouds of bats (upwards of a couple of million) can be observed at sunset.
The largest resident predator in the park is the leopard. Lions and hyenas no longer reside here, but hyenas do come to visit for part of their annual cycle. Jackals can be seen early mornings by those who take notice.

Birds
More than 330 bird species have been recorded in Kasanka. Examples include the rare Pel’s fishing owl, the Pygmy goose, the Ross’s lourie, osprey, and the wattled crane. If you’re really lucky you can also catch a glimpse of the rare shoebill stork here. The best way to spot them is by canoe or motorboat as most of the birds are along the riverbanks.

Lodges
Wasa Lodge is a serene place in the heart of Kasanka National Park, overlooking Wasa Lake. The rustic property offers guests an intimate and unforgettable experience with its scenic views that will take your breath away.
The simple but cozy Wasa Lodge is located on the edge of Lake Wasa in the eastern part of Kasanka National Park. The lodge is perfectly situated close to a treehouse located at 18 meters. From here you have a fantastic view of the Kapabi Swamp. It is very likely that you will spot sitatunga antelopes here, as well as buffalo and in the right season of course the bats.

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