Issue 29
A Bird's Eye View
Cruise the Busanga plains in Zambia in the most exclusive hot air balloon ride of your lifeBy Jo Kromberg
  ·  2016-09-30  ·   Source:

(Photos courtesy of Wilderness Safaris)

Kafue's Busanga Plains, where the luxury safari operator's Shumba & Busanga Camps are situated, is considered to be one of the most exclusive hot air ballooning destinations in Africa.

The 2016 hot air ballooning safari season has kicked off in Kafue National Park's Busanga Plains in Zambia. Until the October 31, 2016, guests of luxury safari tour operator, Wilderness Safaris, visiting their camps in the Plains for three or more nights will receive a complimentary hot air balloon safari - arguably the most exclusive hot air ballooning experience in Africa.

Wilderness Safaris' Shumba and Busanga Bush camps are situated within an exclusive 28,000-hectare private concession in Zambia's Busanga Plains. Due to its remote location and untouched scenery, a hot air balloon safari in this wildlife-rich area offers an unmatched experience, and a unique bird's-eye view of the Plains. Guests staying at either camp for three or more nights until the end of October 2016 will enjoy a complimentary one-hour balloon ride, followed by a delicious Champagne breakfast served in the Park's vast grasslands.

"A hot air balloon safari over the Busanga Plains is truly a bucket-list experience," says Ron Goatley, Wilderness Safaris' Zambezi MD. "The serenity experienced whilst flying over one of Africa's most remote wilderness areas is unparalleled, and guests may witness some incredible wildlife sightings from the air, including large concentrations of antelope species such as lechwe and puku."

In addition to hot air ballooning, guests visiting the Plains can enjoy a range of other activities such as guided walking safaris, game drives and seasonal boating, all of which make the most of the Park's prolific wildlife. Kafue is often noted for having the most varied antelope viewing on the continent and is also known for its population of tree-climbing lions, captured in the National Geographic documentary, Swamp Lions.

Shumba and Busanga Bush camps are seasonal, opening annually from June 1 to October 31. Busanga is an intimate safari camp with four well-appointed tents, while Shumba offers six spacious and luxurious safari tents (including one family tent) on raised platforms.

"Even though our camps in Kafue are only open for the five dry months of the year, we are passionately committed to maintaining our ecotourism presence in this diverse wilderness area," added Ron Goatley. "Since we have been present in the Park, we have seen wildlife populations rebound and a positive economic difference made to local communities; further demonstrating the important role of sustainable and authentic ecotourism in this region."

About Wilderness Safaris: 

Wilderness Safaris is an ecotourism company that specializes in memorable wildlife experiences in some of the most remote and pristine areas in Africa. In this way it offers its guests private access to almost three million hectares of Africa's finest wildlife reserves, while remaining fiercely committed to protecting our planet's precious natural and cultural resources.

Wilderness Safaris operates camps and safaris in some of Africa's best wildlife and wilderness reserves across seven different countries: Botswana, Kenya, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Recognizing that conservation is as much about people as about the environment, the company has pursued important goals through its Children in the Wilderness program, as well as through the Wilderness Wildlife Trust, which have helped change the face of nature-based tourism in Africa.

Wilderness Safaris firmly believes that its single most important achievement to date is to have built a sustainable business model that does not compromise environmental principles and which provides jobs, training, skills, careers, adjusted horizons, hope and a realistic alternative to less sustainable development.

Wilderness Safaris is part of Wilderness Holdings, a group of responsible ecotourism companies that together endeavor to use responsible tourism to build sustainable conservation economies in Africa.


Getting there:

Air China outbound flights to Johannesburg in South Africa operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays, with return services from Johannesburg offered on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Flights will departs from Beijing at 23:15 Beijing time, and arrive in Johannesburg at 7:35 local time on the following day. The inbound flight departs from Johannesburg at 11:50 local time and arrives in Beijing at 7:30 Beijing time.

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