Tuesday, March 5, 2013


One of Africa’s legendary safari companies, Robin Pope Safaris (RPS), has launched a six-night SHOEBILL SAFARI that comprises stays in RPS’ Nkwali Camp in the South Luangwa National Park, the Shoebill Camp in the remote Bangweulu Wetlands and at Wasa Camp in Kasanka National Park, famous for its annual bat migration and known as one of Zambia’s best birding destinations, inhabited by no fewer than 457 different species. Guests will be under the wing of acclaimed safari guide Jacob Shawa.

Rates (based on a minimum of four and a maximum of six guests) start at US$4350 per person, sharing, and include everything except Visa, airport departure taxes and international flights.

Ornithologists rank the SHOEBILL as one of the five most desirable birds in Africa.   It can stand as high as five feet tall.  Its bill is as big as a boot, and its wingspan can reach eight feet.  Ancient Egyptians depicted it; ancient Arabs referred to it as abu markub, or one with a shoe. Some scientists claim it is the “missing link” between storks and pelicans.  Stork or pelican, this blue-gray “statue-like” bird resembles a creature from Alice in Wonderland (or possibly from The Black Lagoon).

But it’s not just their strange, alien looks; it’s their voices, too.  Shoebills are known to moo like a cow; whine like a persistent kid at a candy store, and clatter their bills during nesting season.  The sound of young birds begging for food is “uncannily like human hiccups.”  Loners, Shoebills typically forage in muddy waters and spread out from each other (sometimes as far as 66 feet), the way people unconsciously step apart in an elevator. To see these wonderful creatures and many other exotic birds and wildlife species, book THE SHOEBILL SAFARI with Robin Pope Safaris. 

For bookings or additional information: info@robinpopesafaris.net or call +265 (0) 179 4491 / 5483.
Or visit: www.robinpopesafaris.netDetailed itinerary follows.


Day 1 On arrival at Lusaka International Airport, you will be met by a representative from Robin Pope, who will assist you with your luggage and check-in for your flight to Mfuwe. Jacob will be waiting for you at the Mfuwe airport, where he will drive you to Nkwali Camp. The drive to Nkwali Camp is one hour through colorful local scenes of villages, agriculture as well as bush. Nkwali Camp has a wide view of the Luangwa River. On Robin Pope’s private land, and overlooking the South Luangwa National Park, Nkwali is ideally situated for the start of your safari. The six rooms all look out over the river and have open air bathrooms. Depending on your arrival time, you will enjoy either a lunch looking out over the lagoon to the back of Nkwali, or afternoon tea as well as afternoon and night game drives. Nkwali Camp

Day 2 This is a full day to explore the Luangwa, on board a vehicle or on foot. Nkwali Camp

Day 3 After breakfast around the camp fire, you will be transferred to Mfuwe Airport with Jacob for the 50 minutes flight to Kasanka National Park. Depending on your flight, you may arrive in time for lunch and then enjoy birding for the afternoon with Jacob along the Luwombwa River. With luck, you may see African finfoot, ross’ lourie, pel’s fishing owl and osprey. Returning to camp for dinner and an early night. Alternatively, enjoy after-dinner drinks around the camp fire. Wasa Camp

Day 4 Enjoy a day of birding and game watching in the hope of seeing many mammal species, such as Lichtenstein’s hartebeest, sable antelope, reedbuck and the rare blue monkey. Visit the sitatunga hide with its panoramic views over the Kapabi Swamp where you can spot as many as 40 sitatunga feeding at one time. Wasa Camp

Day 5 Transfer by plane to Bangweulu Swamps, arriving at Shoebill Camp by boat from the airstrip. The search to track down the elusive Shoebill by  boat and foot will start.  Back to camp for lunch and out again after tea to see the herds of antelope for which the area is famous. Dinner is simple but adequate and then an early night. Shoebill Camp

Day 6 A full day of birding and soaking up the surroundings. Watch from the hide at dawn or dusk as thousands of waterfowl fly overhead. Shoebill Camp

Day 7 Today you will take a flight back to Lusaka for your onward connection. END OF SAFARI

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