North Luangwa National Park – Zambia

Along the Luangwa River, there are two national parks; the South Luangwa National Park and the North Luangwa National Park. Arguably, the more popular park between the two is one on the south side of the river.

However, North Luangwa National Park – Zambia does have its own safari offerings and as such, is also worth a visit.


North Luangwa National Park – Zambia is situated at the northernmost valley that lies along the Luangwa River.

It is bounded on its eastern side by the river, Muchinga Escarpment on its western side, Mwaleshi River on its east – western side while its southern boundary is strictly a zone for the park’s covered wilderness.

Getting There

It is recommended that visitors come in to the North Luangwa National Park – Zambia via a guided tour as the wilderness is pretty rough, untouched and remote. This translates to poor infrastructure.

If you wish to drive your own 4×4 to reach the park, you cannot do so without first obtaining permission from the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Services.

On the overall however, your best option is go with a tour as the operators can arrange for pick – ups and transfers as well as guided safaris through the park.

What to See and Do

North Luangwa National Park – Zambia is most popular for its herds upon herds of wild buffalo.

Guests will definitely stare in amazement once they witness these herds running about the wilderness, leaving a trail of dust behind them.

Lions, hyenas, zebras, warthogs, monkeys, elephants, wildebeests and leopards are common sights in the park.

On occasion, guests may also catch lions making a kill.

Brief History

North Luangwa National Park – Zambia was established in the year 1972. Prior to this, it was established as a game reserve some time in the year 1938.

The park covers an estimated area of four thousand six hundred and thirty – six square kilometers. It was not opened for public visits until the year 1984 when husband and wife team Maj. John and Lorna Harvey asked to be allowed to conduct safaris in the park.

For a number of years, the couple was the sole safari operators covering the park. Today, a number of safari operators provide tours throughout the park although the number of visitors allowed is kept to a minimum.


Accommodations close to North Luangwa National Park – Zambia provide safari tours as well. These are lodges and bush campsites close to the park.

Costs range from $ 25 to $ 45 per room, per night and are inclusive of game drives, full board accommodations, road transfers and park entry fees.

Other Information

The best time to visit North Luangwa National Park – Zambia is during the dry season, from June thru October as this is when you will have more opportunities for animal sightings.

In addition, the park is practically inaccessible during the wet season.