Overview – Lochinvar NP
Lochinvar is situated on the southern edge of the Kafue Flats. It isn’t a great park for wildlife viewing, and there are no tourist facilities. It is, however, a great destination for dedicated birders. The Kafue lechwe is the most interesting animal in the park. More than 30,000 individuals are crammed around the lagoon and fights between territorial males are a common sight.
Pros & Cons
- Great birding destination with over 400 species recorded
- Home to big herds of the endemic Kafue lechwe
- Off-the-beaten-track destination
- Unguided walking permitted
- No accommodation or other facilities
- Low wildlife densities and little variety
- Tracks are overgrown and mostly unnavigable
Animal densities are low in Lochinvar, but the big herds of Kafue lechwe, endemic to the Kafue Flats, is a sight to behold. Other herbivores that can be spotted on the grassy plains are buffalo, zebra, wildebeest and oribi. Animals sticking more to the woodland area include bushbuck, greater kudu and baboon.
The main feature of the park is the Kafue Flats floodplain, originating from the Kafue River. This includes the Chunga lagoon, which fluctuates in size depending on river levels. The south of the park gives way to woodland with acacia and bushwillow trees. Big termite hills dot the area.
Weather & Climate
Located in the tropics, Lochinvar experiences uniformly hot temperatures for most of the year. This pattern is only broken in October when the temperature lifts even more to greet the start of the Wet season (November to April). A slight cooling down also occurs in the middle of the Dry season (May to October).
Best Time to Visit
From July until the end of the Dry season (May to October) is the best period for observing wildlife. This is when the drying out of their environment forces animals to gather at the remaining sources of water. By contrast, in the wetter months, the animals disperse into increasingly thick foliage. Also, fewer game drives are on offer at this time, as access becomes more limited.
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Alan is a travel writer and author of over 20 Lonely Planet guidebooks, including the guides to Southern Africa and Zambia & Malawi.
The Kafue Flats
This small park is well off-the-beaten track with no facilities (although camping is possible) so come well prepared. Consisting mainly of grasslands and a lagoon which floods during the Wet season this area has been deemed a World Heritage...