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Among the Elephants and Rhinos Extension

Game Viewing in Hwange National Park


Magnificent Hwange National Park, one of the largest national parks in Africa, is home to some 40,000 elephants along with lion, hippo, cheetah, and more. You'll also have the unique opportunity to visit two white rhinos at the Ngamo Rhino Sanctuary in Hwange—these are the first white rhinos to be reintroduced in this part of Zimbabwe. Enjoy game drives with the flexibility to get out and walk, lantern-lit dinners in the bush, a ride on a vintage railway car, and a walk to school with the local kids (you’ll even learn a few words of their click language).

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1
Victoria Falls / Hwange, Zimbabwe

Spanning some 5,600 square miles, Hwange National Park is both the first (founded in 1928) and largest park in the nation. It is home to some of the highest concentrations of elephant on the planet (around 44,000) along with lion, leopard, buffalo, and rhino, and it’s world-famous as a birding destination. This morning you'll meet your transfer agent and later enter this great park a unique way—aboard a vintage open-air railway car called the Elephant Express. The 2.5-hour train journey glides along the historic track built in 1904 by Cecil Rhodes, enjoy exciting game viewing in comfort, along with snacks and drinks on board. You will disembark at Ngamo and head to your lodge, Bomani Tented Lodge or Camelthorn. Set in a small patch of pristine woodlands on the edge of the Ngamo Plains, these are community-based lodges, helping support local schools and water projects. In the late afternoon, head out for a 4WD game drive, followed by the safari tradition of "sundowner" drinks in a beautiful location at sunset. During the night game drive, the game spotters will bring out spotlights so you can look for nocturnal animals on the way back to the lodge. Dinner and overnight at Bomani or upgrade to Camelthorn Lodge…LD

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Day 2
Among the Elephants / Ngamo Rhino Sanctuary / Hwange National Park

Wake up to birdsong and set out on a variety of adventures. Early risers may enjoy an optional morning game walk, a great way to experience Hwange on foot and see the small details of the bush, such as birds' nests and game tracks. Or you can enjoy a morning or afternoon game drive (or a full-day game drive) in our open-air vehicles. Elephant, giraffe, zebra, wildebeest, and impala are often seen in these parts, making for an exhilarating day in the bush. June-October is the dry season and wildlife frequents the waterholes, enhancing game viewing opportunities. Enjoy a picnic lunch overlooking the Mfagazaan Pan and watch as the animals make their way across the dry plains for a drink of fresh water. A leisurely late afternoon drive from pan to pan brings you back to the lodge, weaving your way between throngs of elephants. You also have the option of a morning or afternoon visit to see white rhinos at the newly created Ngamo Rhino Sanctuary. This thrilling experience grants us special access to see some of the first white rhinos reintroduced to this region of Zimbabwe. Learn about this unique project to create a safe haven for one of Africa’s most endangered large animals. The days are flexible depending on your interests. After dinner at the lodge, enjoy a nightcap by the campfire, sharing stories and photos of the day’s excursions. Overnight at lodge…BLD

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Day 3
Among the Elephants / Hwange National Park

A memorable cultural opportunity is in store this morning (optional). Head to nearby Ngunyana village and join the local school children on their walk from the village to their school. On arrival at the school, you will be welcomed with a wonderful singing performance by the kids. Following this, you interact with them as they try to teach you a few words of Ndebele, their tribal “click” language! It’s always fun and the teachers encourage the interaction as a way for the children to meet people from all over the world and learn about different cultures. After the school visit, you head over to a local homestead to see the typical daily activities at the village. Your late afternoon game drive brings you to a specially built underground game-viewing blind at Stoffie’s Pan, where you will enjoy sundowners and snout-level viewing of thirsty elephants. The blind is furnished with comfortable seating and a bathroom. Tonight head out on a night drive, looking for nocturnal species that prowl the plains after twilight. Dinner will be served en route, bush-style, beneath the spectacular star-lit sky. Overnight at lodge…B

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Day 4
Hwange/ Victoria Falls

Transfer to local airstrip for flight back to Victoria Falls.


Length: 4 days
Cost From: $2595  
Arrive: Victoria Falls
Depart: Victoria Falls
Lodging: 3 nights game lodge
Meals: All meals included
Activity: Wildlife and Natural History, Safaris
Trip Level:

Game viewing by 4WD vehicle