page 1
page 2
page 3
page 4
page 5
page 6
page 7
page 8
page 9
page 10
page 11
page 12
page 13
page 14
page 15
page 16
page 17
page 18
page 19
page 20
page 21
page 22
page 23
page 24
page 25
page 26
page 27
page 28
page 29
page 30
page 31
page 32
page 33
page 34
page 35
page 36
page 37
page 38
page 39
page 40
page 41
page 42
page 43
page 44
page 45
page 46
page 47
page 48
page 49
page 50
page 51
page 52
page 53
page 54
page 55
page 56
page 57
page 58
page 59
page 60

18 Travel Zambia May 2009 Launched in November 2007, the Royal Livingstone Express is the brainchild of Bushtracks' managing director Christopher Tett. But perhaps its real hero is Ben Costa, who has brought his considerable experience on the rails to restoring the 1920s British- built locomotive. Every day that the train runs - usually Thursday, Friday and Saturday - you'll fi nd him on board, carefully nurturing his iron charge as it gets up steam ready for a night out. When you tread the red carpet alongside the carriages, helping yourself to a cool drink as you board, it all feels very adult. Passing through a plush lounge car, gleaming with polished wood, you pass the bar and take your place on a small observation deck. More drinks arrive, with nibbles to match. It's when the train pulls slowly out of the station, however, that the excitement really mounts. Children race alongside as you pass through villages where families gather for the evening meal. Soon homesteads give way to fi elds, and then to Mosi oa Tunya National Park. The train may stop for game viewing if an elephant is spotted, but it is the iron horse that remains the star attraction. Just short of Simonga - a distance of some 15km - there's a fl urry of activity. With a slow hiss, the old locomotive shudders to a halt, is uncoupled from the coaches, then shunts off alone. Points are moved, cameras fl ash, and the loco is relocated to the back of the train, ready to push it the last few hundred metres. As darkness falls over the bush, passengers are ushered in twos and fours to tables set with cut glass that glitters under the soft lights. Classical music accompanies a fi ve- course meal, prepared on board by chefs from the Royal Livingstone Hotel. By the time dessert is served the train is on the move again, but this time the rocking of the rails seems to escape notice: the return to the 21st century is altogether a quieter, gentler affair. The Royal Livingstone Express runs every Thursday, Friday and Saturday evening ( subject to a minimum of six passengers). Reservations can be made through Bushtracks Africa; tel: + 260 ( 0) 213 3323232; www. royal-livingstone- express. com; tickets are US$ 150 per head. Tricia Hayne visited Zambia courtesy of Expert Africa: www. expertafrica. com The Zambezi Express owes much to renowned British artist, conservationist and locomotive lover David Shepherd ( see Travel Zambia 4). The Mulobezi line, along which the locomotive runs, was built in the 1920s to transport timber to Livingstone from the teak forests of Mulobezi. When the railway ceased operations in the early 1970s, Kenneth Kaunda, then President of Zambia, gave two of the locomotives to Shepherd, who had already painted a famous picture called Mulobezi Princess. Shepherd transported one loco to the UK, where he donated its passenger car to the National Railway Museum in York. The other he donated to Zambian National Heritage, where Bushtracks has since renovated it to full working order. Find out more about the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation and its work in Zambia at www. davidshepherd. org SHEPHERD OF THE RAILWAYS People People Vakacha Vakacha Habitat Habitat Nkani Nkani Culture Culture Romance lives - it's offi cial! Just make your way to Livingstone and hitch a ride on the Royal Livingstone Express, reports Tricia Hayne. OK, ' hitch' is pushing it, since the experience does not come cheap, but this could be the occasion to put the recession on hold and step back to an era when the whistle of a steam engine promised a journey to remember. DO THE LOCOMOTION TRICIA HAYNE X 2 DSWF

May 2009 Travel Zambia 19 People People Vakacha Vakacha Habitat Habitat Nkani Nkani Culture These three birds are poking about on the shore of a Luangwa lagoon in search of a tasty morsel. But can you tell what they are? Here are some clues to make it easier: one is named after the colour of its head, another is named after the shape of its head and the third is named after the status it held in ancient Egypt. Name all three species and you could win one of fi ve copies of Zambia: the Bradt Travel Guide. Send your answer on a postcard to Zambia Bradt Competition, Travel Zambia Magazine, 4 Rycote Lane Farm, Milton Common, Oxford, OX9 2NZ, United Kingdom. Or email your answer to competitions@ travelafricamag. com, putting Zambia Bradt Competition in the subject line. Entries MUST include your full postal address and daytime phone number. Only one entry per household. Entries close on 1 September 2009. BIRD BRAINS Win the Bradt guide to Zambia MIKE UNWIN Reader's Journal Linzi Summers visited South Luangwa in January for a special birthday safari. She and her group stayed at Nkwali ( www. robinpopesafaris. net), one of the few camps to remain open throughout the green season. Linzi's diary describes a day to remember. On my birthday I was asked what I would like to see. Every day we had teased our excellent guide Jacob with our requests, such as ' aardvark' and ' polar bear' ( just for fun). This time I asked for wild dog, even though I knew dogs had not been seen in the area since Christmas, three weeks earlier. These things always happen when you least expect them. We were all focused on a heron to the left when Jacob, ignoring the request to confi rm our ID, said " dog print". I leaned over the side to where Jacob was looking. Just one paw print? I thought you needed at least four for a dog. Not convinced, I turned back to the heron. " Two prints," said Jacob. We politely looked again at the dubious evidence. Then suddenly there was an alarm call. We all jumped to attention and Jacob took off. " Hold on tight," he said as he swung the vehicle around, and there on the horizon we could see impala with wild dogs giving chase. We bounced around, dodging deep puddles and ducking under low branches, as Jacob made towards the anticipated arrival area of the dogs. We came to stop and there in front of us were three, ... no four, ... no nine wild dogs, all waiting for the arrival of their hunting mates. We watched in awe as the dogs came back from their ( unsuccessful) hunt and were greeted with squeaky yelps. There were 13 dogs in total. They kept moving about but eventually all settled around the vehicle, taking absolutely no interest in us. We spent the next hour happily absorbing the scene before heading back. Mission accomplished. How could we follow that? Easy. Back at camp Jo, Robin and their team had laid on a special surprise birthday lunch. And what a magical setting! As well as the fantastic food, we had elephants wandering through the backdrop, baboons in the trees, and fl ashes of brilliant colour as kingfi shers and bee- eaters fl itted overhead. Linzi Summers is a freelance safari consultant. Contact her at linzi. summers@ virgin. net Birthday bonus LINZI SUMMERS LINZI SUMMERS