Zambia: CNN Travel's 20 best places to visit in 2020

Victoria Falls offers thundering cascades, white water rafting, zip line facilities and bungee jumping.

CNN, Wed, Jan 1, 2020

Jaw-dropping national parks and awe-inspiring wildlife characterize this beautiful southern African country. With more than 30% of the country's land reserved for national parks, a visit to Zambia encourages you to get up close with nature.

Take South Luangwa National Park, brimming with trees, plants and vegetation, which is home to some 60 animal species, including leopards, elephants and buffalo. Farther west, Kafue National Park, the country's largest, is a haven for flora and fauna.

The lush landscapes of Lower Zambezi National Park, on the Zimbabwe border, offer visitors awesome panoramas. The world's longest freshwater lake, Lake Tanganyika, flows partly through Zambia. Its crystal-clear waters host hundreds of species of fish.

If you want to spend your days soaking up the sun, head to Lake Kariba, Zambia's answer to the French Riviera. Set yourself up for a peaceful few days of exploring via houseboat or get settled in a self-catering villa in the picturesque town of Siavonga.

Parts of the spectacular Victoria Falls on the Zambezi are being affected by the drought that's enveloped neighboring Zimbabwe, but the waterfall's thundering cascades are still not to be missed. The waterfall offers white water rafting, zip lines and bungee jumping, while visitors can take guided tours focusing on the history of Victoria Falls bridge.

Don't miss: The sunsets -- it would be hard to not notice when vibrant hues of coppery orange and golden yellow illuminate the Zambian skies, but every time it happens, it's pretty breathtaking. -- Francesca Street

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