GUIDES: Kyle de Nobrega and Ruth Nussbaum
WATCH THE VIDEO HERE
Most of Africa’s iconic safari destinations host thousands of travellers from around the planet each year. It is thus quite remarkable that Zakouma National Park in the country of Chad has remained off the radar for so long, yet it produces spectacular photographic opportunities in pure wilderness. SEE OUR PORTFOLIO FROM MARCH 2015. The contrast of adventure and the remoteness make it one of the most exciting destinations in Africa today. Tourism is virtually brand new to the region and thus you have freedom to explore and experience the reserve and its wildlife in a unique way, a far cry from the set and scheduled operations of other safari experiences in Africa. This is a safari destination that no one is talking about because no one has been there. It is in the heart of a 350 000ha unfenced wilderness where lions roam as they have for time immemorial. This is a wild Africa that excites, entices and is very, very full of life.
A plethroa of raptors predate upon the flocks of millions of Quelea
In 2015, Kyle de Nobrega visited Zakouma to experience this wilderness and gain valuable experience of the area and the wildlife before leading this unique photo safari. Kyle returned amazed at the vast potential of Zakouma as a wildlife photography destination. C4 Photo Safaris has partnered with African Parks and Camp Nomade to run this very special and unique photo safari into one of Africa’s most unknown destinations. Guides Kyle De Nobrega and Ruth Nussbaum who both have a great wealth of dry savanna wildlife photography will host this safari.
What makes Zakouma incredibly special is theattraction to water in the dry season. Once the water dries up, the animals and birdlife are attracted in numbers un-paralleled, to the pockets of drying pools in the rivers and marshes. Thousands of waterfowl gather in the floodplains, with herds of Tiang, Lelwels Hartebeest, Defassa Waterbuck, Olive Baboon, buffalo and Kordofan Giraffe coming to the water almost all the time. Lion are very common and hunt the buffalo and other antelope as they come to the pools of water. Incredibly common are the relaxed groups of Olive baboon always gibing your camera something to point at. The sounds of thousands of Northern Crowned Cranes honking from every angle becomes the norm and the sight of both species of Pelican fishing in droves are commonly seen from the comfort of your armchair. Spur winged geese and the unmistakable White-faced Ducks congregate in impressive numbers. If one is lucky, the large herds of elephant come to drink along the banks of the waterways. It is more likely though, to spend some time with the small groups of bull elephants along the pans.
The famous herds of Central African Buffalo congregate along the floodplains
Northern Carmine Bee Eaters breed in late March along well known breeding sites
Zakouma offers so much more than a normal safari. The opportunity to photograph wildlife on foot is quite unique. With this flexibility and freedom, spending time on the floodplains with waterfowl and antelope offers incredible opportunities to work with a particular subject. On the whole the wildlife and birds are fairly relaxed and can be approached on foot with relative ease.
Flight trips can be arranged to get an appreciation and understanding of the ebb and flow of Zakouma and puts the perspective of wildlife attractions into view. This is the best way to view the elephants that roam together in tight knit groups of over 400. Viewing lions on their kills from air in the green floodplains is common, and seeing over a thousand Buffalo moving in formation through the Sayel woodlands is quite phenomenal.
Lastly, one of Zakouma’s greatest attractions are its queleas. Watching queleas flocking down from their roosts to drink in their millions is something that you can’t see such a scale or spectrum anywhere else in the world. The formations of the birds moving in waves avoiding hundreds of predating Kites creates scenes that are fantastical, action filled and simply out of this world.
The Riguek floodplain, one of the many magnets that attract waterfowl in some of the biggest flocks you will ever see
Camp Nomade, semi mobile and always situated in the most productive regions on the reserve.
Day 1 - 2
Kempinski Hotel, Chad.
Meet and pick-up at N’Djamena International Airport in Chad for an overnight stay at the 5 star Kempinski Hotel.
Kempinski Hotel N’Djamena is the only 5 star luxury hotel in the city, offering a remarkable guest experience in pleasant surroundings. Kempinski Hotel N’Djamena is like an oasis in the middle of the desert. Relax and enjoy the hotel’s luxurious tropical gardens and inviting guitar-shaped pool. Enjoy the views of the city of N’Djamena from their panoramic restaurant.
White faced Ducks
Day 2 - 9
Nomande Camp, Chad.
You will be transfered to the N’Djamena International Airport for your charter flight to the Nomande Camp in Zakouma.
Camp Nomade offers simplicity, yet excellent quality of both accommodation and cuisine. The comfortable and secluded tents give you comfort and ease to relax and enjoy the wildlife unfolding in front of you. Ablutions are en suite affairs with excellent bucket showers and freshly dug and daily serviced long drop toilets. The camp is based on the edge of one of the pans and moves according to where the most wildlife activity is occurring. This ensures you are always in the heart of the wildlife activity.
Over the next few days the daily activity will be:
05h30 Early morning Game drive/ Walks
13h00 Rest and own time
15h30 Game drive/ Walks
19h00 Dinner in the outdoor boma and then retire to bed for another day of more great photography!
Please note the times mentioned above are estimates and can change.
Highlights to and what to photograph:
N’Djamena International Airport, Chad.
After an early morning game viewing you will enjoy brunch. You will then be transfered for your flight transfer back to N’Djamena International Airport. This is unfortunately the end of the Safari.
We can spend a night next to a breeding colony of Bee eaters to maximise on this avian spectacle
Camp Nomande offers simplicity, yet excellent quality of both accommodation and cuisine. The comfortable and secluded tents give you comfort and ease to relax and enjoy the wildlife unfolding in front of you. Ablutions are en suite affairs with excellent bucket showers and freshly dug and daily serviced long drop toilets. The camp is based on the edge of one of the pans and moves according to where the most wildlife activity is occurring. This ensures you are always in the heart of the wildlife activity.
Dinner underneath a Chadian sky in one of the continents most spectacular and best kept secrets
Simple beauty of Camp Nomade
Meet and pick-up at N’Djamena International Airport in Chad for an overnight stay at Kempinski Hotel.
You will be transfered to the N’Djamena International Airport for your charter flight to the Nomande Camp.
Flight transfer back to N’Djamena International Airport.
Aerial viewing from a light aircraft offer spectacular scenes across Zakouma
Maximum 8 Photographers, minimum of 6.
30% deposit confirms your booking
All-inclusive tour: Transfer from and back to N’Djamena International Airport, all meals and accommodation, daily park entrance fees and game activities and transfer between camps.
Not included: Drinks, visas, purchases of a personal nature and items not included in the itinerary.
The above costs include
Costs not included
Quelea flocks occur in their millions
Zakoumas world famous herds of elephants
To book this safari, please e-mail us or book online on C4 Images and Safaris