From its superb game viewing and incredible wild-walking to its stunning diversity of dramatic landscapes, it's not surprising that Mana Pools National Park was desginated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1984. Open seasonally, the summer months are when you want to plan a visit here; during the dry season hordes of animals arrive to escape the heat, flooding the area to take advantage of the water at the river and the park's four permanent pools.
From zebra and kudu to lions, leopards and one of the largest concentrations of wild dog in Africa, unfenced Mana Pools practically guarantees incredible wildlife encounters. Avid bird spotters will enjoy the 350-plus bird types here, and the vast variety of fish life in the river will satisfy any self-proclaimed fisherman. Here, you'll have a good chance of spotting hippos, and there's always the prospect of meeting the park celebrity, Boswell – a huge bipedal elephant who has become world-famous thanks to his extraordinary treetop-reaching back legs.
Where is Mana Pools?
In the north of Zimbabwe, Mana Pools sits on the southern side of the lower Zambezi Valley. The park stretches alongside almost 52km of the Zambezi River – a stunning natural barrier between Zimbabwe and Zambia.