Zakouma National Park
Zakouma National Park is the latest must-see safari destination for travellers looking for a unique and authentic African experience, far from mainstream tourist routes. Poaching has been virtually eradicated in this 3000-square-kilometre park and, as a result, Zakouma has become a safe haven for many species that are threatened elsewhere in Chad. The sheer volume of wildlife is breathtaking - with 44 species of large mammals including lions, giraffe, leopard and cheetah as well as numerous smaller mammals and 388 species of bird - but Zakouma’s main attraction is undoubtedly its huge herds of elephant.
Scheduled group tour from
March 8 - March 15, 2018
per person sharing
8 days / 7 nights
The Master Guides Collection
Designed by Doug Macdonald
While this tour is completely booked, we have good news. We are headed back to Zakouma in 2019! Check here for details.
Chalo Africa has the great privilege of bringing you Zakouma National Park with Doug Macdonald, one of the pre-eminent guides of Africa. Zakouma National Park is becoming one of the new must-see destinations of Africa. It’s a beautiful park that I think is best described as a mix between the Okavango Delta and South Luangwa National Park.
There is a wonderful array of animals here that include all the big cats and the big mammals – like Giraffe, Buffalo, Hartebeest, Tiang, Roan and Greater Kudu. Mixed in are some interesting smaller animals and a big menu for the birders to look through as well.
Combine all this with the interesting cultures that live outside the park and being able to see the work that happens behind the scenes in keeping a park like this safe from highly motivated poaching teams that work across Africa. It’s a top safari experience and will be guided by Doug Macdonald who has much experience guiding in Africa and is an accredited guide for Zakouma National Park.
- Fully guided safari
- 8 Days / 7 Nights
- 6 Guests (Only 2 seats remaining!)
- US$5100.00 per person sharing
- Please note that there is a single supplement of US$365.00
- The Air Charter in and out of the park might have an increase in price that we will only be able to commit to at the end of 2017.
Zakouma National Park Itinerary
Day 1: N'Djamena
When you arrive in N’Djamena airport there will be a hotel representative outside the airport to meet you and take you on the short drive through the city to the hotel which overlooks the Chari River…
Please contact us for the full itinerary.
Day 2 to 8: Zakouma National Park
It’s an early start from the hotel this morning and the hotel will give you a packed breakfast to take with you. You will go back to the airport and security checks before flying to Zakouma…
We will be able to explore the park with a mixture of game drives and walks. There is also a possibility of doing a flight over the park in one of the park planes…
Please contact us for the full itinerary.
About Zakouma National Park
DESPITE MANY YEARS OF CONFLICT, ZAKOUMA NATIONAL PARK IS WIDELY CONSIDERED TO BE ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT PROTECTED AREAS NOT ONLY IN CHAD, BUT IN ALL OF AFRICA.
The park has become a safe haven for Central and West African wildlife including the Kordofan giraffe and elephant, the latter of which had experienced a 95% loss from rampant poaching. Today, due to extraordinarily effective law enforcement and community engagement, elephant numbers have stabilized and new calves are being born every year. Security has been restored and Zakouma is now a coveted tourism destination, serving as one of the most inspirational conservation success stories of our time.
In the 1950s, Colonel Michel Anna, Chad’s hunting inspector at the time, proposed the classification of Zakouma as a faunal reserve in order to ensure the protection of the highly poached giraffe population and in response to declines in other species due to excessive hunting.
The reserve was established at that time and anti-poaching patrols commenced using nomad guards. Within a few years of this intervention, the density of game reached numbers never before seen in Chad, and as a consequence, the number of poachers on the reserve’s periphery followed a similar trend. To offer better protection, Zakouma was declared a national park in 1963 by Presidential Decree, giving it the highest form of protection available under the laws of Chad.
However, the elephants of Zakouma experienced an extraordinary onslaught of poaching between 2003 to 2010, resulting in the catastrophic loss of over 4,000 elephants. African Parks took over management of the park in 2010, and due to effective law enforcement measures and community networks, poaching has been practically eliminated with only a few individuals being lost in the past six years. Today, the herd has stabilized, and calves are being reported on every year.
2013 marked the 50th anniversary of this continentally important national park.
- Zakouma National Park is managed in partnership between African Parks and the Chadian government.
- The Chadian government and the European Union approached African Parks in 2010 to take on the management responsibility of Zakouma in order to put an end to the ongoing scourge of elephant poaching. The mandate agreement was signed in June 2010 and African Parks commenced management of the park and periphery in the October of the same year.
Text Credit: African Parks.
African Parks at Zakouma
Situated just south of the Sahara desert and above the fertile rainforest regions, Zakouma is one of the last remaining intact Sudano-Sahelian ecosystems. This extremely important protected area was declared a National Park by the Chadian government in 1963. However, poaching drove a massive decline in the elephant population, from 4,000 in 2002 to just 450 in 2010.
Since African Parks took over management the elephant population stabilised and is now finally on the increase, due to improved management and a more effective anti-poaching strategy. With giraffe, roan antelope, tiang, Lelwel’s hartebeest and buffalo populations all on the rise, Zakouma is once again emerging as a coveted tourist destination to the benefit of adjacent communities whose livelihoods have improved considerably.
- The formation of a specialist Rapid Response Unit as part of a stringent anti-poaching strategy has almost completely halted poaching within the park.
- Satellite collars have been fitted to elephant herds, allowing the park management team to monitor them and deploy field patrols accordingly.
- The park’s Tinga Camp, Camp Nomade and Camp Salamat have seen an influx of local and international tourists, providing local employment and trade opportunities.
- The community outreach visits arranged by the park ensure that about 5,000 Chadian children and villagers visit the park each year.
ON THE HORIZON
We plan to improve the educational curriculum and expand on the four Elephant Schools that address the challenge of a dispersed local population. The reintroduction of black rhino and the creation of an elephant corridor beyond the park are priority conservation projects that are already under planning and investigation.
Extensions in Ethiopia!
We have designed a variety of stand-alone trips for Ethiopian endemics that can be booked either before or after this special Zakouma safari.
- Surma (Suri) tribes in the Omo Valley, with a scenic flight over Gambella NP to see the white-eared kob migration
- Hyena Man of Harar
- Ethiopian Wolves in Bale Mts, Webb Valley mobile camping
- Gelada monkeys in the Simien Mts or Menz-Guassa