Type: National Park
Governing Body: African Parks
Year Established: 1972
Area: 3369 km2
Coordinates: 14°30′S 22°29′E
Country: Zambia
Province: Western
Nearest Districts: Mongu

General Information

Liuwa Plain National Park is a large national park situated on the barotse flood plains of Western province. "Liuwa" means "plain" in the local Liuwa dialect of the Lozi language. The plains originally served as a hunting ground for Lubosi Lewanika, the Litunga King of the Lozi people. The area was designated as a protected area by Lubosi Lewanika in the early 1880s, and as a national park in 1972, when Zambia's government took over management. The nonprofit conservation organization African Parks has managed Liuwa in partnership with the Department of National Parks and Wildlife and the Barotse Royal Establishment since 2003.

Infrastructure & Accesibility

Liuwa Plaina national park has a helicopter tour service thanks to African Parks and Norman Carr Safaris including a luxury lodge called King Lewanika Lodge.
There are also a few guest house to stay in. It is suggested that you stop at Mongu for supplies as once in Kalabo there is very little, local markets selling a few items. The African Parks offices are just at the harbour before you cross on the pont and this is where you can check in and get any more additional information before entering Liuwa.

Climate, Flora & Habitat

Liuwa Plain lies within the Barotse Floodplain, and is bounded by the Luambimba River to the north and Luanginga River to the south. The park is prominently made up of a grassland that measures approximately 72 by 32 km, scattered with raffia palms and woodlands.

Wildlife

Liuwa Plain National Park is known for a famous lioness called Lady Liuwa, who was the subject of a National Geographic documentary (The Last Lioness) before she died of natural causes in 2017. Lady Liuwa was the only remaining lion in the area, following years of excess hunting, prior to African Parks' assuming management and introducing additional lions to encourage the re-establishment of a pride. Since 2005, the protected area is considered a Lion Conservation Unit.

Animal populations have since stabilized, despite declines and local extinctions during the 1990s–2000s. The park's grasslands support a variety of large mammals, including tens of thousands of blue wildebeest, whose annual migration is Africa's second-largest. Frequently sighted large predators include the cheetah, spotted hyena, and lions.

Liuwa is home to a variety of mammals, including buffalo, common eland, common tsessebe, oribi, red lechwe, reedbuck, roan antelope, and migrating blue wildebeest, which gather in the tens of thousands. Liuwa's wildebeest migration is the second-largest in Africa.

Reptiles & Amphibians

Liuwa Plain National Park also provides habitat for various snake species, Crocodiles and most notably, Monitor lizards which are known as "Hopane" in the Lozi language.

Birds

More than 300 bird species have been recorded in the Liuwa Plain national park.
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