For Wildlife-Watchers: North Luangwa National Park by National Geographic

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Primal North Luangwa National Park is an untouched savanna wilderness visited by less than 500 tourists each year. Located in the oldest section of Africa’s Great Rift Valley, the 1,790-square-mile (4,636-square-kilometer) park has no roads and no permanent camps. September to October is the height of the dry season, when wildlife concentrates near the Luangwa River. Guided walking safaris on existing animal trails are the only way to see the residents, which include buffalo, elephants, lions, leopards, Africa’s greatest concentration of hippos, and over 400 species of birds. “Walks are peaceful with no diesel engines blotting out the bush sounds,” says freshwater biologist Christine Coppinger, who was born and raised in the Luangwa Valley and works for Remote Africa Safaris, the four-camp Luangwa safari company founded by her parents.

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