Mana Pools. Oh man, how we love it! And so, by the way, do hordes of African wildlife (even though they have no idea that it is a World Heritage Site). When the lakes that are created during the rainy season on the floodplains dry up in the Summer, they shrink, forming smaller bodies of water that attract thirsty mammals and birds to an ever-diminishing water source.
Fed by the lower Zambezi River, the floodplains create four – or mana in Shona – permanent pools. Spanning over 2500 square kilometres in the far North of Zimbabwe, this lush conservation region is made up of pools, sandbanks, islands and miles of scenic river frontage. Wild fig, ebony and mahogany trees provide the perfect habitat for nearly 400 species of bird. Giant baobab trees, ever a reminder that we are in Africa – stand guard over the African fauna and flora that is protected within this game reserve.
While animals like antelope, zebra, buffalo, lion, cheetah, hyena, leopard and Cape wild dog and the elusive black rhino sip water from the shoreline of the pools, hippo, crocodile and elephant wade within its depths. If you’re into wildlife photography, Mana Pools will put a flutter in your shutter as animal activity is almost guaranteed around waterholes, pans and dams.
The ideal African safari combines a little luxury, a lot of game viewing and just the right amount of sundowners and sitting around the campfire. Private concession areas around Mana Pools offer a variety of game lodges, luxury tented camps, bush camps, glamping and river lodges that all pride themselves on service, knowledge of the bush and outstanding facilities.
Mana Pools is truly a lifeblood that sustains the African plains.