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Millions of fruit bats.....

Kasanka Bat Migration

  • Largest mammal "migration" on the planet
  • Exceptional birding
  • Experience the Zambian culture

More than 10 million mammals in an area less than two football pitches! Where else could you see something like this?

Every year between November and December, millions of Straw-coloured fruit bats congregate in an area of forest in Northern Zambia, enticed by a bounty of fruiting trees in the area. The bats roost in a common part of the forest as one churning mass. By night they feed, and this is what makes this such a spectacle. Each evening the bats leave their roosting site to forage in the surrounding Kasanka forest. They leave en masse, and for 30 minutes, the evening sky is decorated with little mobile silhouettes of millions of bats.

This is one of Africa's top wildlife spectacles, if not the world?

Visiting Kasanka can be done on a mobile safari - although distances in Zambia are vast between different destinations. So a visit is best done on an "expedition" style format. We have combined Kasanka with Liuwa plains expeditions so this would be an ideal arrangement.

There is also a nearby airstrip, so Kasanka can be combined with any destination in Zambia.

Please ask us to design an itinerary for you.

Accommodation and Activities

There are no 5 star lodges in Kasanka (which is a relief). Wasa Lodge is the best (only) option inside the Kasanka National Park. It is well run and managed by the Kasanka Trust - a charity set up to protect the forest for the future, as poaching has been a recent problem here.

The chalets are quite simple, but clean and comfortable enough to use as a base to see the bats. Activities are based around the late evenings and VERY EARLY mornings - one needs to get into position well before first light to see the bats return from their foraging.

There are various hides strategically located at different locations around the bat roosting site. So each morning and evening, you can witness the event from a different angle, location or setting. Some hides are set high in the tree canopy looking into the sunset. Others low down looking into the sunrise. All angles are covered, and each location offers a different view of the spectacle!

Of course, the bats are not the only attraction here. The forest is beautiful, the birdlife is prolific and general game is abundant. Having visited Kasanka recently, I saw more "rare" Sitatunga antelope in 48 hours, than I have seen in my whole life in the Okavango Delta!

I have had the great privilege to be able to visit Botswana (both on several mobile safaris and high end lodges) and can say without hesitation that Wildland Safaris and guide-owner James Haskins provides one of the best experiences in the sector. James is by far the most dedicated and professionally competent guide I have known. His company has provided us with a well organised and comfortable safari while James went out of his way to provide us with exceptional game viewing and the trip of a lifetime.
Christine Klass