Matusadona National Park is on the southern side of Lake Kariba, and it is the fertile grasslands growing here which have enabled strong populations of large mammals to thrive. The elephant and Cape buffalo are a wonderful sight, but it is the presence of the majestic black rhino which will really get your pulse racing. Many of the rhino living here were resettled during Operation Noah when the nearby dam was flooded. They are generally solitary creatures, wandering slowly through the bush, but now and then you will see a mother and calf, and that will definitely make you feel all warm and gooey with emotion inside!
The best way to see the rhino up close is on foot, as then the sound of a vehicle engine running won’t disturb them. The experienced local guides will take you out early in the morning or late in the afternoon, and they know how to approach the rhino safely. With the slow pace of travel, you will have plenty of time to observe and learn about the environment in which the rhino live, and the guide will happily tell you about the creatures’ habits, individual personalities, and the conservation challenges which all rhino face.
There are several wonderful camps in and around Matusadona National Park which offer rhino tracking as part of the daily activity schedule. Bumi Hills Safari Lodge is the absolute epitome of luxury, and the guides here will also take you on boat rides on Lake Kariba and game drives in pursuit of lion. Changa Safari Camp and the aptly named Rhino Safari Camp are a little simpler. Whether you are on foot or a game drive, the guides and trackers will ensure you are well positioned to see the rhino up close, often as they are heading to the lake for an early morning drink.