Hwange National Park

A Pride of Lions at Hwange National Park
Photo by: cardamom , Creative Commons

Hwange is a mining town located in the western part of Zimbabwe. Before 1982, the town was called Wankie and because of the Hwange Colliery (the largest coal mine in the country) located in the area; it is the hub of the coal industry of Zimbabwe. Aside from being the focal point of coal mining, Hwange is also a very popular tourist destination because of the Hwange National Park.
Hwange National Park

The Hwange National Park hosts a variety of wildlife. It is estimated that there are at least 400 different species of birdlife and more than 100 species of mammals in the National Park. The Hwange National Park has an area of 14,600 square kilometers making it the largest national park in Zimbabwe. It is different from other national parks because of the brown hyena and gemsbok population; no other protected area has as large of a hyena and gemsbok population as the Hwange National Park.

Hwange has done a great job at preserving some of the most endangered species. The population of the largest land mammals, the African Elephant, is thought to be the larger in the National Park than what naturally occurs. The African Wild Dog, estimated to have a population of about 5,000, is also breeding and living abundantly in Hwange National Park.

Aside from animal viewing, camping is also a very popular activity in the National Park. There are three permanent camps in the park: the Main Camp (located in the south), the Sinamatella (in the north) and Robins Camp (in the north). The Main camp is the most accessible. The Sinamatella is located on top of a waterhole which is great for viewing animals. The Robins camp is not recommended to newcomers because of its remote placement and doesn’t have a consistent supply of fuel and other provisions.

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