Nearly three years ago was the culmination of one of the biggest decisions I have made in my life. Having never been to Johannesburg, I boarded a plane and flew 16 hours, halfway around the world, into the unknown. I was moving to a city where the only person I knew was the woman who had hired me. Mid-flight I awoke from an exhausted sleep in a panic about the decision I had made. It was the only moment in the past three years, that I doubted my decision to leave home.
Neither words nor photos can capture the chaos of the great migration. It is a wildlife spectacle that needs to been seen to understand the scale on which it unfolds. Every year an estimated one and a half million white-bearded wildebeest travel over 300 miles in a giant loop across Kenya and Tanzania in search of fresh grass. Along this trek they birth their young; attempt perilous river crossings where many wildebeest drown or are eaten by crocodiles; and they fall prey to awaiting lions. The entire display is filled with drama and suspense and was something I had wanted to see since I moved to South Africa.
South Luangwa is famed for walking safaris with two notable companies (Norman Carr and Robin Pope) offering multi-day walks or shorter walks between permanent camps. I wasn’t spending enough time in the park to take advantage of either of these options, but Tena Tena, the camp I was staying at, offered walks in place of the standard game drive. Unlike walks I have done in other countries, a walking safari in South Luangwa National Park feels more wild and remote.