Mozambique’s Limpopo National Park, located in the Gaza Province—until 1992 torn by war—was transformed in 2001 from hunting zone to park and opened to visitors in 2005. Today, the 10,000 km² (3,860 mile²) area works to mitigate poaching, to restore and sustain its communities, game and wilderness and to grow tourism. Its efforts include relocating 4,000 animals, among them the “big five,” from overpopulated Kruger National Park; involving its communities in the park’s growth and management; and creating a multi-use park with three zones—one for tourists, one for wilderness and one for the hunting of game. The park is bordered on the north by what Rudyard Kipling famously termed the “great grey-green greasy Limpopo River” and on the south by the Olifants River and its recently completed Massingir Dam, home to crocodile. Betwixt the two rivers lie recently built infrastructure, bush and pristine, reinvigorated wilderness, cleared of the land mines that once marred it. Limpopo will eventually comprise one-third of the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park, an initiative to support peace, rebuilding and cross-border biodiversity. Today, visitors to Limpopo can enjoy guided hiking and game walks, fishing and exploration by canoe and 4x4 trail.
April to September—Mozambique’s cool, dry months—are best for eyeing animals. February finds parts of the country closed for hurricane season.