Flights to Chingola
Chingola is a copper-mining town in central Zambia, very near the border with the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The town has most basic tourist facilities but not much more than that. Any attractions will be outside of town though walking the streets of Chingola can give you a unique view of a Zambian industrial city.
You can get a flight to Chingola from South Africa that arrives at the Ndola Airport (airport code: NLA) which is about 100km from Chingola. You can get a bus or a rental car to go between cities. A flight to Chingola with South African Airways will be non-stop, but Kenya Airways will have a single connection in Nairobi. With Air Botswana, you will have a trip that goes through Gaborone as well as Nairobi. Non-stop flights to Chingola are just over 2 hours but those with connections are usually closer to 24 hours long.
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The Tourist Attractions of Chingola:
West Lunga National Park
There are no large nature parks within really easy reach of Chingola, but the West Lunga National Park isn’t too far. It will take several hours by car to reach it. West Lunga is a remote park that has no towns nearby and there are no tourist facilities in place. If you want to see some rough and untouched Zambian countryside, this is the place to go. Make sure you have water and supplies of your own before you leave. Within the park boundaries, this is a heavily forested area that is home to buffalo, elephants, baboons, crocodiles, tree monkeys and many species of antelope (duiker, eland, impala and sable).
Chimfunshi Chimp Sanctuary
This animal park is about 60km outside of Chingola to the west, and is a home to orphaned chimpanzees. Since there are no native chimps in Zambia, the park is a popular tourist attraction. The park is also home to flocks of peacocks and a couple of hippos. It’s a good cause, and you can see chimps in a more personal setting than in a typical safari park.
Bangweulu Game Reserve
If you head in the other direction from Chingola you can find the larger Bangweulu Game Reserve. It is about the same distance away as the West Lunga Park but you can cut your trip shorter if you take a more direct route across a small portion of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Do not try to cross the borders without proper paperwork though. The park is made up of forests and wetlands, and you can find additional scenery and wildlife that the West Lunga Park doesn’t have. Hippos, crocodiles, hyenas and jackals are all fairly common.
When Should You Visit?:
Some months are quite hot in Chingola but there is a cooler season during June and July. It will only reach 25C (77F) in the daytime, and then drop to extremely cool in the evenings. A jacket would be necessary. This is also the driest part of the year, which really does make the best time to visit. Most of the year is only a few degrees warmer, except that it does heat up in September and October up to 31C (88F)