Although wildlife safaris are ideal for those in wheelchairs or on crutches, you’ll need to be intrepid in Zambia, as there are very few facilities for the disabled – even though there are more disabled people per head of population here than in the West. It has to be said that most travellers with disabilities find travel in Zambia much easier with the assistance of a companion.
Part of the whole safari ethos in Zambia is being adaptable and flexible, so most camps and lodges in national parks have no problem catering for travellers with disabilities – with notice. Safari lodges are single storey, and getting around is fairly easy, although gaps in slatted wooden decking can easily trap a wheel or walking stick. Another great advantage at upmarket lodges is the roomy outdoor bathrooms.
Hemingways in Livingstone can offer wheelchair-accessible vehicles to get about. In cities and towns, midrange and upmarket hotels have lifts, ramps and private bathrooms attached to the room. A few of the smart hotels in Lusaka and Livingstone have rooms with specific disabled facilities. Getting around urban areas is much harder for people with wheelchairs or walking difficulties. Footpaths (where they exist at all) are often in bad condition with cracks or damaged sections, and crossing the road can be hard because curbs don’t have ramps and traffic rarely stops for pedestrians anyway.