ZimParks reinstates unguided public walking in Mana Pools

The Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority has reinstated ‘unguided’ public walking in Mana Pools National Park, with immediate effect. The authority said all walking activities would now require permits that cost $10 (R123) per day for Zimbabweans and $15 (R185) per day for international visitors. All people walking without a permit will be fined $100 (R1 239).

The Zambezi Society has worked with its constituency members, the Lower Zambezi Tour Operators Association (LZTOA) and the ZimParks Authority at Mana Pools station level to develop a Code of Conduct for Mana Pools National Park, which puts in place strong measures to ensure that fines are strictly enforced for offenders and non-permit-holders. The code be found here.

The Zambezi Society said in a statement: “We urge visitors to Mana Pools to recognise the privilege that has been returned to them and to respect the guidelines provided by the agreed Codes of Conduct. While making a daily payment for the privilege of ‘unguided’ walking adds an additional financial burden to visitors, it is nonetheless arguable that this requirement should have been in place long ago, and might have served to prevent the unacceptable behaviour of a small minority of visitors in recent years.”

Source: Tourism Update