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Roan antelope
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Roan antelope

Where to see Roan antelope in Zambia

The roan is Africa’s second largest antelope and one of its most handsome, with a powerful build and distinctive markings. Wary of people, it is renowned for its bravery in fighting off predators.


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Quick facts about Roan antelope

Scientific name: Hippotragus equinus Habitat: Savannah woodland
IUCN status: Least Concern Adult weight: 180–300kg

The roan is the largest of the ‘horse-like’ antelope (Hippotraginae) and is indeed horse-like in stature, with a fawn coat and stiff mane. A relative of the slightly smaller sable antelope, it has a similar black-and-white face, but is paler, with shorter horns and tasselled ears.

Roan inhabit woodland savannah, where they graze on tall grasses and visit water daily to drink. A bull presides over a group of five to fifteen females and young, which he defends vigorously from rivals, going on his knees to strike sweeping blows with his horns – a technique also used against predators such as lions. A female keeps her single calf concealed in thick bush for the first month of its life.


1m

Max. horn length

1.4m

Bull’s shoulder height

1km2

Min. bull’s territory

±75%

Calf mortality

The top camps for seeing roan antelope in Zambia

Based on 26 reports by our travellers since Aug 2018, visitors at these camps in Zambia have the best chances of sighting roan antelope.


Best chances to see

Good chances to see

Some sightings

No sightings yet

Top 10 camps for roan antelope

% of travellers who saw roan antelope

Top 10 camps for roan antelope

% of travellers who saw roan antelope

Where to see roan in Africa

Although the roan enjoys a wide distribution, it is relatively seldom seen. Shy and reclusive, this handsome antelope is most conspicuous when visiting waterholes. Allow it plenty of space or it may disappear.


Top tips for viewing roan

Roan occur widely but sparsely across Africa: to the north, they roam across the Sahel; further south, they occupy a discontinuous range from northern Tanzania to northern South Africa.

Nowhere are they numerous, however, and this remains one of the rarer antelopes seen on safari. Typically, small groups are seen when venturing warily out of cover to drink at a waterhole, often at mid-morning, before departing the same way. Roan are shy, so be prepared to enjoy your sighting from a distance rather than scare them away.

Good areas for sightings include Moremi (Botswana), Hwange (Zimbabwe) and Kafue (Zambia). Perhaps the most reliable viewing is on Malawi’s Nyika plateau, where larger herds graze the montane grasslands and are more approachable than usual.

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Our best Zambia holidays for roan antelope sightings

Based on our travellers' reports, these ideas for Zambia safaris are likely to give the best roan antelope sightings


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Purple Roller Safari

8 days • 2 locations
LUSAKA AIRPORT TO LUSAKA AIRPORT

Explore the varied habitats and terrain of Kafue National Park with stays in two wonderfully remote bushcamps. Two sister-camps offer access to the park’s centre as well as the wildlife-rich Busanga Plains.

US$7,800 - US$7,800 per person

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Robin Pope Walking Safari

7 days • 3 locations
LUSAKA AIRPORT TO LUSAKA AIRPORT

The definitive, original mobile walking safari; explore the remote north of the South Luangwa on foot while staying in a simple mobile camp that moves with the group.

US$6,090 - US$7,020 per person

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Perekani Walking Trail

10 days • 5 locations
LUSAKA AIRPORT TO LUSAKA AIRPORT

Five smart but rustic bushcamps are the comfortable staging-posts for this walking safari in South Luangwa. The route offers outstanding seclusion and rich wildlife with top-quality guiding throughout.

US$8,730 - US$10,090 per person

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Scrub Hare Safari

7 days • 3 locations
LUSAKA AIRPORT TO LUSAKA AIRPORT

Camps run by welcoming owners with a passion for their environment are rare, and Tafika is one of the best. Combine this with walking safaris at equally excellent bushcamps for the best South Luangwa offers.

US$5,500 - US$6,270 per person

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Defassa Waterbuck Safari

9 days • 3 locations
LUSAKA AIRPORT TO LUSAKA AIRPORT

Stay in three intimate, owner-run camps during this exploration of Kafue National Park. Remote locations, true wilderness and a range of activities make for a real adventure off the beaten track.

US$7,480 - US$7,500 per person

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Hippo Safari

9 days • 4 locations
LUSAKA AIRPORT TO LIVINGSTONE AIRPORT

Combining excellent game with aspects of remoter safari in South Luangwa, as well as the cultural delights of Livingstone, this trip also makes use of long-stay discounts, making it an excellent-value and well-rounded adventure.

US$7,480 - US$8,580 per person

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Hyena Safari

11 days • 4 locations
VICTORIA FALLS AIRPORT TO LILONGWE AIRPORT

Mix relaxation and adventure on a safari combining the South Luangwa with Victoria Falls and the beaches of Lake Malawi. These three locations are among the most iconic in southern Africa.

US$6,580 - US$8,420 per person

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Boehm's Zebra Safari

7 days • 2 locations
LUSAKA AIRPORT TO LUSAKA AIRPORT

This safari combines two high quality owner-run camps in a very productive region of the South Luangwa. The guiding is excellent and with its hides this safari is perfect for serious photographers.

US$6,830 - US$8,110 per person

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Fruit Bat Safari

6 days • 2 locations
LUSAKA AIRPORT TO LUSAKA AIRPORT

Offering a highly specialised experienced, this safari uses two simple bases for access to South Luangwa and Kasanka National Parks. Visit between October and December when you will witness the world’s largest mammalian migration of millions of fruit bats.

US$4,520 - US$4,780 per person

View all holidays to Zambia

More information about roan antelope in our other destinations

Click here for detailed information about roan antelope in other countries, including the places for sighting roan antelope.


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