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Walking 1,500km to inspire wildlife protection in Zimbabwe

Joseph Makowa, known as The Travel Mufasa, had a dream to travel across Zimbabwe to connect with the people and with nature. So he decided to embark on a journey, walking 1,500 km (900 miles) on a route running through the country.

Zimbabwe is a land of superlatives, thanks in part to Victoria Falls, the world’s largest waterfall, and Lake Kariba, the largest man-made lake in terms of volume. National Parks such as Hwange and Mana Pools teem with wildlife. The country has the second-largest population of elephants in the world, the fourth-largest black rhino population, and is one of the few places left to still view the “Big Five” wildlife species (lion, leopard, elephant, rhino and buffalo) making Zimbabwe one of the continent’s best places to go on safari.

“We need to create a generation of young Zimbabweans who appreciate conservation”

Joseph Makowa

Although poverty affects most Zimbabweans, the country is full of positivity and hugely inspiring people, many of whom are passionate about the future of Zimbabwe’s heritage, environment and wildlife. One of these young men is 25-year-old Joseph, The Travel Mufasa (mufasa meaning ‘king’ inspired by the movie The Lion King and Joseph’s passion for travel), who lost his travel and tourism business during the COVID-19 pandemic and decided to seek a new challenge in life.

Travel Mufasa is a heartwarming and inspirational story of awakening and discovery. Joseph has found a new passion for wildlife and the environment and is now committed to sharing this new-found passion and knowledge to Zimbabwe’s youth, while encouraging them to plant trees and experience Zimbabwe’s incredible wildlife. “We need to create a generation of young Zimbabweans who appreciate conservation,” says Joseph.

WildAid followed Joseph re-enacting part of his route, and joined him at Imire Rhino & Wildlife Conservancy where he was fortunate enough to walk with habituated elephants, learning from their rangers, as well as spending time with the dedicated rangers who guard the resident black and white rhino population in the conservancy.