There is an immense variety of sport hunting areas and options within Zimbabwe, from private ranches and communal land concessions to the great national hunting areas of the Zambezi Valley and Matabeleland; from bird shooting and plains game to the Big Four.
Safari operators in Zimbabwe are required to be registered and licenced by the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority. Ask for your Operator's number when booking your hunt and, if he does not have one, check his bona fides through SOAZ (email: firstname.lastname@example.org).
Operators must hold a lease or agreement on a suitable concession with an approved quota of animals. They are responsible for the official paperwork and permits connected to the hunt.
Bow and handgun hunting are permitted on an experimental basis, but require special permits. Black powder is legal provided the weapon complies with the requirements of the Third Schedule of the Firearms Act. This also applies to handguns.
Hunting operators are required by law to provide the services of a Zimbabwe Licenced Professional Hunter to accompany foreign hunters in Zimbabwe. Licencing is undertaken by the National Parks & Wildlife Authority. Professional Hunters write a Learner Examination, and are then apprenticed to a fully-licenced Professional Hunter for two years. During this time they must pass a shooting test set by the Zimbabwe Shooting Federation and obtain an Advanced First Aid Certificate.
They then attend a Proficiency Test in the field. Full Licence holders carry a plastic disc issued by the Parks Authority which shows their photograph, ID number and licence number. Learner Licence holders carry a paper licence with their details and a licence number.