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Basic information

  • Area: ~100 km2 (38.61 sq mi)
  • Calling Code: +260
  • Currency: Zambian kwacha (ZMW)
  • Population (EST): 136,897
  • Official language: English, other
  • Time Zone: CAT (UTC+2)

10 Reasons to Visit Livingstone

1. Cultural Richness

Considered the gateway between Southern and Central Africa, Livingston is a lively city, brimming with carts and locals chatting away in Tongo, Bemba, Nyanja or one of 73 other languages spoken in Zambia. In contrast to the north, there is a much more Western feel to Livingstone; you see businessmen in suits, there's cold beer sold by vendours, and it's easy to get a nice, warm shower. The infrastructure of the city is sound, and is a wonderful place for travelers to relax and share exciting stories, before venturing back into the unknown reaches of Zambia.

2. Natural Wonderland

Though famous for its National Park, river, and the mighty Victoria Falls, in and of itself Livingston an essential stop on any itinerary. The National Park is home to Zambia's only 5 rare white rhinos, and the majestic Zambezi rushes through its boundaries. There are a number of adrenalin-packed adventures available to experience the beautiful natural wonders of Zambia, and thrills that will last a lifetime. This is a place to find the perfect blend of natural African wonder and accommodating, enriching city-life; all rolled into one. White water rafting is just another popular pastime amongst adventurous travelers.

3. Relaxation

Even with all the wonderful activities that are on offer in the area, Livingstone is also a fabulous place to sit around, relax, and enjoy a beer. Those who are on business in Africa find this city to be a wonderful place to loosen their ties and kick back for a while. With a number of local restaurants and cafes, it's easy to slow down and enjoy the wonderful climate and beautiful natural surroundings. Bring your book, sit by the pool, and have a little rest before you tackle the more exciting outings that abound.

4. Victoria Falls

No trip to Livingstone is complete without beholding the majesty of Victoria Falls, certified as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. During high season from February to June, the Falls are a veritable ball of smoke and spray. The energy-charged waters are a wonder, and it seems as though you could visit the falls for a full day and simply drink in the dramatic splendour. It gives one the sense of how powerful Mother Nature is, and what she's truly capable of.

5. Lunar Rainbow

The lunar rainbow is a natural phenomenon that all travelers look forward to seeing in Livingstone's night sky. When it is clear out, and Victoria Falls is running at its peak capacity, there are enormous rainbows emitted through the mysterious mist of the night. Some great ways to see it are to be table-side at a restaurant that overlooks the falls, or enjoy a backpacking trip that has a special night expedition, allowing you to soak in the beauty of the majestic night rainbow. Oddly enough, the lunar rainbow photographs quite well, and travelers scramble to capture the beauty on film.

6. Zambian Sunsets

Zambia is known for its tranquil, colourful sunsets, and there are a number of great spots in Livingstone to see the impressive lights of dusk. A great place for a viewing is atop the Batoka Gorge, where it's possible to see as far as Zimbabwe, and also take in a glimpse of the Zambezi and the spray of the distant Victoria Falls. Pop open a cold beer, bring a lawn chair, and just drink it all in. It's the perfect finish to a long day of sightseeing and adventure.

7. Crocodile and Snake Park

If you want to see some amazing reptiles, the Crocodile Park is not to be missed. There is also a nice selection of poisonous snakes on display. What better way to view these terrifying and fascinating creatures up-close and personal? If you really want to see something amazing, go Saturday or Sunday, when the animals are fed. That's a sight that will not soon be forgotten.

8. Mukuni Village

Just outside of Livingstone is where the Toka-Leya people have their charming village open for display. You really get to see the day-to-day life and traditions of these lively people. With a population of just about 8000, it's possible to walk amongst the visitors, and be a fly on the wall. It's best to ask before taking photographs, and remember to always be kind and courteous to the locals.

9. Maramba Market

Maramba Market is the place to find pretty much everything under the sun for purchase. The rows of endless stalls are brimming with vintage clothing, fresh produce and dried beans, as well as bikes, backpacks, and other goods. The people here are quite friendly, but it is always suggested that you should dress modestly in these areas of town. Pick up some snacks from street vendours, and find some souvenirs as well. This is a wonderful place to simply stroll and take it all in.

10. Exciting Museums

There are a number of fabulous museums in Livingstone, and in particular, the Livingstone Museum is perhaps the most popular. See the displays highlighting Zambia's independence, witchcraft, crafts, and David Livingstone memorabilia. The Victoria Falls Field Museum is also a nice spot, focusing on the local people surrounding the Falls, as well as the unique geology of the area.

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