Livingstone City was Capital of Zambia (Northern Rhodesia) from 1911 up to 1935 when the administrative capital was shifted to Lusaka. This tourist capital lies 11 kilometres from the Victoria Falls.
The city’s business district lies along the town’s principal thoroughfare, Mosi-oa-tunya Road. Some parts along the road are lined with classic colonial buildings with spacious wooden verandas and iron roofs.
In recent years the town has witnessed an exciting programme of construction and development, with the impressive Zambezi waterfront one of the top-rated tourist destinations in southern Africa.
The town offers a lot of activities including sight-seeing at the Victoria Falls, elephant safaris, helicopter or microlight filps, a 111-metre bungee jump off the Victoria Falls Bridge, kayaking or jet boating in the Batoka Gorge below the falls, fishing, game viewing, white water rafting, Maramba Cultural Village. There are also quad bike trails, bicycle safaris to Victoria Falls and wilderness safaris with elephant rides and lion or rhino walks. The town has undergone tremendous growth and today Livingstone is a great Zambian tourist destination.
Want to have a change of pace? Go angling on the Zambezi or take a leisurely breakfast, lunch or sunset cruise along the river. Don’t forget a steam train ride aboard the Royal Livingstone Express, which traverses the historic Mulobezi Railway line to the beautiful Victoria Falls Bridge. This will be your unforgettable experience! Are you interested in wide life? Check the Livingstone Reptile Park.
The most well-known attraction is the mighty Victoria Falls, located about 11km from the City. When it’s at its peak just after the rain season, an average of 550,000 cubic litres of water pours down the cliff in a minute. The first white man to see the falls was the Scottish explorer David Livingstone, who was thrilled by the falls that he named it after Queen Victoria of England. The nearby Mosi-oa-tunya National Park is home to antelopes, zebra and the recently re-introduced white rhino. Bird watching and wild life safaris are under taken in the game park.
Despite being the home land for the Tonga speaking people, the language widely spoken in Livingstone City is Lozi from the Western province. English, the country’s official language, is used mostly for business.
Indeed the city’s fascinating history is reflected in the number and quality of museums here, from the renovated Livingstone Museum, to the Railway Museum with its beautifully preserved old steam locomotives and memorabilia. Also across from the falls entrance, the Field Museum gives a good overview of the falls and their interesting geology.
Livingstone City’s heritage sites are beautiful as they offer historical memories that have stood the test of time. Among these cultural heritage sites, is the first shopping centres built in 1910. The buildings portray the old architectural ingenuity that has been passed on to the current generation. The office for the prince of England, Prince George, built in 1914, is presently used as the local court.
The Livingstone Museum, which is the oldest museum of the Zambian museums, has on exhibit interesting discoveries. Among these discoveries are the local traditional fire guns used for witchcraft, traditional aero plane, local mappings depicting the entire Livingstone, a collection of David Livingstone's memorabilia and many more. If you happen to be after some Zambian curios, the Mukuni Park Curio Market is the right place for you.
Livingstone City has some fine restaurants that can restore your weaning appetite. A cruise through the following list will show you one restaurant that suits your taste. The list is by no means exhaustive. The types of restaurants differ as the following list shows:
Offers a wide variety of foods including African, barbecue, Caribbean and pizza.
Specializes in Asian cuisine. It is highly ideal for a family outing.
Serves; Asian cuisine.
Some important markets worth visiting include Mukuni Park, which has a good selection of curios, wooden carvings and baskets, the Maramba Market, which sells everything from fresh produce to hand-crafted furniture, and the craft and curio market next to the falls.
Don’t forget about day trips to traditional African Villages. This will give you an insight into local culture. The villages include Musokatwane Village, a typical African Village situated 37 kilometres out of town.
Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula international airport is linked directly or indirectly (through Kenneth Kaunda International airport) to the outside world. British Airways/Comair and the South African airways have scheduled flights from Johannesburg (South Africa) to Livingstone, and there are Domestic carriers like Proflight with regular flights to Livingstone from Lusaka.
There are many tour operators based in the city which provide private road transportation in the form of transfers in and around Zambia. Cars, as well as off-road vehicles are also available for hire at car rental outlets in the town.
By road, the town has excellent links within or with neighbouring countries. It is about 487 km from Lusaka and therefore it is about a 6 hour drive from Lusaka. There are reliable and timed coaches running between Livingstone City and Lusaka. From the south you can use Chirundu (Zimbabwe) or Kazungula (Botswana) border posts.
There's a train from Kitwe, via Lusaka to Livingstone by the Zambia Railways, but service is slow and it’s advisable to use it when you've got plenty of time.
There's abundant accommodation within or near Livingstone. There are Hotels, Lodges and Guest houses (Bed and Breakfast). The following are some of the hotels and lodges;
Located on Mosi-oa-tunya road, its one place where you can spend your quality time.
Also on Mosi-oa-tunya road is the Protea Hotel. The friendly staff compliments the excellent and comfortable rooms.
Located on Nakatindi road, with an exciting view of the Zambezi River, it has a lounge, a bar and a dining room. The River Club guarantees you quality service at your disposal.
Offers buffet breakfast, double bed rooms, and much more, all this is just 5 minutes’ walk to the Victoria Falls.
The New Fairmount Hotel, with over 400 rooms is situated right in the centre of Livingstone City and therefore offers accessibility to all that Livingstone has to offer.
Located on the banks of the Zambezi River, the lodge has beautiful scenery with a friendly atmosphere.
The Wasawange Lodge, is conveniently situated only two minutes’ drive from the Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula International Airport, with the Victoria Falls, one of the wonders of the world, only some 8 Kilometres away.
The Nena Guest House is located a mere 6 minutes’ drive from Livingstone city. The guest house has all the facilities a discerning visitor can ask for.
Gloria’s Bed and Breakfast is just a mere 1.5 kilometres near Livingstone city centre and about 10 minutes’ drive from the mighty Victoria Falls.
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Chaminuka Lodge offers luxurious accommodation, spectacular views over Lake Chitoka where you can behold the most glorious sunsets of Africa.
Thorntree River Lodge offers excellent game viewing opportunities and adventure activities. The lodge is located inside the Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park.
Kansanshi hotel in Solwezi town is situated in a great location, on 4.5 hectares area. The hotel opened on January 30, 2010, with a ceremony attended by local chiefs and government dignitaries.