Tourism & Communications

Draw for tourists

Located in the heart of sub-Saharan Africa, Zambia’s game parks are a major draw for tourists. There are three main safari areas – the Luangwa Valley, the Lower Zambezi and northern Kafue region.Hot springs

Kafue National Park is only a day’s drive from Livingstone. The town's proximity to the Zambezi River also makes it a popular base for travellers today.

Founded in 1905 and named after the Victorian explorer David Livingstone, this was Zambia’s capital until 1935.

Key attraction for thrill-seekers

The Zambezi river is a key attraction for visitors. For thrill-seekers, the river offers river-boarding, bungee jumping and whitewater rafting.

Safari by canoe

Along the Lower Zambezi, hippos, elephants, zebra, impala, buffalo, waterbuck, baboons and crocodiles can be seen along the banks.

The Batoka Gorge is particularly popular, with its 23 rapids and dramatic sheer black cliffs.

For visitors who want to enjoy wider scenery and at a slower pace, canoe safaris run along stretches of the Upper Zambezi and along the Lower Zambezi, where there are national parks on both sides.

Smoke that thunders

However, the river’s best-known attraction is Victoria Falls, located roughlyVictoria Falls, by John Walker [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons midway along the Zambezi at the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe.

These spectacular falls span the entire breadth of the river at one of its widest points. Here, the water plunges down over 100 metres. Although the river’s flow varies by season, on average, 935 cubic metres of water go over the precipice every second.

The Makololo people refer to the falls as Mosi-oa-Tunya. This means the ‘smoke that sounds/thunders’ because of the mist and roar of the water. As the first westerner to come upon the area, Livingstone described “scenes so lovely [they] must have been gazed upon by angels in their flight”. He named the falls after Queen Victoria.

Getting around

Buses/coaches provide transport between the major towns and minibuses or taxis (painted blue) offer local rides. For travelling cross-country, a 4x4 vehicle is a must. Roads can be heavily pot-holed and fewer than half are tarred or graveled.

Visitors normally arrive in Zambia by air or rail, but the most leisurely way to enter the country is on Lake Tanganykia. The MV Liemba, one of the oldest operating steam ships and a former German vessel from World War I, runs from Bujumbura in Burundi, via Kigoma in Tanzania to the port of Mpulungu in Zambia.