Livingstone is an interesting place where contrasts are easily noticeable everywhere: dusty roads near fancy coffee shops, open markets next to supermarkets, tourists mingling with locals. If you’re travelling from Southern Africa, you will be surprised by the amount of street business happening in Livingstone. It’s a place where you can easily spend any amount of time in between a few days and a few weeks. If you’re not sure what you can do here, you’ve arrived at the right place for suggestions.
1. Victoria Waterfalls on Zambia side
Victoria Waterfalls should really be mentioned only at the end of the article, as it’s by far the most popular activity in this region. But then again, it’s maybe better to just state the obvious first and get it out of the way. Zambian side of Victoria Waterfalls is the part where you want to take your pictures. But do pay attention not to get too much water on your camera. The entrance fee is USD 20 and you can easily spend a few good hours walking around and getting soaked. That is if you visit in between May and September/October, otherwise you might find it dry.
Victoria Waterfalls on Zambia side
Address: outside Livingstone, towards Zimbabwe border, Zambia
Website: Victoria Waterfalls on Zambia side
2. Rafting trip on Zambezi
Another activity worth considering while in Livingstone is going rafting on Zambezi. It is one of the best rafting experiences in the world, due to the rough water Lower Zambezi has. There are several companies in both Zambia and Zimbabwe organizing rafting trips on Zambezi, but you might as well encourage the only local business in Livingstone: Maano adventures. They have wonderful and very competent guides, providing not only safety during the trips, but also good jokes, great laughter and information about Zambian culture.
Rafting trip on Zambezi with Maano adventures
Address: Livingstone 10101, Zambia
3. Visit the highest baobab tree in the region
Located on the way to Mukuni village from Victoria Waterfalls, the best thing about this baobab tree is the metal staircase built next to it. You can therefore climb up and see the “smoke” that comes out of the falls. It is an impressive view. One can also get there around sunset time for an even better show of the nature.
Highest baobab tree
Address: close to Victoria Waterfalls, Zambian side
The most luxurious hotel available in town, Royal Livingstone Hotel is also the best spot to be during sunset. Besides, you get to see zebras and giraffes walking around on the perfect grass, maybe even hippos and crocodiles swimming in the river close by. The bar and restaurant of Royal Livingstone Hotel is placed right next to the river, offering an amazing view and great pictures opportunities.
5. Victoria Waterfalls on Zimbabwe side
While the Zambian side is about pictures, the Zimbabwean side is about seeing the size of the entire waterfall. You will walk along the edge of the gorge - it’s not the place to be if you’re afraid of heights, as there’s no fence. It’s a matter of taste which side is better. If it’s convenient for you, just visit both sides. Don’t forget your raincoat, though. Zimbabweans have a higher entry fee for the falls - USD 30. Rumour among the locals has it that there’re some tigers in the park.
Victoria Falls on the Zimbabwean side
Address: Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, towards the Zambian border
Website: Victoria Falls
6. See a lunar rainbow
If you manage to synchronize your trip to Livingstone with a full moon, do consider going to the falls at night. On the nights with full moon, the park is open until midnight and you’ll be able to see a lunar rainbow. It is an amazing phenomenon that can’t be experienced in many other places in the world.
7. Buy your veggies in Maramba market
Maramba is one of the suburbs of Livingstone. It’s the place where many of the locals choose to live mostly because it offers the cheapest accommodation in the area. Maramba also hosts a huge market where you can find anything you might need, from second hand clothes, to vegetables, beans, fish, paint, soap. It’s probably the place with the lowest prices, no matter on what are the products you’re looking for. Even if you don’t want to buy anything, you can still go for a stroll and a chat with the farmers.
Address: Maramba neighourhood, Livingstone
With it’s messy style, Zinga Backpackers is a charming place to hang out. The staff is very friendly and nice. You can even play your own music at the system available while enjoying your cold beer, just ask the person at the bar for the cable to link it to your phone. Zinga welcomes everyone and it offers a very relaxing atmosphere. If you feel like playing some board games, don’t hesitate to choose from their collection.
Price: from 10 USD
Number of Guests: 20
Make the most of your time in Livingstone
Livingstone is both a place to relax and a place to go on activities. Although many of the activities available are rather expensive, some are once in a life time opportunity (unless you live in Southern or Eastern Africa). So have loads of fun, discover Zambian culture and try to be even a better explorer than David Livingstone. Take your time while in Livingstone, don’t rush your trip through if you want to make the most of it. And when in doubt, just admire the smoke that thunders (Mosi oa Tunya - the original name of Victoria Falls) from a distance. It has for sure a very calming effect.
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