Likes & Dislikes

Opinions

“Zambia is dreamlike in its beauty. Unfortunately, tourism is not that popular in the country yet, though then again, maybe that's the beauty of it. There are truly untouched areas. Around Lake Tanganyika, there are small villages cut off from civilization, which you can't read about in, for example, travel guides.

When we talk about Zambia, everyone thinks of Victoria Falls (or possibly Livingstone), where you can try white-water rafting or go on safari. Here, the prices are tailored to foreign tourists, but as you leave this southern area and travel elsewhere, you don't need much money.

The infrastructure is very underdeveloped, and while some roads are well built because of trade connections, if you really want to see beautiful places, you’d better be prepared for dusty, bumpy roads, a lack of street lighting, and unexpected things no one would think of.

There are a lot of long-distance and local buses in the country. Still, I would only recommend this to adventurous young people with backpacks because they are often crowded, there is a high chance that at least one or two children or chickens will be put on your lap, or the bus will break down, or will stop for a rest, then go on without you. Unfortunately, there are a lot of drunk drivers, which is why there are many accidents, so I wouldn't say that traffic is 100% safe. Of course, you can also rent a car, but this is more expensive. It is difficult to find accommodation in the countryside. Though some lodges are run by British people, they are often unaffordable. I would rather say they are unrealistically priced, especially if you consider that there is absolutely no water or electricity.

The more restrained people who want to take a vacation go on a trip to the waterfall in the southern part of the country, and the self-motivated tourists go around the whole country with plenty of time to kill. Many people find accommodation through Couchsurfing, and I have accommodated several people this way: I have had Norwegian, English, and even half-Hungarian-half-Dutch guests. People come here from all over the world. Many volunteer work for a longer or shorter time during their trip.

Public safety is nothing to worry about, but white women should pay attention and be careful. The local culture must be respected, and you shouldn’t draw too much attention to yourself through your dress. People are friendly and helpful, but it's better not to leave things to chance.” (2016)


Zambia - village family - Elter photo

Zambia - zebras - Elter photo

Practicals

Transport

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Zambia - safari jeeps - Elter photo

Zambia - Intercity Terminus

Fun

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Zambia - Devil's pool - m.z. photo

Public safety

Zambia is a safe tourist destination by African standards. Chances of being killed by guns, knives is totally slim. Tourists in Lusaka should avoid the Chibolya area at night. A lot of drug traffic makes area risky.

Health

Zambia is a country at risk for malaria, so tourists need to protect themselves with medication by following the recommended precautions.

Background

Zambia - national flag colors made-up

Destination in brief

Zambia is a landlocked country in East Africa. Neighbors: Tanzania (north east), Malawi (east), Mozambique (south east), Botswana and Zombabwe (south), Angola (west), Dr Congo (north).

Size:752,618 km² (290,587 mi²)

Capital city: Lusaka

Population (in 2020): 18.3 million - Bemba (21%) and Tonga (13.6%) are the largest ethnic groups


Languages: English the official language of administration, education, trade and law - There are 7 official native languages: Bemba, Tonga, Nyanja, Lozi, Luvale, Lunda, and Kaonde

Zambia was a British colony (as Northern Rhodesia) - The county gained independence in 1964. 

Religions: 85% Christians

Form of government: presidential republic, multi-party democracy

Currency: Zambian kwacha (ZMW)

Average net monthly salary (in 2020): 680 USD (Tanzania: 190 USD, Mozambique 250 USD, DR Congo 900 USD)

Most common surname: Phiri

Zambia is a relatively safe tourist destination compared to the Southern African region, and much much safer than South Africa itself. The locals themselves protect the tourists. The criminals who attack tourists or steal from them are often caught by civil man on the street. The locals know how much the country needs tourism because many make a living from it.

Dry season: May-August, hottest: September-November, rainy season: from the second half of November to April.

Zambia is a left-driving country.

Zambia has a lot of tourist attractions, yet the tourist infrastructure is not developed adequately. The copper mining area of ​​the country (Copperbelt) is ugly; you better avoid it. Lusaka is not attractive, neither. Tourists use it as a hub to explore the country. It is not worth staying there for more than a day. In general, cities in Zambia are not exciting. Nature and the countryside is the attraction.

 On the border with Zimbabwe is Victoria Falls, a UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site. (There are other, smaller waterfalls in the northern part of Zambia.)

Zambia is one of the most suitable countries in Africa for safaris. There are plenty of national parks for safaris: like Kafue National Park,  South Luangwa National Park, Blue Lagoon National Park, Liuwei plateaus,       Bangweulu. There are other waterfalls in the northern part of Zambia.


People

Zambians are very proud and pedantic about their dress. Women for instance will seldom be seen around town in sloppy clothes, with unkempt hair. Locals really like to impress and look beautiful all the time. Men wear suits, women look amazing.

Zambia - guy - Elter photo

Gastronomy

Favourite fast food is fried chicken.

A popular home-made meal is ugali. It has several other names, depending on location. It’s a thick porridge made from maize flour.

Attractions

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