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Where to Stay in Zambia in 2023 | Best Areas & Hotels

Where to Stay in Zambia in 2023 | Best Areas & Hotels

Zambia is the understated gem of southern Africa. It’s a land with a strong tradition, untouched wilderness, and diverse wildlife. With famous national parks like South Luangwa and Lower Zambezi, Zambia is a top safari destination.

Adventure seekers can explore the untamed Zambezi River and witness the magnificent Victoria Falls. Read on to learn where to stay in Zambia!

The 2 Best Places to Stay in Zambia

The 2 best areas to stay on a trip to Zambia include:

  1. Livingstone: The place to be if you want to spend the night partying
  2. Lusaka: The ideal fitness vacation destination with plenty of sports courts and outdoor activities

Where to Stay in Zambia: Best Areas & Hotels

Zambia is a place that’s very welcoming for tourists, a place where you can easily find places to stay. From bungalows to lodges, hotels, and luxury resorts, Zambia has it all and is generally considered to be an inexpensive country.

There are also lots of great restaurants where you can eat authentic African food for very fair prices.

Zambia is less frequented by tourists compared to some of its neighbors, which makes the safari experience much more intimate and authentic. Its wilderness areas remain largely unspoiled, so it’s perfect for people who want to avoid the large touristy safari areas in other parts of Africa.

1. Livingstone

An old steam train emitting smoke from below while on its tracks.

ZAMBIA, LIVINGSTON, AFRICA â?? 18 JULY: Old steam locomotive in royal Zambia in Livingston. Africa, Zambia, Livingston. July 18, 2014./GUDKOV ANDREY/Shutterstock

Livingstone is a charming town located on the banks of the Zambezi River. Because of its proximity to Victoria Falls, the city is often synonymous with adventure, natural wonders, and cultural heritage.

Named after the famed explorer David Livingstone, this town is the gateway to the awe-inspiring, world-famous falls and a hub for thrilling activities and memorable adrenaline-filled experiences.

Livingstone is home to the Zambian side of Victoria Falls, known locally as “Mosi-oa-Tunya,” or “The Smoke that Thunders.”

These majestic falls, which have a combined width of 5,604 feet and a height of 354 feet, make the greatest sheet of falling water in the world. They are considered the largest waterfalls in the world, even though they are neither the highest nor the broadest.

There are plenty of tours and tour guides that will help you experience the grandeur of one of the world’s largest waterfalls. You can even get a permit to visit the falls from the Zimbabwean side if you want to.

Apart from Victoria Falls, Livingstone also offers plenty of opportunities for a number of water sports on the Zambezi River.

If you’re interested in spiking your adrenaline levels, you can even sign up for activities such as whitewater rafting, bungee jumping off the Victoria Falls Bridge, or taking a heart-pounding microlight flight over the falls.

A good way to calm yourself down after doing these activities is to go on a sunset cruise on the Zambezi River. Let your hair down, witness the changing colors of the African sky, and spot wildlife along the river banks from a safe distance.

Livingstone Budget Hotels

  • Tabonina Guesthouse is a nice guesthouse in Livingstone with an outdoor pool and a wonderful relaxing garden. You can rent entire chalets for a very affordable price, with their own private bathrooms and balconies/terraces. Also, breakfast is included in the room price.
  • The Victoria Falls Waterfront is a three-star hotel with a wonderful location right on the Zambezi River. It has two swimming pools, a beautiful garden, and a large deck with a restaurant and bar overlooking the river. The rooms vary in size, as some have shared and others private bathrooms, depending on the price, but breakfast is included in all room offers.

Livingstone Mid-Range Hotels

  • Radisson Blu Mosi-oa-Tunya Livingstone Resort is a four-star hotel with a perfect location on the Zambezi River. It’s a great hotel with three swimming pools, a spa and fitness center, and delicious breakfast included in the room price. Rooms are modern, with private bathrooms and great views of the river and the garden.
  • Protea Hotel by Marriott Livingstone is a three-star hotel in Livingstone. It’s a very good hotel with an outdoor pool, breakfast included in the room price, and rooms with private bathrooms and Wi-Fi. You can also easily rent bicycles from the hotel and explore the area.

Livingstone Luxury Hotels

  • Royal Livingstone Hotel by Anantara is a wonderful five-star luxury hotel located very close to Victoria Falls. It has big and bright rooms with en suite bathrooms with views of the Zambezi River, the hotel garden, or the outdoor pool. Guests especially loved the staff and the amazing complimentary breakfast.
  • The River Club is another great five-star hotel located on the Zambezi River. Its beautiful rooms overlook the river, and you can enjoy the Zambian sunsets from your very own room. The hotel has an outdoor pool and lots of other amenities for its guests, like a fitness and spa treatment center, a communal TV room, and a billiards table. Full English breakfast is included in the room price.

See All Hotels in Zambia

2. Lusaka

Top view of a town roundabout where cars can be seen running orderly.

Gareth Zebron/Shutterstock

Lusaka is the capital and largest city of Zambia, a bustling metropolis that serves as the country’s economic, political, and cultural hub. If you want to get to know contemporary Zambia and its vibrant atmosphere, cultural diversity, and economic development, then look no further than Lusaka.

While it may not boast natural wonders like other parts of the country, its energy, city attractions — like the Lusaka National Museum and Kabwata Cultural Village — and strategic location make it an essential stop on your journey through Zambia.

Lusaka pulses with urban vitality. Its streets are alive with the rhythm of daily life, and the cityscape is a blend of modern skyscrapers, colonial-era buildings, and bustling markets.

The Soweto Market, in particular, is where you can get to know the local culture more thoroughly and get a feeling of the urban Zambian way of life.

Despite its urban sprawl, Lusaka still has some green pockets, like the Munda Wanga Environmental Park, where you can take strolls through beautiful botanical gardens, encounter zebras at an animal park, and visit its wildlife sanctuary.

Lusaka also serves as a central transport hub, making it the starting point for exploring Zambia’s other attractions, including Victoria Falls, the national parks, and safari adventures.

Lusaka Budget Hotels

  • HOTEL AFRICANA LSK is a three-star hotel outside Lusaka’s city center. It’s a very nice, affordable hotel with breakfast included and free Wi-Fi throughout the whole property. The hotel also offers laundry and ironing services, as well as room service. The rooms are bright and cozy, with private bathrooms and air conditioning.
  • StayEasy Lusaka is a two-star hotel in the city. Lots of reviewers like this place for the friendly service and nice and simple affordable rooms with private bathrooms, Wi-Fi, and air conditioning. The hotel doesn’t have a restaurant and doesn’t offer breakfast, but there are places where you can eat nearby.

Lusaka Mid-Range Hotels

  • Protea Hotel by Marriott Lusaka Cairo Road is a three-star hotel with a great location in the center of Lusaka. It’s a hotel you’d want to return to over and over again because it just makes you feel nice and taken care of. The hotel’s interiors are fun and colorful, and the rooms with private bathrooms are bright and clean. The hotel also provides free parking and laundry services, and breakfast is included in the room price.
  • Hilton Garden Inn Society Business Park is a great four-star hotel in the business district of Lusaka. It stays true to its Hilton name with all the amazing amenities like an outdoor pool, a fitness center, and room service. It has a great location, close to many shops and restaurants, but it also has a restaurant and a bar lounge of its own, where you can have all the meals of the day and also relax with a drink in the evening hours.

Lusaka Luxury Hotels

  • Neelkanth Sarovar Premiere is a luxury five-star hotel, the best you can find in Lusaka. Guests were overjoyed by everything, starting from the super-friendly staff and the amenities to the superb breakfast. The hotel has an outdoor pool with a sunbed area, a spa center, and two restaurants. The rooms are very spacious (rented as suites), with private bathrooms, and some also with private kitchenettes.
  • InterContinental Lusaka is another great five-star hotel in Lusaka. It has all the standards for a super comfortable and luxurious stay, like an outdoor pool, a fitness center, room service, and an amazing continental and breakfast buffet. Rooms are bright and cozy with great beds, air conditioning, Wi-Fi, and large private bathrooms.

See All Hotels in Zambia

Why You Should Visit Zambia in 2023

A small town with native houses and several tents during sunset.

Marek Poplawski/Shutterstock

Zambia is often referred to as the “Real Africa” because it has so many natural riches, national parks, magnificent landscapes, wondrous animals, birds, rich ecosystems, and warm, hospitable people.

As such, Zambia is a prime destination for wildlife enthusiasts and safari lovers. The country, renowned for pioneering walking safaris, allows you to have the unique chance to explore the African wilderness on foot, accompanied by experienced guides with deep knowledge of the bush and its inhabitants.

Africa’s most famous national parks are also located here, namely, South Luangwa, Kafue, and Lower Zambezi, where you can spot the Big Five — elephants, lions, rhinos, leopards, and African buffalos, but also wild dogs and unique bird species.

Sharing its border with Zimbabwe, Zambia boasts a breathtaking section of Victoria Falls, one of the world’s largest and most awe-inspiring waterfalls.

Called the “Smoke that Thunders” in the local indigenous language, the waterfalls are one of the most important Zambian attractions and an absolute no-miss when you’re visiting this country.

Beyond Victoria Falls and the river water sports, Zambia offers other types of thrilling adventures such as zip-lining, abseiling, and microlight flights.

Oh, and let’s not forget bungee jumping! As you can see, the diverse terrain is a playground for adrenaline junkies — if you’re one of them, you’ll have a field day in Zambia. Mighty rivers, including the Zambezi and Luangwa, crisscross the country.

Hence, there are lots of opportunities for water activities like canoeing, fishing, and even whitewater rafting and river safaris, which provide up-close encounters with hippos, crocodiles, and diverse birdlife. In fact, Zambia is a birdwatcher’s paradise with over 750 species, including the rare Shoebill stork.

So, Where Should You Stay in Zambia?

🎉 Best for NightlifeLivingstone
🌲 Best for Outdoor ActivitiesLusaka

It wouldn’t be an overstatement if we say that every traveler will have a memorable experience in Zambia because of all the opportunities for adventure that it offers. Happy travels!