Things To Do In Lusaka
Lusaka, the capital and biggest city in Zambia, can be a confounding and turbulent spot for guests not acquainted with its rustic neighborhoods and rough roads. The city lies on a plateau. Much of it consists of high, spreading plains of grassland and bush, giving way to mountains in the east. Because the land is high, the climate is cooler here than in many other African countries. Copper export provide most of its income and the copper industry is also the major source of employment for the people of Lusaka. Corn is a major crop and one of the most popular dishes is a corn porridge called nshima.
When To Go:
Climate and atmosphere patterns all over Africa are getting to be progressively unusual, likely because of global warming; there are now strong storms amidst deserts and harming dry seasons when downpours ought to be falling.
The rainy season in Lusaka usually arrive in December, January, February and March however the further north you are, the prior the downpours arrive and the later they take off. This is Zambia's so called 'Emerald Season' – when most camps close and numerous unpaved streets in Zambia get to be obstructed by flood.
By April and May a large portion of the downpour season has blurred away and creates an emerald green landscape that is also beginning to dry out. Evening temperatures begin to drop, particularly in higher and the southern areas.
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In June, July and August the nights get much colder, yet the days are clear and warm. Verify you bring warm garments to wrap up in case you're out during the evening, as a few nights get extremely chilly! A large portion of Zambia's little 'strolling bush camps' open toward the first week of June, when the streets have dried out sufficiently to permit access. This is the official start of the peak season to explore this city.
But come September and October (summer season) the temperatures rise and you'll see some sublime diversion as the wildlife animals focus around finding drinking water amidst the constrained water sources during this dry season. November is quite unpredictable; it can be hot and dry like October, or it can see the season's first deluges.
Explore these attractions and experience the great variety of things to do when in the city of Lusaka:
The Lilayi Elephant Nursery
It is exciting to see the baby elephants nurtured and protected inside the grounds of The Lilayi Elephant Nursery and listen to exceptionally complete information. You will be impressed with the commitment of the staff and their dedication to the cause of the baby elephants and the variety of cases that they need to manage with on a daily basis. They also aim to help the community become aware of how to secure themselves from the wild elephants. Most of the cases here are elephants injured and attacked by the villagers who wants to secure their crops and homes.
The site is a preserved observatory cottage for vagrant elephants. It is a great way to educate the children about the mighty animal. The staff is knowledgeable and explains to their guests the need to care for the elephants and to preserve them inside the nursery. The elephants kept here ranges from the age of 1 year to 6 years old. They are safeguarded and given medicinal treatment by the animal reserve foundation. The stories of these elephants are terrible and the scars of their experience are obvious from the initial review stage.
One good example was an elephant that was saved from poachers after her mother had been slaughtered for her tusks. The heartless poachers did not stop from that incident. They even stab with an ax the baby elephant's back making her paralyzed from her spine down to her right leg. It is the nursery’s mission to gather and collect all these orphaned baby elephants, to feed them, care, give medical attention if they are sick with the hope that they can come back to their natural habitat in the future.
The entrance fee requires a small donation for the orphaned elephants cause. Do not miss a visit to this place and get entertained by the baby elephants and a chance to promote and help their worthy cause. It can be easily accessed from the city because The Lilayi Elephant Nursery is located within the proximity of the Lilayi Lodge (situated just outside of Lusaka Zambia). These elephants are raised and cared for to be let out in the wild later on. It is an absolute must see while you’re in Lusaka City but you must call their office in advance if you plan to have an excursion on its grounds to meet the baby elephants in real.
Chaminuka Game Reserve
The entire resort is built in order to see as many animals as possible. The safari tour starts in an open jeep with a great guide who will show everything from baby giraffes to elephants. The packed lunch provided by the resort is absolutely incredible. If you are lucky enough, you can even bump into the owners of the Chaminuka Game Reserve. They are very humble people. This is an excellent resort that offers a decent safari experience. You can see wild impala, elephant, giraffe, and so forth while on board a steel railed safari vehicle. Indeed, the daytime excursion with lunch is great, yet in the event that you have additional time, it is more pleasant to stay one night there to enjoy a full relaxation and be surrounded by nature at the same time.
Chaminuka is ideal for a family day out or where you can spend a perfect weekend getaway. Even if it’s a bit costly, the rooms, the accommodation, and food is all worth it. They also offer another tour for cheese lovers. The resort / reserve park has its own cheese factory located within its wide premises. You can delight on different kinds of cheese that are free to taste along with some wine on the side to cleanse your distinctive palate.
Kabwata Cultural Village
The Kabwata Cultural Village is the ideal place to buy authentic souvenirs from Lusaka. Even if most of the merchants sway you to buy and choose their products they are not persistent to the point that they will follow you around anywhere you go. They are amiable and very welcoming. The magic of haggling is the most prevalent tradition here, ask the price and inquire about their “best offer” and begin to walk away once they lower their cost. The sellers are mostly inside the African huts, even if the place is a bit pricey it is all worth taking time to stop by and see what it has to offer. The best reward after a busy day of haggling is you can purchase things at a less expensive price and a t a cost that you anticipate.
If your friends back home asks you to buy or bring something from Lusaka, Zambia, this is the best place to shop the best souvenirs and authentic handicrafts. To have the best idea, look for a fabric called the “chitenge”. It is commonly used as shawls and clothing and highly regarded as durable and long lasting. While you are here you must be prepared to barter or get deceived. Another odd thing about this place is if you paid for something and the change is more than 100, they will provide for you an alternative item that cost the same amount rather than give you the exact change.
Lower Zambezi National Park
The Lower Zambezi National Park is located along the banks of the Zambezi River and it is very rich in aquatic animals, birds, and big cats. There is an exciting night safari that you can watch along with your family. The National Park of Zambezi is spectacularly beautiful. Especially the Zambezi River that is full of hippos, crocodiles and hundreds of migratory and endemic birds.
While inside its premises you can have a feeling of real Africa. It is absolutely recommended. If it’s your first time in Africa, this can be the best place to get educated about Africa’s rich natural reserve.
You can have the most wonderful and fun experience as you navigate the entire park with the sight of hippos poking out of the water. It is also a silent navigation that is full of surprises like seeing crocodiles lying in the sun on the banks of the Zambezi, big tigers perched on top of the tree, impalas running along with the zebras and giraffes, the majestic flight of an eagle fish, trunks of elephants over the bushes and a sunset with a wonderful reflection in the water. The park is truly magnificent and full of unforgettable and evocative moments.
Zambia National Museum
The Zambian National Museum is worth a look, but first it is necessary to read or research a little about the history of the country to understand its contents. It is quite difficult to understand why they have devoted the entire rooms and sections of the exposition. But still it has its highlights and particularly interesting - like, for example, the exhibition of objects used in witchcraft with a matching explanation on how they were used (some ancient African cures are based on herbal medicine, while others have beliefs on magic or spirits of good and evil) and the layout of a traditional Zambian village which shows the main occupations of the local peasants. The odd thing you will notice among the pictures are women farmers (women carrying corn husks on their head, plowing the soil, etc.). The guide narrates that women do most of the farm laboring in Zambia. They grow and maintain crops such as millet, sorghum, cassava, and corn on small plots to help feed their families.
You will learn so much about Lusaka and Zambia and how the nation and the city came to be while in the museum. During the colonial period, from the early 1900s until the 1960s, Zambia was first known as Northern Rhodesia and was under British control. When Rhodesia gained independence in 1964, it was named Zambia and Kenneth Kaunda was made president. Up until 1990, only one political party was permitted by law. In 1991, Frederick Chiluba, head of the opposition party MMD (Movement for Multiparty Democracy), became president when he defeated Kaunda in the country’s first multiparty elections. Anyone who goes to Lusaka should definitely visit this museum. Then you will understand the country and its people.
The Lusaka Experience is actually a walking tour of the Garden Compound in Lusaka. You can hire Felix as a guide and have a wonderful time while taking the hike. The trail gives many impressions and superb views of the city. The lunch treat after the tour is superb. Lusaka Experience is an extraordinary method for getting to know parts of the city that you may not discover as a traveler.
With Felix, you can get a customized visit in Garden Compound where you will learn a great deal about Lusaka's history, topography and the living conditions and lifestyle of the typical Zambians. The tour is well organized and the guides here are all detailed on facts about the nation’s past. A visit here is an eye opening adventure; do not miss the Lusaka Experience.
Cathedral of the Holy Cross Lusaka
The Cathedral of the Holy Cross Lusaka is an exceptionally lovely and serene place that was built since the 1950s. The religious structure uses a fusion of Coventry and Guildford architectural design. The bishops here are very kind and will gladly show you around and tell the significant role of this church and the Christian faith during the transition of government in 1960s.
Come and visit here if you are looking for peace and calm after a tour of the safaris and reserve parks which the city is famous for. The Holy Masses every Sunday are open to everyone and delivered in English. The church also have admirable and stunning stained glass windows. There is no entrance fee and taking pictures is allowed from inside and outside the Christian church.
The Chilenje House is just one of the few museums in Lusaka that you can visit for free. If you are curious by the history of Lusaka and where its former President Kaunda once stayed, then it is imperative to visit this house museum. There isn't much to see around here; only his old Rover, a small collection of photographs, books political propaganda materials, and his old office preserved like how it was in the 1960s. The place looks a bit in shambles but still worth visiting for its historical value.
Kalimba Reptile Park
The Kalimba Reptile Park is an animal reserve for crocodiles and other reptiles that is well kept and a considerable measure of spaces with barbecue grills are accessible for cookout and a picnic. It is a slice of Africa that is simply a couple of minutes away from the downtown area. The crocodiles are a tad bit exhausted during the day as they lay along the ponds, same with the snakes in their glassed cages.
You can actually see diverse types of snakes during the exhibition. All of them are appropriately marked with their scientific names and important information about their behavior, what they eat, and their role in the animal kingdom. The crocodiles are abundant (almost 165). It is such an experience to see innumerable crocodiles plunge into the stream. Bring your camera and sense of adventure and you will definitely enjoy this reptile park in Lusaka.
Munda Wanga Environmental Park
The Munda Wanga Environmental Park is located at the southern part of the city which emphasizes the flourishing gardens, animal sanctuaries, wildlife park and reserves, picnic groves, beach resorts, and relaxing bistros with an overlooking balcony. There I a great selection of things to do while you are here. There is a swimming pool for kids and adults to enjoy, a play area with complete facilities for kids, a recreational and promenade area, jogging paths, and of course, seeing the wildlife animals of Zambia. The place is neat and well maintained, plus it is free to explore this wonderful attraction in Lusaka City.
Lusaka is a city whose clamoring mayhem has a certain appeal that is simply Zambia. The entrancing thing about Lusaka is its vitality. Not maybe of the same kind as the other big cities in Africa, however it is the type of energetic atmosphere that has a strong need to survive. Anyhow Lusaka is likewise a city experiencing a major facelift. A stroll around the city will uncover new shops-including a developing business and trade sector and a multi-million dollar shopping center that is currently underway; brilliant fast food outlets; wider highways, old structures being renovated and recreational parks that are well maintained. For a lot of people, this is the ideal case of what financial liberalization has accomplished for the nation. Lusaka is the sparkling capital which still influences rustic Zambians to take up jobs in the bustling capital city. If you’re in Africa include Lusaka, Zambia in your itinerary and discover a city rich with animal reserves, interesting culture, and a unique travel experience.