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Livingstone - A travel report by Devin
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Livingstone,  Zambia - flag Zambia -  Southern
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devinhunt's travel reports

down and out in livingstone

  7 votes

quite frankly, i thought that livingstone was a bit of a shithole but i'm really glad that i went there. the town itself doesn't really have anything to offer but it's a great place to spend a few days if you're visiting victoria falls as the views are much more spectacular on the zambian side of the zambezi river.

Favourite spots:
if you stay at the jolly boys backpackers in town, they can organise accommodation packages which include meals and a trip to the best place to visit victoria falls. we rose early and jumped in a 4wd for a quick drive to the mosi-oa-tunya national park for some of the best viewpoints of the falls. it was incredibly hot whilst we were there but my cousin and i didn't let the heat stop us from walking downs a steep track to a place known as the boiling pot. the views of the falls were incredible from here but got better as we walked along the the edge of cliff towards the falls themselves. as it was the dry season, the water was quite low so we were able to swim in a natural pool at the top of the falls and peer down into the canyon below. it was a magnificent view however not one for the faint-hearted. the area was popular with locals as well as tourists and we had a great chat with a few local zambians who were also trying to escape the heat and do some laundry.

What's really great:
the view of victoria falls from zambia were far more spectacular than those from zimbabwe so this was a definate highlight.

Accommodations:
the jolly boys backpackers is the best place to stay in livingstone. before it was a hostel it was a brothel (hence the name) but nowadays it is a really nice place to rest your weary head. jolly boys was a fantastic place to meet other travellers whilst lazing around the pool. the rooms were cheap and the friendly staff there could organise transfers to the falls and meals if you wanted. it is certainly an oasis in the centre of what can be described as a pretty rough and dirty town.

Restaurants:
there is a food vendor in mosi-oa-tunya road called shamba's takeaways (?) which does great curry puffs at a bargain price however we ate most of our meals at jolly boys backpackers. the food wasn't great but it wasn't bad either.

Other recommendations:
we arrived in livingstone with next to no money as the guards at the border between zimbabwe and zambia took most of money to pay for visas. none of the cashpoints in town worked so we were unable to get any money from the banks either! make sure that you take enough cash or travellers cheques to see you through your stay in livingstone or you might find yourself in a bit of trouble. the locals - especially those who ran curio stalls - were more than willing to barter though. we met a few boys who gave us several wooden carvings and african drums in exchange for clothes, pens and even photos of our friends and family! my cousin and i even traded the clothes that we were wearing at the time - right down to the socks that we had on our feet! be careful taking photos of the locals too. one man dragged me down the main street towards the police station after i pointed my camera at some local women to take a photo!

Published on Tuesday December 3th, 2002


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