A lot of travellers visit Zambia for the stunning Victoria Falls, but to bypass Lusaka is to miss out on its beautiful vibrant markets, wildlife parks and game reserves.
In terms of safety and general wellbeing, Lusaka ranks alongside African counterparts Lagos, Nairobi and Johannesburg, and in truth is no busier than big cities in Europe. Stroll along one of its many wide, tree-lined streets and you'll see it’s a cosmopolitan city, one where new buildings are constantly being contructed.
There are familiar names in retail and restaurants, and large shopping malls offer all the conveniences you would expect in a modern city.
Lusaka always looks to the future, but at the same time it also manages to maintain its traditions. For a taste of this, try shopping at the city’s salaula stalls (salaula means ‘to rummage through a pile’), which are the Zambian version of thrift shops. There are also countless traditional open markets where you can practise your bartering skills.
The burgeoning nightlife scene is built around a hub of cool, contemporary venues. For an authentic Zambian night out, seek out a shebeen – buzzing nightlife venues that often host live bands, where the dancing goes on until the early hours.