Livingstone Backpackers




The Review

Fierce competition in the backpacker market keep the standards in Livingstone higher than anywhere else in Zambia; Livingstone Backpackers is one of the leaders in the field.

The Location

Livingstone is in the south of Zambia near the Zimbabwe border, a seven- to eight-hour bus journey from the capital Lusaka, and gateway to one of the world’s main natural attractions and UNESCO World Heritage Site Victoria Falls. Livingstone Backpackers is situated just south of the city center on Makambo Road, east and parallel to Mosi-Oa-Tunya, the main street.

Rooms and Bathrooms

There is a huge range of accommodations here to suit every budget, including en suite doubles, doubles with shared bathroom, dorms, and a small camping area. All rooms are tastefully and colorfully decorated, and clean as a whistle. The beds have good mattresses and mosquito nets. The bathrooms are clean with plenty of hot water, though there is sometimes a queue when times are busy.

Common Spaces

The quadrangle in the middle of the property is the hub around which the whole place is built. It houses a swimming pool, climbing wall, and dozens of sun loungers. The interior of the wall surrounding the property is brightly painted and there is a large book exchange by the sofas next to the reception area. A large DSTV screen also inhabits this corner, usually set on a rolling news channel at minimum volume. The self-caterers’ kitchen is well stocked and clean, though it can be a bit chaotic when the place is full. You can order food at the reception. A small menu of reasonably priced breakfasts and lunches are prepared for you to eat wherever you like.


Livingstone Backpackers is one of the leaders in the backpacker field with friendly and helpful management and staff to keep this place professionally run. This is primarily a young person’s hostel, with a full-on party atmosphere, though you can get your moments of quiet during the day when most people are at the Falls. Evening, around the bar area, is when the fun starts with quiz and movie nights. The reception and activity center offers a huge range of activities, such as white water rafting, bungee jumping, walking safaris, and game drives. There is an infectious enthusiasm about the place, in which it is impossible not to get caught up.

Livingstone Backpackers is a great choice for your stay and it's good to see those little touches, like the comical notices and slogans dotted around the place that make it a little more than just a place to crash. You'll also get a free shuttle to the Falls each morning.
by Londonroad Staff Reviewer
Photos taken by the reviewer — Genuine photos you can trust.
Self Caterers' Kitchen
Swimming Pool
Bar Lounge
Accommodation Block & Camping area
Climbing Wall
4-Bed Dorm


(Location is approximate. You may need to pan/move to find "Livingstone Backpackers" at 559 Makambo Road.)


559 Makambo Road, Livingstone, Zambia
-17.850762, 25.856799 (accuracy not guaranteed)
+260 213 324 730
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(232 ratings)
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86% Guest Reviews

  Livingstone Backpackers is located just off Mosi-oa-Tunya Road, right in the centre of town. The surrounding neighborhood is very calm and safe during the entire day. This hostel has an extensive outdoor common area, with a TV room, library, swimming pool, rock-climbing wall, garden, and large kitchen and bar where the guests usually hang out. The hostel consists of a number of buildings, with a large yard in between and there is free Wi-Fi in all areas. For those driving, there is room for parked cars in the front yard. The Location The hostel is located a block back from the main street of Mosi-ao-Tunya, within easy walking distance to central Livingstone. When you reach the street, shouldn’t be hard to spot the hostel, as are signs pointing from the main street and on both sides of the side street. As the hostel is located in the city centre, there are some high quality grocery stores, international dining options, and a post office nearby. Rooms and Bathrooms The dorms have enough space for the number of people and were kept clean during our stay. Only some bunks have mosquito nets, which is slightly concerning. There is also only one locker in some of the dorm rooms. Also important, you will have Wi-Fi in the dorms, although connection is sometimes intermittent. The bathrooms are kept quite clean. The dorm rooms have fans, but given the nature of the rooms, we found the rooms don’t really cool down -- especially when the hostel is at capacity. Common Spaces The hostel’s common spaces are spacious and exceed most hostel standards. There is an outdoor TV room with sofas, and next to it is an extensive library. The communal kitchen is outdoors and has all the main utensils, whilst being kept very clean. It’s certainly conducive to a few people cooking at once. There is a rock-climbing wall and a large pool, with many pool decks and outdoor couches. The outdoor bar is quite large and gets fairly busy come the weekend. Summary Despite the "hot" rooms, the common spaces and utilities of this hostel mean that this is a fantastic option in Livingstone. The prices are very fair and considering the amount on offer, it’s well worth it. The hostel also has a tour-booking desk, which almost guarantees the best prices in town. The best part -- the hostel offers a daily free shuttle to Victoria Falls and the Zimbabwe border -- what more could you want in Livingstone?
Toilet Upstairs deck 4 bed dorm room Street Entrance Reception Pool Pool and Rock Climbing Wall
Clean, secure, cheap, and fun.
Stayed there for 4 days with my boyfriend and was well impressed. Staff were excellent, rooms very clean and secure, and pool and bar area great for relaxing. Overall one of the best hostels I have stayed in.
Kim Potter
Excellent, friendly, new. Cheap.
This hostel has just opened and everything is clean new and its super cheap. We thought the place was excellent and would not hesitate to recommend it. They have a cabanna bar, jacuzzi, and climbing wall. Great vibe by the swimming pool.
Barry Doyle
  I was in Livingstone, staying somewhere else and went over to livingstone backpackers to check it out because i heard there was a new hostel. The guard at the gate would not even let me in the gate. I am a black american who lives in Zambia and have had this trouble before but have never been denied entry. I ask for the manager to voice my complaint at the discrimination by the guard. She was totally dismissive of my complaint. Like I said I had this problem before, but the management at other places have been apologetic and I have never had any other problems after my complaint. Don't stay at a place that blatantly discriminates against others.

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