Responsible tourism and involving local communities has always been a central tenet of South Luangwa safaris, right back to the days of Norman Carr. All of the top Luangwa operators offer visits to a local village as an activity, which is perfect for those on longer stays who want to break up their safari a little, and ironically you can often see some fantastic game when driving through the park en route to the village! Perhaps the most well-known is Kawaza Village, where guests can actually choose to stay in simple accommodation and fully immerse themselves in village life. But other, shorter experiences are equally valid and enjoyable, both for visitors and for the adults and children of the community. Remote Africa Safaris visit Mkasanga Village, Bushcamp Company take you to Mwangwe Cultural Village and Norman Carr are involved with the Kakumbi Chiefdom.
In each of these programmes, highlights might include a visit to the local school and church, meeting village elders, introductions to the cuisine and musical instruments, playing football with local children and enjoying a cultural performance. Most camps, particularly those in the Mfuwe area, will also offer a visit to Tribal Textiles, a local operative responsible for designing and producing the brightly coloured tablecloths, throws and curtains that you are almost certain to encounter during your stay. The visit will provide an insight into how the fabrics are produced, plus some excellent souvenir shopping opportunities!