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Heritage Head for the Phoenix Club on Cairo Road for a sundowner. Up here, on the 10th floor of the Radio Phoenix building, you'll have a remarkable sunset view of the city as you ponder your many options for dinner. For the self- styled ' best pepper steak in the world', try Marlin's at the Lusaka Club on Los Angeles Boulevard: the food is spectacular, the portions enormous and the prices reasonable – though not cheap. Another delicious and reasonably- priced option is Le Triumph Dolphin Restaurant and Bar in Northmead, off the Great East Road. The decor is a kind of Under- the- Sea meets Saturday Night Fever fusion, while the Creole- style prawns and potato gratin are the pick of a scrumptious menu. One word of warning: on a Friday or Saturday you should either warm up your vocal chords or protect your ears, because it's Karaoke night. The owner, Santosh, is a Karaoke legend in these parts and will gladly join anyone too timid to take to the stage alone. 22: 00 Exhausted yet? I hope not, because it's now time to explore Lusaka's famous nightlife. Room 101, at Arcades Shopping Centre, is the latest addition to the scene and probably the closest to a European nightclub you're going to find. For a cheaper evening, however, and a more mixed crowd, you could head over to Chez Ntemba on Kafue Road, where one room offers African rumba and the other hip- hop and house. Or, for live bands, try The Lounge in Northmead, not far from Le Triumph Dolphin. BedTIME Lusaka offers numerous places to rest your weary head. At the cheaper end you could try Chachacha Backpackers on Bwinjimfumu Road, only 15 minutes walk from most amenities. There is camping, a dormitory and private rooms, plus a bar, restaurant and pool table. For more creature comforts, try the Taj Pamodzi or the Southern Sun Ridgeway on Church Road, which both offer all the luxuries you'd expect from such establishments. It will set you back $ 200–$ 400, but you're staying only one night, so why not splurge? Ultimately, if you're like me, then whatever you choose to do you'll find that the smiles and spirits of Lusaka's residents alone justify your visit. In fact, you'll probably find 24 hours isn't nearly enough. As one local resident, Sikamikami, told me: " In Livingstone you meet natural beauty and in South Luangwa you meet the Big Five. But in Lusaka you meet real Zambians, living real lives." Above: Chitenges on sale at Kabwata cultural village Opposite above ( clockwise, from top left): Jacaranda tree in bloom; enjoying the nightlife at Le Triumph Dolphin; lunch at Engineers restaurant; breakfast at the Southern Sun Ridgeway Opposite below: The Freedom Statue celebrates Zambia's independence. November 2008 Travel Zambia 39 18: 30 Sights and sounds Kabwata Cultural Village, Burma Road: be prepared to haggle Lusaka National Museum, Independence Avenue: like no other national museum Chez Ntemba, Kafue Road: African beats will keep you grooving City Market, Lumumba Road: a full- on shopping experience Where to stay Chachacha Backpackers, Bwinjimfumu Road: cheap, cheerful and convenient ( www. chachachasafaris. com) Taj Pamodzi Hotel, Church Road: lavish recent renovations ( www. tajhotels. com) Southern Sun Ridgeway, Church Road: fabulous breakfast buffet ( www. southernsun. com) Lilayi Lodge, off Kafue Road ( www. lilayi. com): tranquil haven 30 minutes out of town Eating Out Marlin, Lusaka Club, Los Angeles Blvd ( tel: 252206): ' the best pepper steak in the world' Le Triumph Dolphin Restaurant & Bar ( Karaoke Fri & Sat nights), Northmead ( tel: 292133): exotic fusion of décor and flavours Portico ( Italian), in the Showgrounds ( tel: 250111): the best pizza in Lusaka? Muskaan ( Indian) Chindo Road in Kabulonga ( tel: 251666) Mr Pete's Steakhouse, Panganani Road ( tel: 223428): affordably delicious food The Engineers: arrive at 12: 30 to explore a real Zambian menu For many more places to visit, eat and stay try the Bradt Guide to Zambia ( Chris McIntyre) or visit www. zambiatourism. com/ travel/ cities/ lusaka. htm City Essessessentials

I'm a camp manager ... get me out of here! Most visitors to Zambia take for granted the smooth running of their safari lodge. A calm, competent team of staff ushers them from thrilling game drive to sumptuous meal, and their neatly- pressed laundry returns as if by magic. Yet things behind the scenes are not always quite so calm. Anna Devereux Baker, no stranger to managing a camp, reflects on the world that guests seldom see. 40 Travel Zambia November 2008