Kitwe lies at an altitude of 1295m and it is the very heart of the Copperbelt. Located at a distance of about 368km from Lusaka (about a 5-hour drive from the capital of Zambia), the city grew out of Nkana area where the first shaft was sunk in 1928. In 1932, copper smelting operations began and the growth of the mining industry gave birth to townships in 1935. A management board was instituted in 1951 and it was elevated to a Municipal Council in 1954.
The rainy season in Kitwe features high rainfall with humidity which lasts from November to April. This is followed by cool dry season from mid-April to August, while a short hot dry season is experienced from September to mid-November. Evenings are usually cool, even during the hot dry season. Like most parts of Zambia, the people are friendly, cheerful and eager to help you.
There are really no natural outlandish features in Kitwe. The Kitwe Zoo is no more. Kafue River which is the longest river wholly within Zambia is about the main natural MUST SEE in the city. The Copperfield area is well worth exploring. Some of the sights in the city are the impressive structures being erected, especially the malls. Mukuba Mall which was commissioned in April 2015, stands on the spot where the Kitwe Zoo used to be. Mindolo Dam is a must with its peaceful ambience.
Being a fast growing city, finding where or what to eat in Kitwe is not a problem. The hotels offer continental dishes, and there are restaurants ranging from Indian, Chinese to European and African, offering different types of menu. Also, several fast food franchises are available in the city, especially at the malls and shopping centers and you can easily grab a bite. For a taste of local food, nshima is the national staple made from ground maize and it is often eaten with nshiwo usually called relish – a sauce made from fish or meat boiled with vegetables. Ifashi, a peanut stew combined with tomatoes, spinach and cabbage is also an nshima accompaniment.
Drinks are available at the hotels, restaurants, shopping malls, clubs and bars and casinos. Zambians love to enjoy themselves and the weekend starts from Thursday. The clubs starts filling out in the evening and although they go to work on Fridays, the mood has already been set for a TGIF.