mukuni_villageMukuni Village – A unique Cultural Experience that gives the visitor an insight into modern, yet distinctly timeless, way of life of the Toka Leya people that live there.

This village is made up of the homesteads of over 1000 families and has a total population of some   6 000 Zambian people. The Homesteads are positioned on the crest of one of the ancient sand dunes that are found in the region. With the increase in rainfall in the last 100 000 years these dunes are well covered with vegetation and woodlands. The people of Mukuni are clearly respectful of the environment and as such the village, which covers some 20 hectares, has many lovely trees and a lot of these have been encouraged and probably planted by the residents as they provide fruit and shade, as well as ensure the stability of the sandy soils.

Located on the south eastern side of the village, are the Homesteads of the leaders of the community.  This includes a large area enclosed with a reed fence called the palace, and it is within here that the much revered Chief Mukuni and his second in charge Chieftainess Bediango  call home, when they are resident.

Near to this palace are also found the governing structures of the large village including a rudimentary court room and some jail cells. These combine to form the entire disciplinary and ruling region of the community. Due to the fact that this is a focal point for visitors to the village the Mukuni curio market is also found here, together with the tourist centre and guide station.

As one drives through the village to the structures mentioned above, visitors are treated to some insight into the modern lifestyle of the residents of Mukuni village.  There are stores, bars and cell phone  shops. The rather strange combination of world renowned brands flashed amongst the basic housing and buildings, makes for  an interesting mix.

To the western edge of the village one finds the schooling systems have  developed over recent years. Both primary and secondary schools are well established and provide for over 1500 students. The structure and curriculum are excellent and the teaching bodies well committed. It is also enjoyable to see the sporting facilities provided with a number of football fields, soccer being the obvious favourite.

It is not far from these schools that one finds a fairly modern clinic and two large churches. As is the case with the majority of Zambia the community is generally Christian and church attendance high.  These have played a positive role in the development of the community over the last 100 years.

Along the periphery of the village, as one descends the edge of the large hill that the village is set upon, we find that the community has worked together to develop a well established farming system. This includes maize and sorghum, as well as the rearing of cattle, chickens and goats.