Homestead layouts vary, are similar in nature, but are not identical.. The structures themselves are quite small but outdoor spaces are utilized because of warm temperatures.
The combined structures and spaces of a homestead equals the size of a house in the U.S.
Homestead Layout
Each homestead usually has these spaces and structures. Variances do occur but this is seen as typical.
Functional Area
Social/ Public Area
Nature Buffer
Tall grass or bush defines the homestead. Since Zambia is an agricultural society, fields are prevalent and often are buffers between homesteads. The homestead area is trodden, well worn, where grass does not grow.
Connections are made to other homesteads by walking paths.
Many homesteads comprise of extended families; the fathers house, then the sons and their wives and families. In many tribes in Zambia, when a women marries she lives in the husbands village.
Arrangements of homesteads vary from area to area but 3 main variations exist.
Close to each Other
These homesteads are deep in the bush. There are no specific distances between them. Some are right next to each other and others are far apart. It is very random.
The Lozi's in Southern and Western provinces are unique. They were traditionally a warring tribe and would often steal cattle from other tribes. Their homesteads were enclosed compounds, quite small with buildings against the fences and open areas inside.
These homesteads are very open to each other with no major barriers in-between.. Separations are achieved by layouts of individual homesteads, creating courtyards. Plantings, or nature are used for separation of spaces and homesteads.
These homesteads are rarer; yards are completely enclosed by bushes or hedges. The plantings are uniform in size and placement, and this effect creates "streets" through a village.
Various Layouts
These following pictures are examples of different layouts of the homestead. Some homesteads or yards are for single houses while others are comprised of many houses in a single family. Some homesteads are enclosed by shrubs or other natural features while others are open to others.
Main entrance









Social Insaka
Main House



Cooking Insaka