Located in the Zambezi Valley, Kariba is hot all year round.
Kariba town is the center of the tourist industry for the Lake Kariba region. Kariba town provides accommodation in various hotels and lodges. There are two casinos in the town and several restaurants. Many of the attractions in Kariba for the tourist are water-based. Fishing, game-viewing, and house-boating are the most popular activities. A visit to the Kariba Dam wall is also impressive. In 2006 only three of the hotels were open. They were Carribea Bay, The Cutty Sark, and the Zambezi Valley Motel in Nyamhunga.
The town was originally established to house workers who were constructing the dam in the mid to late 1950's. The Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority ZESA are an important employer in the town employing workers in the hydroelectric power station. Kapenta fishing is also an important industry, though it has been affected by fuel shortages.
Kariba has three main suburbs: Mahombekombe, the older poorer lakeshore high density suburb, Nyamhunga the newer high density suburb, and Kariba Heights, the wealthier inland suburb and home to the Operation Noah monument. Kariba Heights as the name suggests is located on hills and the views of Lake Kariba from the Heights are fantastic.