Victoria Falls
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Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls is the largest single sheet of flowing water in the world. Located on the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe, it’s a sight like no other. In this blog, we share some tips from our African Travel Specialists on how best to experience these magnificent falls.

About

Boasting the largest falling sheet of water in the world, Victoria Falls is a spectacular sight.  It truly deserves to be one of the greatest natural wonders of our world. This thundering cascade of water straddles the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe and can be seen from both sides. It was first known to the Western world when David Livingstone discovered it in 1855. The enormous falls, known as Mosi-oa-Tunya to locals, were named “Victoria Falls” after Queen Victoria.

Getting There

Victoria Falls is accessible from both Zimbabwe and Zambia. You can reach the falls from Victoria Falls town on the Zimbabwean side and Livingstone on the Zambian side. Both sides have their own airport, bus terminals and train stations.

 When to Visit

As with many trips, what you’re interested in seeing and doing will determine the time of year you travel. Victoria Falls is no different– the rainy season is from November to April, and the driest months are August to November. They both offer incredibly different experiences, with the rainy season giving the falls their highest flow.  During this period the spray can often obscure views, so if you’re looking at travelling in peak rainy season, this is worth considering.

During the dry season, the water level is at the lowest. Although this means less volume and less spray, it allows for other amazing experiences such as exploring Livingstone Island and the Devil’s Pool.

Experiences

Royal Livingstone Express

This is perfect for those wanting to delve into the history of the area in a relaxed and luxurious environment. Indulge in a gourmet 5-course meal aboard the Royal Livingstone Express, driving across the famous Victoria Falls Bridge and enjoying spectacular views.

 See a Lunar Rainbow

Not that unlike a regular rainbow, the lunar rainbow is one that can be seen during the high water season when there is a full moon. This is an amazing experience that can only be seen in a few places around the world. The park on the Livingstone side will open the night prior, the night of and night after a full moon from 6:00PM–12:00PM, allowing you the best chance to enjoy this incredible phenomena.

Adventure Activities

If you’re looking for heart racing experiences, Victoria Falls has them in spades! Enjoy activities like bungee jumping, high wire canopy tours and canoeing on the Zambezi River. Hike the Batoka Gorge or go white water rafting– there’s nothing more impressive than saying you’ve navigated the rapids of Victoria Falls!

 See the Falls from Above

One of the best ways to see Victoria Falls is from the air. Available on the Zambian side, microlight flights offer a unique perspective and the chance to see the Zambezi and surrounding areas. Longer flights also include game viewing from above in the nearby Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park.

 Devil’s Pool and Livingstone Island

A rock pool situated on the very edge of the falls, the Devil’s Pool is the perfect experience for thrill seekers. Tours are conducted every day during the dry season and include a visit to the nearby Livingstone Island. Wade through the waters of the Zambezi to reach the pool that has been formed by years of erosion.  A thick rock lip separates the pool  from the sheer drop of the falls.

Top Tips

  • Our specialists recommend purchasing a UniVisa when visiting the falls. It allows you to cross from Zambia and Zimbabwe as many times as you like.  It will also allow you to day-trip into Botswana.
  • Although it may be tempting to see the falls when the water is at its highest (Feb–May), keep in mind that the amount of spray will be great. Consider travelling in July or August, as access to both sides of the falls is great and there is less spray.
  • Both sides offer fantastic and different views of the falls but if you’re pressed for time, the Zimbabwe side offers more view points and the majority of the falls are located on this side.
  • Be prepared to get wet! Unfortunately, there’s no escaping it. Remember to wear fast drying and comfortable clothes. But don’t worry too much– you’ll be too enamoured by the view you won’t even notice!
References:  Thank you National GeographicThe Crowded Planet, Bench, The Culture Trip, Go 2 Africa, Victoria Falls The Guide, Seasons in Africa, safpar.com, Anantara, Travel Dudes
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