Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe


We had been in two minds about visiting Victoria Falls on our own because of the problems in Zimbabwe but while at Island River Lodge we had a chat with the owners, MIck and Ann, who said they regularly visited the Falls and that it was fine to go independently and camp there - originally we'd considered going on a day tour from Kasane or visiting the Zambian side of the Falls.

It took a while to get through the border post and it cost quite a bit as we had to pay for Visas, car tax, 3rd party insurance etc but eventually we got through and then it was only an hour to Victoria Falls (the town) where we stopped at the campsite in town (S17 55.553 E25 50.331) which was fine (and had a nice swimming pool!) and all the staff were very friendly.

The following day we were at the Falls by 8am -WOW! - magnificent, just amazing and impossible to put into words really. We went to all the lookout points and were just awe-struck by the sight of all that water - and were seeing it at its lowest level so in April, May when the river is full it would look quite different, in fact so much water that all you can see is spray according to several people.

The statue of David Livingstone is still standing.

At one point, where all the spray is blown onto the land alongside the river there is a rainforest!! (on the way back we stopped and got a lovely cool shower under the trees).

The people at a viewpoint give an idea of the scale of the Falls.

 

At the furthermost point, near the bridge, we could see a group of people rafting. They spent a while getting used to paddling and then set off, both boats got through the first set of rapids and quickly disappeared round the corner under the bridge.

We had to visit the Victoria Falls Hotel, a huge old colonial hotel with waiters in dinner jackets and a terrace looking out towards the bridge over the Zambezi.

We had a glass of iced tea on the terrace and then wandered around some of the rooms and corridors looking at the photos etc. It was just like stepping back in time.

One evening, just after wed gone to bed, we heard African singing and got up to investigate. One of the tour groups staying at the site had obviously organised a local group to sing and dance to them as it was the 60th birthday of one of them. They were in local costume and sang beautifully and a one point got several people (including me) to join in! well worth getting up for.

The Zambezi River before it goes over the Falls is a big, wide, sleepy river!

Kalahari, Botswana
Okavango, Botswana
Tsodilo Hills, Botswana
Kavango River, Caprivi, Namibia
Kwando River, Caprivi, Namibia
Zambezi River, Caprivi, Namibia
Chobe National Park, Botswana
Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Tuli Block, Botswana
Diary.

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