There are few issues extra majestic than a waterfall, however in the case of Victoria Falls, “majestic” doesn’t even BEGIN to explain it.
This humongous waterfall is among the world’s most outstanding pure wonders and a true gem of Africa. With wealthy forestry, ample and numerous wildlife, and pure magnificence wherever you set your eyes, Victoria Falls must be a bucket-list location for everybody.
It was with this spirit that we booked our journey to Victoria Falls once we knew we might be visiting Zimbabwe and the expertise didn’t disappoint one bit.
By way of our expertise, we’ve compiled this detailed checklist of issues it’s best to know earlier than visiting Victoria Falls, to make sure your journey goes off with out a hitch.
1. About Victoria Falls
Positioned in southern Africa, on the Zambezi River, this is among the most astonishing waterfalls you could possibly ever see.
This African waterfall stretches to a width of 5604 toes (longer than 18 soccer fields!) and a peak of 300 toes, making for a really imposing sight.
Whereas not the tallest or the widest waterfall on the earth, Victoria Falls is taken into account the most important as a result of the world of the sheet of water it produces is bigger than every other waterfall. Many take into account Niagara Falls, one of many most famous places in the world, to be spectacular, however it dwarfs compared to Victoria Falls, which is twice as tall and twice as broad.
The European’s first encounter with these majestic falls was via a Scottish explorer and missionary, David Livingstone, in 1855. Upon seeing the awe-inspiring sight, he was bowled over and determined to call the waterfall after the reigning monarch on the time, Queen Victoria.
2. Victoria Falls Brings Collectively Two International locations
The Zambezi River runs alongside the borders of many nations, forming a hyperlink between them. Victoria Falls is among the gems alongside this historic river that lies on the border of Zimbabwe and Zambia.
One other enjoyable truth; another means that the Zambezi River brings these two nations collectively is thru the Kariba Dam, which gives electrical energy to each nations.
3. Which Aspect Is Higher To Go to From? Zimbabwe or Zambia?
In case you’re planning your journey primarily to see Victoria Falls, then Zimbabwe is the straightforward alternative. When you can entry and see the waterfall from each nations, the Zimbabwean aspect has extra viewpoints (16 out of 20 in whole) that give a wider view of Victoria Falls. We’ve now been a number of instances to Victoria Falls, and may attest that the higher view is from Zimbabwe, as a majority of the water flows on the Zambia aspect.
When visiting from Zimbabwe, you aren’t that affected by the change in season both, since many of the water on the Zambian aspect dries up in the course of the dry season, whereas the Zimbabwean aspect nonetheless has a powerful move of water. The final time we visited it was in November, the top of the dry season, and the falls have been nonetheless insanely spectacular from the Zimbabwe aspect. Whereas if I have been on the Zambia aspect, there may be not a lot I’d have been seeing throughout the Zambezi.
Although all that being stated there are benefits to visiting from Zambia. Mosi Oa Tunya Nationwide Park on the Zambian aspect usually attracts fewer guests in comparison with the Zimbabwe aspect, with a decrease entry price of simply US$20. These routes present varied views of the Falls, together with views from the underside and the aspect. In the course of the wet season, visiting the Zambian aspect could lead to a totally drenched expertise. The close by main city of Livingstone gives a pleasing two-day keep, boasting glorious eating choices and lodging. Zambia’s foreign money tends to be extra steady than that of Zimbabwe and the favored Satan’s Pool and Livingstone Island tour is conveniently situated on the Zambian aspect.
This could go with out saying, however double-check your journey plans, as a result of vacationers have gotten confused pondering Zambia and Zimbabwe are the identical nation. We bumped into a pair who had booked their visas and tickets to Zimbabwe, however their lodges in Zambia, and one of many guides instructed us in a while that it was a typical incidence.
You probably have plans to journey into Zambia and Zimbabwe it’s finest to look right into a KAZA UniVisa. This distinctive visa grants limitless entry into Zimbabwe and Zambia inside a 30-day interval. In case your nationality necessitates a visa for each nations, acquiring this visa is extra economical than buying particular person visas. Moreover, it permits a day-trip to Botswana with the flexibleness to return to Zambia or Zimbabwe. The charge for this visa is $50.
4. How To Get To Victoria Falls
Since Victoria Falls was the final cease on our journey itinerary for Zimbabwe, we determined to take essentially the most handy route and flew proper into Victoria Falls Worldwide Airport from Hwange National Park, which is the place we have been on safari. The Vic Falls Airport is considered one of Zimbabwe’s main airports and situated only a quick distance from the city of Victoria Falls. It takes about 20 minutes to drive from the Vic Falls Airport to the city of Victoria Falls, nevertheless the charge is a set worth at a whopping $30.
The city of Victoria Falls is the place most lodges are situated, and from the city it’s only a quick 20 minute stroll to Victoria Falls, or a 5 minute drive. Many lodges and resorts supply shuttles to Vic Falls. In case you are staying at a safari lodge, just like the Vic Falls River Lodge, usually the switch to Victoria Falls is included.
There are bus providers that you could possibly additionally use to succeed in the city of Victoria Falls from different elements of Zimbabwe and plenty of tour operators will supply visits to the Falls with transportation included.
5. What’s the Price of Entry?
Since April of 2023, entry costs have seen a steep enhance. Worldwide guests need to pay $50 to enter Victoria Falls Park and get a correct view of the majestic Falls. For SADC nations, the entry charge is $30, and the charge is $7 for Zimbabweans. Kids aged 6 to 12 pay half, whereas kids underneath the age of 6 get pleasure from free entry. In case you are a member of SADC or Zimbabwean, you have to deliver proof with an ID.
It’s essential to do not forget that that is for a single-entry ticket. In case you exit and want to return later within the day, you have to pay the entry charge once more.
Like most companies in Vic Falls, it’s potential to pay with bank card at Victoria Falls. Although it’s all the time advisable to have money on you in Zimbabwe – notably USD.
6. When is the Finest Time to Go to Victoria Falls?
Whereas there may be move of water all 12 months spherical, every season has its distinctive specialty.
Victoria Falls is at its peak between March and June, however whereas you may get the total expertise of the Falls, different actions change into restricted. For instance, in case you’re on the lookout for some outside adventures when you’re right here, white water rafting isn’t potential throughout this time.
For such actions, you’ll want to attend until August via December. That is additionally when you’ll be able to go to the famed Satan’s Pool (extra on that later). Nevertheless, the water within the Falls is kind of low throughout this time. If wildlife is extra your factor, then any time between July and October is good.
7. Exploring Victoria Falls
When you enter the Falls Park, all you have to do is observe the Victoria Falls footpath to the Falls themselves. You’ll know once you’re shut as a result of it’ll get misty shortly. There’s a reasonably simple pathway to observe that’s simple to know. We advocate beginning on the David Livingstone Statue and dealing your solution to the suitable from there!
When on the commentary decks, be sure to have agency footing and don’t act a idiot by leaping round or hanging off the rails. At some spots the water shall be mere few toes away out of your toes and, with one improper transfer, you could possibly get pulled down with the water. Nevertheless the paths are properly maintained and supply loads of distance from the sting. You’d need to strive arduous to fall, but it does happen.
Security precautions however, once you get a full view of Victoria Falls from any of the commentary decks, you’re left standing in awe. Nature’s magnificence and energy are on full show, particularly in the course of the peak wet season.
Nevertheless, exploring Victoria Falls Park will hardly take you a few hours, so that you’ll want to search out one thing to do for the remainder of the day. Fortunately, the resort city of Victoria Falls is close by and there’s loads to do there.
8. Visiting The Satan’s Pool
August to January mark the drier months of the 12 months for Victoria Falls and that is when among the finest spots in your entire space opens up. The Satan’s Pool is a pure rock pool, dubbed the world’s finest infinity pool, situated on the very fringe of Victoria Falls on the Zambia aspect solely.
Embarking on a difficult journey of strolling and swimming via the Zambezi, adventurers attempt to succeed in a novel pool. Upon reaching this adrenaline-pumping swimming gap, these daring sufficient to make the leap expertise an exciting encounter with the river’s drive. The formidable present propels them to the pool’s edge, the place a rocky lip halts their descent, and the tumultuous waters of the Zambezi cascade over close by cliffs.
The vantage level from the precipice gives an totally exhilarating panorama, permitting you to sense the sheer energy of the Zambezi River because it rushes previous and plunges down a wide ranging 100-meter (320-foot) drop!
With over 500 million liters (132 million gallons) of water plummeting over the Falls each minute, this pure spectacle calls for respect. This exercise have to be made with a educated information.
In the course of the dry months (August to January) you’ll be able to go swimming at this spot and take footage proper on the fringe of the waterfall. Along with making for nice Instagram moments, it’s additionally a spot the place you can also make lasting reminiscences.
9. Hold An Eye Out for Wildlife
The encircling areas in Zambezi Nationwide Park are house to many species of wildlife corresponding to giraffes, antelopes, Cape buffalo, zebras, and even elephants. Huge cats corresponding to lions and cheetahs are seen on occasion, however not too often. You’ll even have the possibility to see crocodiles and hippos, together with baboons and vervet monkeys. Nevertheless at Vic Falls you’re almost certainly to see warthogs operating about, baboons, and monkeys.
Hen watching can be fairly well-liked with greater than 35 species of raptors calling the world their house.
10. Victoria Falls Is Steeped In Historical past
Whereas an excessive amount of credit score is given to David Livingstone for the invention of Victoria Falls, and regardless that the waterfall itself is called after a British Monarch, this waterfall has held an essential place within the native tribal tradition for a lot of centuries.
The locals even have their very personal names for the waterfall. In Lozi, it’s known as “Mosi-oa-Tunya,” which interprets to “thundering smoke,” and in Tonga, it’s known as “Shungu Namutitima,” which implies “boiling water.”
There’s proof that proves that people going again to the Stone Age have used the falls as a supply of water or for civilization. Archaeologists have discovered human artifacts from varied time durations and there may be even proof of a settlement within the space that dates again to greater than a thousand years in the past.
11. You Can See Victoria Falls From The Sky!
Whereas an costly indulgence, helicopter rides can be found at Victoria Falls, permitting guests an opportunity to get an aerial view of the majestic waterfall from the sky.
A brief helicopter journey begin at $150 (Excludes Park Payment & Gas Levy), whereas an extended journey will price you almost $400. Nevertheless, it’s a splurge-worthy exercise, as let’s face it it is a once-in-a-lifetime alternative. Many say it’s properly well worth the cash!
12. Flora Round Victoria Falls
The realm across the waterfall has a dense forested area with palm bushes, mopane, and teak dominating the tree line. Vegetation across the falls can be ample, with the water offering diet to ivory palms, wild date palms, pod mahogany, and batoko plum! Hold your eye out for all of the completely different vegetation!
13. Take A Prepare Trip Round Victoria Falls!
In case you can’t do the helicopter journey, positively benefit from the practice journey across the falls. A restored practice, steam engine, and all, will take you on a journey and supply a very completely different view of the majestic waterfall. The practice comes with a number of lounge areas, eating, and extremely snug chairs.
14. Concerning the City of Victoria Falls
Victoria Falls, the city, is a cute little resort city and it’s house to many small markets that promote completely different items and crafts. There are additionally many actions that you could possibly participate in, corresponding to zip lining, canoeing, bungee leaping, and even crocodile diving!
We loved heading right here for some procuring, in addition to grabbing a drink on the River Brewing Co.
15. What To Convey to Victoria Falls
A water bottle, sunscreen, hat, and comfy strolling sneakers are requirements when visiting Victoria Falls. Relying on how a lot you stroll round and discover, you additionally would possibly need to hold one thing to snack on corresponding to path combine, an power bar, or sandwiches.
You’ll additionally need to deliver one thing to maintain your belongings dry since you are DEFINITELY going to get moist when visiting the Falls. By the point we reached the final commentary deck, we just about soaked via and thru! We advocate a journey digital camera to seize the fantastic thing about the falls, it is among the best vacation spots in the world after all. In case you resolve to deliver a digital camera, you 100% must even have one thing to guard it from the water, like a water-resistant safari bag.
16. Local weather Change Is Impacting Victoria Falls
Many consultants are in worry that Victoria Falls will quickly be declared a last-chance vacation spot World Heritage Website. That is due to local weather change’s vital hostile impacts on Victoria Falls.
Resulting from rising temperatures, water move has decreased over time and droughts have gotten extra frequent and extreme every year. Once we final visited in November, the rains have been weeks late, and Zimbabwe was properly right into a drought. On safari, we noticed many elephants practically dying of dehydration and warmth.
Many main channels corresponding to Discovery and Nationwide Geographic, have additionally documented the specter of local weather change to this unbelievable pure surprise and broadcasted them in a number of applications and documentaries.
All these hostile situations have an effect not solely on the Falls and the way they appear but additionally on the native wildlife. With growing droughts, the pure habitat of many animals is disappearing and will quickly result in irreversible harm to their inhabitants numbers.
17. Finest Eating places Close to Victoria Falls
The city of Victoria Falls has many eating places that provide high quality meals, however the preferred, by a large margin, is the Three Monkeys Restaurant & Bar. Each locals and vacationers flock to this restaurant in giant numbers.
All through our two days in Victoria Falls, we ate at Three Monkeys, and the Lookout Cafe. Along with all kinds of meals corresponding to burgers, pizzas, BBQ, and wood-fired dishes, there are additionally vegan choices and a powerful number of drinks on the bar.
For dinner although, we nearly all the time caught to the eating choices at our lodging, the Vic Falls Lodge.
18. Malaria is a Danger
Whereas Victoria Falls is technically labeled as a malaria zone, you are able to do many issues to guard your self. Use mosquito repellant profusely and guarantee your home windows are closed for the night time. That is very true in the course of the wet season when the bugs are dangerous.
We now have visited Zimbabwe a number of instances and by no means take malaria tablets, as we aren’t in malaria inclined areas or it’s the dry season and there usually are not many mosquitos round.
Nevertheless it you assume chances are you’ll be in danger, it’s finest to seek the advice of together with your physician on different ways in which you could possibly stop and safeguard your self from malaria.
19. Is Victoria Falls Price Visiting?
An impressive waterfall, wealthy greenery, numerous wildlife, and extremely vivid rainbows. What extra may one ask for out of a visit?
I’d simply advocate Victoria Falls as a bucket checklist location to anybody with out a second’s hesitation. The expertise of seeing one of many world’s pure wonders, and one that’s on such a big scale, is an expertise that shouldn’t be missed. We liked it a lot we’ve traveled twice to Victoria Falls.
In case you’re into journey actions, Vic Falls can be declared the journey capital of Africa. With bungee leaping, Satan’s Pool, helicopter flights, and white water rafting on supply, it’s arduous to get bored!
20. How Lengthy Ought to You Keep At Victoria Falls?
Whereas we spent three full days in Victoria Falls, it appeared prefer it wasn’t sufficient time. It’s best to have not less than two days to your self on this location; the primary day to relaxation in some picturesque settings. Many individuals head right here earlier than or after their Southern Africa safari, particularly since there’s a properly related airport!
So far as time really at Victoria Falls, I’d allocate 2-3 hours to amply discover. We spent a pleasant morning at Victoria Falls, arriving round 9 am to beat the noon crowds and spent three hours having fun with the views and taking plenty of pictures. If I have been to redo the expertise, I’d have appreciated to get there proper at opening to beat all of the crowds and get higher late. Although there may be loads of house to unfold about right here.
21. Lunar Rainbow – A moonbow!
The enchanting phenomenon generally known as the lunar rainbow or ‘moonbow’ is fashioned when mild refracts via airborne water particles, with the moon serving as the sunshine supply as a substitute of the solar. Throughout this celestial show, the Victoria Falls Nationwide Park welcomes guests for unique lunar rainbow excursions.
On each full moon, the Victoria Falls rainforest reopens within the night, presenting a novel alternative for particular excursions that unveil the mesmerizing fantastic thing about the lunar rainbow, contingent upon favorable climate situations and spray depth.
Victoria Falls stands as one of many uncommon places on our planet the place this fascinating pure occasion happens, simply accessible for these in search of to witness its splendor. Surprisingly, many guests to the world stay unaware of this breathtaking incidence, which ranks among the many most awe-inspiring spectacles at Victoria Falls. To make sure you don’t miss this magical show, it’s advisable to watch the total moon cycle and plan your go to accordingly.
22. Keep on the Vic Falls Lodge
Throughout our time at Vic Falls, we knew we needed to e book someplace iconic. Cue the Victoria Falls Lodge, which stands as a beacon of luxurious and class within the coronary heart of Africa. With its timeless class and fascinating views, a keep at this iconic institution is extra than simply lodging – it’s an immersive journey into the pure and cultural wonders surrounding it.
Inbuilt 1904, the Victoria Falls Lodge has a wealthy historical past that mirrors the evolving tapestry of Southern Africa. Constructed initially as lodging for staff on the Cape-to-Cairo railway, the resort has since remodeled into an emblem of refined colonial allure. Moving into its storied halls is like stepping again in time, with classic decor, excessive tea traditions, and a way of timeless grandeur.
The resort gives a spread of lodging, from fashionable rooms to opulent suites, every meticulously designed to mix basic class with fashionable consolation. The rooms are adorned with colonial-era furnishings, exuding a refined ambiance that pays homage to the resort’s historic roots. The attentive employees, recognized for his or her heat hospitality, ensures that each visitor looks like royalty all through their keep.
We liked our keep right here, and it was well-positioned within the City of Victoria Falls. It was additionally only a 15 minute stroll to Victoria Falls, which was simple for us to stroll to within the morning! Although even once you’re not proper up near the waterfall one of many standout options of the Victoria Falls Lodge is its unmatched view of the majestic Victoria Falls. Think about waking as much as the sound of cascading water and stepping outdoors to an impressive view of the falls – a sight that by no means fails to encourage awe.
The opposite stand out of the Victoria Falls resort is their iconic excessive tea. Supplied day by day to resort and non resort company, having excessive tea right here just like the royals used to is among the finest issues to do in Victoria Falls.
23. Victoria Falls Suggestions
- Cease at each viewpoint: Cease at each single viewpoint you’ll be able to whereas at Victoria Falls. Each gives a novel and completely different view than the opposite. And also you’ve already paid $50 to enter so chances are you’ll as properly get your cash’s value!
- Plan on getting moist: We visited within the peak of a drought in the course of the dry season and nonetheless bought fairly freaking moist! Plan on getting moist in your go to, and convey some dry gear to your electronics.
- It’s costly: The entry charge retains rising to Victoria Falls, and I’ve to confess that $50 is a reasonably steep entry worth. The primary time we visited in 2016, the worth was $30, which I already thought was excessive! Simply settle for that it’s a dream destination and that Africa isn’t the cheapest destination and benefit from the pure surprise!
- Cafes and Restrooms: There are a number of locations to seize snacks, a meal, and a number of loos close to the doorway to Victoria Falls!
- Plan on strolling: The Vic Falls advanced is somewhat giant, and to see every viewpoint would require some strolling. Convey good travel shoes for the day, we advocate non slip trainers!
- You Don’t Want A Information: The paths are simple to observe and a information isn’t wanted, although chances are you’ll get requested a couple of instances in order for you one. Whereas a information could also be useful for telling the historical past and in regards to the land, it’s removed from vital until you need somebody to take your pictures!
- Plan to Spend 2-3 hours having fun with the falls. If you may get there at dawn, you received’t be dissatisfied.