It’s confusing to some but Victoria Falls is the name of both a town and a waterfall (massive and famous) in Zimbabwe. Without a doubt, the Victoria Falls waterfall is the most famous & most popular attraction in Zimbabwe. For this reason, we are sharing 10 fascinating facts about this bucket-list destination:
You can swim in Devil’s Pool
Somewhere between brave and scary – swimming at the edge of the Victoria Falls is definitely not something for the fainthearted. To really drive the point home, let me remind you that Victoria Falls stretches an astounding 5,600 feet in width and spills over a 360-foot-high cliff. The scary-awesomeness of the experience can’t really be described in any words. The naturally formed Devil’s Pool rests right on the edge of the Zambian side of Victoria Falls.
A rock wall on the edge of the falls slows down the current and prevents brave swimmers from tumbling over the edge. It takes a rocky walk and swim in the Zambezi to reach the pool – then the fearless ones leap into the pool and get pushed to the edge by the force of the river. All you need is your costume and your camera – and a whole lot of guts.
It’s 1 of the 7 Natural Wonders
Africa has its own list of Natural Wonders. Victoria Falls is one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World and is a definite must-see for any tourist visiting Africa. Located on the Zambezi River between Zambia and Zimbabwe, it is often referred to as Mosi-oa-Tunjya”, which means “the smoke that thunders”. The smoke, in this case, is the water mist that makes this quite a wet experience.
Other Natural Wonders that made the list are: Mount Kilimanjaro, Red Sea Reef, Nile River, Ngorongoro Crater, Sahara Desert, Okavango Delta and Serengeti Migration.
Largest water curtain in the world
Did you know that Victoria Falls forms the world’s largest curtain of falling water in the world? It’s best seen from up high on a helicopter trip. Departing from the helipad located just 3 km from the Victoria Falls town centre, the “Flight of Angels” is a scenic 15-minute flight over the thundering Victoria Falls.
What an exhilarating experience – with the great views of the world’s largest sheet of falling water, the gorges and views upstream of the Zambezi river!
It’s a great perspective to see them in all their glory. And you might just agree with David Livingstone who famously said, “A sight so wonderful that angels must have gazed down on it in flight”.
Named after a very, very famous queen
Dr. Livingston, who was the first European to discover the waters of Victoria Falls in 1855 by canoe, named the waterfall after the reigning Queen of England at the time, Victoria.
Her Royal Highness vacationed there. In 1947, Queen Elizabeth came to Zimbabwe to visit the mighty Victoria Falls. She stayed in the royal suite of the famous Victoria Falls Hotel with her husband King George – how convenient!
Don’t forget your umbrella
The Zambezi River Rain Forest is the only place in Africa where it appears to constantly rain 24 hours a day, 7 days a week due of the permanent spray from the falls.
Runs into one of the largest rivers
The Zambezi River with its tributaries is the fourth largest river in Africa after the Nile, Congo and River Niger.
The full moon causes a nature spectacle
After the sunset you can experience a very romantic and rare spectacle – the “moonbow”, a rainbow during the night. The Victoria Falls lunar rainbow only occurs during the full moon and is said to be one of Africa’s most famous secrets!
Surrounded by 2 national parks
Two national parks protect the water masses, namely: Zambezi National Park and Victoria Falls National Park. Both parks cover 56,000 hectares of surrounding beauty.
The Zambezi National Park is perfect for game viewing with a large number of zebras, sable antelopes, giraffes, kudus or waterbucks.
The rain forest area is the core of the Victoria Falls National Park. Its’ rich and diverse plants are continually nourished by the spray of the waterfall, and is home to many insect, amphibian, bird and mammal species.
The Victoria Falls Bridge was shipped in from England
The Victoria Falls Bridge was designed in England and transported from Europe in pieces! To think the bridge was once a puzzle piece in Cecil John Rhodes ‘Cape to Cairo’ railway scheme, nowadays it’s a popular for bungee jumping. Adrenaline junkies from around the world come to jump off this 111-meter high bridge. This definitely makes Victoria Falls the adventure travel capital of Africa!