Wild Zambezi recently shared this brilliant article that we had to share too:
With so many activities to choose from, Emma Dawes from Harare-based Destination Management Company, Off 2 Africa has compiled a list of the best things to do in Victoria Falls.
“I am finally home after an incredible trip up to Victoria Falls and Hwange National Park. Arriving in Vic Falls, I was just in time for the annual marathon that takes place, and I was more than ready for the exhausting yet extremely fun day of supporting the runners… I didn’t run. Next year!
It’s not news to us that Vic Falls is probably the most popular destination for those visiting Zimbabwe, and we always get raving reviews back from clients that spend time up there. It’s a small, happy little town with so much going on! You can find beauty, creativity, culture and even wildlife nearly everywhere you go.
There are also SO many activities to choose from in this buzzing little town. The amount of things to do and see in Victoria Falls can get a little overwhelming actually. Trying to fit everything into a few days never works out too well. But I suppose this gives you a reason to come back! Different people are after different activities and experiences and it’s not easy to know which one will best fulfill your Vic Falls Dreams. I’ve therefore hand picked a few of the best things to do in Victoria Falls that I personally think will leave you feeling satisfied after your trip. I haven’t included a visit to the rainforest to watch the famous Smoke that Thunders, because EVERYONE really, really should do it.
• The Adventurer – Devils Pool
The name itself is enough to give you second thoughts before knowing what it actually is. There’s a reason for this – Devil’s Pool isn’t for the faint hearted considering you’ll literally be hanging off the largest waterfall in the world! It’s totally nerve- wracking, but the type where you’re smiling uncontrollably the whole time. Somewhat like you’ve dared yourself, and you’re interested (with a mixture of excitement and fear) to see the result.
You’re transferred by boat (about 6-9 minutes) to Livingstone Island where the pool is, and guided through the activity every step of the way by the incredible guides who make this 100% safe and fun! You’ll swim across the river and arrive at Devils Pool, where you’ll splash about, and then you’ll look over to watch the gushing water being thrown over the very edge that you’re holding onto, plummeting 110 metres beneath you.
Some might say it’s just plain scary, and others will say it’s wonderfully thrilling. I did it for the first time last month, and I’d 100% go with the latter review. Plus, afterwards you can indulge in a delicious breakfast or lunch (depending on the time of day).
The whole experience takes about half a day, and is truly one of the most amazing half days of adventure that I’ve ever had!
(Editor’s Comment: Note that this activity takes place on the Zambian side of the Falls).
• The Unstoppable – White Water Rafting
There is absolutely no denying that White Water Rafting on the Zambezi is an experience like no other.
The debaucherous rapids on the river (which are named purposefully to instil fear in the wannabe rafter – “The Overland Truck-eater”, “The Mother”, “Gnashing Jaws of Death”)… are graded as some of the best in the world, so be prepared to row your little heart out because you’ll be thrown around in every direction like confetti in and outside of the raft. Don’t worry though, you’re in extremely safe hands with the well-experienced rafting guides who could row this river backwards.
So, if you’re an adventure addict, I’d recommend this activity which you can do for either a whole day or a half day. You’ll walk to the bottom of the gorge to start the rafting, and you’ll walk back up afterwards, just to challenge you a little bit more!
Try and race the guides back up – I doubt you’ll beat them.
• The Royals – The Bushtracks Dinner Express
This is a luxurious train journey that is fit for those who love a bit of dress up, and enjoy being pampered.
The steam train creates a perfect atmosphere for an elegant, romantic outing for two thanks to it’s carriage that offers a beautiful fine dining experience. The other two carriages are dedicated to the pre dinner scene – relaxing and enjoying the views whilst sipping on whatever beverage you fancy. It’s a peaceful ride that is made to take it’s passengers back in time to the early 20th century.
You’ll be able to learn more about the history of the whole steam train experience in the museum that you’ll be taken through by a wonderful, knowledgeable guide. There are two extremely special stops that are made for you to enjoy your sundowners and then your dinner…
With its incredible service, scenery and flavours, I can highly recommend The Bushtracks Dinner Express!
• The Cultural – The Boma Dinner and Drum Show
The Boma Dinner & Drum Show is probably the best and most exciting way to experience the true African culture in Victoria Falls.
With mountains of delicious, traditional food – some of which you are only dared to try (mopane worms for example), you won’t leave The Boma unsatisfied. You’ll be wrapped in your “chitenge” (sarong) on arrival and from here, the entertainment doesn’t stop.
From the welcome dance to the famous interactive drumming show that gets the entire arena involved, to the acapella singers, fortune tellers and much more… The Boma is a great way to completely let go and jump out of any comfort zones.
It’s an African extravaganza of dance, song and food – just a few of the many cultural highlights in Zimbabwe!
• The Spiritual – Helicopter Flight above the Falls
Everyone who visits Victoria Falls will see the thundering waterfall from the rainforest, but there are those who will want to see this famous wonder of the world from a different angle, or as some will say – a different perspective. I couldn’t agree more!
There is something magical about soaring above the spray and the colours produced by the mighty Falls! I think a bird’s eye view of nearly anything will allow you to think differently about where you are, and what you’re doing in that very moment.
It’s hard not to feel a sense of peace and intense gratitude for life run through you in moments like this – when you’re up in the clouds, alone, and everyone else is down there… somewhere. It’s beautiful in every way. The views, the emotions, life.
• The Peace Seekers – Sunset River Cruise
Last but not least – the sunset river cruise.
I’d say this is an experience for pretty much everyone. A beautiful, calming boat ride up the Zambezi River.
There are a few different boats to choose from, and each gives you a spectacular experience. With wonderful canapés floating around, a drink in hand and the boat moving you gracefully upstream – there’s no better way to watch the sunset, than on (literally), the Zambezi River.
For many of us who live in Zimbabwe – this river is a picture of peace. No matter where we are in the world, or how good or bad a day has been – a mere thought of this African haven will always be a safe place, and will always be home. I am sure those who are even just passing through will understand this.
If you haven’t felt the tranquility of the Zambezi – a sunset cruise is the perfect way to get an idea.”