When I saw Victoria Falls, I was speechless. It was the most breathtaking thing I had ever seen — by a long stretch. This is the century for African tourism and Zimbabwe is an underrated destination for adventure, nature and culture. Victoria Falls is the 8th wonder of the world (or the first, depending on who is making the list) and the fulcrum of Zimbabwe’s tourism industry. So, I visited Victoria Falls and dug through all the adventures to bring you information. Check out these 5 mind-blowing travel adventures waiting for you in Victoria Falls, from my first-hand experience.
- Sunset Cruise along the Zambezi River:
Remember the childhood song about Africa’s rivers? You might have heard that the river Zambezi is the fourth longest river on the continent after the Nile, Congo and Niger, in that order. What you haven’t heard is that as you cruise down the river, you’ll find hippos swimming, crocodiles sun bathing and other wild creatures living their lives in their habitat. Of course, there is an endless supply of drinks and oer d’oeuvres throughout the cruise and if you really want a premium experience, book an upper-level deck and stuff your face with all sorts of delicious treats. The only thing more beautiful than the sunshine over the Zambezi River is the red sky at sunset.
2. Safari Game Drive + Bush Breakfast:
Wake up early, don thick ponchos and go on a game drive through any of the national parks across the country. We visited the Stanley & Livingstone private game reserve in Victoria Falls. Our tour guide, aptly named Afrika, was a guide indeed. He took time to explain the conservation efforts of the park and mentioned that the population of white rhinos has tripled in the last 10 years. As we drove through the reserve, he pointed out an assortment of animals including rhinos, elands, antelopes, zebras, birds, warthogs, monkeys and a host of others. By the end of the drive, the giraffes in all their elegance had stolen the heart of the group. Then, we proceeded to a gazebo for a bush breakfast. The breakfast was hearty, delicious and very well assorted. This bush breakfast compared to the continental spread in the top restaurants in Victoria Falls, except with a better view and in a natural environment.
3. Bungee Jumps, Gorge Swings, Flying Foxes & Gorge Slides:
After my first bungee jumping experience in Uganda, I knew I wanted to do higher and scarier jumps. So, when I found out about the high-wire activities that take place over the Victoria Falls bridge between Zimbabwe and Zambia, I could not resist the opportunity to throw myself down 111 feet. Even my friends who had never done such wild things were able to conquer their fear. Why not? These jumps are safe and ecstatic. You can choose from a long list: bungee jump, gorge slide, gorge swing and zip-line activities. The view of the Victoria Falls gorge is spectacular. There’s also another location at Lookout Cafe which we experienced with similar jumps and the Flying Fox slide experience. Enjoy a delicious lunch after swinging away.
4. Boma Dinner & Drum Show:
One evening, we took our hungry bellies to the Boma Dinner and Drum Show. What could be better than 100+ people, enjoying an unlimited buffet of local meals and meats, donning traditional wrappers around our shoulders, sporting cute tribal facial paintings, swaying to the beat of traditional dancers? After about an hour and a half of delicious meals, everyone was presented with a drum and taught how to make local drum beats. In less than fifteen minutes, the entire room was drumming together led by the lead drummer and his band. This was a true Zimbabwean experience — it was a dinner like no other. We also belted up and ate the local maponi worms, earning certificates of bravery from the experience. At the end of the evening, our bellies were as full as our hearts.
5. Victoria Falls — “The smoke that thunders, Mosi — oa — Tunya”:
The most famous landmark in all of Zimbabwe is Victoria Falls (Mosi — oa — Tunya). The natural wonder is shared by two countries (Zimbabwe and Zambia) and draws visitors from around the world. There are two ways to experience the falls and you don’t want to miss either of them. Both experiences complement each other and one cannot replace the other.
- Flight of Angels: Let this twelve — minute flight whet your appetite for the majesty of this sheet of falling water. The flight of angels is nicknamed after a statement made by David Livingstone in which he described the aerial view as similar to the gaze of angels upon the Earth as they made their flight. This preamble to the close-up walk by the Falls might make you tear up or scream or freeze in silence. Either way, it will draw a reaction of awe from you.
- Kissing the Falls: Everyday in Victoria Falls town is a highlight, enough to inspire fascination and awe. But among wonders, Victoria Falls is king. As we explored the dense rain-forest surrounding the Falls in our raincoats, we could not but appreciate the endless potential that Zimbabwe has for ecotourism. By the time we got to the face of the magical Falls, we understood why it was named Mosi — oa — Tunya by the residents of the area. Mosi — oa — Tunya means “the smoke that thunders”. Some of us were in tears, others burst out in song and others were speechless. Everyone was in awe at the beauty, the majesty and the sheer volume of Victoria Falls. What a wonder indeed. We proceeded to enjoy the crispiest, cleanest and most child-like shower under the water sprayed upon us hundreds of feet away by the falls.
Zimbabwe is the gem that you are yet to unravel. Step up your adventure game by exploring the wonders of this Southern African adrenaline hotspot. What could possibly be better than a peaceful, stable and adventure-saturated country serving weather goals? You will be thankful when you visit Victoria Falls.
Follow ‘Funmi’s discoveries, travel stories and guides on Instagram — (@funmioyatogun). You can also book a group tour or a custom travel itinerary with TVP Adventures (@TVPAdventures). ‘Funmi is available for writing or travel expo opportunities.