One of the greatest attractions in Africa and one of the most spectacular waterfalls in the world, Victoria Falls is located on the Zambezi River, the fourth largest river in Africa, which is also defining the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe. Victoria Falls is the only waterfall in the world with a length of more than a kilometer and a height of more than hundred meters. It is also considered to be the largest fall in the world. The noise of Victoria Falls can be heard from a distance of 40 kilometers, while the spray and mist from the falling water is rising to a height of over 400 meters and can be seen from a distance of 50 kilometers. No wonder that the local tribes used to call the waterfall Mosi-o-Tunya “The smoke that thunders”.
We can help build your perfect itinerary or simply select and plan yourself using our Victoria Falls Route Planner.
Scottish missionary and famous explorer of Africa David Livingstone (1813-1873) named it after Queen Victoria. Livingstone who was the first European to cross Africa from south to north discovered this awe-inspiring waterfall in 1855, while preaching Christianity in Africa. That is why Livingstone wasn’t very pleased with his discovery: it was just an obstacle on his way. Despite the inconveniences, he was fascinated by the beauty of the falls. In 1857 Livingstone wrote that no one in England can even imagine the beauty of this scene. Religious Livingstone also wrote that most probably angels are admiring the scenery while flying nearby. He was accompanied by soldiers but only two of them took the risk of approaching the waterfalls with Livingstone. For centuries local African tribes had a sacral fear from the waterfall.
The water level varies throughout the year; it is at its peak in April, at the end of the rainy season when on average 500,000,000 liters of water flow and it is at its lowest level in October and early November. Interestingly, during the dry season the water level in the Zambezi River drops sharply, and it becomes possible to walk through some parts of the waterfall. However, during the rest of the year Victoria Falls is a roaring machine that strikes anyone with its power.
Qatar Airways are continuing their plans to fly into Victoria Falls from Doha, but for now you can book British Airways, from anywhere in the world to Victoria Falls or Livingstone, at www.ba.com. The airline codeshares with Comair, who provide daily flights between Johannesburg and Victoria Falls/Livingstone Airports. Air Zimbabwe also offers flights between Victoria Falls Airport and other destinations within Zimbabwe - NB please check whether Air Zimbabwe is operating at the time of your visit, as recently their schedule has not been reliable, and they ceased operations for a period of time. Kenya Airways connect Cape Town and Nairobi to Livingstone currently 4 times a week and direct flights can also be booked from Nelspruit Airport (Kruger National Park) to Livingstone three times a week, via Airlink. Any flights from Kruger to Victoria Falls must go through Johannesburg.
The roads within Zimbabwe are not very good, with potholes commonplace. The most direct way to Victoria Falls overland is from Bulawayo. There is a good road network from the South African border at Beit Bridge right through to the falls. It's possible to drive in through Livingstone. Crossing an international border with a vehicle, however, this will incur extra costs like carbon tax and insurance. Coming from Namibia or Botswana, the best road is from Kasane in Botswana using the Kazungula border post. Distance to Vic Falls is 70 km.
If you stay in one of our recommended premium hotels or lodges, they will be able to assist you with your travel needs. Should you wish to book transfers yourself, you can make a request directly through our recommended ground handler, Love For Africa.
These can be organised through the accommodation when you arrive. To get you in the mood, here’s a list of what you can do in and around the Falls:
Canoeing on the river above the falls
White water rafting, on the river below the falls
Sunset cruise on the Zambezi River, which is beautiful above the falls
Bungee-jumping / bungee swing
Flying fox / cable slide
Abseiling / rappelling
Vic Falls Tram / Bridge tour
Depending on the type of passport you have will determine the visa required. UK passport holders will receive a visa in both Zimbabwe or Zambia on arrival, either single or double entry will be provided for $50-US$70. South African passport holders do not require a visa. We would advise to check with your hotel or lodge prior to booking your flight or embassy in your country. Our ground handlers also have a wealth of visa and other information, including details of a new Uni Visa, click here.
Victoria Falls is a malaria are. For health information, please click here