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Vic Falls Bush Telegraph issue 13
December 10, 2014


Victoria Falls Guide Bush Telegraph

The Victoria Falls Bush Telegraph | December 9th, 2014

Issue 13

Destination Update

As I re-read the destination update from our last newsletter in mid-September it’s hard to believe the so much as happened in just the 2 months. We have endured the extremely hot months of October, November where the temperatures hovered around 38 to 40 degrees. Some days it seemed unbearable and yet at the same time wonderful.

On the 20th September in the early hours of the morning we had a few loud claps of thunder which amounted to only a few spots of rain…the heavens were teasing us. We had to wait for several weeks with searing temperatures before we enjoyed a few thunder showers which like a blast freezer immediately cooled things down.

Then on the 6th November slightly earlier than we would normally expect some significant rain arrived dropping several inches within a few hours. The transformation of the bush after these rains was quite extraordinary. Dry woody branches without a single leaf turned into a profusion of green leaves within 2 days...a true miracle of nature.

Since then though the rainfall has been disappointing and we eagerly await the rain to return. Once again temperatures have returned to the high 30’s and we look to the skies daily for some relief. What an expectant time of year, all of nature dependant on this life giving rain. The warthogs in the Safari Lodge grounds have dropped their cheeky looking piglets and it won’t be long before all the other plains game follow suit.

Aerial view of the Victoria Falls in low water season


As is normal for November the Falls get very low with water reduced to flowing just over Devils cataract and Mains Falls and a tiny trickle on the Zambian side. We did a helicopter flight on 7th November and from the photo right you can see how low the water level actually is. From the air it looks unimpressive but from the ground it’s a different story. The 2nd photo shows Main falls taken the next day and it’s still ever so impressive.


View of the Victoria Falls main falls during low water season

Despite the limited local rainfall, the Zambezi River will soon start to rise rapidly due to rainfall in the Zambian catchment area which flows downstream and starts arriving here within the next week. The river will rise 2 to 3cms per day and by the end of December the dry rock face that you see in the photo will be covered with water, the Falls will be pumping. Rafting will move from low to high water and the Devils swim will have to close around early January.

The real tragedy to end this year has been the Ebola crisis. Up until this outbreak Victoria Falls operators were recording record breaking figures across the board. Africa to the rest of the world is sometimes unfortunately classed as one country, when in reality the West African countries that have been hit hard by the Ebola crisis are actually closer to Europe than to us in Southern Africa. However some international travel agents and tourist alike have just said no go to Africa. This has hit our industry hard and many operators are now reporting a sharp decline in figures. We are Ebola free and as such travellers should not cancel or stop planning their visit to Victoria Falls.

Much has been going on and we have reported on several interesting happenings in the articles below.

It only remains for us to wish you all a very Happy Christmas and a Prosperous New Year.

Best wishes,
Tony and Boo

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News and Events

New Uni-Visa Launched between Zimbabwe & Zambia
Probably the most exciting news we have and a real indication of Governments desire to be proactive with regards to tourism is the announcement of the new Zimbabwe / Zambia Kaza Uni-Visa which was launched on 28th November 2014 . Citizens from 40 countries shall be eligible for the KAZA UNIVISA obtainable at eight (8) ports of entry. Read more about the Uni-Visa...

VAT for tourists will NOT be introduced
For months now we have been waiting with  baited breath as to whether Zimbabwe was going to introduce VAT on accommodation and activities for international travellers. Confusion reigned as no clear directive was given. Hotels and activity operators then issued 2015 rates including VAT so as not to be caught out. We underwent the mammoth task of changing all our 2015 prices on our website only for the Minster of finance not to even mention it in the budget recently. From that we can all only deduce that the VAT will NOT be implemented, which is fantastic news. However hotels and activity operators are being slow to reissue new rates, still being cautious we think. We will have to once again undertake to change all the rates on our website so please bear with us. Read more...

Zambezi Triangle Takes Flight
Air Zimbabwe is now running flights between Kariba, Victoria Falls and Harare. Of-course the Harare-Vic Falls flights have been operational for a while now, flying 6 days a week, but Air Zimbabwe are giving you the potential to enhance your Zimbabwe travel experience with scheduled flights from Harare to Kariba, then Kariba to Victoria Falls, and the same way back. Read more...

Victoria Falls - Leading Hotels
The World Travel Awards this year recognise the Victoria Falls Hotel and the Royal Livingstone Hotel and leading hotels in their respective countries of Zimbabwe and Zambia. Read more...

AAT Golf Tournament Results
AFRICA Albida Tourism hosted a fundraising golf tournament in August this year in order to assist in raising money for the Victoria Falls Anti-Poaching Unit.  Read more...

David Livingstone's Collection Discovered
The curator of the Natural History Museum has stumbled upon an unparalleled treasure - a unique collection of insects gathered by Dr David Livingstone, one of Britain's legendary explorers of Africa, which has remained hidden for over 150 years. Read more...

Two Highwire Slackers walk across the Victoria Falls Gorge
Two daredevils made it across the Victoria Falls gorge on nothing but rope! Lukas and Reinhard (see pictures here) walked barefoot across from the Falls themselves to the other end of the gorge. See the video and read more about it...

Activities Update

Star Gazing at Victoria Falls Safari Club

Star Gazing for Victoria Falls
Safari Club Guests

Hike the gorge & swim right under the Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls New Year's Carnival 2014

The Most Highly Anticipated
Party of the Year


Renewed Hope for the Rhino
The Stanley & Livingstone Private Game Reserve in Victoria Falls enjoyed the privilege of seeing two baby rhinos being born this year. The first was Misinzo (translated to “a good omen on arrival after a long journey” and “a good omen towards the beginning of a journey”), born early July to mother Bambi. The second baby rhino was born in late September and was named Bashe (meaning “chief”). The names of the babies were nominated by the public with their meanings, were considered and voted by the folks at IAPF (International Anti-Poaching Foundation) and fans.

Misinzo and Bashe are doing very well and are being monitored (along with all the animals in the area) by the IAPF and the Nakavango Conservation Programme. “A huge thank you to the IAPF - International Anti Poaching Foundation - for their tireless efforts in keeping our rhino safe, and to our Nakavango Conservation Programme for their rhino conservation research work.”



For information about IAPF visit their Facebook page and their website.

For information about the Nakavango Conservation Programme, visit their Facebook page and their website.

You will also find opportunities to contribute to the cause.

Solent Flying Boat

Picture of the Month

This month's picture is an oldie showing the Solent Flying Boat - a double deck flying boat which landed at Victoria Falls right on the Zambezi River. The Solent had four-seater cabins, a cocktail lounge and lady's powder rooms. This picture was taken by Victor Clark.

Did you know???

That warthogs retreat into burrows when threatened and during the night. In these burrows the adult warthog makes a special upper ledge or chamber where the piglets sleep and are therefore protected in the event of heavy rain or flash flood.

Warthogs with new piglets at Victoria Falls Safari Lodge

Special Promotions

Flights from Johannesburg to Victoria Falls/Livingstone base fares start from ZAR110 (add taxes). Flights from Victoria Falls or Livingstone to Johannesburg the base fares start from USD75 plus taxes. Click here for more.

Fly with Air Zimbabwe from Johannesburg to Victoria Falls and stay at one of 4 great hotels. Find out more on these packages which include flights and 2 to 7 nights accommodation... Click here to see all our packages.

Sable Sands (Hwange) Holiday Special - 2 nights at US$306 per adult or 3 nights at US$409 per adult. Package includes accommodation, all meals, and one game drive. Valid up to 31st March 2015.
Click to contact us

Gorges Lodge, Victoria Falls

Arrival of the Rains Special - Take a nine night journey in Victoria Falls and Hwange and experience game, birds, and the Victoria Falls in one fantastic package.

Click here for more info


"Hi Boo and Tony
Boo, just want to thank you SO much for helping to organise our 4 day family holiday at the Vic Falls from the 11th to the 14th Sep. The accommodation was fab and every activity you had booked us for ran so smoothly. It was fantastic to be back in the country of my birth and to share its splendor with my family. Here's a photo of us at Devils Pool - wow, it was AMAZING!!" - Cathy

Click here to read more testimonials

Hotels & Lodges Update

Zambezi Sands room, Victoria Falls

Zambezi Sands Opens

The King's Club at the Kingdom Hotel, Victoria Falls

The New King's Club at the Kingdom Hotel

Featured Properties for Sale

Bonamanzi Luxury Villas - The Best Private Investment Opportunity Victoria Falls Has Ever Seen

Bonamanzi is an exciting new development of Luxury Holiday Villas in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. Investors in this unique development have a rare opportunity to capitalise on the phenomenal earning potential of this major tourist destination and natural wonder of the world.

The development consists of 18 luxury villas set on 17 400sqm of land situated just 4 kilometres from the world renowned Victoria Falls. It is the first of its kind in this region and represents the best private investment opportunity Victoria Falls has ever seen with substantial investment returns.

Why Invest?
• Outright ownership of property/villa with sectional title
• Good capital return on investment AND capital appreciation of asset
• Property rented and managed giving maximum return and hassle free ownership
• No Levies unless annual occupancy drops below an unlikely 26%
• All management, operational and marketing costs covered by rental revenue
• Ongoing repairs and maintenance factored into operational costs
• Villa furnished and equipped for a no hassle, walk in investment
• Insurance policies in place for security of investors capital
• Renowned Project Managers and Builders
• Victoria Falls based Developers with local knowledge and experience
• Off plan investment ensuring maximum capital growth once it’s established and a premier resort
• Owners can use their villa for as long as they like with two weeks free per annum
• Limited number of villas available

Get more information from the website

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