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Vic Falls Bush Telegraph issue 9
November 16, 2012 16th November 2012
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Victoria Falls Newsletter

Hi there once again

Thanks for subscribing to our newsletter!

With a few bits of interesting news about we decided to put together another short newsletter for your interest. We had such good feedback from the September issue, thank you... we are glad you enjoyed it!

The upcoming holiday season in Victoria Falls is set to be a very busy one! Accommodation at all the hotels large and small during December is just about fully booked, availability is very limited. If you have not booked accommodation yet and want to go in December, please get hold of us as soon as you can to see if we can find something for you.

Due to the high volume of visitors most of the activities will also be fully booked, so again pre-booking is essential to avoid disappointment. Don't wait till you get there!

Don't forget, you can keep updated on Vic Falls via our Facebook and Twitter



Destination Update

Within the last month we have received the first reports of scattered light rains in the region, and in the last few days a few heavy downpours have been also reported. Across the region everyone will be hoping that we are on track for good rains this year.

Photo: Early morning skyscape and spray from the Falls Courtesy of Peter Roberts

The onset of the rainy season marks the end of the traditional safari season, however more and more travellers are choosing to visit Africa outside of the usual dry season safari, when game is more likely to be concentrated near water and easier to see. Whilst it is true that game such as elephant, buffalo, zebra and assorted antelope species do disperse with the arrival of the rains and first flush of new grazing and browse, and with them the predators, they can still often be found by the patient observer, and the transformation of the dry, dusty plains into lush verdant grasslands and woodlands is truly spectacular and accompanied by its own wealth of wildlife.

Photo: Verdant bush Courtesy of Peter Roberts

For the naturalist the rainy season offers amazing birdlife, reptiles, amphibians, insects, a whole wealth of flowers and other flora, and for the photographer spectacular thunder storms, torrential rains, dramatic skyscapes and incredible sunsets. If you are travelling in the region at this time of year a waterproof is an essential item, as downpours can be a daily late afternoon event.

The river is at its lowest, before being replenished by the oncoming rains, and the Falls at their driest, allowing the visitor to study the rock walls of the main gorge, worn smooth by the erosion of the water, and to contemplate the power of this natural wonder.


Photo: First gorge Courtesy of Peter Roberts


The eastern Cataract in Zambia is particularly dry at this time of year and visitors to that side only are invariably quite disappointed, however there is still, as always, a good amount of water flowing over the Zimbabwe end of the Falls, with the Devil's Cataract and Main Falls carrying a good volume of water all year round.


Photo: Main Falls in mid October still has lots of water Courtesy of Tony Peel

This is a good time of year to face the challenge of rafting the rapids of the Zambezi, or indeed undertake any of the activities around town.

That's all from us for now - enjoy the rest of the newsletter!


News And Events


'Discovery' of the Victoria Falls

This month marks the 157th anniversary of the 'discovery' of the Victoria Falls by Dr David Livingstone. Travelling downstream by dugout canoe paddled by skilled local paddlers and guided by Chief Sekelutu, chief of the Makalolo, Livingstone first arrived at the island on the lip of the Falls which now bears his name, Livingstone Island on the 16th November 1855. There is much debate over Livingstone’s 'discovery' of the Falls - read our feature exploring these keys events: Discovery of the Victoria Falls

Livingstone Bicentenary

Livingstone town on the Zambian side of the river is planning a series of exciting events and festivals in 2013 to commemorate Dr David Livingstone and the bicentenary of his birth on 19 March 1813. Find out more online: Livingstone Bicentenary.

One of the focal events will be an International Academic Conference, to he held in April 2013, looking at 'Imperial Obsessions, David Livingstone, Africa and World History: A Life and Legacy Reconsidered', with an international array of academics and speakers on a broad spectrum of topics. Find out more details online: Livingstone Conference.

Friends of Hwange Trust

The latest Newsletter of Friends of Hwange Trust is definitely worth the read and is available online to read here


What's new online

We've recently added new accommodation pages to our site on the long established favourite Gorges Lodge, and the newly opened Victoria Falls Safari Club.
On this page we have used a new slideshow feature to display the photographs - let us know what you think!


Airline Updates

Several national air carriers have announced the return of regular flights to Zimbabwe, as have regional operators to Victoria Falls.

First in the news however is the failure of the new budget airline, Fresh Air, which failed soon after taking over the operation of the old 1Time route from Johannesburg to Livingstone, but which was due to switch to Victoria Falls. We were so excited about this last month as cheap flights directly into Victoria Falls would have been a huge boost to Zimbabwean tourism, anyway sadly not to be at this moment in time.

If you have made a booking on 1Time airlines this is no longer valid as they are definitely in liquidation so you need to make another booking with another airline. Payments to 1Time made by credit card seem to be being refunded quite quickly by the banks but cash and EFT payments are not so easy as the money becomes part of the liquidation. Making contact with 1 Time does not seem to be that easy, but these are the details on their facebook page:

"Please note that 1time Airline's call centre number: 011 086 8000 is operational between 8am and 3pm and our customer service agents are on standby to handle all your enquiries.

Please also note that cash/EFT queries should be directed in writing to with your booking reference and contact details."

British Airways-Comair have been flying twice daily to Victoria Falls from Johannesburg since August. LAM Mozambique has re-launched flights on its Harare-Beira and Harare-Maputo routes, flying three times a week, and Tanzanian carrier Precision Air is flying three times a week to Harare from Dar es Salaam.


Cresta Sprayview

It has been announced that the well known Cresta Hotels group have entered into an agreement to manage the Sprayview Hotel. Redevelopment and refurbishment work is due to start almost immediately and the Hotel is aiming to re-launch before next year's UNWTO conference in August.

Sprayview was originally opened in the 1970s and offers 64 rooms, two restaurants, two bars, and three conference rooms. Aimed at the mid range three star market, the hotel will offer much needed accommodation within this sector within Victoria Falls. Cresta Hotels currently operate thirteen hotels across the region, with eight in Botswana, one in Zambia and four in Zimbabwe.

Victoria Falls Safari Lodge features in exclusive shortlist

The Victoria Falls Safari Lodge has received international recognition through listing in the prestigious US magazine Conde Nast Traveler in its Reader's Choice Awards and lists VFSL as 10th in the Top 25 Resorts & Safari Camps in Africa. Congratulations to all at VFSL!

Victoria Falls Bridge featured in Getaway magazine

The latest issue of Getaway magazine, published in South Africa and promoting tourism across the continent, includes a special feature on the Victoria Falls Bridge.


Victoria Falls Hotel prepares for refurbishment

Victoria Falls Hotel Partnership have appointed a new General Manager for the Hotel, Guilio Toni, who will oversee the upgrade and refurbishment of the hotel's 161 rooms and suits in preparation for next year's UNWTO event.

New Activities


Steam Train and Tram

Local tour operator Shearwater Adventures have teamed up with the Victoria Falls Steam Train who recently introduced the Tram service, which runs down to the Victoria Falls Bridge and can drop off clients for the historical bridge tour, bungee jump and bridge cafe restaurant.

The two new activities offered by this partnership are The Victoria Falls Tram Morning Bridge Tour and the The Victoria Falls Tram & Bridge Champagne Sunset Tour both reasonably priced at US$60pp. We will feature more details on these activities soon.


mazing property on the Zambezi river - Deka

On a titled piece of land measuring 4,485 m2 with three properties, embracing beautiful views of the river.

Ideal for a fishing lodge or camp as well.

Loads of camping areas on the terraced lawns.

Price:- US$375 000

Click here for full details


Feel free to contact us with any questions, queries, ideas or criticisms.

We're here to help you!
Bye for now
Tony and Boo Peel | Pietermaritzburg | Kwa-Zulu Natal | 3201 | South Africa

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