Description of Victoria Falls - Zimbabwe
Victoria Falls, on the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia, is one of the seven wonders of the world and classified as a world heritage site.
It is on the bucket list of many people all around the globe and draws hundreds of thousands of visitors every year. In full flow it is the biggest single curtain of falling water in the world at 1708 meters long.
The water plunges 100 meters in places, into a deep and winding gorge, full of turbulent rapids and whirlpools. It is one of the world’s most spectacular waterfalls and it really is quite a sight to behold.
What is more is that it is situated in the very hub of numerous world class Game Parks, so combining a visit to this remarkable waterfall with a safari, makes for the most memorable of holidays.
A Visual Description of Victoria Falls...
As you enter through the national parks' entrance gate you begin your trail to the left, along a network of cobbled paths.
Initially, the vegetation although thick, is still quite dry as the spray from the waterfall doesn't always reach here. As you head closer to the Falls and the thunderous sound of the falling water, of which you can feel vibrating through your body, the canopy of trees, vines and foliage gets thicker. You now enter the true rainforest which rains 24/7 - 365 days of the year.
The impressive Victoria Falls
The Victoria Falls Rainforest
The rainforest is humid, the earthy smells of the soil and vegetation become stronger and little drops of spray start to dampen your skin. Then, there it is - this big, thriving river, cascading over a 1.7 km long, dark basalt rock ledge, creating the biggest curtain of falling water in the world.
The water plunges 100 m into a deep and winding gorge full of turbulent rapids and whirlpools. Victoria Falls is one of the world's most spectacular waterfalls and it really is quite a sight to behold.
The Victoria Falls is comprised of five main waterfalls – The Devils Cataract, the Main Falls, the Horseshoe Falls, the Rainbow Falls and the Eastern Cataract, which is on the Zambian side but can be seen from the Zimbabwe side. The waterfall on the Zimbabwe side has 16 viewing points and the Zambian side has another 13, but not all of those look onto the waterfall.
Description of Victoria Falls - Zimbabwe Viewpoints
The first sighting of the Falls is from viewpoint number 2. This spot has a glorious view down the length of the waterfall and is very picturesque, as the view is framed by trees and foliage. A unique viewing spot at this viewpoint is down a set of steps, which takes you lower into the gorge and gives you a view of the falls from a lower angle.
Victoria Falls from viewpoint 1, with Devils Cataract in the foreground and Main Falls in the distance
Viewpoint number 1 is around the corner and in front of the David Livingstone statue. Here you can look down onto Devils Cataract and also along the length to the Main falls. Viewpoints 3, 4 & 5 give you a good frontal view of Devils Cataract. Viewpoints 6, 7 & 8 give you clear views of the Main Falls. Viewpoints 9, 10, 11 & 12 are in the heart of the rainforest and where it is wettest throughout the year, so here the vegetation is a true rainforest jungle. Viewpoints 11, 12 & 13 give you a glimpse of Livingstone Island and the Devils Pool activity, which is famous for "swims on the edge".
Viewpoints 13, 14 & 15, emerge out of the rainforest, as it doesn't rain from the spray all year round here. They look onto the Horseshoe Falls and the Rainbow falls and in the low water season you can also get a good look into the raging river way below. During the high water season though, these viewpoints become a complete white-out, as there is a tremendous amount of spray created from the waterfall, at this the narrowest point in the gorge.
Viewpoint 15, also known as Danger Point is the furthest point one can go on the Zimbabwean side. It also looks east to the Eastern Cataract on the Zambian side and the boiling pot below where the white water rafting starts, in low water. The iconic Victoria Falls Bridge can be seen from viewpoint number 16.
Danger Point as seen from the Zambia side
Description of Victoria Falls - Zambia
The 13 viewpoints on the Zambian side, cover a much shorter section of the Falls, as only 25% of the Falls can be seen from that side. Although the vegetation is quite lush here, during the high water season, this is not a true rainforest as the eastern or Zambian side of the Falls dry up almost completely every year during the low water season, from October till early December. Viewing the Falls from the Zambian side can be disappointing during these months, if you are expecting to see a lot of water.
The Zambian viewpoints do offer a different perspective to those on the Zimbabwean side, as they are lower and look up to the lip of the Falls. There are also several viewpoints overlooking the gorges downstream. These are well worth a visit is you can fit them in time-wise.
A different view point on the Zambia side of the Victoria Falls
We hope this gives you a good description of Victoria Falls. It helps to know the local seasons, if the waterfalls are your main purpose of visiting the area. Activities can be seasonal so we do advise to ask what times of year are good for certain activities and viewing the Falls.
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