Once you have tasted the waters of the Zambezi....You will be back!!
by Caroline WH
Victoria Falls ugh???
Where do I begin............This is a place that holds most of my most cherished memories! I went there in 1986 just for a season working and ended up living there for 13 years!!! I went single and left married with 2 beautiful children. We had built a beautiful home and made some of our dearest friends there.
We may not live there anymore but we often communicate with our special friends who are still there, We have family that visit it regularly and The BEST news is we go back in September, this year 2009 to let our girls feel once again what is so special about this place that was once their home.!!
The PEOPLE. Apart from the Falls themselves (which let's face it, are truely spectacular!) and so many other great things to do - it is THE REMARKABLE, WONDERFUL PEOPLE (Black, White or otherwise) of Victoria Falls thats makes it such a very unique and special place. There are people there who have been in that town through thick and thin and no matter what is happening they will greet you with a warm friendly smile and welcome you to their home, only too eager to share everything it has to offer.
The service and attention to detail that you will recieve on your vist to Victoria Falls will be unsurpassed in the first world. (I have to admit it was closely matched by the beautiful people of Fiji on a recent visit - but even then it was different - We in Vic Falls have so much to show you.)
I could ramble for hours and reminise, so instead I am going to give you a list of some of our Favourites:
Favourite Hotel: VICTORIA FALLS SAFARI LODGE without a doubt. The African feel and ambience of this place whilst still giving you 1st class comfort and service is just brilliant and to sit out looking over the waterhole and watching the sun go down over the river, glass of cool crisp wine is hand is just the BEST!!
Dinner at the Boma also within the Safari Lodge complex is definately NOT TO BE MISSED.
Camps and Lodges: This is a hard one, In 'our time' they were all wonderful and at that time all owned and run by extremely proffessional, dedicated and passionate people. Must confess to not being quite up to speed on all the camps that are still running and who is at them. If we were to choose and make a booking my first choice would be to go back to Imabala up near the Kazangula Boarder, on the Zambezi River. When you see my comments on Favourite Tour Operators below, you get why we would choose this camp.
Favourite Things to do: Well the FALLS is a NO BRAINER - if you are lucky enough to be there at full moon go in and see the falls at night too - the lunar rainbow is awesome!!! The Falls are always spectaculer but if you can, its worth reseaching what time of year you want to be there. When they are very high, you actually see less and obviously too low they will not be at their best either. I am sure Tony and Boo will have details of the water levels and what to look at / when in the Falls, somewhere on this great site??
OK, once you've got wet in the rainforest, YOU MUST go and watch a sunset on the river - get on that water , drink it, listen to the sights sounds and smells, enjoy watching the hippos, look out for crocs(in the water) and wildlife (on the banks), bird watch, sip on that sundowner as our HUGE orange sun sets slowly drops and turns the water into liquid gold. How you go on the river is up to you what ever floats your boat!!? Kayak, pontoon, fishing boat canoe, Big Criuse boat..... Our fav would be drifying down in a canoe.
The Croc Farm and Nature Sanctuary is a must - I worked there for years....LOVED it!!
If you are up for it find someone to take you camping in the National Park. And if you want more Game do a day trip over to Chobe in Botswana. (see tour opperators below)
Its worth taking a walk over the Historic bridge spanning the mighty Zambezi and visiting the Zambian side. Go see the Falls from another perspective. If you are wanting to learn more about the people and some of the african cultures, get yourself taken in to Mukuni Village a 700 year old village and full of wonderful stories. It'll be an experience you will not forget. Please go being prepared to bargain and buy some of their wonderful hand crafted curios as momentos and gifts from your trip. These people truely appreciate your support although their enthusiasum to serve you and get you to buy can be somewhat overwhelming. No need to be scared though, they are friendly and I spent many hours trading there to, even taking across my very young children. Just be firm!! many curios are available on the Zimb side but this Zambian ones are usually great quality and different.
If you are into Museums, Livingstone has, or used to have, a great museum and I believe the town has changed for the better since we were last there.
Heading back to Zimbabwe .....
Our Favourite Tour Operator: WILD HORIZON...YEAH!!! again I say this without a minutes hesitation this is and wonderful family and friends run business that will be a one stop shop for you to plan all your activities and adventure sports. The owners are all personal and very dear friends who are committed to giving you a holiday of your lifetime.... from your airport transfers to that sunset Cruise and game viewing and everything in between. Oh....... and I nearly forgot this is the amazing company that owns and runs that very special camp I mentined ...Imbabala. Go on Treat yourself!!
As you will have seen from this website there are so many wonderful experiences to be had here. I could probaly tell you something wonderful about each and every one. Its making me homesick just writing about it all But this place has to be experienced for your self!! Whether you are after roughing it and adventure or some luxuary with a touch of culture and some game.
Even now with all the bad news , the AWESOME PEOPLE of Victiruia Falls can give it to you a holiday that you will NEVER want to forget.
And beleive me once you have tasted the waters of the Zambezi....you WILL be back!!
Maybe I will report some more with up to the minute info, when I get back in October 09