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For other destinations and types of holiday, visit Kuoni
For other destinations and types of holiday, visit Kuoni 

Things to do in Zimbabwe

Face to face with ‘The Smoke That Thunders’

When you experience Victoria Falls for yourself, you can really appreciate its power in a way you don’t from watching a film…

By Francis Nyabadza
Guide at Wild Horizons, Alfred&’s partner in Zimbabwe

Victoria Falls is one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World and you have to see it for yourself to get the full effect – watching a documentary isn’t the same at all. In high season, between March to July, when the river is at its highest, you can feel the ground shaking and the noise is incredible. In some of the rooms in The Victoria Falls Hotel, if you leave your window open and a teaspoon in a cup or glass, you can hear it tinkling from the vibration of the Falls. And, of course, there’s the spray, which rises high into the air and looks just like smoke. In high season, the paths get drenched and so do you, so we advise people to bring waterproof cameras and not to bother with make-up as it gets washed away!

I hate to rush people through the Falls because they’ve come a long way to see them, so the tour normally takes a minimum of two hours. We visit all the main viewpoints, starting at Livingstone’s Statue, where we do a brief talk about how he introduced the Falls to the whole world. If people want to go down the ‘Chain Walk’, it gives you a lovely view of Devil’s Cataract and Cataract Island; otherwise, we carry on through the rainforest, a lovely canopy which houses a lot of creatures like birds, animals and insects, to the Main Falls. This is the biggest of the five parts of the Falls, where approximately 700,000 cubic metres of water go over every minute, and it’s very impressive. After that comes Livingstone Island, Horseshoe Falls and Rainbow Falls. The last part is the Eastern Cataract on the Zambian side, which can be viewed perfectly from Danger Point. And then we either retrace our steps so people can take more pictures coming backwards or there is a little shortcut that takes us back to the entrance.

Personally, when I go to the Falls, I have a great feeling that I’m getting natural healing. The people who lived here some 80,000 years before the arrival of Livingstone believed that their God was in the waterfall, and they did their ritual cleansing here. When you experience Victoria Falls for yourself, you can really appreciate its power, as they did, and you don’t get that from a television programme.


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Alfred & Francis Nyabadza

Francis Nyabadza grew up hearing the roar of the Victoria Falls, and familiarity has done nothing to diminish his sense of awe every time he takes guests to experience this natural wonder for themselves – something he’s been doing for Wild Horizons since 1997. When not at the Falls, his favourite place to take visitors is the village that hosts the company’s Meet the People cultural activity.

Plan your holiday withAlfred&

Your journey will start with one of our UK team – someone like Adele, who's travelled extensively in Zimbabwe. They’ll shape your ideas into the trip of a lifetime. But they won't do it alone. They'll draw on the expertise of our contacts on the ground, connecting you to the people who'll make your holiday one you'll always remember – the ranger who can show you the best game viewing and fishing spots on the Zambezi, the guide who’ll introduce you to ‘moonbows’ at Victoria Falls and the locals who’ll share their dinner with you.

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