A Guide To Visiting Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
A Guide To Visiting Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe was originally published in January 2021
Victoria Falls was the perfect halfway point on my journey across southern and east Africa, despite it being a bit of a tourist trap. Being the adventure capital of Southern Africa, there are surely more things to do here in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe than you’ll likely have time for on your stay. Not to mention the Zambian side of Vic Falls, which I’ll be saving for another post (because it’s just so epic).
Victoria Falls is beyond impressive, called Mosi oa Tunya locally, meaning the smoke that thunders. It’s also an incredibly unique place- never did I ever think I’d have to wait for a police officer to escort me back to camp from the bar because of elephants roaming the streets in town (true story!).
So before I get too carried away reminiscing about my trip to Victoria Falls a few years back, here is everything you need to know to plan the perfect stay in Victoria Falls.
Traveling through Botswana before or after? See why Chobe National Park needs to be on your itinerary
Most passport holders from Europe, North America, South America, Asia, and Australia are eligible for a visa on arrival in Zimbabwe. Visas on arrival seem to cost between $30-160 USD depending on nationality and number of entries.
In late 2014 the KAZA Universal Visa was introduced, with a bit of a hiccup in 2015-16 (meaning it didn’t work then). The KAZA should allow visitors to travel freely between Zimbabwe and Zambia for 30 days so long as they don’t exit into any other countries in that period. There are plans to add Angola, Botswana, and Namibia to the KAZA.
Read more about the KAZA Univisa Program.
Grab a copy of Bradt’s Zimbabwe guide to help you start planning your trip
The Best Time To Visit Victoria Falls
If you want to see Victoria Falls at it’s highest with massive water sprays- so much so you’ll probably want to bring a rain jacket, April-June is your best bet. This is also when you’re more likely to see a rainbow.
July-August gives the best visibility at Victoria Falls, as water levels are at their lowest. July and August are also peak season for visiting Vic Falls and the remainder of Zimbabwe.
September through November also have excellent visibility as Victoria Falls is still at lower levels. This is also the best time to visit if you plan to visit the Devil’s Pool on the Zambia side of Victoria Falls as this requires waters to be at their lowest seasonal levels.
Planning to visit the Devil’s Pool in Zambia too?
Where To Stay In Victoria Falls
- Budget: I pitched a tent at Victoria Falls Restcamp & Lodge, which is located right in the middle of town and within walking distance from most attractions in Vic Falls. They also have a dorm, as well as chalets and lodge up for rent and an on-site restaurant. Check availability on booking.com and hotels.com. I felt completely safe staying here in a tent and had zero issues, though I feel I should mention two girls staying in a chalet had their windows broken and their valuables were stolen from their room.
- Mid-range: Lokuthula Lodge comes highly recommended by those in the mid-range travel budget. Lokuthula comes with beautiful chalets and a great looking pool. Book your stay on booking.com or hotels.com.
- Splurge: Victoria Falls River Lodge is where to go if you’re looking for a unique all-inclusive ultimate luxury experience. They offer beautiful luxe glamping tents and treehouse rooms. Check rates on booking.com and hotels.com.
Continuing on to Zambia? Don’t miss South Luangwa National Park
Things To Do In Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Walk The Rim At Victoria Falls National Park
When in Victoria Falls you absolutely must pay a visit to Victoria Falls National Park. This is where you’re going to get to see for yourself why they call it Mosi oa Tunya.
You can easily visit on your own by grabbing a taxi from town (expect to pay about $5 USD for the journey) and spend some time walking along the edge of the canyon taking in the impressive views of thunderous Victoria Falls. From here you can even wave across to the people enjoying the Devil’s Pool on the Zambian side (the Devil’s Pool post is coming up here soon!). The Victoria Falls national park entrance fee is $30 USD.
If you don’t want the hassle of planning your own visit, check out this guided trip to Vic Falls National Park with Excellence Trails Safaris.
Take A Leap And Go Bungee Jumping
I didn’t go myself, but bungee jumping is a popular activity for those that come to Victoria Falls. You’ll get to take a leap off the Zambezi Bridge that separates the Zimbabwe and Zambia border posts with epic views of Victoria Falls as you plunge down and then back up again.
Check out this Zim-Zam Bridge bungee jumping package with Shearwater Adventures.
Swing On The Flying Fox
Departing from the Zim-Zam Bridge right next to the bungee jumping is the flying fox. This harness will take you to cross the gorge at high speeds. Shearwater Adventures mentioned above offers the Flying Fox in addition to bungee jumping.
Go Ziplining Over Victoria Falls
Similar to the flying fox, you can zip line across the gorge, though this one is a bit faster, sending you hurtling at about 100 kph!
Book your Vic Falls zipline adrenaline rush with Shearwater Adventure Victoria Falls.
Go Whitewater Rafting On The Lower Zambezi
Don’t laugh, this Alaskan’s first whitewater rafting experience was on the Lower Zambezi. I got talked into it. Initially, I didn’t intend to go.
The evening before I went I met some girls at the camp that had gone and gotten pretty beat up- one was bucked from the boat and had to get stitches in her chin because she slammed her oar into it- the other with bloody legs from rock scrapes after a spill from the raft.
That same morning during the safety briefing, I was horrified- as in I was 99% sure I was going to die… not for any other reason than it seemed scary, and I’m not even afraid of water.
Going whitewater rafting on the Zambezi ended up being a total blast. I honestly couldn’t believe it had taken me that long to try it. Now I’m hooked. It was nowhere near as terrifying as I had thought it was going to be.
Book this Lower Zambezi whitewater rafting trip with Shockwave Adventures.
Sway To & Fro On The Gorge Swing
Just as the name suggests, this contraption will send you swinging back and forth over the Zambezi Gorge, guaranteed to get your heart rate up.
Go On A Heli Or Micro Flight Over Victoria Falls
My one regret when I visited Victoria Falls is not taking a scenic flight overhead. I’m a huge fan of scenic flights whether in a small plane or helicopter. I’d recommend taking a scenic flight over Victoria Falls, especially for photogs and the like who want to get a different perspective on the falls.
Book your Victoria Falls scenic flight with Sky Safaris.
Take A Sunset Zambezi River Cruise
A sunset Zambezi River cruise is a great way to end your final evening on the Zimbabwean side of Victoria Falls. I had an absolute blast spending my last night in Zimbabwe on one of these cruises amongst yawning hippos and an almost unlimited bar.
Take A Day Trip To Hwange National Park
Located only 150 kilometers away, Hwange National Park is an easy day trip from Victoria Falls, taking about 1.5 hours each way. Hwange is the largest and most popular safari park in Zimbabwe with a wide variety of game and diverse landscapes.
Book this Hwange National Park day safari from Vic Falls with DK Tours & Safaris.
Want to Join A Southern Africa Overland Tour?
Overlanding can be a great way to explore Southern Africa, though renting a vehicle and doing it on your own may seem like a daunting task, especially for those that aren’t quite as experienced or don’t want to deal with the hassle. Not to worry, there are a few companies that offer overland trips that include a stop in Victoria Falls. Check out this 41 day Cape Town to Zanzibar overlander with Intrepid, and this 18 day Victoria Falls to Cape Town adventure with GAdventures.
Have Any Questions About Visiting Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe?
Ask in the comments section below.