Africa: Victoria Falls

After departing South Africa and before returning to Washington, we headed north to Victoria Falls on the Zambia/Zimbabwe border to enjoy one of the world’s most beautiful waterfalls that is known locally as the “the smoke that Thunders.”   Our flight into Zambia gave us our first view of the falls – or at least of the mist from the falls.

We were staying at a lodge in Zambia along the Zambezi River upriver a ways.  Here the river is a mile wide and appears to meander slowly between the shores. We watched the sun set across this African waterway.  Downriver the water becomes a roaring column of fury as it dives off the 1000 meter  long cliff into the gorge below with columns of mist shooting hundreds and thousands of feet into the air.

Our first full day in Zambia, we went over to explore the falls more closely. The walk begins with a view over the falls and a gift of a parka which proves to be worthless in the ensuing monsoon like conditions. Above the falls, we felt a bit of mist and looked at a rainbow tucked into a canyon nook. After looking down on the water, we charged into the maddening fury.  The winds generated by the water were ferocious – nearly blowing us over.  Then the ‘rains’ came as the ‘mist’ pummeled us from above like we were in the midst of a thunderstorm.

Later we went to the Zimbabwe side where the views, and the force of the water, were even more spectacular.  It was beautiful and Zimbabwe really has a gem of a place to visit.  The other challenges Zimbabwe faces were on display as locals attempted to sell us 1 billion (Zimbabwe) dollar notes for less than 1 USD.

Before leaving Victoria Falls, we were lucky to see it from the air again – this time from a helicopter. We were all impressed as we looked at spots we had explored in the preceding days.  From the falls, the helicopter went a little distance up the Zambezi to an island where we watched wild elephant roam around from above.

Victoria Falls  is spectacular and is a place we will never forget.  We look forward to continuing our exploration of the world’s waterfalls .


~ by Rob Page III on September 14, 2010.

One Response to “Africa: Victoria Falls”

  1. lovely pics on the Falls and we are happy you loved your helicopter flight. The obsession of the Falls is so irresistible and contagious.Best wishes in your exploration of the world’s falls.

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