And now Vic Falls

August 19, 2016 - Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe






The border post between Botswana and Zimbabwe is at Kazungulu.  The border post between Botswana and Zambia is also at Kazungulu and this is a ferry which crosses the confluence of the Chobe and Zambezi rivers.


We arrived at Kazungulu and missed the turn off to the Zimbabwe border post and found ourselves heading towards Zambia.  That in itself was no real problem, the border posts being only about 3 or 4 km apart.  However, what was remarkable was the long queue of huge trucks waiting to cross on the ferry to Zambia.  The ferry only seems to take one truck at a time, so these drivers were in for a long wait.  We estimated the queue to be well over 2 km long.


But clearly not much is being imported into Zimbabwe at this point as the queue of trucks here was only a few trucks long.  However, there were a large number of vehicles belonging to tour companies bringing groups of tourists across the border from Botswana into Zimbabwe to the Victoria Falls which are only about 60km from the border.


The border was pretty chaotic on the Zim side, but everyone was very charming and trying to do their best to get things moving.  At one stage all the drivers were sent off to a different counter and then it was found that S African citizens could be processed more quickly and so the non-drivers were rushing around collecting passports and filling in forms and then getting them signed.  Poor non-SADC residents (most of the tourists) were left standing in a queue in the blazing African sun.  But all was done in great spirits and one got the feeling that the Zimbabweans were really helpful and welcoming if a little chaotic!  And there was no problem with our car registration.  So we are Zimbabwe!!


So on to Victoria Falls and lunch at the Victoria Falls Hotel – a monument to the colonial way of life. There are huge portraits of Edward VII and Queen Mary in the main lounge area as well as a whole series of framed caricatures down one of the corridors depicting ‘The British Character’.  But we had a superb lunch on the shady patio looking out across the Zambesi gorge to the bridge that crosses from Zim to Zambia.


Victoria Falls is an adrenalin junkie’s heaven!!  There is the bungee jump off the bridge as well as gorge swing which swings you across the gorge and also a zipline across the gorge.  We walked across to have a look at these activities after lunch.  At one stage some of our party thought they might have a go but having had a look decided it was too expensive.  At least that was their story!!  As old skydivers, I believed them – some wouldn’t.  It looked absolutely terrifying to me.


It was now about 2.30 and blisteringly hot.  The plan was originally to go and have a look at the Falls themselves at this point, but we decided that as we don’t have far to go tomorrow, we’ll rather get up early and go to the Falls.  In the meantime, we went to the Zambesi National Park (about 10 km from Vic Falls) where we are booked in for the night.


The accommodation at Zambesi National Park is pretty rundown and in need of plenty of maintenance.  However, we have a hot shower (even if it has no showerhead and the ceiling is full of mildew) and clean beds for the night.  And we don’t have to put up tents!!


We have 2 chalets with a lovely walkway down to the Zambesi and we watched all the boats coming past on the sunset cruises which leave from both sides of the river (Zimbabwe and Zambia).


A braai outside our chalet and off to bed.


Tomorrow we are getting up early, hoping to leave at 6.30!!

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