Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls

There are few appropriate superlatives that have not already been applied to this magnificent natural wonder of the world; in many ways it defies description. So vast are the Falls and their setting that it is difficult to grasp their true grandeur and for this reason, they are perhaps best seen from the air.

The Victoria Falls offer an inescapable closeness to the natural elements. The towering column of spray when the river is high, the thunder of the falling water, the terrifying abyss that separates Zimbabwe from Zambia, the forest - lined, placid, tranquil lagoons upstream in which hippo and deadly crocodiles lurk.

David Livingstone reported the existence of the Falls to the outside world in 1860. The result was immediate and from that point, the number of foreign visitors rose steadily. People walked, rode on horseback or traveled by ox - wagon from the Transvaal along what was then called the Hunters Road (now the border between Botswana and Zimbabwe) and on reaching George Westbeech's store at Pandamatenga left their animals there, safe from the lethal bite of the tsetse fly, and walked the remaining 80 kilometers, due north to the Falls.

With the conflict in South Africa finally resolved and the region politically more stable, tourism is developing rapidly. New activities are constantly emerging and the industry is becoming more and more sophisticated. Rafting the wild rapids below the Falls was the first innovation more than ten years ago.

Now the list of organized, commercial activities has expanded dramatically. Visitors can kayak, canoe, fish, go on guided walking safaris, ride on horseback, lunch on Livingstone's Island and in addition to the well-known "Flight of Angels", for the more adventurous there is micro lighting with stunning views of the Falls.