Destinations Southern Africa

5 Special Things About Victoria Falls You Should Experience

victoria falls
Written by See Africa Today

The Zambezi River, Okavango Delta, Blyde River Canyon and the iconic Table Mountain are amazing places to visit in Southern Africa, and so are Victoria Falls.

Named after British Monarch Queen Victoria, the falls are spectacular. They have a local name; Mosi-oa-Tunya translating to Smoke That Thunders. It completes the cycle of breathtaking natural wonders in Southern Africa. Droves of tourists visit the falls annually and capture every moment of the adventure.

Which Country is Victoria Falls in?

Victoria Falls is situated on the Zambian-Zimbabwean border. It’s 354 ft high and drains its water to the Zambezi River. The roaring sounds of water welcome you to Vic Falls – as it’s popularly known.  Two-thirds of the water in the falls flows from Livingstone in Zambia. Livingstone borders Zimbabwe’s Matabeleland North Province where the other half of the falls is located.

Victoria Falls

The Victoria Falls. Photo/ Travel Addicts.

Whether you’re on the Zimbabwean or Zambian side, you still get a vantage view of the falls. There are developed viewpoints and major tourism infrastructure set up on both sides of the border to give visitors the best views. Tourism agencies from both countries jointly manage the falls through a commission. This commission handles:

  • Falls Maintenance
  • Conservation efforts
  • Development of tourism

What is So Special About Victoria Falls?

Exceptional beauty and its huge size top the reasons why Victoria Falls is special. Vic Falls is the world’s widest falls measuring 5,604 ft (1,708m) in width and 354 ft (108m) in height. Here is more about what makes the falls special.

Rare Geological Wonders

Mosi-oa-Tunya presents a rare geographical feature of the most iconic waterfall in the world. Sprays of water form mist-like conditions in the areas surrounding Livingstone and Victoria Falls town in Zimbabwe. Rainbows are always there adding to the beauty of the area.

Rays of sunlight pass through the microwater droplets produced when the water flows down and hits the Zambezi River with a thud. These tiny droplets form a mist and light is refracted, dispersed and eventually reflected resulting in a rainbow.

Roaring Thunder

Thunder at Vic Falls happens as huge volumes of water powerfully crash at the bottom of the Zambezi with a mighty thud that produces a roaring sound. Huge volumes of water flowing down 354 ft will produce a thundering sound.

A Million Litres Flow Every Second

One million litres of water gushes down the falls every second! Mosi – oa – Tunya’s huge water flow volumes remain one of the largest worldwide.

A UNESCO World Heritage Site

Mosi – oa – Tunya is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its breathtaking beauty, scenery and adventure earned it a place on the UNESCO list.

Devil’s Pool

Is Devil's Pool dangerous

Devil’s pool at Victoria Falls. Photo/Drink Tea& Travel

Are you an adrenaline junkie? Devil’s Pool is the place to test your boldness in the face of danger. The pool is at the top of Vic Falls in Livingstone and extends to the edge where the sheets of water flow down 354 feet deep. Visitors are only allowed to swim in the pool during the dry season when the water levels are low.

The boulders at the edge of the pool prevent swimmers from falling down the falls. However, high water levels during the wet season rise above the boulders. Thus, no one is allowed into the pools unless it is sunny and dry.

Is it Better to See Victoria Falls from Zambia or Zimbabwe?

Victoria Falls town in Zimbabwe has the best views of the falls throughout the year compared to the Livingstone in Zambia. Zimbabwe has more strategic points for viewing especially during the wet season from February to May than Zambia has.

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Victoria Falls Chopper ride. [Photo: VictoriaFalls24]

Zambia scores 25% in viewing points while Zimbabwe scores 75%. However, Zambia has an up-close experience than in Zimbabwe, the Devil’s Pool being a good example.  There are at least a million tourists who visit Vic Falls every year, mostly during the dry season from July to November.

Though Zimbabwe has impressive views of the fall landscape, tourists cross over to Zambia and back for a full experience of this African wonder. Both Zimbabwe and Zambia offer budget and exclusive accommodation based on preference.

Do I Need a Visa to Visit Victoria Falls?

Visa requirement to enter Zambia or Zimbabwe depends on a few things such as nationality. There are over 100 countries whose people can enter Zambia without a visa according to the Zambian Immigration Department.

However, the need for a visa is also necessitated by which side you want to view the falls from. Mostly, visitors get an e-visa valid for 30 days.

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