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The trip to Victoria Falls was part of our 2 week vacation in Southern Africa. Besides the falls, we also did a Zambesi river sunset cruise and an elephant back ride. As our time was limited, we decided not to cross the border into Zambia and not to take a plunge into Devil's Pool.
Victoria Falls are neither the tallest nor the widest waterfall in the world but the “largest”. In this case “largest” means the sheet of water plunging down (5,604ft height x 354ft width). Compared to Niagara Falls, Victoria Falls are about twice as tall and more than twice as wide.
US dollars are the currency of choice and accepted everywhere while Zim dollars are not. We had many people approach us asking to exchange 1 US dollar for 1 million Zim dollars.
We took a free shuttle bus from our hotel to Victoria Falls Park and walked along the easy and paved path to all the vista points on the Zimbabwean side. The falls are impressive and, as we went there in August/September, the falls were still impressive but the water spray and mist did not obscure much of the falls.
There were even some monkeys in the park that were sitting on the path and, I guess, waiting for people to feed them.
Zambesi River Sunset Cruise
For the first evening, I had booked a sunset cruise on the Zambesi river.
The 1,599 mile (2574km) long Zambezi is the 4th longest river in Africa. It is the longest African river that flows into the Indian Ocean. Apparently, in January 1498 Vasco da Gama was the first European to see the Zambesi.
The cruise brought us through a beautiful and slow flowing stretch of the river and the only other people you see were other sunset cruises. There was plenty of wildlife like hippos, elephants, giraffes, a corcodile and many bird species like eagles and herons. At around sunset, the boat stopped. As the sky was cloudless, the sunset was nice but not spectacular.
Elephant Back Ride
The elephant back sunrise ride was one of the many Making memorable Moments of our trip. All elephants were rescuees that could not be released back into the wild for various reasons. The experience started with an elephant encounter where the elephants came to the deck and everyone could touch and familiarize themselves with these magnificent animals. The ride was 45min and each elephant had a saddle that fit the driver and 2 passengers.
As it was the dry season, the ride went mostly through a dry and barren landscape which turned very beautiful and green when we got near and crossed a river. It is an amazing feeling to feel the elephant walking.
We saw giraffes, impalas, water bucks and warthogs during the ride.
After the ride, we were allowed to feed the animals with elephant treats. It is an absolutely amazing feeling to have an elephant suck the food out of your hands or to throw it directly into their mouths.