The Victoria Falls, one of the most breath-taking natural wonders in the world, is a popular destination for tourists from all corners of the globe and presents an array of accommodation options for the travel-thirsty adventurer.
- The Victoria Falls offer a unique and unforgettable experience, with visitors being showered in spray, mist, and rainbows.
- The region has seen increasing growth in visitor numbers and offers a range of accommodation options.
- The Victoria Falls region is a must-visit destination that offers a combination of natural beauty, luxury accommodation, and unforgettable experiences for travelers.
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The Victoria Falls region offers an array of five-star travel options ready to fit any budget. For South African’s, the Victoria Falls region has a popular getaway appeal rivalling Cape Town, Mauritius or Zanzibar. Located on the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe, the falls are a spectacular sight to behold, and offer visitors a unique experience that cannot be found anywhere else in the world. Livingstone on the Zambia side of the Victoria Falls has seen increasing growth in visitor numbers but also in new hotels, resorts and experiences.
With the world’s greatest sheet of falling water a short travel distance from South Africa, The Sandton Times set out to explore what some of the most popular destinations around the Victoria Falls on the Livingstone side had to offer – and what an experience it was! The Victoria Falls on its own is a real-life experience everyone should try to experience at least once in a lifetime, being showered in a cocktail of spray, mist and rainbows from one of the many viewing points close to the Mosi-oa-Tunya – ‘The Smoke that Thunders’.
If you are traveling from South Africa, there are a few useful and general points to keep in mind. As Zambia forms part of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), you won’t require a VISA to enter the country which is a huge administrative and financial upside.
Most of the hotels quote prices in Zambian Kwacha and US Dollar yet the South African Rand is also widely accepted, so make sure you pack a few extra notes in your wallet for ease of transacting. This also applies to many of the local markets and vendors found at some of the many tourist hot-spots. For those inclined to do a bit of bartering, packing some extra brand name caps or clothing from home might find a few traders ready to trade exchange some souvenirs for apparel.
Another thing to keep in mind is that there is an automatic 16% VAT and a 10% service charge on almost all meals and drinks, when staying at many of the hotels in the Livingstone area. For those opting not to travel to the Victoria Falls by train, flights from Johannesburg to Livingstone are just under 2-hours, which is about the same as flying between Johannesburg and Cape Town, making it a great quick getaway to do over a long weekend or holiday period. So, if you are planning to head to Livingstone, here are 4 Must-Book Victoria Falls Experiences:
Rovos Rail, A Luxurious Trip By Train
Considered to be one of a handful of grande train experiences globally, the Rovos Rail is a South African national treasure, offering an experience of bygone days with all the modern luxuries. A journey from Pretoria, South Africa to Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe is certainly part romantic and part adventurous, as the Rovos Rail travels through areas inaccessible by road, showcasing spectacular natural landscapes.
The service onboard is equally as impressive, as dinner every evening is presented with a mandatory dress code of suits and ties for the gentlemen and long dresses for the ladies, whilst the beautifully prepared meals and curated excursions provide a feast of memories. A smooth journey never made for an interesting tale, and when it comes to rail travel in Africa, be sure to experience the odd delay, technical glitch or extended gin & tonic break with fellow passengers, as the trip unfolds.
Nonetheless, it’s a journey of a lifetime and an unrivaled experience you won’t quickly forget!
For more information, visit the Rovos Rail website.
Royal Livingstone by Anantara, A Seasoned Luxury Stay
The Royal Livingstone enjoys a prime spot for those wanting to take in the sheer scale of the mighty Zambezi in full flow, whilst also seeing the mist of the Victoria Falls rise up from a good distance.
Expect to be surprised by the odd Zebra, Impala or Giraffe grazing on the hotel lawns or outside your room, as these African animals roam free on the property, but be warned, as even the most tempting selfie or photo opportunity should not override the reality that these animals can execute a serious defensive kick that will take more than the King’s horses and men to put your iPhone or mandible back together again.
The recently refurbished boma offers a unique Zambian culinary experience whilst the leisurely breakfast, overlooking the hotel lawns, pool and the Zambezi River, is a truly African affair. Both the Royal Livingstone and neighbouring AVANI Victoria Falls Resort, offer complimentary access to the Victoria Falls in walking distance or are reachable by golf cart. Make sure you pack a pair of Crocs and a raincoat, as a baptism by the falls spray is both a spiritual and natural experience you will never forget!
For more information, visit the Royal Livingstone website.
Radisson Blu Mosi-Oa-Tunya, A New Livingstone Resort
The Radisson Blu Mosi-oa-Tunya Livingstone Resort stands out for its contemporary African experience, distinguishing it from other properties in the region. The resort is ideally situated near the Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park, just 2km south of the historic city of Livingstone, and 4km northwest of the famous Victoria Falls.
The resort has been constructed and operates with utmost respect for this natural wonder, which serves as a habitat for several unique species of plants and animals.
The Radisson Blu Mosi-oa-Tunya Livingstone Resort offers a range of accommodations, including 200 rooms, luxurious suites, and villas, many of which offer stunning views of the Zambezi River. Guests can indulge in exquisite dining options at the bespoke all-day restaurant or enjoy their favorite drinks at the Shungu Bar and Lounge, the Viewing Deck, or the Pool Bar overlooking the river. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to watch the sun set over the Zambezi River during an afternoon river cruise!
For more information, visit the Radisson Blu Mosi-Oa-Tunya website.
Tintswalo at Siankaba, A Luxurious Tented Camp
Situated on two densely forested islands in the mighty Zambezi River, Tintswalo at Siankaba is a luxury tented camp well placed around 38km from Victoria Falls and 48km from the Chobe National Park, providing convenient access to some of the region’s top tourist attractions.
In November 2022, following a thorough renovation, the camp reopened as a luxurious tented camp, able to accommodate 14 guests in seven suites perched high above the ground in the shade of the Zambezi River’s canopy. Every one of the tented suites has a luxurious bathroom and an own balcony that overlooks the river, encouraging guests to unwind while taking in the scenery of the river and the Zimbabwean riverbanks nearby.
With an array of outstanding and unique experiences, get ready for an African adventure with a touch of luxury and a suitcase of memories.
For more information, visit the Tintswalo at Siankaba website.
The greater Victoria Falls region is a destination that offers visitors a unique and unforgettable experience. From the awe-inspiring size of the falls themselves, to the diverse array of activities and cultural experiences available in the surrounding area, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
Whether you are a nature lover, a thrill-seeker, or a culture enthusiast, Victoria Falls is a destination that should not be missed. So why not start planning your trip today, and experience the wonder of Victoria Falls for yourself!
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