Updated: Oct 23, 2021
Victoria Falls is located in the very North West of Zimbabwe. For many visitors coming to Zimbabwe, it is the one stop they make on a tour that usually consists of South Africa, Zambia and other African countries.
That, for me, is a big shame.
I’ve learnt over the past week that Zimbabwe is incredibly diverse, with different regions, wildlife, landscapes and history. To be brutally honest, Victoria Falls is a tourist trap, and those visiting do not get a true taste of the real Zimbabwe.
But then you have to remember why Victoria Falls is such a powerful lure for international travellers. Whilst it’s not the highest waterfall in the world, Victoria Falls is classed as one of the biggest. It is over 1700m wide, with the best view from the Zimbabwe side. At its peak, 1 million litres of water – per second – pour down the falls. In terms of sheer size, that is only rivalled by the powerful Iguazu Falls in Argentina.
The view of Victoria Falls from a helicopter - Zimbabwe
Low water levels of Victoria Falls in late October
We arrived at the Victoria Falls Safari Lodge, dropped our bags, and headed to the heliport. One of the top attractions at Victoria Falls is to take a helicopter flight over the falls, giving passengers a true perspective of the landscape and the falls themselves. This was an opportunity I wasn’t about to pass, so I hopped in the transfer bus, with GoPro and camera in hand.
We arrived, watched a few helicopters take off and land, and then – as quickly as you could say the word helicopter – we were weighed, and ushered to the copter.
Getting ready for take off - Zimbabwe
Taking pictures from the helicopter - Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
As soon as we were up in the air, the sheer size of the area dominated my thoughts. In the grand scheme of things, Victoria Falls is a tiny area of Zimbabwe, yet the brown trees and grassland below spreads as far as the eye can see.
In the middle of all the trees and waterholes? The mighty Zambezi River. As the fourth biggest river in the world, the colourful Zambezi snakes its way through the dry shrub land before powering over the falls.
When over the falls you can see tourists milling around like ants, thrill-seekers bungy jumping off the bridge that connects Zimbabwe to Zambia, the deep gorges that tear through the landscape, and white water rafters tackling the rapids below the falls. It’s quite a scene.
If you are planning on visiting Zimbabwe, I’d thoroughly recommend it – especially between December and August, when the rainfall will ensure the river is higher and the falls more powerful. Hopefully you’ll be able to experience the Mosi-oa-Tunya (‘the smoke that thunders’), as well as the amazing Hwange National Park and Lake Kariba.
If you’re not a fan of helicopters, fear not – you can also view Victoria Falls on foot, near the entry post with Zambia. As you can tell, the views are pretty spectacular!