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Victoria Falls – The Mist That Thunders

It’s 6am and I can’t sleep. I pass the time with a blank stare through the mesh window of my safari tent, watching as the low light begins to illuminate the ...

by Greg Snell Posted on 24 October 2012

It's 6am and I can’t sleep. I pass the time with a blank stare through the mesh window of my safari tent, watching as the low light begins to illuminate the sky. Breakfast is in an hour and I’ll be jumping off a bridge in two.

I'm in Livingstone, Zambia. The adventure capital of Africa and home to the thundering chasm known as Victoria Falls. Vic Falls is one of the most impressive waterfalls on earth and is a consistent draw for travellers from all over the world. It spans about two kilometers across and acts as the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe. You can visit the falls from both sides, however at the time of writing this I have only seen them from the Zambian side.

Victoria Falls, photo by Greg S.

Victoria Falls in black and white

Victoria Falls in black and white, photo by Greg S.

There are a number of adventure activities offered by local tour operators in Livingstone (the most popular being bungee jumping and white water rafting). Once you sit down and get all of the options it is almost overwhelming, there is so much to do and see. The tours vary from elephants rides and sunset cruises, to mircolight flights and helicopter trips circling the falls from above. There are so many options it is almost difficult to choose, especially when you only have two or three days at the falls. Luckily my G Adventures representative in Livingstone was there to help sort everything out. I was quickly able to book myself in for rafting, bungee jumping, and a beautiful sunset cruise along the Zambezi.

The bungee jumping was a fantastic rush and one I wish to highlight for you. As I have said once before, one of the most amazing feelings I have ever encountered is the first rebound after the initial fall, when your body comes to that split second of complete weightlessness before gravity takes over and you come crashing back down to earth. This is adrenaline. This is bungee jumping. This is life. I highly suggest you try it at one point during your travels.

Greg taking the leap

Greg taking the leap

Greg in midflight

Greg in midflight

The next day I embarked on a full day rafting trip down the Zambezi River. It was incredible and takes first place as the best White Water Rafting trip I have ever experienced...and I have only rafted in Nepal, Peru, Canada, Uganda, Chile and Ecuador. All of those experiences were also great, but I must say the Zambezi rafting is something I have wanted to do for years and it did not disappoint. We ran 25 rapids over 6 hours with a short half hour break for lunch. Out of the 25, 16 were class fives known as long swimmers (assuming you fell from the raft at the beginning of the rapid and had to swim the rest) and the other 9 were class fours, almost equally as long. It was incredible. Unfortunately, I couldn’t bring my DSLR on the raft and have no photos to share, however, I’m sure if you Google image Zambezi rafting, you’ll get the idea.

With only two full days in Livingstone, I was able to accomplish a life goal (rafting the Zambezi) and take full advantage of the activities offered in the adventure capital of Africa. For anyone travelling to Zambia and Vic Falls in the near future, you have a treat ahead of you. It is a beautiful area of the world, with amazing people, and a wealth of things to do. I say enjoy it and continue to live life to its fullest every day.


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