Victoria Falls (Zambia)
These spectacular waterfalls are a designated World Heritage Site as well as being one of the natural wonders of the world. Ever since their existence was publicized by David Livingstone in 1855, visitors have travelled from all over the world to witness this amazing natural phenomenon. The falls are 1.7 km wide and have an average height of 100m.
The volume of water passing over the falls is 550,000 square meters per minute, on average, although this can increase dramatically during the high water period between March and May. The geology of this area is fascinating; the original falls were actually 8km downstream of the present ones. Erosion over millions of years, combined with weaknesses in the basalt rock perpendicular to the flow of the Zambezi have gradually worn away the previous seven sets of falls and have led to the magnificent gorge system that visitors see today.
In the first years of the 20th century, the growing village of Victoria Falls, on the Zimbabwean side, was put on the map by Cecil Rhodes’ British South African Company plans to attempt the construction of a Cape to Cairo railway line. Although the line was never completed, the track still runs through Victoria Falls and luxury trains, offering opulent service as well as breath-taking views, travel through this station in addition to the regular Zimbabwean Railway service.
The Falls can be viewed either from the Zambian town of Livingstone or from the Zimbabwean town of Victoria Falls. Many adventure activities can be arranged, varying from bungee jumping, gorge swinging, micro-lighting and white water rafting to more leisurely boat cruises on the upper stretches of the river.