Zimbabwe

A nation of spectacular natural beauty, friendly people and rich culture, Zimbabwe’s status as one of Africa’s leading safari destinations was dampened for years by its political instability. But now that the country is transcending its strife and returning to a state of equilibrium, it is once again emerging as a vacation highlight of the continent. Victoria Falls – known to locals as ‘The Smoke That Thunders’ – is one of the seven natural wonders of the world and the sheer power of this massive body of water plunging into the Zambezi Gorge is awe-inspiring and unforgettable. Lake Kariba, with its game-rich shores and islands, is an idyllic safari spot featuring mind-blowing sunsets; Hwange National Park is known for its huge herds of elephants; and a kayak trip down the Zambezi through the Mana Pools National Park will appeal to the intrepid traveller, providing close encounters with crocodiles, hippos and a host of other wildlife.

What’s on offer in Zimbabwe?

Hwange National Park - Elephants - Zimbabwe

Hwange National Park

Hwange National Park is Zimbabwe’s biggest reserve, home to a profusion of wildlife, including giraffe, lion, zebra and approximately 40 000 elephants. It provides sanctuary for all the country’s endangered species, including a population of wild dogs thought to be among the most sizeable surviving groups on the continent. Terrain ranges from desert dunes and savannah lands to rocky outcrops and sparse forests, and visitors have the choice of game drives, guided walks or horseback safaris as a means of experiencing the park and its creatures.

Lake Kariba - Hippo - Zimbabwe

Lake Kariba

The planet’s most voluminous man-made lake, Kariba is a popular tourist destination that was created in the 1950s when the mighty Zambezi was dammed. It stretches for more than 200 kilometres along the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia, forming a natural boundary between the two countries. The lake’s waters are home to abundant crocodiles, hippos, fish and aquatic birds, while its shoreline and islands are rich with terrestrial game such as elephant and buffalo. It has become one of Zimbabwe’s main tourist attractions offering houseboat holidays, fishing safaris and wonderful game viewing experiences.

Matobo National Park - Zimbabwe

Matobo National Park

The Matopos Hills are rich in history dating back more than 300 000 years and in 2003 the area was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Over 3,000 registered San rock art sites are dotted across the area in caves and crevasses. In more recent times the hills were of great significance to the Ndebele people, their name meaning ‘Bald Heads” was given by their founder Mzilikazi. The Hills are the resting place of the country’s most famous colonial icons including Cecil Rhodes, Leander Starr Jameson and Allan Wilson and his ill fated Shangani Patrol.

Gonarezhou National Park - Zimbabwe

Gonarezhou National Park

Meaning ‘place of elephants’ Gonarezhou is Zimbabwe’s second-largest national park, extending across a vast area of baobab-dotted scrubland and pale orange sandstone cliffs. It is home to 4 of Africa’s ‘Big Five’ – elephant, leopard, lion and buffalo – as well as a multiplicity of other animal and bird species.

Great Zimbabwe Ruins

Great Zimbabwe Ruins

Once Zimbabwe’s capital, the ancient city of Great Zimbabwe is the biggest and most significant stone archaeological complex in sub-Saharan Africa. It is also one of its oldest – thought to date back to the 11th century and second only to South Africa’s Mapungwe. Composed entirely of rectangular granite blocks stacked on top of one another without the use of mortar, the walls and towers of the city measure up to 12 metres in places, and it is unsurprising that Great Zimbabwe was designated a World Heritage Site in 1986.

Our top Zimbabwe safari packages:

Please call: 01227 753187 for a tailor-made Zimbabwe safari itinerary.

Fast Facts

BEST TIME TO VISIT: April to September – the days are sunny and warm and game viewing is at its best between June and August. The rainy season is late October to March when the Victoria Falls are at their most spectacular and huge flocks of birds can be seen migrating south from Europe.

TIME DIFFERENCE: GMT + 2 hours

VISAS: Visas are required for entry into Zimbabwe and can be obtained either before departure or on arrival.

Yellow Fever: Yellow Fever vaccination certificate is required for travellers arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission.

LANGUAGE: English

CURRENCY:  US Dollar.

FLYING TIME FROM UK: Approx 13 hours.

 

 

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