In my last post I shared with you moments from my exploration of Livingstone Island, a World Heritage Site, which sits on the edge of the Victoria Falls. Its only been open since 1992, allowing exclusive access to get up close and personal with the falls. I also mentioned that I was going to be sharing with you pictures from the adventurous dip into the Devils Pool. The Devil's Pool is a natural pool on the edge of Victoria Falls and it's thought that it was created by thousands of years erosion. It's beauty lies in the fact that you have a rock ledge on the edge that stops you from being swept down the 100 meter gorge by the torrents of water. Well you can wait no longer as the pictures are below. Before that a little detail on how this came about. This trip has been a long time coming and the Devils Pool even more so. I have mentioned it a couple of times now on the blog and it was between this and a bangee jump. I am glad to say the the Devils Pool won!
Getting to the Devils Pool
Our journey started off at Tongabezi, and drove to the Royal Livingstone Hotel where we had our private boat onto Livingstone Island. The boat ride on the Zambezi is about 5 minutes and as you approach the island you can see the spray rising that is created by the water on the falls. Arriving on the Island we were met with drinks before being shown around the island by our guide. On the island you can also find the 2005 commemorative plaque that was erected here to commemorate 150 years since David Livingstone's first arrival. The views of the falls are just breath-taking. You have views of Zimbabwe on the other side of the falls where you can also spot people who head over there to view the falls from the Zim side. After our coming to the end of the tour of the little island it was show time! The Devil's Pool is just adjacent to the to the Island. With the water still flowing right next to you and falling into a gorge that has a drop of a good 100 meters, it was a scary, exciting and rather an exhilarating adventure. Of course having not been before you dont know what to expect so rely fully on the Tonagbezi guides for guidance on where to swim. Having stayed at Tongabezi and knowing that they put safety as a priority I didn't worry too much. The Devil's Pool is only open during low season when the water levels on the Zambezi go down, allowing for safer swim across before you get into the pool. There a natural rock wall on the edge of the falls that keeps swimmers from being swept away with the force of the might Zambezi flowing out and down the 100 meters on the other side of the falls. Its amazing standing on parts of the falls that would otherwise be completely submerged during the rain season when the water is in full flow and you can feel the sheer force and power of the water as you feel the spray from the other side of the viewing platforms.
Activities on Livingstone Island
Other than being a dare devil and diving into the Devils Pool, you can also have lunch on Livingstone Island that I mentioned on the previous post, you can book intimate picnics for you and your partner as well in small groups. Tongabezi runs the trips to the Island in small groups through the day, note that these groups are no more than 10-15 at a time for safety reasons as well as the fact that this is a protected natural habitat. As far as I am aware Tongabezi are the only licensed operator on Livingstone Island so be absolutely careful if being offered unlicensed guide to the Island as this please is dangerous and not somewhere you can just wander off on your own or take some short cut with someone just to save a quick buck.
It was a truly magical experience. Such an adrenaline packed trek and I absolutely enjoyed the adventure of swimming across, which wasn't too bad or as scary as I thought it would be. Most parts were only as deep as 4-5 feet when swimming up stream. I am not the strongest of swimmers and still managed it. Its definitely not for the faint-hearted but it will be the most exciting thing you will ever do. There is also a rope as an added safety precaution if needed. The pool itself is about 5 meters and small and cosy too. You can see us chilling on the edge of the pool as if we don't have 100 meters on the other side. Sitting on the edge of the falls while torrents of water are gushing over the edge and dropping below. I wasn't going to risk my Nikon taking a dip into the falls too so I took a smaller camera across the falls in a dry bag which was carried by one of the guides who was also acting as photographer for our mini Indiana Jones adventure on the Victoria Falls. If you arrive during the lunar moon then you can also have the double bonus of diving in the Devils Pool, but also have the incredible rainbows on your Victoria Falls back drop. These rainbows are only visible during the lunar days in the year and are just such a beautiful sight. After frolicking in the pool and waving at the people on the other side of the falls who were watching our crazy swim, we swam back onto the island for some lunch before catching out boat back to Royal Livingstone Hotel, where our car was waiting to whisk us back to the luxe living at Tongabezi.
|Our guide showing me where to step before getting into the devils pool.|
|On the edge of Victoria Falls|
|Waving over at the people on the Zimbabwe side.|
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