18 November 2014

Victoria Falls | Lunch on Livingstone Island

Victoria Falls | Lunch on Livingstone Island

"So lovely, it must have been gazed upon by angels in their flight" - David Livingstone

Although the first known Europeans to visit Zambia were the Portuguese, it is thought that David Livingstone was the first Brit to explore the Zambezi River (and gaze upon the Victoria Falls), which gives life to Mosi-oa-Tunya. This translates to The Smoke that Thunders. You might know this as Victoria Falls, renamed by David Livingstone in 1855 in honour of Queen Victoria as he stood on what is now know as Livingstone Island. In high season you wouldn't be able to stand here as it is completely submerged in sheets of water. Most Zambians and Zimbabweans still use its original name and Zimbabwe went as far as officially renaming the falls back to "Mosi-oa-Tunya" last year.


Experience Victoria Falls


Getting up close and personal with Victoria Falls is the only way to experience it. To do this you have to get on the Livingstone Island for the ultimate experience of The Smoke that Thunders. As we were staying at Tongabezi who manage the island we booked in for a little afternoon adventure to take a dip into the Devil's Pool. Before the Devil's Pool, which I will be telling you about in the next post, we had a tour of the falls with a touch of history on the local people and how David Livingstone was introduced to the falls by the people lived on the land. Your experience on the island starts off with a boat ride from the Royal Livingstone hotel and onto the island. For a little extra treat, my boyfriend and I had the boat to ourselves for the trip! Well, in addition to the skipper and our guide of course. As we arrived on the island we could see the smoke created by the falling sheets of water on the other side. Victoria Falls is known to be the largest sheet of falling water with a width of 1708 meters, twice the size of Niagara Falls and more than twice that of the Horseshoe Falls. Victoria Falls is only rivaled by that of the Argentinian Iguazu Falls.

If you can see the falls in both high and low season then I would definitely recommend it, but even more so if you can get on the island for a close and personal encounter. Having not been around here since childhood it was great to bring my boyfriend here to witness this beauty. Even great that he was crazy enough to dive into the the Devil's Pool with me. Look out for my next post on that soon. Below are my shots from experiencing the Smoke That Thunders.

Victoria Falls | Lunch on Livingstone Island
Victoria Falls | Lunch on Livingstone Island
Victoria Falls | Lunch on Livingstone Island

Victoria Falls | Lunch on Livingstone Island
Victoria Falls | Lunch on Livingstone Island

Best time to visit the Victoria Falls


If you can manage to visit Victoria Falls in both the dry and wet season then I would definitely recommend it. During the rainy season, which starts from December to April, Victoria Falls can be experienced at its fullest with East and West cataract cascading with water that sprays from Zambia all  the way onto the the Zimbabwean side. The spray is visible a good 30 miles away. If you visit in the dry(July to September) season you will have the opportunity to stand on Livingstone Island and take on the Devil's Pool if a little African adventure is what you seek.

Another beautiful sight you can witness on the Zambezi is Victoria Falls during the lunar rainbow, check out Tonagbezi for more details. This happens during the three nights around the full moon. At full moon,  these beautiful rainbows appear over Victoria Falls. Below  are the dates for the 2015 full moon appearance.

Full moon dates 2015:

Monday, 5 January
Wednesday, 4 February
Thursday, 5 March
Saturday, 4 April
Monday, 4 May
Tuesday, 2 June
Thursday, 2 July
Friday, 31 July
Saturday, 29 August
Monday, 28 September
Tuesday, 27 October
Wednesday, 25 November
Friday, 25 December

Where to Stay In Livingstone


Livingstone has many places to choose from and covering every budget from backpackers budget to luxe accommodation. From camping, glamping, luxury tents, lodges and hotels but in the main town, on the Zambezi and near and with views of Victoria Falls. Three that I have personally experienced are below. You can also read about my stay at Tongabezi here.

Maramba River Lodge


Maramba offers 3 different types of accommodation; luxury tents, chalets and camping sites. The surroundings overlook the river where you can spot elephants, hippos and crocodiles which come to find on the river right by lounging decks. 

Victoria Falls |Maramba River Lodge -  Livingstone Island

Tongabezi Lodge


Nestled in the shadows of Mosi-oa-Tunya national park. Tongabezi has few luxury and intimate lodges with beautiful views of the Zambezi and wildlife. It offers up a an amazing selection of activities such as a romantic dinner on a floating table on the Zambezi. Lunch on Livingstone Island, game drives and more. I had one of the most memorable times here. 

Victoria Falls |Tongabezi River Lodge -  Livingstone Island

Royal Livingstone Hotel


This place offers an indulgent experience that transports one to a bygone Victorian-era Africa. Beautiful surroundings where you can see the Smoke That Thunders; Victoria Falls, from the lounging decks and from the pool but if I had to choose, I would do Tonagbezi as there is a certain exclusivity about the place and that fact that you have privacy in your own little lodge with private views of the river and from your lodge terrace you can see wildlife. The hotel grounds here also have wildlife that roam the grounds such as Zebra and impalas.  Whether you are staying at the Royal Livingstone Hotel or not you cannot leave the town without trying out the afternoon tea served in the tea room at The Royal Livingstone, its thought to be a must-do when at the Victoria Falls. 

Victoria Falls | Royal Livingstone Hotel -  Livingstone Island

40 comments:

  1. Your pictures are spectacular! This is on our list. Thank you for feeding the wanderlust.

    Kelly
    www.alovelylifeindeed.com

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    1. Thanks Kelly. I am glad you like them. I am sure you will love it when you do manage to visit.

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  2. I love Victoria Falls...How did you not get soaked?

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    1. Yes we did, when we dived into the Devils pool! Otherwise we were there during the dry season so the waters is at its lowest so there isnt that must spray not that I would be standing where I too these pictures during the rain season.

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  3. I would definitely stay in one of the lodges and I love your pictures you look like a queen! We will get to Africa someday because both of us (my husband and I) have an historical/emotional connection to the continent. It's not your "typical" destination but then again we're not the "typical" travelers :) Can't wait for the post about Devil's Pool!

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  4. Im always fascinated by your pictures! and I cannot believe you got into the Devils pool! thats high on my bucket list, looking forward to that post!

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  5. Oh Victoria falls its on my bucketlist ..... pics looks cool

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  6. What a view! This is definitely a lunch to remember.

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  7. stunning photos!
    love it :-)
    xx inga
    www.heartoverhead.de

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  8. Looks awesome! Great pictures!
    It's amazing on how close from the falls you can get! (:

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  9. Oh wow, BEAUTIFUL pictures! And you look happy in all of them...I believe it, the place is stunning ;)

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  10. How does it compare to Niagara Falls?

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    1. Not even close. Vic Falls is only rivalled by Igauazu falls.

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  11. Lovely photos Bianca! Especially that first one!

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  12. Wow those photos ate absolutely incredible. And also a little scary suw to the sheer height of the calls. Just incredible

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  13. Oh my . . . a)look at those falls and b) look at you! Both so beautiful! This experience would be amazing, I can't wait to visit here also!

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    1. Thanks! Yes it is just a magical places. Hope you get to experience it soon.

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  14. I am from Zimbabwe and I always love it when people visit my country. I now live in London but I do miss the space and all over stress-free life over there.

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    1. Hahaha hi neighbour! I am orginally from Zambia but live in London.

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  15. oh wow, great tips! I'm going to victoria falls next summer and absolutely can't wait! crossing my fingers i'll match the timing to see the lunar rainbow :)

    Sher
    www.shershegoes.com

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    1. Awesome! My Devils Pool post will publish on the blog tomorrow. Drop by and check it out :D

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  16. Bee, I don't know what was more fabulous, you or the view! It looks like you 2 really got to experience the falls in style.

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    1. Aww thank you! I am glad you enjoyed them :D

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  17. I hope that if I ever go, that it happens to be on a full moon night! It sounds beautiful

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  18. Would love to visit Victoria Falls!! Looks amazing!!! It is high up on our bucket list! Must be the most awesome place to have lunch! Love your outfit too, you look stunning!

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    1. Thank you :D Yes definitely a bucketlist spot!

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  19. Love you pictures (and your hat!!!). This looks like a beautiful place to visit. I have added it to my list!

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    1. Awesome! Hope you get to tick it off soon.

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  20. What a stunning location!

    xo T.
    initialed.ca

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  21. omg!!! so lucky for your to experience that! that is just breath taking!!

    Animated Confessions

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  22. Zimbabwe and more particularly Vic Falls is one of my all time favourites! I only regret not wearing a fab outfit like yours when I was there. The pictures look amazing!

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    1. I would have loved to see the Vic falls from Zimbabwean side but we were in Zambia for these shots :)

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  23. Gorgeous and inspiring article! Thanks for putting so much time to do it!

    www.searchingforlbd.com

    www.searchingforlbd.com

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    1. Glad you appreciate :D

      Loving your blog too.

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  24. Beautiful moments captured perfectly :-)

    http://juanamaua.blogspot.com

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  25. Amazing photos. My husband and I have Victoria falls on our bucket list. Lovely inspiring images.

    Thank you for sharing.

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    1. Thats awesome, I am sure you will love it!

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