THE BEST DESTINATIONS
EXPERIENCE SOUTHERN AFRICA
The Victoria Falls are among the greatest waterfalls in the world and are a unique experience.
The Victoria Falls form the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia. The falls are accessible to visitors both from Zimbabwe, from the small town of Victoria Falls, and from Zambia, from the small town of Livingstone. The mighty water masses of the Zambezi plunge up to 110 meters deep over a width of around 1.7 kilometers . In the rainy season, around 10 million liters of water flow over the edge of the rock every second. When there is low water, as is often the case in drought years, there is little left of the otherwise raging water volume in September and October.
When the water falls into the gorge, spray is formed that rises up to 500 meters and with its moisture allows lush vegetation, a small rainforest, to grow. Even from the plane when landing at Victoria Falls Airport, you can see the giant spray cloud.
Because of the volume caused by the falling water and the impact on the bottom of the gorge and the spray, the locals called the cases “Mosi-oa-Tunya”, which means “smoke that thunders”.
The British missionary and researcher David Livingstone was the first European to deal with the cases in November 1855. Livingstone wrote in his diary at the time: “Even the angels must be delighted when they fly over the falls”. He named the waterfalls “Victoria Falls” in honor of Queen Victoria of England. The deep gorge and the course of the Zambezi were created by the river digging into softer material made of sandstone of different levels of resistance and washing it away. You can visit the falls from both Zimbabwe and Zambia. We visited the cases in different seasons from both countries. There is no place from which you can overlook the entire falling edge.
Botswana trips are known worldwide for their impressive wilderness and the protected habitats of the local wildlife. Of the total area of the country, 38 percent is accounted for by game reserves, national parks and protected areas such as the Chobe National Park, the Moremi Protected Area or the Khwai Private Reserve. Most of these are not fenced in and ensure that the animals can live in the wild. Tourists often travel home to Botswana with the feeling that they have visited a never-ending natural paradise on a Botswana safari.
With a total area larger than France, the country is home to just 1.8 million people. The government also transfers this vastness to the number of visitors to the national parks. The best time is from April to December, the average daytime temperature here is between 15 degrees Celsius and 30 degrees Celsius.
The Caprivi Strip is an inspiring safari destination in Namibia. Caprivi National Parks on the Kwando, Okavango, Chobe, and Zambezi River offers great bird-watching and game-viewing.
What You Can Look Forward to in Caprivi Strip
The Caprivi Strip, an inspiring safari destination in Namibia, is made up of a number of reserves and parks for birding and game viewing by boat and on land. Five mighty rivers flow through here – the Kwando, Okavango, Linyanti, Chobe, and Zambezi Rivers. The Caprivi Strip is sandwiched between Angola, Zambia, and Botswana near the tip of Zimbabwe and close to other outstanding holiday hotspots like Chobe National Park, Okavango Delta, and Victoria Falls. Rundu is the western gateway to the Caprivi on the Okavango River in Namibia. From here the main road travels to Katima Mulilo in the east on the Zambian border, which is the leading town in this region with an airport and a good local market. Impalila Island, on the far eastern tip of the Caprivi Strip, is a popular holiday spot where the Zambezi and Chobe Rivers meet. There is no marked border between the Caprivi in Namibia and Botswana, so the game moves back and forth seasonally across the river.
In the Caprivi Strip in northern Namibia you can stay in riverside lodges and camps, on islands or houseboats, and enjoy game drives, bush walks, fishing and boating, or canoeing, and cultural visits. You can see big herds of Elephant, Buffalo, Lion, Hippo, Crocodile, Leopard and sometimes Wild Dog, lots of antelope and hundreds of birds. The area is remote and roads are accessible by 4×4 only. Certain destinations combine well on a well-planned self-drive holiday or you can arrange a fly-in itinerary to specific lodges that are more difficult to access.
Caprivi Safari Adventure
Wildlife in the Caprivi Strip is varied with 4 out of the Big Five game present. The border of Botswana is unmarked so the animals move seasonally from area to area and through unfenced National Parks. You can see large herds of elephants, also Buffalo, Hippo, Crocodile, Lion, Leopard, Wild Dog, and a variety of antelope including Giraffe, Lechwe, Roan, Sable, Tsessebe, Sitatunga, Reedbuck, and Waterbuck.
Caprivi Strip safari activities in Namibia include game drives, bush walks, and sundowners on floating pontoons. Game viewing by boat, sunset cruises, and canoeing adventures are a great way to relax. From a houseboat, you can watch wildlife at the water’s edge at prime times and enjoy wonderful passing scenery whilst cruising along. The Caprivi Strip is also ideal for a birding safari with more than 400 recorded species – the highest in Namibia.
West to East along the Caprivi Strip:
Mahangu Game Reserve
This small reserve borders on the Okavango River and Botswana. It has diverse scenery and wildlife, with lush riverine forest and Okavango floodplains on one side and dry Kalahari bush on the other.
Bwabwata National Park (was Caprivi Game Park)
Next to Mahangu is Bwabwata which stretches from the Okavango River to the Kwando River. The game moves freely between this park and Botswana. The waters are clear and there are lush islands in the river. Popa Falls is a series of rapids in a very scenic area on the Okavango River.
Mudumu National Park
Deep in the Caprivi, this park is characterised by the beautiful waterways of the Kwando River which are superb for boating and canoeing. The dense vegetation is favoured by all kinds of animals while marshy areas host Sitatunga and Spotted Neck Otters.
Mamili National Park
Mamili is secluded and has vast swamps, oxbow lakes, and wetlands where the Kwando River turns into the Linyanti which becomes the Chobe River. Birdlife is prolific here. The park is reached on a day trip from Mudumu.
This is a popular area in the far eastern Caprivi at the confluence of the Zambezi and Chobe Rivers. You can enjoy canoeing in the floodplains and see animals along the waterfront of Chobe National Park whilst enjoying a Chobe River cruise.
Catch one of the world’s best sporting fish in Caprivi
The Okavango River enters the Caprivi Strip in the west and flows out into the Okavango Delta, while the Kwando River cuts through the heart, becoming the Linyanti Wetlands before changing direction into the Chobe River separating Nambia from Botswana. The great Zambezi River forms the eastern border between Namibia and Zambia before the massive plunge of the Victoria Falls.