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Travel bucket list idea:

Last updated: 04 April, 2024
Expert travel writer: Richard Holmes

While the waterfall is the main attraction, the game reserves around Victoria Falls offer some decent sightings, and are a bucket list inclusion if you have not yet been on safari.

You might not see the ‘Big Five’ (elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion and leopard) but to experience the African bush – in vehicles or on foot – is unforgettable and unmissable. The best reserves for sightings are Victoria Falls Private Game Reserve, and Zambia’s Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park – home to the protected white rhino.

Make sure you book a night drive. They cost more, but are tremendously exciting (especially for kids) and offer the chance to spot lesser-seen nocturnals like porcupines and aardvarks.

Logistics

Price from: £120
Minimum age: 5
Age suitable: 8+
When: All year around
Duration: 3-4 hours

Getting there & doing it

There are private reserves and national parks on both sides of the Zambezi, with operators offering morning and afternoon game drives in the morning and afternoon. Return transfers from your hotel are usually included, and some tours offer breakfast or dinner out in the bush.

When to do it

Safaris run all year round, seven days a week. The bush is most beautiful in the rainy season, but if animals are your priority, the August to December dry season draws them from the bush for easy viewing at waterholes.

Start times vary by operator, but most will leave around 5am-5.30am. Night game drives depart around 4.30pm. There’s a reason game drives are only offered in the early morning and late afternoon: animals, like wise humans, avoid doing much in the heat of the day.

Destination guides

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Destination guides including or relevant to this experience

Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

Victoria Falls

The world-famous Victoria Falls is also Africa’s adventure playground, offering an array of brilliant adrenalin-packed adventure activities plus Big Five safaris.