Browsing Category: Zambia

Zambezi River

The Zambezi River is a river that originates in Zambia.  The river starts from the marshy dambo in the northern west part of Zambia.  The elevation of the source is about 4,900 feet (1,524 m).  The Zambezi flows through a large broken edged plateau sitting between 2,950 feet (900 m) and 3,937 feet (1,200 m).

You are invited to discover and learn more about the Zambezi River and what makes it one of the Seven Wonders of Zambia.

What makes the Zambezi River one of the Seven Wonders of Zambia?

Statistically speaking, the Zambezi River is the fourth largest river in Africa, and the largest river flowing into the Indian Ocean.  The basin extends 540,000 square miles (1,390,000 sq km), which is close to 1/2 the Nile River.  The river is 1,599 miles long (2,574 km) long.

Although the river flows through Zambia, Angola, Namibia, Botswana, and Mozambique before finishing in the Indian Ocean, it is a Zambian wonder for a number of reasons.  The source of the Zambezi River is in Zambia.  Additionally, it is the source of Lake Kariba, which is the world’s largest man-made lake and reservoir.  It is also the source of Victoria Falls, which is the world’s largest waterfall and one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World.

The Zambezi River and Kariba Dam work together to be the main power source for Zambia and Zimbabwe.  The Cahora Bassa

What are the best ways to see and experience Zambezi River?

The best ways to see and experience the Zambezi River varies depending on preferences.   Victoria Falls and the surrounding Zambezi River area is one of the more popular places to see the river.  Sunset dinner cruises are popular providing travelers with an opportunity to experience the river, see wildlife and witness one of the most amazing sunsets in Africa.

More adventurous travelers can take speed boat trips through the roaring river, white water rafting excursions, canoe or kayak trips, or even bogey boards across the white water rapids.  The canoe or kayak adventures also provide visitors with a chance to see and experience wildlife, whereas the other adventures are more about the excitement of the activity.

What is the Zambezi River weather like?

The weather for the Zambezi River varies depending on where you are at in Zambia.  However, it is fair to say that you can plan for the traditional rainy season running from November through April and the dry season running from May through October.  The dry season is the better time to visit the Zambezi River because you can expect comfortable temperatures during the day along with clear blue and sunny skies.

When is the best time to visit the Zambezi River?

The best time to visit the Zambezi River is probably during the period from mid-June through late July.  The water flow will not be as high as May and early June, but it is still flowing well and starts to be aesthetically appealing with rocks piercing the face of the falls.

Moving later in the dry season will create the possibilities of losing boating or white water rafting options because water levels get too low.

April and May will be the months with the highest water levels providing the most dramatic sense of the power of the falls.  September and October run the risk of little to know water over the falls.  August is a good month if you want to explore atop the falls.

How do you get to the Zambezi River?

The majority of travelers looking to experiencing the Zambezi River are also looking to experience Victoria Falls.  Internationally speaking, visitors can fly directly into Livingstone International Airport.  This is the best way to reach the Zambezi River.  It is possible to take bus service from Lusaka, but that is a 6 hour long bus ride and not the recommended route.

Photography Tips for capturing the Zambezi River

The best pictures tend to be sunset pictures.  The Zambezi River and the African sun do not disappoint.  Some of the most picturesque sunsets come from the sun setting on the Zambezi River.  One of the best locations for capturing these images comes from one of the dinner cruises that take off daily right near Victoria Falls.

Another good location to take sunset images while also relaxing with drinks is the river deck provided by the Royal Livingstone.  You can see the rising mist of the falls at the same time, and if you are lucky you will probably be visited by wildlife right on the hotel grounds.

Further tips and insights will be added as experienced or discovered.  If you are a photographer and have insights to share for future photographers visiting the Zambezi River, please submit them to Seven Wonders through the Contact Page.