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WHITE WATER RAFTING (day and multiday options)
Above the Victoria Falls the Zambezi River is wide, slow flowing and nearly 2 kilometres wide at some points; below the Falls the volume of this huge river is constrained within the confines of the Batoka Gorge to an average width of about 40 metres. Eroded by the gradual regression of a series of waterfalls, of which the Victoria Falls is only the most recent, the Batoka Gorge is over 120 metres deep at its head and extends for approximately 120 kilometres, deepening to over 350 metres at its deepest point. Here the river becomes a twisted raging torrent full of power and menace, exploding in a series of over sixty rocky rapids and forming one of the wildest stretches of commercially run white water in the world.
The Batoka Gorge section of the Zambezi is known as a high volume pool-drop river. The rapids are numbered from below the Victoria Falls and are increasingly spaced downstream. Commercial rafting on the Zambezi River rapids started in 1981 and nearly half of the rapids are classified as Grade 5, the biggest rapids which can be run commercially – Grade 6 is ‘unrunnable’ – and includes renowned rapids such as ‘Stairway to Heaven’, ‘Gulliver’s Travels’ and ‘Oblivion’.
Please note: The type of trip offered varies according to season and the height of the river, which varies significantly over the year. Months indicated are approximate and depend on the timing and volume of the rains and arrival of floodwaters. Please also note that in some years rafting can be suspended completely during periods of high flood (usually in April but timing again varies according to the floods).
- Low Water Rafting (July-December) – The Low Water Rafting trip is the biggest rapids at the best time. Running from rapids 1 to 18. The trip is designed to finish leaving guests enough time to get back into Victoria Falls and enjoy an afternoon activity.
- High Water Rafting (January-June) – At this time of year the level of the Zambezi River is swollen from the seasonal rains over its vast upper catchment. The High Water Rafting trip runs from rapid 11 to rapid 23/24 due to the washed out nature of the first rapids at this high water time. The trip is designed to finish leaving guests enough time to get back into Victoria Falls and enjoy an afternoon activity.
Rafting the rapids of the Zambezi River
- Three day/two night trip – A full two days of rafting, covering some 50 kilometres through the Batoka Gorge. Day One: This 23 km stretch is by far the wildest section of river that will be covered. A cold buffet lunch will be served at rapid No 11, overnight beach campsite at rapid No 21. This section includes renowned rapids such as ‘Stairway to Heaven’, ‘Gulliver’s Travels’ and ‘Oblivion’. Day Two: There is now more time between major rapids than on day one, a chance to relax in the sun as we drift down calmer stretches. The steep vertical walls of the gorge give way to a wider valley at times and white sandy beaches dazzle in the sunshine before running the Upper Moemba rapids. Overnight beach camp by Moemba Falls. Includes rapids such as ‘The Narrows’, ‘Let’s make a Deal’, and Chimamba Falls. Day Three: Final stage of rafting to the ‘Old Dam Site’, the original proposed location for the Batoka Gorge Dam. (Transfer back to Victoria Falls.)
- Six day/Five night trip – An extra 3 days of rafting the Zambezi River from Moemba Falls, where the Zambezi is squeezed into a narrow and spectacular cataract (and where you have to get out and walk), downstream to close to the confluence of the Matetsi River, including the rapid-chain known as ‘Ghost Rider’, described as the biggest commercially run roller coaster wave train in the World! (Includes transfer back to Victoria Falls.)
Victoria Falls is the ultimate Africa tourist destination, offering not only one of the seven natural wonders of the wor...
Discover Victoria Falls is proud to offer some of the best accommodation options in and around Victoria Falls. Browse ou...
We offer genuine, uncontrived safaris in unfenced wilderness areas, designed for the more discerning traveller. Please e...
Anyone who loves the bush or wants to truly experience the natural environment at Vic Falls needs to do a trip with Charles Brightman. His work with the anti-poaching unit is inspirational and we cannot recommend him highly enough.
Barbi Jay – Australia
Discover Victoria Falls is by far the best way to experience all that this incredible part of the world has to offer. I have been to the falls several times but came away from this most recent trip with the most memorable and special experiences I could wish for.
London, United Kingdom
Charles Brightman was our guide in the Zambezi National Park and his enthusiasm for nature and all things was so contagious that our 3 hour Walking Safari went for 5 and a half hours and finished only because we had a midday lunch appointment. Treat yourself to a wonderful experience.
Our bush walk with Charles Brightman was so informative and his love for the bush, animals, birds, environmental issues and the country was inspiring. And the sunset dinner was wonderful! Many, many thanks - a great service!
We engaged Charles as our private guide whilst on holiday in Zimbabwe last October. Cannot recommend him enough - he made our trip to Hwange!!
Discover Safaris, based in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, is owned and oper...
Discover Victoria Falls with our background information section on the...
Victoria Falls is the ultimate Africa tourist destination, offering no...
Discover Victoria Falls is proud to offer some of the best accommodati...
We offer genuine, uncontrived safaris in unfenced wilderness areas, de...