Waterfalls to hippos: our first four days in Africa

Africa. It’s the only major continent we both haven’t really visited before (discounting Egypt and Morocco) and knew the least about.

We always had it on the itinerary but at some points we wondered if we’d actually make it here, but after just a few days, it is already one of the highlights of the trip.

What makes it more surprising is that we decided to join a group tour. Something we have never done before for this length of time (22 days and nights). There seemed to be no way to get around unless you are willing to self-drive a 4×4 and be ready to deal with burst tyres and corrupt officials, so it was really the only option but we were still a little reluctant.

Our truck

We were worried about losing our autonomy, camping for that long and the other people on the tour. But so far so good: it’s actually a nice change not making hundreds of decisions every day; the camping has been a real highlight; and the group is good – and we aren’t even the eldest!

Life on the road

So back to what we’ve seen and done. We first flew from Dubai to Livingston, Zambia (via Doha and Jo’burg). Here we checked into a really nice hostel with a pool, ate some crocodile (delicious) and saw the powerful Victoria Falls. 

So much spray you can barely see the falls

We have seen some amazing waterfalls but these were impressive: 1,000 cubic metres per second litres of water dropping up to 108 metres. It was the tail end of the rainy season so they were at their full force and there was one section where you got completely soaked by the spray.


After two nights we crossed the border (a bizarre 2km walk in a no-mans land between the two countries) to Zimbabwe. Whereas Livingstone felt like a proper local town, the town of Victoria Falls was definitely built for tourism which was an interesting contrast.

We saw the falls again from this side and did a sunset cruise down the Zambezi river where we saw a lot of hippos which are surprisingly considered the most dangerous animal in Africa. Fast both in out of the water apparently.

Crazy tour to Livingstone Island (Zambia) seen from Zimbabwe
No fences…

Relaxing with a G&T on the Zambezi


That night we met up with our group totalling 30. A few were starting here but most had been on the truck since Kenya, over 50 days ago! It was a boozy first night of shots, doing to YMCA and finding out all the gossip. 

The next day we were on the road to Botswana.

One Comment Add yours

  1. Zoe says:

    Your trip is fast becoming a great weekly geography lesson for Harry !!

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