Anyone who’s been to Zimbabwe recognizes it as one of the most magnificent countries of Southern Africa. It is unique in culture and beauty and it is home to a plethora of African wildlife and the largest waterfall on the continent. There are so many things to see and do in Zimbabwe that it is the best choice for many safari-goers. For first-time visitors to Africa, or those returning for the 20th time, Zimbabwe has lots to offer. Here are some of the reasons to travel there.
1. Wildlife, Wildlife, Wildlife!
Zimbabwe sets the stage for some of the world’s most fantastic array of African wildlife. Very few other countries offer so many opportunities to see Africa’s exclusive wildlife species, including the “Big 5” (Elephant, Lion, Rhino, Leopard and Buffalo). Zimbabwe also has an incredible concentration of birds, and some very unusual species of animals can also be found, such as the king cheetah in Gonarezhou, and the Samango monkey in the Eastern Highlands. And because Zimbabwe is still considered a remote destination, the chance of experiencing a really amazing wildlife encounter is excellent.
2. Affordable Safari Options
In recent years, the Zimbabwean government has changed the country’s currency to the US Dollar. This change has brought nationwide economic stability, and this has led to an increase in tourism to Zimbabwe. Inbound tour operators have maintained reasonably-priced tours, which has developed tourism as a viable and stable sector of the business economy. Countries surrounding Zimbabwe have also developed tour options which have included highlights of Zimbabwe, and this has led to a positive economic turn for the whole of Southern Africa. Zimbabwe, among the rest, is still largely considered the most affordable safari destination in Africa.
3. So much to do!
Zimbabwe, and in particular, Victoria Falls, offers an incredible array of fun activities, and there truly is something for everyone. For wildlife enthusiasts who want to get up-close-and-personal with the animals, there are Elephant-back safaris and walking with lions. For thrill-seekers and dare-devils looking for a challenge, try the bungee jump, white water rafting, or abseiling. For those who want to experience the great African outdoors, there are cruises and canoe trips, as well as the fantastic helicopter flights over the falls. Other options include touring the falls on foot with a guided tour. Leisurely strolls, cultural visits and open-market shopping for fabric, curious, and other African specialties are all possibilities in Victoria Falls – an African destination unlike any other.
Because of the political and economical climate in recent years, Zimbabwe has not been a major tourist destination for quite some time. People have visited in limited numbers since the turn of this century, and only very recently, tourists are again starting to re-discover Zimbabwe, and finding it to be untouched, pristine, and offering a kind of exclusivity that is hard to find in the rest of Africa. The national parks have remained intact and remote, which is particularly heartening, given the widespread destruction of natural environments in other parts of the world. Travellers can also expect to experience more intimate encounters with wildlife simply because conditions in Zimbabwe’s environment have remained wild and unaffected by development.
Due to unprecedented demand, Zimbabwe is seeing some really exciting developments in tourist lodgings, and there is something available to suit every budget. High-end hotels, tented camps, bed-and-breakfasts and self-catering campsites are all on offer throughout Zimbabwe. Barefoot- luxury options are also being developed, which offer an exclusive experience of Africa at affordable rates. African Luxury Hideaways have announced an addition of two new accommodations establishments in Zimbabwe: Elephants Eye, near Hwange National Park, and Cliff Top Lodge in Victoria Falls. Both lodges will offer true barefoot-luxury accommodation, built with eco-friendly materials, and maintained with sustainable resources, including solar power, locally made furnishings, eco-pools, grey-water systems, and using locally harvested organic food sources and locally-trained staff. African Luxury Hideaways are making great efforts in these new accommodations to sustain Zimbabwe’s precious environmental systems!
6. National Parks
Zimbabwe has several national parks – all worth visiting, and each offering a unique experience of this vast and diverse country. Popular tourist destinations have always been Victoria Falls and Zambezi National parks (for reasons above) as well as Mana Pools (for the most incredible wildlife), Chimanimani (for unbelievable and unique mountainous beauty), Motobo Hills (for the Great Zimbabwe Ruins) and Hwange (known for its elephants). Each national park has a lot to offer, with incredible ecosystems, lush vegetation, abundant waterways and temperate climates year round. The recent upsurge of touristic interest has found that all of Zimbabwe’s national parks have been preserved and protected over the years of political change, making them that much more appealing to new visitors.
7. The People: Character and Craftsmanship
From the amazing history found in the rock art at the Great Zimbabwe Ruins, to the incredible talent seen in the paintings and carvings of the crafts and curios, Zimbabwe proves itself as a rich source of unique cultural artistry. The abundance of rock art and ruins bear witness to ancient traditions in Zimbabwe, dating as far back as the Pre-Middle Stone Age. Zimbabwe is also home to many ethnic groups including the Shona people, whose soapstone sculptures have become world-famous in the art scene. Some visitors come specifically to purchase the unique carvings and fabrics that Zimbabwe is known for. And while Zimbabwe’s people are known for their artistry, they also have a reputation for being compassionate, generous and extremely friendly. Many visitors have remarked for years that Zimbabwe is among the most welcoming nations in the world. Now is the time to experience a taste of Zimbabwe yourself!
Visit www.travel2zimbabwe.com to find the perfect safari for you! We have a great selection of Victoria Falls packages as well as tours that include Hwange National Park, Mana Pools, Lake Kariba and many other Zimbabwe Highlights.