The Blue Arrow bus system is certainly the most comfortable and stress-free way of traveling between major cities in Zimbabwe. The Blue Arrow runs both directions from Harare to Bulawayo and makes only four stops in between (at Chegutu, Kadoma, Kwekwe, and Gweru).
Harare to Gweru is four hours. Harare to Bulawayo is six hours. The buses run on time and are generally air-conditioned. Buses stop at the Golden Mile Hotel in Kwekwe for a bathroom break and a chance to get something to eat.
Most of the stops are near the center of the town. The Fairmile Hotel is just outside of Gweru. The hotel will call a taxi for you (for a small fee) and the ride into town takes less than five minutes.
Mon-Sat Sun Mon-Sat Sun
Harare depart 08h00 14h00 Bulawayo depart 08h00 14h00
Chegutu depart 09h30 15h30 Gweru depart 10h00 16h00
Kadoma depart 10h00 16h00 Kwekwe depart 11h00 17h00
Kwekwe depart 11h15 17h15 Kadoma depart 12h15 18h15
Gweru depart 12h10 18h10 Chegutu depart 12h45 18h45
Bulawayo arrive 14h15 20h15 Harare arrive 14h15 20h15
Harare: Chester House, Speke Ave
Bulawayo: Unifreight House, Fife St
Chegutu: Chegutu Hotel
Kadoma: Kadoma Hotel and Conference Centre
Kwekwe: Golden Mile Hotel
Gweru: Fairmile Hotel
The 70 km road along the south bank of the Zambezi river from Kazungula border to Victoria Falls is inside a national park. The trip takes about 45 minutes. There are a lot of wild animals on this trip.
The 70 km road from Botswana to Victoria Falls takes about 45 minutes. The taxi drivers are waiting outside the immigration office, and will approach you when you get out of the immigration office. They will ask for 30-40 USD to Victoria Falls. The normal price is 30 USD, but I think you can bargain the price even more. I recommend to pay the price and have a happy driver who can be co-operative. There are a lot of wild animals on this trip. Ask if he can stop when you see the animals. Also ask if he can assist you to find some guesthouses in Vic Falls.
Want to see Zimbabwe and not have to worry about your car or bus running out of fuel? Ride the Shongololo! So what does the word Shongololo mean? It a giant African Millipede the length of a man’s boot. Shongololo Express trains are like long Cruise Ships on land. They offer luxury travel that can take all the hassle out of some places in Southern Africa that you really want to visit. They offer luxury cabins, excellent chefs preparing authentic African dishes, local wines and professional staff. Packages range form weekends to 16-day treks. Each train has air-conditioned Mercedes Benz touring vehicles for days out with guides who speak English, German, Dutch and French. Adventures even include scuba diving, hot air ballooning and elephant rides.
The Shongololo travels to nine countries across southern Africa: Namibia, South Africa, Lesotho, Swaziland, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Zambia and Tanzania.
When it was time for us to leave Harare for our flight back to South Africa, we were unexpectedly told that we needed US $20 each to pay for the airport departure fees. I had thought that this was included in the price of our tickets, so did not have the required amount of cash with us (and they did not really want any substitute for hard currency!). Luckily, our hostess was still with us and she was able to talk them into accepting her Zimbabwean currency as a substitute. While she was busy with this, I managed to slip all of our excess Zim $ and SA Rand into her bag to compensate her and off we went through Customs into the departure lounge. It then transpired that our return flight to SA was going to be delayed for a couple of hours due to a mechanical problem in Johannesburg. Eventually this delay stretched into 9 hours, during which time we were not allowed to leave the single-room departure lounge because we had already cleared Customs. During this period, all the waiting passengers became very good friends (luckily for us because the now-cleaned-out Browns needed to borrow a bit of cash to get some potato chips out of a vending machine). Eventually, the airlines admitted that the South African Airways Airbus 320 was not going to make it at all, so they arranged alternative flights directly out of Harare on whatever could be set-up. All the luggage was lined up on the tarmac outside the lounge and each passenger had to come out and identify their bags for the alternate flights. Instead of flying back to Jo'burg to catch our SAA flight to London, we ended up taking a British Airways flight direct to London. Overall, I found that the experience did not bother me (in fact it was just another interesting experience) - I was just glad that the airlines were able to make things work to get us back to England in time to complete the rest of our trip home.
If you thinking of arrive and taking taxi in zimbabwe well you may just find that taxi have no fuel at the moment, lets hope things change soon for this country.
Make sure if you arrive that you have a collection! to your hotel
Thanks to the inspirational leadership of Uncle Bob, Zimbabwe is chronically short of car fuels. In fact these pictures were taken just over the border in Botswana where they have no such issues. As you can see people cross the border to fill up with as much as they can. I drove to Victoria Falls after filling up my car before entering the country. It is the first time in my life I have been approached by taxi drivers offering to hire me (cash!) to make fuel runs as my car had enough petrol to get to Botswana. Crazy. Make sure you top up before driving in and have enough to get yourself back out. Count on not being able to get ANY fuel in Zimbabwe. You probably won’t.
I was amazed to see that the roads are in very good shape, at least the mainroads are. Many countries have it alot worse. I'd love to go back and just drive around the country. You can see baboons on the side of the roads, and chameleons running or just standing on the middle of the road, it looked funny :)
When its dark or getting darker watch out for bigger animals like buffalo, and people walk very long distances on the sides of the roads so do keep your eyes open.
Zimbabwe has an excellant public transport system so you should have no problem getting a bus to wherever you wanted to go. It is also relatively easy to travel overland into other countries by bus or by train.
The best way to have a good overview and the most breathtaking experience ever is to make a flight by helicopter to see the Victoria Falls.
We had a 30 minutes flight, could overview the whole area, had a deep look in the gorges and really good opportunities for photographing.
We got a bonus and had also a flight just 2 M above the Zambesi River along the route of white water rafting.
For more see my Victoria Falls page.
Making game drives is the best in small open air landrovers, like we had in Hwange National Park.
In these cars you have a direct connection with the surrounding area and wildlife.
You can feel, smell, hear and nearly touch.
And very good opportunities for photographing too!!!
During the trip in Zimbabwe we had our own bus to travel around.
So in the Whovi Park we could make the gamedrive with this bus.
The bus had some problems with crossing the tracks and got stuck. So we had to give a hand by bringing stones to get the bus out of this situation.
Our last keg of our ZIMBABWE SAFARI. Was
a 3day canoe trip on the MIGHTY ZAMBEZI.
I took point with VICTOR. Our guide for this part. I wa so lucky being alone. The other
clowns in the other canoes where all over the place at times. This could be very boring or
very risky. But you get a good workout!!
Those 3 days were very choppy, and we were
going against the current.
I guess I'll just have more ZIMBABWE BEER!
This tip could easily be under Must See Activities as well. After finishing canoeing in the national park, I got to the town of Kariba. From there I wanted to get to Victoria Falls, which is west, on the other side of Lake Kariba. The ferry was fully booked, but I waited around to try and get a last minute space. The operator said that I could have a ticket, but that I would have to sleep on the deck of the boat. This turned out to be the best part. The ferry takes over 18 hours, leaving late morning and arriving early morning the next day.
The ride was relaxing with nice views along the shoreline of the lake. Then sleeping was great. The regular passengers slept inside on chairs with footstools right next to each other in a big ring. I slept outside on the deck. I was give a matress about 10 cm thick. I spread out my sleeping back and slept out under the stars. The motion of the boat prevented attack by mosquitos. It was one of those great unexpected surprises, being 'forced' to sleep out on the deck underneath the stars.
This as you can guess wasn't in front of the LIONS! Same PARK different day!
MATUSADONA PARK, ZIMBABWE. We had a
LAND-ROVER with a bad starter! So, If we couldn't put the truck on some kind of a slope.
Well guess what! We had to push the thing!!
One of the 3 days here. We stopped to look at 5 LIONS. You can get out of your truck in
ZIMBABWE! We had to anyway! We had to PUSH! Hardly 50feet away! LIONS just staring at us like we were CRAZY!
I guess we were!!
MATUSADONA PARK, ZIMBABWE 10/1999
Zambezi River, 80 km from Victoria Falls, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Good for: Solo
Corner 3rd Street/Jason Moyo Avenue, Harare, Zimbabwe
Good for: Solo
service was allright rooms are very basic, clean but a little used the restaurant was a posivtive...more