Victoria Falls Warnings and Dangers

  • Warnings and Dangers
    by Juyish
  • Warnings and Dangers
    by Juyish
  • Warnings and Dangers
    by Juyish

Most Recent Warnings and Dangers in Victoria Falls

  • Juyish's Profile Photo

    Be aware of your surroundings

    by Juyish Written May 22, 2013
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    The vendors in Victoria Falls are extremely aggresive and come up too close to you. Make sure you let them know to stand back and also don't allow them to intimadate you. Bargain the prices down because at these curios shops the shops here will try to charge you four times the prices of what you know is something that is not worth it. Make sure you bring singles (US DOLLARS) and also bring pens with your and bandanas (they will bargain for those items to trade). Try to stay with a small group or another person, especially if you are a woman. Also use your pens to trade for the Zimbabwe dollars that are completelty useless! They will ask for a dollar but again bring a pack of pens and use those to trade for those dollars they are great souvenirs.

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  • CatherineReichardt's Profile Photo

    The hawkers at Vic Falls are EXTREMELY persistent

    by CatherineReichardt Updated Dec 20, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Based on my own and several friends' recent experience, the hawkers (street traders) + curio salemen + general beggars at Vic Falls have become persistent to the point of being almost overwhelming - doubtless due at least in part to Zim's parlous economic state. Zimbabweans are generally extremely polite and courteous people, but at Vic Falls, these character traits have been all but forgotten, and tourists venturing outside controlled tourist areas (eg. hotels, the park around the Falls) run the risk of being surrounded by hoards of people.

    Unfortunately if you buy goods or give money or food, you are likely to be mobbed by others eager to get their share - although this can be intimidating (particularly for people who are new to Africa and/or don't speak English) it is important to note that you are very unlikely to be on the receiving end of any physical violence.

    The Tourist Police are meant to control this problem, but can't be everywhere at once, so be sensible and viligent. If you go out, do so in groups, and politely but firmly rebuff people who approach you. If you decide to buy goods or give money, be aware that this will encourage other hawkers/beggars to approach you. Politely but consistently stress that you're not interested - if you get drawn into conversation, you'll only get hard luck stories (many of them unfortunately true) and it will become progressively harder to extricate yourself from the situation.

    Sadly, if Zim doesn't get this situation under control somehow, then they run the grave risk of driving yet more of the tourism business over the border to Zambia (which is already preferred by the more risk-averse tourists). Unfortunately there is no easy fix ...

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  • glabah's Profile Photo

    Very Difficult Living in Zimbabwe

    by glabah Written Oct 12, 2011

    I visited the Victoria Falls side in Zimbabwe in 2008, and at that time conditions were quite difficult for the people. Inflation stood at a very high rate, and food was massively in short supply due to the new farming policies implemented by the government.

    Thus, it should not be surprising that right at the bridge between Zimbabwe and Zambia I would be treated to hundreds of people hounding the border crossing, hoping to sell tourists just one small buffalo sculpture, or just one small bit of anything, in order to try to survive.

    I didn't buy a thing from any of them, as I knew that would be more trouble - with several hundred of them and only one of me, there is no way I could buy something from each of them.

    Conditions may very well have changed in the area around Victoria Falls since then, but I highly recommend carefully considering the conditions there before crossing the border, and making sure that you take a minimum of valuables with you when you cross.

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  • Durfun's Profile Photo

    Don't trail your fingers in the river!

    by Durfun Updated Feb 3, 2010

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This is a very dangerous thing to do, as there are lots of crocodiles in the Zambezi, and they are known to attack quite happily!!

    A friend of mine did white water rafting in the Zambezi in the appropriate season, and told me they often fell in the river - there were no crocs, so I was a bit too relaxed..

    I was leaning out of our open & flat pontoon raft, and trailing my fingers in the water, just to feel the Zambezi. Our host/guide started yelling and going ballistic, causing me to jump back in! He then pointed out a croc that had just surfaced about 20 feet away!!!

    Later he explained that crocs don't like the rapids, but there are plenty in the calm waters - the very stretch we were in!

    *** Do you know that as long as a croc has a depth of three feet of water, it can propel it's entire body length clear, out the water??? Scary thought!

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  • georeiser's Profile Photo

    Slippery rocks in the falls

    by georeiser Written Oct 26, 2009

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    A crazy guy standing on the edge of the falls
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    Some parts of the footpath along the falls are not fenced in. This applies for the main areas and the Horseshoe area. Be careful because the rocks along the foothpath are slippery due to the constant mist from the falls.

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  • georeiser's Profile Photo

    Dangerous animals

    by georeiser Written Oct 25, 2009

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    Dangerous animals
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    Road signs in the Zambezi drive warned for wild animals. "You are now entering Victoria Falls National park". All wild animals are unpredictable and dangerous. Walking after prescribed hours is strictly prohibited.

    The road is closed for walking during the nights due to the wild animals, and especially elephants. And it's not allowed to swim in the Zambezi river because of crocodiles. I didn't see any other animals than an elephant on the other side of the river. But it was exciting to walk in an area with footprints from wild animals.

    It took about 30 minutes to walk the Zambezi drive from the town to the river, and then follow the river to the falls.

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  • mikelisaanna's Profile Photo

    Extremely aggressive souvenir peddlers

    by mikelisaanna Written Sep 1, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    We encountered some very aggressive souvenir peddlers during our trip across the Zimbabwe border. While they did not harm us, they were VERY persistent. The one thing that we did buy from them was some multibillion Zimbabwe Dollar bills, which were some of our favorite souvenirs from the trip.

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  • PierreZA's Profile Photo

    Malaria

    by PierreZA Written Apr 15, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Some areas at the Falls are like Rain Forests

    Do remember that this is a malaria area.
    Do take precautions, eg medication and repellent. The hotel we stayed at supplied you with repellent if you did need some.
    Take especially care when you go out at night or on a sunset cruise.

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  • PierreZA's Profile Photo

    Hassled by locals

    by PierreZA Written Apr 15, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Bridge between Zimbabwe and Zambia

    Being hassled by locals (craft sellers) was the only unpleasant aspect of the visit to Vic Falls. It is mostly craft sellers, whom become very annoying in the sense that they are extremely persistent. Then there are the ones trying to sell you Zim Dollars (eg One Trillion Dollar Notes)! As you get closer to the hotel, they do tend to disappear suddenly. They will ask you for your shoes or even your socks.
    It is not easy to get rid of the harassment, but I think one should remember that these people are extremely poor.

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  • PierreZA's Profile Photo

    Tourist Police

    by PierreZA Written Apr 15, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Tourist Police

    Tourist Police are quite visible in Victoria Falls Town as well as the area around the entrance to the Falls. They are very helpful and it seems that they do have an impact on your comfort and safety. If you need to get rid of someone harassing you, rather get the help of one of these guys than to get involved too much with the person/situation you are unhappy with.

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  • DAO's Profile Photo

    THE SHAME OF ROBERT MUGABE

    by DAO Written Jun 28, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    Zimbabwe is a dictatorship and a badly run one at that. Over the last couple of years the economy has been run into absolute ruin. Zimbabwe used to be a major EXPORTER of food. Now it relies on outside food aid to feed its people – when the government lets the aid in. What does this mean to you as a traveller? You cannot get petrol. Plan on that fact. Also meat is hard to find. Just look at the picture of the shelves in the grocery store in Victoria Falls. What meat you find is frozen and must be cooked within an inch of its life. That’s because electricity goes off in the afternoons. It may have thawed before. Vegetables and other items can still be found. If you have a car, take everything you need from another country. It’s a shame, but that’s the state of affairs.

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  • Trading money...

    by RblWthACoz Written Jul 1, 2006

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Woo hoo! I'm a millionaire!!!!

    Techincally it is illegal to enact currency transactions in public places. There are tourist police around who would no doubt stop you if they saw you. As you walk throughout the streets, young guys will offer you hundreds of thousands of Zim dollars per U.S. dollar. If you want to risk such a transaction on the streets is up to you. Otherwise, be prepared to pay an exhorbitant amount of money for things if you change your money at the "official" rate.

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  • Travmad's Profile Photo

    Malaria is here!

    by Travmad Written Apr 9, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    It's the same in parts of Africa you can contract malaria. Two weeks after leaving Vic falls Mark came down with the symptoms and we got him to hospital to start treatment. It can really dampen your travels and takes a long time to completely heal from.

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  • Rusket's Profile Photo

    Look out for unwanted "passangers"

    by Rusket Written Jun 15, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Drums

    Take care when buying woodwork, it might be infested by borer beetles or other parasites. One salesman tried to convince us that the holes we found on a drum he tried to sell us, was drilled to improve the sound! The drums on the picture, although they are of poor quality, are free of parasites, but we had do "loose" another drum we had bought. Even though we were careful, the holes were cleverly disguised, we did not see them until we got to Nairobi :-(

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  • K.Knight's Profile Photo

    Safety is not a concern on the Zimbabwe side.

    by K.Knight Written Nov 9, 2004

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Don't go too close.

    As you can see by this photo, fences are very fragile and often broken, if they exist at all!

    It costs US$20.00 per person to enter the Victoria falls tourist section and I really do not know what they do with all of this cash. The facilities are basic, the fences may as well not be there but the Livingstone memorial, views of the falls and the walkway around the top of the escarpment are not to be missed.

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Victoria Falls Warnings and Dangers

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