Travel from Zimbabwe’s magnificent Victoria Falls to spicy Zanzibar

Experience the roar of Victoria Falls at the start of this incredible adventure through Zimbabwe, Zambia and Tanzania towards Zanzibar, East Africa’s famed Spice Island. From verdant national parks and remote highland villages, to savannas stretching towards the horizon and roaming herds of elephants, Africa never fails to delight, inspire and move. Come face-to-face with wild animals, explore landscapes rich in natural beauty and meet some of the friendliest people you’ve ever come across on this memorable journey across Africa’s eastern plains.


Start
Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Finish
Zanzibar, Tanzania
Countries
Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Style
Basix
Theme
Overland, Wildlife
Code
YXOSC
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 22

Why we love this trip

  • Experience the rumble and roar of Victoria Falls from the Zimbabwe side, which gives you the broadest view

  • Discover the magic of South Luangwa National Park, a highly concentrated arena of noble beasts and exotic wildflowers

  • Explore the largest ruins in sub-Saharan Africa, the World Heritage-listed Great Zimbabwe

  • Get a taste of the colourful cities of the region, with time in Lusaka, Harare and Bulawayo

  • Chill out on the northern beaches of Zanzibar enjoying white sand and sparkling blue sea of the Indian Ocean

  • Accompanied by a local crew — a leader, driver and cook – you'll be in excellent hands for the duration of your adventure

Is this trip right for you?

  • There are many excellent optional activities on this trip. We recommend taking this into consideration when budgeting for your adventure.

  • Our purpose-built overland vehicles allow for excellent game viewing, equipped with large sliding windows. They have no air-conditioning, however, so they can get dusty and hot at times.

  • The going can be slow over the long distances and often bumpy roads. A little bit of patience will go a long way towards your enjoyment of this beautiful land!

  • This is a participatory camping trip, so team spirit is key. You'll be expected to help out with camp setup, food preparation and cleaning.

  • Some passengers will have been travelling together prior to the start of your trip.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2016 to 31 December 2016. View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2017 - 31 December 2017

Mhoro! Welcome to Zimbabwe. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 4pm. You can arrive at any time as there are no activities planned until this important meeting. Please ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time for this, consider arriving a day early so you are able to attend. If you are going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting. Your campground is centrally located in the town of Victoria Falls. Accommodation upgrades are available here – ask your leader if you are interested. WiFi is also available.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Victoria Falls - Canoe trail - USD185
  • Victoria Falls - Canoe trail (half day) - USD100
  • Victoria Falls - Flying fox - USD50
  • Victoria Falls - Helicopter flight (12 mins) - USD175
  • Victoria Falls - Helicopter flight (25 mins) - USD334
  • Rafting & river boarding combo (half day) - USD218
  • Village & township tour - USD50
  • Wine Route Canoe trail - USD55
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
You may notice businesses offering an optional 'Walk with the Lions' experience. We recommend that Intrepid travellers bypass this activity as it is contrary to Intrepid's Responsible Travel guideline, which opposes the exploitation of animals, wild or domestic. Professional wildlife conservation organisations, including Born Free and the World Society for Protection of Animals (WSPA), advise that habituating lions to humans can shorten their life and may result in lion-human conflict issues. While there is some merit in the argument that the money that you pay for the activity goes towards lion research, Intrepid believes the negative impacts on the lions' rehabilitation far outweigh this. You may also hear about an activity known as the Devil's Pool. Intrepid does not recommend this activity, due to the high risk involved. Our leaders cannot assist in organising this activity. If you are interested in a scenic helicopter flight, use Zambezi Helicopter Company (CAA Zimbabwe) – the onl
Visit the magnificent Victoria Falls. This thundering curtain of water is about a mile wide, falling 108 metres into a narrow gorge below. In the wet season, the spray created can rise up an incredible 400 metres and the falls become an impressive raging torrent. In the dry season, the view of the falls is unobstructed by spray and you can see little islets in the river below. Today your leader will take you to a local activity centre where a range of activities will be on offer.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Visit Victoria Falls
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Depart Victoria Falls and travel toward Bulawayo (approximately 6–7 hours). Known locally as the 'City of Kings', Bulawayo, Zimbabwe's second largest city, has an interesting history and some impeccable colonial architecture. You will have the afternoon free to explore, so take the opportunity to visit local markets, chat with locals or perhaps find a game of football or rugby to watch. In Bulawayo you will stay in a campground with shared facilities and WiFi. Upgrades are also available (subject to availability).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Natural History Museum - USD10
  • Railway Museum - USD2
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Perhaps get up early and take the option to go to Matobo National Park. Home to a significant population of black and white rhinoceros that can be tracked on foot, Matobo National Park is also the site of the grave of Cecil John Rhodes, the founder of Rhodesia and the De Beers diamond company. The Matopos area has great spiritual and cultural significance to the local people and there are many sites within the park where important ceremonies still take place.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Matobo National Park - Guided walking safari - USD95
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Drive the short stretch to Masvingo (approximately 5–6 hours). This colonial settlement – the oldest in Zimbabwe – makes for the perfect base from which to explore the Great Zimbabwe Ruins. The ruined city, now a UNESCO World Heritage site, was first constructed in the 11th century. It's thought to be the former royal palace of the Zimbabwean monarch. Spend a few hours exploring this intriguing site before heading off to camp. Your campground in Masvingo has shared facilities, and upgrades and WiFi are available.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Great Zimbabwe Ruins
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Travel to Harare today (approximately 5–6 hours). You will arrive at your destination in time for lunch. You only have an hour or two to explore Zimbabwe's capital city, so if you're feeling active and up for a stroll, get out and make the most of it. Perhaps head to the National Gallery, the museum, the botanical gardens or simply wander the city centre and visit the colourful markets. Accomodation upgrades are offered at your camp (subject to availability).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • National Archives - USD3
  • National Botanical Gardens - USD5
  • National Gallery - USD1
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Today you will cross into Zambia and drive to your campsite just outside Lusaka, Zambia's capital (approximately 8 hours). Your journey begins with a nice scenic drive to the border. At some point during the day there will be an opportunity to stop at an ATM and stock up on any supplies you might need at a shop or market. Your camp has shared facilities, and upgrades are available.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Spend some time checking out one of the fastest-developing cities in southern Africa. You'll see that it's a modern city but still retains a traditional African feel, with its busy markets and friendly people. Afterwards, travel on to Petauke (approximately 8 hours). The camp tonight has facilities, WiFi and upgrades (availability dependent).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Make your way through the heartland to South Luangwa National Park (approximately 6 hours). The concentration of animals around the Luangwa River and its lagoons is among the highest in Africa. Many elephants, buffaloes, leopards, Thornicroft’s giraffes and lions are known to roam here. There are also some 400 species of birds inhabiting the area. A great way to experience South Luangwa and its beautiful scenery is to take an optional river trip – ask your leader for more details. Your camp tonight has basic facilities.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Perhaps enjoy some optional activities in your free time. You can choose to rise early for an exhilirating morning game drive in a 4X4, then head back to the camp for lunch (as this is the hottest part of the day) and return to the park for a game drive at night. A village walk is another good option, if you'd like a snapshot of daily life in the local community.

Notes: A one-off payment covering entrance to the park (USD25) is payable in addition to the prices of optional activities.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • South Luangwa - Night Game Drive - USD40
  • South Luangwa - 4x4 Dawn Game Drive - USD40
  • South Luangwa - Game Walk - USD50
  • South Luangwa - Village Walk - USD20
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
After crossing the border into Malawi, head straight to your camp on the shore of Lake Malawi (approximately 9–10 hours). Malawi is dominated by its lake, which covers almost a fifth of the country and provides a livelihood for many Malawian people. Fishermen, fish traders and canoe and net makers all ply their trade on Lake Malawi. A common sight is that of a fisherman in a bwato (a dugout canoe made from a hollowed tree trunk) fishing on the still lake at the break of day. Your campsite at Kande Beach is right on the shore of the lake. Upgrades are offered here, but there is no WiFi available.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Enjoy free time to soak up your idyllic surrounds. You might like to participate in one of the many water-based activities on offer – ask your leader for a recommendation. As well as chilling out on the beach, make sure you take the opportunity to meet some local Malawians – easily some of the friendliest people in Africa.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Drive to your camp in Chitimba (approximately 5–6 hours). Chitimba lies along the coast of Lake Malawi and has lovely beaches, friendly locals and a laid-back atmosphere. When you arrive, perhaps take a stroll and acquaint yourself with this different part of the lake. Enjoy the scenery of banana palms, papaya trees and the Livingstonia and Nyika mountains looming nearby. Camp facilities, WiFi and upgrades are available here.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Today is a long travel day into Tanzania and its southern highlands (approximately 9–10 hours). Sit back, relax and watch as the countryside passes by. On arrival you will set up camp on the grounds of a farmhouse situated on the outskirts of this pleasant settlement. Perhaps go for a walk around the old farmhouse to welcome the evening. Camp facilities, WiFi and upgrades are available.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Travel to Kipepeo Beach just south of Dar es Salaam (approximately 13 hours). Throughout this long drive you will travel through the lovely Mikumi National Park. Situated at the foot of the thickly wooded Uluguru Mountains, Mikumi is Tanzania's fourth largest national park. Although you won't take a safari into the depths of the park, a good selection of the wildlife that resides in Mikumi can usually be seen on the way. The camp is on the grounds of a hotel with upgrades usually possible and situated next to the beach.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Drive into Dar es Salaam and then catch a ferry to the 'Spice Island' of Zanzibar.
Filled with idyllic beaches, winding cobblestone alleyways and fragrant bazaars, Zanzibar has a colourful history – everything from slave traders to Arabian sultans and fruit exporters. The sight of traditional dhows sailing along the coast evokes what the island must have been like in Livingstone's day. The old part of Zanzibar's main city is known as Stone Town. The best way to see this exotic port town is on foot, exploring the markets, shops, mosques, palaces and courtyards. When the sun is setting, perhaps enjoy a sundowner from a bar overlooking the seafront, and a seafood curry at a local restaurant. Spend a night in Stone Town at a basic inn with double/twin-share rooms and access to WiFi.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Prison island tour - USD25
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
As this is a combination trip the composition of your group may change at this location. There will be a group meeting to discuss the next stage of your itinerary and meet your new fellow travellers. Please note the Zanzibar portion of your itinerary may have more passengers than the maximum group size of 22 as we have a crossover of trips starting and finishing in Zanzibar.
Check out of your Stone Town hotel and drive to the spice plantations. Here you will receive a guided tour, during which you can learn all about the history of this town's renowned spice trade. You will also have the opportunity to touch, smell and taste various spices, such as cinnamon, vanilla and ginger. Sample some teas made with these spices too. After lunch you will head to the northern beaches, where white sands and sparkling blue seas await. This is the Indian Ocean at its best.
Accommodation
  • Bungalow (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Zanzibar Spice tour
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Enjoy free time in this beautiful archipelago today. There are many ways you can spend your day – perhaps talk to your leader for any recommendations they might have. Snorkelling in search of exotic fish is an excellent option. You might also like to feast on a sumptuous lunch of grilled local seafood, or simply relax in a hammock underneath a coconut tree with a good book.
Accommodation
  • Bungalow (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Dhow trip - USD60
  • Snorkelling - USD60
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
After checking out this morning, you will make your way back to Stone Town, arriving at the Safari Lodge before 10am. Your trip comes to an end here. Ferries depart Zanzibar for Dar es Salaam daily at 7.30 am, 9.30 am, 12.30 pm and 3.30 pm. It's important to allow enough time to get back to the mainland if you need to catch your departing flight from Dar es Salaam. Speak to your leader about the best way to do this.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
If you wish to stay on in Zanzibar, post trip accommodation can be pre-booked at the Northern Beaches beach resort or in Stone Town.

Meals

18 breakfasts, 13 lunches, 13 dinners

Transport

Overland vehicle

Accommodation

Bungalow (2 nights), Camping (with facilities) (15 nights), Hotel (1 night)

Included Activities

  • Visit Victoria Falls
  • Great Zimbabwe Ruins
  • Zanzibar Spice tour

Dates & availability

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Important notes

1. A single supplement is available on this trip.
2. This is a combination trip made up of 2 shorter trips. This means the composition of your group may change in Stone Town as some new group members join you.
3. The Zanzibar portion of your itinerary may have a few more passengers than the maximum group size of 22 as we have a crossover of trips starting and finishing in Zanzibar.
4. This trip finishes upon arrival at our finish point hotel in Stone Town on Day 19. Please do not book any flights until after 4pm this evening.

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

Reviews

Our Vic Falls to Zanzibar trips score an average of 5 out of 5 based on 1 review in the last year.

Vic Falls to Zanzibar, June 2016

Jacqueline Slee