A visit to the mighty Victoria Falls is high on many a bucket list, and for very good reason. The falls without doubt put on one of nature’s most spectacular displays. While they might not be the tallest falls, or even the widest, on earth, they are considered the largest falls in the world. Stretching an incredible 1.7km (more than a mile) in length and plunging over 100m (350 feet), making them one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. When the falls are full, more than 500,000,000 litres of water flow over the edge every minute! As this huge volume of water cascades into the gorge below the updraft sends a plume of mist soaring into the sky, reaching up to 1km high. The roar of the water is deafening and combined with the billowing mist gives rise the local name for the falls, Mosi-oa-Tunya, “The Smoke That Thunders”.
In nature there is a season for everything, and so it is too with the Victoria Falls. Whether you want to experience them in all their roaring watery wonder or in their gentler low-water tumble, make sure you choose your dates wisely. To help you with this we have created a handy month-by-month guide to when is the best time to visit the falls based on various factors:
- Best time to see the falls in their full watery glory
- Best time to enjoy safari in the surrounding reserves
- Best time for birders to tick off their list
- Best time for adrenalin junkies to take on the famous white water rapids
- Best time for those seeking the ultimate thrill of swimming on the edge in the Devil’s Pool
At this point we need to hold our hands up and admit that none of what we are going to say below is ever 100% certain. We are dealing with nature here and there are many variables. The Victoria Falls are created by the waters of the Zambezi River flowing over the edge of a great chasm, the water levels of the Zambezi River in turn depend on when and how much rain falls in Western Zambia and Angola. The water falling there feeds into the river upstream and creates the rises and falls in river levels. There is usually a 1 – 2 month gap between the rains falling in the catchment area and the water flowing over the falls. The amount of water that falls each year can have a significant impact on what you see flowing over the falls – especially in the period July – December. There were very low rains in 2019 and by August the falls were very low, now in 2020 there have been excellent rains and we expect there will still be great volumes of water in August. Our guide is based on the patterns of rise and fall over decades and give as close as possible an accurate indication as to what you can expect.
So, without further ado here is our guide, and don’t forget to check out the gallery at the bottom!