Victoria Falls, one of the world’s seven natural wonders, is a whole year-round holiday destination for many on their bucket list. However, Victoria Falls is not only about the falls themselves. There are so many opportunities and things to do, so you will need to plan your trip based on the activities you would like to take.
Victoria Falls, like other countries, has different seasons and not all activities can be done whole year round. For example, water activities and the famous Devil’s pool are closed during the high water season. On the other hand, during the dry season, you will not see the falls in their full power. Let’s have a look closely at the seasons and activities and when is the best time to visit Victoria Falls.
High water season
High water season is when the water power is at its strongest, which is between February-May. During the rainy season from November till February, the falls filled up with water and now it is the time to see the Falls at their most thrilling.
You have to be prepared with a raincoat as you will get soaking wet during the rainforest walk. It is not just a small spray of water, but a really strong shower. The Falls can be heard 40 kilometers away. Therefore the name Mosi-Oa-Tunya, which means Smoke that Thunders. The disadvantage of this strong power is the mist that the water is creating while falling and so you will not have clear visibility of the Falls. Also, be ready for the slippery roads.
However, during this high water season, you are not able to do the water activities like white water rafting or canoeing. Also, be prepared that Devi’s Pool is going to be closed as it is not safe when the water level is high. Not only the water activities, but safaris are not good at this time as well. You will not see many animals at this time and also the roads may not be accessible at the beginning of the season when there are still some rains. Therefore if you are planning to do any of these activities, this is not a good time for you.
When it comes to weather, the days are still hot and nights warm, but not too hot like during September-November. You can also expect occasional thunder.
Low water season
The low water season is when the water power is at its lowest. This happens from September till November. The days during this time are very hot around 30-35 degrees celsius, therefore if you are not a fan of very hot weather, this time may not be the best for you.
It is also not a good time for you when your main reason is to see the Falls. The water is still strong and in some places, you get some spray from the water, but you will not see the full power. Moreover, some parts are completely dry, so there is only a rocky wall. Mostly the Zambian side is completely dry.
On the other hand, this is the best time for water activities lovers. If you want to do any of the water activities like white water rafting, canoeing, high-speed jet boat, and mostly Devil’s Pools, this is the right time for you. These activities can be done only during the low water season due to safety.
When it comes to seeing wildlife, it is better than the high water season, due to thinner vegetation and also animals coming to drink water from the water holes. However on hot days, the animals are hiding in the bush, so you may see them only early in the morning or late in the evening.
We visited Victoria Falls during this season in October and we had an amazing experience here. We saw the Falls and it was spectacular and power was still strong even not the strongest. We sat in the Devil’s pool, took the Zambezi river cruise, went for a rhino walk, and for a safari in Zambezi National Park (we didn’t see many animals there). You can read about our trip here.
Medium-high water season
If you are looking for something between these two seasons, there is a medium-high water season and it happens twice the year. From December till January and from June till August.
December till January is the rainy season in Victoria Falls, so the water starting to rise. The Falls have stronger power, but you need to be ready for some rain and clouds.
June till August is winter in Victoria Falls. Don’t expect very cold or snow as the days are still hot and evenings warm, however, you need some warmer jumpers and long trousers for early mornings and evenings. The Falls still have a strong power but slowly drying out towards the dry season.
This is the best time for those who would love to do some safaris and see most of the animals. You can expect great game drives due to warm days and cooler nights, and almost no or very little rain. You can go for a safari in Zambezi National Park, Hwange National Park, which is the largest in Zimbabwe or you can combine your visit to Victoria Falls with Chobe National Park in Botswana.
So when is the best time to visit Victoria Falls for you? As you can see all the seasons have something interesting and exciting to see and do and I’m sure it is not an easy decision. You just need to choose your priorities. I believe that no matter which season you will choose, you will have an amazing holiday that you will remember forever. Victoria Falls is one of the best destinations and on many bucket lists.