What is, however, interesting and heart-warming, is the fact that this townVictoria Falls did not change at all, except for the fact that the once hustling and bustling tourists are gone. Only a few dwellers were going around and too many “small enterprises” that want to make some living. The US dollar, now being the official currency, also makes things more expensive for tourist from Africa. Some hotels offer special prises though. It is, however, amazing how the town was all sustained; the people, though a lot poorer and politically drained, still friendly and honestly welcoming.
Andries remembered how the dreadfully shocked everybody in town were, a couple of years ago, when one of his student’s bag were stolen from their tent and how everybody opened the hearts and businesses donated clothes. The police caught the culprit within 24hours and relocated the student’s passport.
Our Taxi dropped us at the municipality campsiteVictoria Falls Rest Camp, where we’d booked a 2 bedroomed self catering chalet. As appose to Botswana, the Zimbabweans love their lawns and everything is nice, green and clean. As almost all the hotels and lodges are within a 10km2 , we explored the area on foot and visited the3 most popular hotels on our list – The Kingdom Hotel, built entirely on the local theme – the Zimbabwe ruins with the great enclosure and the works, but with modern interior and a popular casino, Ilala Lodge the luxury sister hotel f Victoria Falls Rest Camp and the majestic old lady, almost a 100years, the Victoria Falls Hotel, with a Victorian theme and the history and great names to go with it. Both of them are overlooking the falls and Victoria Falls is just 5 minute walk from the entrance to the national park.
Though I visited the Victoria Falls many times before, at different times of the year and different depths of the water level, it always had been just something beyond description and one can only agree with David Livingston the great missionary/doctor/explorer and the first European who-ever sat sight it: “Something so beautiful, must have been gazed upon by angels in their flight”. Being one of the 7 natural wonders of the world, this is not just something to see, but to experience. Every time there was something else that captured my imagination; whether it was just standing I awe, watching the trillions of cubic meters’ of water plunging over the edge of the gauge to between 87m and 100m at the bottom with a mesmerizing mixture of white foam and mist steaming from beneath, just to rain down on the adjacent forest, or running in the rain from view point to view point, when the fall are full, it remains a memory, forever.
Judy Ludwick Sept 2011