Zambezi River Discovery Itinerary

Day 1

You’ll arrive in Livingstone, Zambia, where you meet your trip leader. After checking in to the beautiful riverside David Livingstone Safari Lodge, we’ll load up and head off for a sunset cruise on the upper Zambezi River, upstream of Victoria Falls on the newest cruise boat, the Lady Livingstone. This is an amazing opportunity to enjoy your first glimpses of elephants, hippos, crocodiles and much more under your first African sunset. After the cruise we will enjoy a first class meal at the lodge’s riverside restaurant where we’ll cover all of the details and logistics of the adventure to come.


Day 2

Today we begin our journey down the Zambezi, putting in directly below Victoria Falls. This is our first taste of some of the most exciting rafting in the world, and we will pay our respects to the African River God, Nyami Nyami, one wave at a time. After some spectacular rapids and a short portage, we arrive at our camp on a beautiful white sand beach in the bottom of the gorge.


Day 3

This morning we load up the gear rafts and head downstream through infamous rapids Oblivion, Overland Truck Crash, Stairway to Heaven, and many more. We reach our camp at yet another beautiful beach in time for sundowners.


Day 4

Today the rapids spread out a bit and we are able to enjoy the great scenery and wildlife of the Batoka Gorge, navigating several more colossal rapids in between with names such as Closed and Open Season, the Narrows, Chimambo Falls and Upper Moemba. Tonight we make camp above the riverwide, 20-foot tall waterfall of Lower Moemba. This football field sized beach is by far one of the greatest camps in the world and the perfect spot for our last night on the river!


Day 5

This morning we wake at a leisurely pace and make our way across the river to begin the short journey out of the canyon. Porters will be waiting to carry all of our equipment and bags up the 30 min. trail to the top of the gorge. The views from the top are truly spectacular and afford some amazing photo opportunities. After a cold beverage at the top we will load up into a safari viewing vehicle for the wonderful drive back to the David Livingstone Safari Lodge. Along the way we will drive through a number of very little seen villages and a unique peek into the local culture and customs. There will be a stop at the Mukuni Village for a great opportunity to see and purchase a wide variety of local crafts and curios. We will arrive back at the lodge mid-day with plenty of time to relax on the deck or by the pool. This evening we will be picked up by a small boat that will take us to the famous Livingstone island at the brink of the falls. Once on the island, you will be given a guided tour, learning about its history from ancient times, when it served as a sacrificial site, to the present day and its World Heritage status. There will also be a chance to swim in a small pool right at the edge of the famous Victoria Falls, a truly incredible experience!


Day 6

After a hearty breakfast we begin our 2-day journey on the Upper Zambezi River beginning several miles upstream of Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park. After receiving specific instructions on canoeing and the upper river, we will begin our journey downstream in individual or 2-preson inflatable, wide and incredibly stable canoes. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to photograph the local wildlife, especially buffalo, elephant and hippos. The birdlife here is exceptional as you drift through the channels and currents of the Zambezi River. We will end today’s trip at one of the most unique and beautiful eco-lodges in the world, the Thorntree lodge. You will settle into your private rooms all oriented with outstanding views of the river. Enjoy curious elephants walking the grounds and yet another beautiful African sunset.


Day 7

Before returning to our canoes, this morning we will enjoy a very unique, intimate and close encounter with a pride of lions. You are invited to gain the unique experience of walking alongside and interacting with the lions as they play, learn to hunt and prepare for release.  At times, the lions may rest allowing you a close encounter and a chance to get a photo with them. These lions are part of stage one of the African Lion Rehabilitation & Release into the Wild Program, supported by ALERT. After lunch it’s time to return to the canoes for the last half of our trip downstream. A couple of hours later we will reach the finishing point of the canoe trip on the banks of the Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park. A safari game viewing vehicle will pick us up for the short driver through the park with even more opportunities to see some new animals including Zebra, Giraffe and numerous Impala, Kudu and Buffalo. We will arrive back at the David Livingstone Safari Lodge in the late afternoon in time to freshen up and prepare for our final night banquet.

Day 8

Your trip leader will accompany you to the airport for the flight back home or to the transfer location for your next destination!


Global Descents reserves the right to change the order of activities or even some of the activities due to changes in weather, transportation or other unforeseen events.