The capital is Harare
The capital of Zimbabwe, Harare, is a more diverse destination. Most tourists stop in town just to continue their journey on safaris. The city offers tourists history and culture as well as a wide range of restaurant experiences.
The city’s specialties include a house where farmers sell tobacco from one broker to another. Tobacco was once one of Zimbabwe’s largest exports, and still from February to August the layers are filled in the mornings with a hustle and bustle described as a stock exchange-like auction.
There is a protected area for injured and orphaned wildlife near the airport, where you can enjoy afternoon coffee or champagne while exploring the animals. The specialty of the place is that children under the age of 12 are not allowed in the area. Advance booking is also desirable.
There are also a few museums in Harare, which store especially art objects and photographs.
Fashion weeks are also held in Zimbabwe. The ex-model from the country, Pricilla Chigariro, has set up an event where African designers will showcase their creations. The event takes place annually at the turn of August-September.
One of the largest artificial lakes in the world serves as a diverse recreation area. The best way to relax on the lake is to rent a houseboat. Fishing is also a popular pastime on the lake. Swimming is not recommended as the lake is home to large crocodiles. Other wildlife such as elephants and buffalo can also be seen on the shores of the lake, as it is adjacent to Matusadona National Park.
Lake Kariba also offers a water route to neighboring Zambia and Victoria Falls. If you are traveling by water to a neighboring country and want to return to Zimbabwe, make sure your visa allows for more entry.
Mana Pools National Park
Mana Pools National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, offers the traveler a holistic experience of wildlife. What makes the park special is that it is not fenced. So elephants may wander past you as you enjoy breakfast.
The park can also be explored on foot. There live a large number of zebras, hippos and crocodiles, as well as lions. When hiking in the park and admiring the animals, it is good to remember that the animals are not only wild but also really fast. Although they rarely attack a person, the danger still exists. Because of this, moving around with a guide is highly recommended.
You can stay in a tent or cottage in the park area. Cottage accommodation is available on many levels, so there is an option for every budget. Some prices include food and accommodation, so it is a good idea to check the booking to make what is included in the price. It is also worth noting that some of the campsites close during the rainy season.
The waterfalls, named after Dr. Victoria by Dr. David Livingstone in 1855, are Zimbabwe’s most famous travel destination. The waterfalls are located on the border with Zambia and are a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The waterfalls are 108 meters high and 1.7 kilometers wide. The traveler experiences a different experience at the waterfalls, depending on the time of year when the waterfalls visit. The best time to visit the waterfalls is from June to September, when there is still plenty of water in the waterfalls, but the water mist does not obscure the visibility. Before the rainy season in early November, the amount of water in the waterfalls decreases and in some places there is no water at all.
On the Zimbabwean side, a Victoria Falls Marathon will be held in the immediate vicinity of the waterfalls. In addition to the full marathon, there is a choice of a half marathon and a distance of five kilometers. The route is relatively flat and the scenery is stunning. The marathon is held annually in June.
Hwange National Park
An hour’s drive from Victoria Falls is Hwange National Park. Founded in 1929, the park is the largest in Zimbabwe. About 100 mammal species live in the area. Elephants and buffaloes are found in exceptionally large herds. The area is also a birdwatcher’s dream, with about 400 different species living there.
You can stay at the campsite in the park. You can choose between tent or cottage accommodation. The main camp also has a restaurant and a grocery store selling basic necessities.
The best time to visit the park is during the dry season, when the animals gather at the drinking spots and getting around the park is easy.
THE BEST OF ZIMBABWE
Experience these in Zimbabwe
- Admire Victoria Falls and test your endurance with a marathon
- Experience wildlife in Mana Pools
- Enjoy Harare’s restaurant offerings
The disadvantages of Zimbabwe
- No direct flights from Finland
- Belongs to the malaria risk area
- Pocket thefts are common