Flow of the Zambezi – virtual tour of a majestic river.
The fourth longest river in Africa, the Zambezi River is an amazing 3,540 kilometres long. It becomes the longest east flowing river in Africa whose source is in the wetlands of the Mwinilunga District of north western Zambia, near the border where Zambia, Angola and the Congo meet.
Interestingly, the Zambezi River flows through 6 countries. From its source in Zambia, the river flows through Angola, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe (which is neighbouring the borders of Zambia) then across Mozambique to the Indian Ocean.The Zambezi River has several waterfalls which include the majestic Victoria Falls; one of Africa’s proudly placed tourist attractions. Other waterfalls on the Zambezi include Ngonye Falls in the Western Parts of Zambia and Chavuma Falls located on the border of Angola and Zambia. It’s almost always a norm for the Zambezi River to be frequented by rapids and for this reason the river has never been a means of long distance travel.
It pains me to say that the Zambezi River is plagued by a common yet man made misfortune- water pollution. None of the major cities surrounding the river have adequate water treatment plants. A tremendous amount of raw sewage is currently being released into the river. Sad, isn’t it?
On a much lighter note though, I’ve had the privilege of seeing some animals along the river. You’re guaranteed of seeing several crocodiles and hippopotamus. Large animals such as lions, zebras, giraffes and buffalo can be found near the river in many other areas. A few years ago, residents of A ’Zambezi River Lodge would occasionally get to meet Sebastian the hippo during themed dinner evenings by the riverbank. I loved how he would know exactly when to show up- right before dinner time, as if he was inspecting the restaurant set up et-all. Amusing! Numerous bird actions are visible along the river. You’ll be sure to spot pelicans, egrets and African fish eagles if you look closely. Fish is also very common to spot- Your yellow fish, catfish, tiger fish and cichlids are all found in the Zambezi River.
Okay, now that you know the make-up and structure of the majestic river, I’d like to take you through the most interesting facts about this attraction. – (1) Every single year, this river attracts thousands of tourists for sightseeing, rafting game viewing and boating etc. (2) In 1498, Vasco Da Gama became the first European to see the Zambezi which he called the “River of Good Omens” (Rio dos Bons Sinais) (3)If you’re to compare the Zambezi River to other rivers in Africa, you’ll find that it still has only been explored way less compared to other rivers. (4) There is an annual flood of the Zambezi which has brought about one of the best known ceremonies in Zambia which is known as Kuomboka which means “to move out of the water”. Yes, you guessed right, people do travel from all over the world to witness this ceremony. (5) Popularly known as Zambezi Sharks, Bull Sharks which normally live in coastal waters have been known to swim very far up the Zambezi River. (6) Lastly, but definitely not the end of the list on interesting facts about the Zambezi River is the power generation. A huge source of hydroelectric power on the Zambezi is the Kariba Dam. At 128 meters high and 579 meters long, it is one of the largest dams in the world. Its construction was completed in 1977. 86 men lost their lives building it.
SafariExtra brings you a unique opportunity to experience the Zambezi River from any country of your choice. Should you feel like water rafting, bird watching or simply having a risk it all experience with the crocs, feel free to get in touch with us and we will help you put together an adventurous yet memorable tour in Africa which includes a Zambezi River Experience!
By Tariro Mutonhori : Safari Expert at SafariExtra.com