Mar 7, 2012
Zim has come back and tourism is PUMPING… and the renaissance goes well beyond Victoria Falls! Zimbabwe is one of southern Africa’s most diverse and stunning countries. A great hub for any safari (bordering Botswana, Namibia, Mozambique and Zambia) is going through major changes and renovations in areas where wildlife is flourishing once again. A new shared government and the introduction of the USD and British Pound currency has changed the face, and mood, of the country.
Cherri and Richard traveled extensively in Zimbabwe in 2011 to check out the lodges and see the changes with their own eyes. Most lodges have been refurbished and many, like Bumi Hills Safari Lodge at Lake Kariba, have been virtually rebuilt. Victoria Falls Hotel is undergoing a major overhaul soon but will retain its colonial aesthetic. There is also a fantastic new 5-star lodge on the Zambezi River located 20 minutes upstream from the Victoria Falls center, Victoria Falls River Lodge. Wildlife is as good as ever (Hwange is absolutely teeming with animals and Bumi is full of elephants and even lion!), standards are great, and you will be welcomed with open arms!
Cherri says, “It’s great to have Zim back on the map and, once again, rising to compete with the best of its neighboring Botswana and Zambian tourism trades. The service has always been fantastic and the people incredibly friendly. Nothing has changed in this regard, and with the government’s new friendly attitude toward investors, the commitment of returning Zimbabwean lodge owners is astonishing. The door is open and they have rushed back to the ‘mother country’ in droves, with purses open, to help rebuild the tourism product. For a short window of time prices will be exceptional, so go now!”
In their 2012 March issues, both Travel & Leisure and Conde Nast Traveler magazines feature Zimbabwe. This says a lot. In the CNT article “A New Day for Zimbabwe” Joshua Hammer reflects on the future of Zim: “Standing on the banks of the Zambezi River I wonder if tourism might one day play an even bigger role in Zimbabwe’s recovery, pumping more cash into the game reserves, funding additional conservation and research programs, allowing the national parks to become self-sustaining, and providing more jobs for local people. I can envision the Zambezi Valley, Hwange National Park, and the southern bushveld becoming as lucrative as Kenya’s Masai Mara Reserve or South Africa’s Kruger National Park.”
VIDEOS from our friends at Victoria Falls River Lodge