The Best Time to Visit Victoria Falls

Bird eye view of Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls is a year-round destination thanks to the mild winters and hot summers in Zambia and Zimbabwe. The optimal time to visit the Falls depends on the activities that are of interest to you. From seeing the waterfall to bird watching, game drives, river rafting, and helicopter rides, you are really spoilt for choice. A visit to Vic Falls, as it’s sometimes known, is often paired with a trip to the Kruger National Park, South Africa’s biggest game reserve.

Most people don’t realize that there isn’t a constant flow of gushing water throughout the year. Water levels depend on the annual rainfall pattern and the seasons. Be sure to keep this in mind when booking your trip to visit Victoria Falls.

Best Time to See Victoria Falls

The Zambezi River has its annual peak flooding time during the months of February and May, making it the ideal time to visit the Falls! The gushing water covers the entire 1.7km width of the waterfall. Misty clouds of spray from the Victoria Falls can rise to a height of over 400 meters and can be seen from 30 km away.

Victoria Falls seen with gorge

All that water flowing makes a deafening noise and makes it impossible to see the bottom of the Falls and its rockface. The Falls are in their element this time of year and make for an absolutely mesmerizing experience.

Taking a stroll along the paths will result in you getting extremely wet. The water sprays reach far and are powerful! Make sure that you have not only waterproofed yourself but also your cameras! Imagine your equipment getting wet – resulting in there being no pictures or footage of your amazing trip to share back home!

Nonetheless, it’s also a hot time of year, and the spray of water surrounding the waterfall can be just what you need on a hot summer’s day.

Victoria Falls Weather

The weather at Victoria falls is beautiful! With hot summers and mild winters – it is the perfect destination for your next trip.

Victoria Falls waterfall

Summer Months – October to April

The summer months run from October to April. The days can become hot, with temperatures soaring up to 30°C and cooling down to roughly 14°C in the evenings. During this time, you may also experience dramatic thunderstorms that can light up the sky in the afternoon and make for spectacular sunsets.

Rain will mostly fall between the area during November and March. If you are looking to work on your tan, and return home bronzed, this is definitely the right time to visit Victoria Falls. Just don’t forget to bring a hat and sunscreen, as we all know tanning can be a risky activity.

Rainbow at Victoria Falls

Winter Months – May to September/October

The winter months run from May to September/October. The days are mostly warm, sunny and dry. Temperatures are mild during the day with 20°C but it can get cold at night with temperatures dropping as low as 5ºC. Be sure to bring layered clothing, as during the day you will enjoy pleasant weather, but you will need to layer up at night.

Average Temperatures

Regarding actual weather conditions. The months between October to April are extremely hot. From November to April it can get very wet – at it is the rainy season.

During the day temperatures reach a high of 32-34°C (90-93°F) and cool down to 15-19°C (59-66°F) at night.

The mild winter months occur from May to September and have an average high of 25-27°C (77-81°F) with average lows between 7-10°C (45-50°F).

Victoria Falls Activities

Not only do the Victoria Falls make for spectacular views but they also offer a wide range of jaw-dropping adventurous activities. Bungee jump from the bridge, take a swing in the gorge or abseil down the rock face of the gorge.

White water rafting at Victoria Falls

White Water Rafting

Adrenaline junkies – Victoria Falls has you covered! Make sure to go white water rafting down the Zambezi River. This unique activity is dependent on water levels. August through December are the best months to go white water rafting. The upper rapids are open and make for an unforgettable experience. It’s quite an extreme adventure, so be sure you’re ready for some intense action at the hands of the great outdoors.

Rafting stops when the Zambezi River is at its highest water levels which can occur between mid-March to early May. We all know how unpredictable mother nature is – so be sure to check the water levels before you book your trip if you want to go rafting.

Sunset cruise on river

For the less adventurous, there are also more laid-back activities including a visit to the Livingstone Craft Market, canoeing, a leisurely sunset cruise or taking an elephant or horseback safari. There is an activity for everyone!

Safari

For all the animal lovers out there, it is best to visit Victoria Falls during its dry winters. The vegetation is sparse making it prime game viewing time around the falls area. The animals are forced to gather around water sources. Herds of buffalo and chatty elephants can be seen drinking from the water’s edge.

Hippopotamus in river

Those wondering when the best time is to visit South Africa and Victoria Falls need not to look any further. The months of July through September are your prime time! This is a great time to combine the Victoria Falls with a safari trip to the nearby Matetsi Victoria Falls game reserve. These months are ideal for game viewing! As the Falls are transitioning between water levels, the mist and noise are not as overpowering.

Victoria Falls – From the Sky

Why not take a trip to the sky while at the Falls? This time of year is perfect to take a helicopter flight or hot air balloon ride around the Falls. From the air, you can truly see the magnitude and beauty of this magical world wonder!

Devil's pool at Victoria Falls

Devil’s Pool

October and December are the months in which there is the lowest water level. On the Zambian side of the Falls, there is no waterfall at all during this period. However, this is the ideal time to enjoy a swim in the Devil’s pool – an infamous natural rock infinity pool near the edge of the falls.

You can relax in the calm water and look over the edge of the pool into the gorge! It is 108 meters down! What a place to take a swim.

Long shot bird eye view of Victoria Falls

Final Thoughts

All in all, Victoria Falls needs to be on your list – as it is a spectacular destination all year round. Ultimately, the best time to go to Victoria Falls depends on what you want from the experience. Whether that’s the Falls at their most powerful, or the chance to get close and intimate to this natural wonder.

 

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