One of the most beautiful countries in Africa, Zimbabwe has been neglected as a tourist destination for many years but is finally staging a comeback. With one of the best climates in the world, a happy blend of diverse scenery and wildlife and an ambiance only found in Africa, this is a destination not to be missed. Mahlatini’s top 5 attractions are only a taster of why you should visit.
Mana Pools National Park
Through boat rides along the mighty Zambezi River and excellent game viewing, take in the beauty of Mana Pools National Park. A mixture of floodplains and grasslands, the landscape is dominated by the Zambezi River, with the mountains of the Rift Valley rising in the background. As there are four main pools in the area to visit the park has borrowed the number as its title, with the word ‘mana’ meaning ‘four’ in Shona. The area’s fauna ranges from lions to wild dogs to one of Africa’s largest population of hippo that you can greet while gliding down the Zambezi on the Mana Canoe Trail.
The Great Zimbabwe ruins
The presence of a number of ancient and ruined civilisations sets Zimbabwe apart from the rest. Built in a dry stone style unique to the ruins, this blast from the past brings a whole new layer of authenticity to travelling the country. The Great Zimbabwe ruins in Masvingo are the most famous among these and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its walls are one of its most prominent features, some of which reach over the 5 metre mark. Believed to have once been home to 18,000 people it was the royal palace from which the monarchs of the day would rule.
Hwange National Park
For the wildlife lover in you, Hwange National Park will provide all you need. As the country’s largest reserve it is also known to be its best, with strong elephant and buffalo populations and almost 400 different species of bird, including the southern carmine bee-eater in the summer months and the Kori Bustard. Grassland, Kalahari sandveld, saltpans and woodlands; the diverse scenery of the park is only heightened by the wildlife that live in it.
The Matobo Hills
A place that has fascinated humankind for thousands of years is the Matobo Hills. A place for the history and nature buffs to enjoy together. Find yourself mesmerised by the 2,000 million year old granite formations and one of the highest rock art concentrations in Southern Africa, dating back as far as 13,000 years ago. Through this early artwork step back in time and discover an ancient way of life.
Perhaps the most famous and well known attraction on our list is the mighty Victoria Falls. Known as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of The World, this great curtain of water holds many activities and attractions to keep visitors busy. Try your hand at bungee-jumping and white water rafting or take a helicopter or microlight ride to gain a bird’s eye view impression of this impressive landmark.
Victoria Falls is one of Zimbabwe’s most iconic scenic features and thousands flock to the falls each year. While it’s a popular destination for active individuals, it’s also perfect for honeymooning couples and families alike!
To continue the adventure you could easily combine Zimbabwe with another destination and create a twin centre holiday. Spend time on safari in Zimbabwe before relaxing on a beach break in Mozambique or Mauritius.
Photos courtesy of
Mike Myers, African Bush Camps, Dana Allen, Big Cave Camp, Ilala Lodge, Shearwater Adventures.