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Falling at The Falls: Where to Stay for a Romantic Break

Victoria Falls, a perfect romantic getaway for every kind of couple.

Victoria Falls might not be the first destination that pops into your mind when you think, of a romantic getaway, but what’s more romantic than sitting at the edge of the world’s largest waterfall with your partner…and not pushing them off?

Dark humour aside, Victoria Falls have inspired romance and romanticism since they were first discovered. I mean, how else do you describe 500 million litres of water, spanning 1.7 kilometres, falling a height of 108 metres, each minute, and crashing down at the bottom to release a thick mist that rises again, 400 metres into the air, creating a little rainforest around itself complete with its own unique trees and fauna? 

Of all that tried to describe The Falls, the indigenous Makololo people did it best, naming The Falls, “Mosi oa Tunya”, meaning “The smoke that thunders”. Before naming Victoria Falls after his Queen, even David Livingstone emotionally exclaimed, “No one can imagine the beauty of the view from anything witnessed in England…but scenes so lovely must have been gazed upon by angels in their flight”.

Where are the Victoria Falls?

It’s not surprising that one of the 7 natural wonders of the world is located in two countries, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Although both countries offer amazing holiday activities and accommodation options, my visit focused on the Zambian side of the falls in Livingstone. 

This little, vibrant tourist town is dotted with romantic accommodation options for all kinds of couples from young adventure seekers, to parents travelling with their kids, to honeymooners looking for their own private piece of paradise. There’s even something for backpacking travellers “discovering themselves” through travel.

The most romantic lodge for parents that the kids will love too

For couples, particularly parents travelling with their kids, it doesn’t get better than Waterberry Zambezi Lodge, which is also the highest-rated lodge on TripAdvisor. 

Waterberry can best be described as a quaint village on a lush and immaculately maintained piece of property on the banks of the Zambezi River. The modern hut-styled chalets boast spotless white and natural wood-coloured interiors with a splash of colourful African fabrics that add character to the rooms. 

The food is sourced from their huge garden which also supplies the feeding program at the impressive community school they built. 

Waterberry is a great value offer for families complete with unbelievable customer service. Their enthusiastic and friendly staff–80 per cent of whom are from the local village–meet and anticipate your needs. 

In addition, their reasonable rates are all-inclusive covering snacks, drinks, and boat rides. I’m also assuming they also have little magical elves, with perfect timing, that sneak into your room when you’re away to clean up, do the laundry and disappear without a trace. 

If there is a place where it is possible for couples to have a romantic and relaxing vacation with their kids, it is Waterberry.


Where to honeymoon at the Victoria Falls

Honeymooners will love Tongabezi, a high-end island-style lodge with afro-Mediterranean fusion decor. It blends seamlessly into the surrounding tropical garden, also on the banks of the Zambezi River.  

It offers private chalets (no room keys needed) and a dedicated personal valet to take care of your every need–yes you made it! 

You can choose where to eat your romantic dinners from a variety of scenic locations, including a floating lamplit platform on the river. 

Tongabezi offers a gym and their activities include cycling, visiting the neighbouring village and the Tongabezi-funded school. They also offer a variety of massages and a trip to the instaworthy Devil’s Pool, which they manage. It is also accessible from other lodges (for a fee), but because it is run by Tongabezi, it is an included activity for their guests.


The most thrilling romantic getaway for adventure couples

Young couples seeking an adventure travel experience will absolutely love Toka Leya. This Robinson Crusoe-styled getaway comprises raised tented wooden chalets connected by raised wooden walkways running through the lush wild bush. 

Get uncomfortably close to elephants, hippos, deer and other herbivores from the Zambezi river banks as they walk underneath the raised structures to feast on the lush vegetation. 

The interiors of the chalets at Toka Leya are so modern that, if it were not for the views outside your window, you might think you were in a city hotel room. Each chalet has an outdoor open-air bathtub, a swing seat, and a sunken seating area. 

Toka Leya’s large open dining and lounge area really brings the whole place together boasting an elaborate coffee station and a pizza oven. Toka Leya also offers a beautiful swimming pool and a small and cheerful gym, both overlooking the Zambezi river.

Toka Leya

The best budget lodge for couples and singles seeking romance

My wildcard of romantic locations has to be The Victoria Falls Riverfront. 

A budget option for those that are willing to make a few compromises. Riverfront offers everything from campsites to executive river-facing rooms, which means that guests get a mixture of various experiences. 

Although the hotel-styled rooms offer some privacy, you still run into overlanders and non-residents in the parking lot and the beautiful river view restaurant deck, which attracts people from the surrounding lodges and backpackers. 

The sunset cruise from their double-decker, MV Makumbi, is very popular with young–often tipsy–travellers. Their dinner menu is delicious and they are famous for their fire oven pizza place, Peppino’s

Riverfront is bustling with life, which isn’t great if you’re seeking some quiet time, but is perfect if you are social and love meeting new and interesting travellers. During dinner, I was surrounded by kids running around, young European travellers chatting in between gulps of colourful cocktails, and I even spotted a group of elderly bar hoppers led by a lively balding man with a mullet…make of that what you will, but he was rocking it.


Activities at the Victoria Falls

Regardless of where you stay in Livingstone, Zambia, each lodge offers sundowner cruises, jaw-dropping views of the sun setting over the Zambezi river, and access to all the activities at Victoria Falls. 

These include bungee jumping and gorge swinging; helicopter and microlight flights over The Falls; white water rafting and canoeing; swimming at the top of the Falls in the Devil’s Pool; and visiting the Mosi oa Tunya National Park which boasts opportunities to get very close to the confident herbivores including the very rare white rhinos.

So as Valentine’s Day creeps up, reminding you of anniversaries and historic promises of romance, keep Victoria Falls in mind. It truly is breathtaking in every sense of the word. 

Devil's Pool

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