Top Ten Southern Africa Classic Adventures

Raft the Upper Zambezi

Oblivion, Stairway to Heaven, Highway to Hell, the Mother: All fitting names for the huge, churning caldrons below Victoria Falls that make for the world's most exciting stretch of whitewater. Many of the rapids of Batoka Gorge are Class V—the highest that a commercial operator is allowed to tackle; say a prayer to Nyaminyami (the god of the river) before you go. And the whitewater's not all: Crocodiles lurk in the pools below the rapids—don't trail your hand in the water during these calm stretches. And watch the trees overhead during your lunchtime stops, vervet monkeys up there will try to urinate on you while you eat. Fortunately they're poor marksmen. As an adrenaline fix, this is second to none. And between rapids there's time to take in the stately beauty of the gorge's towering red and black cliffs, topped with hanging forests. Or pehaps glimpse a white-headed fish eagle dipping low to snatch its flapping dinner from the waters.


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