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Additional details WWR

Additional details WWR

Commercial rafting first commenced on the Zambezi River in 1981 and since then this activity has grown in popularity to the point where a rafting trip on the Zambezi is now a regular feature in most tourists’ itineraries.  The white water rafting run is widely acknowledged as the best white water rafting trip available in the world for amateurs and is available in half day, full day or multi-day runs.

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All the details you need to know

The Zambezi River is classified as a high volume, pool-drop river i.e. there is little exposed rock either in the rapids or the pools below the rapids.  The distance between rapids varies from 100 metres to 2 kms.  The Gorge itself is approximately 400ft deep at the put-in point and 750ft at the take out point.  The river drops about 400ft over the 24km covered in the one-day raft trip and the depth of the river can reach 200ft.  The British Canoe Union has classified the river Grade 5 “extremely difficult, long and violent rapids, steep gradients, big drops and pressure areas”.  Nearly half of the rapids negotiated are Grade 5.  (Grade 6 is unrunable – rapid number 9, “Commercial Suicide” is a Grade 6 rapid and we porter around this rapid).


Due to the steepness of the Gorge, wildlife is not abundant.  On occasion klipspringer, rock hyrax, vervet monkeys and baboon are spotted.  However, the birdlife is far more spectacular.  Black eagle, augur buzzard, black stork, pied and giant kingfisher and red winged starling are some of the birds normally seen during the trips and sightings of the very rare Taita Falcon are not uncommon.  There are crocodile in the river, but they are small due to the unsuitability of the area for their habitation.

Videos and Photographs

Whilst on the river, videos and photographs will be taken by “Zambezi Memories”.  Rafting videos and photographs will be shown that evening at the Zambezi Waterfront.  Copies of all products are available for purchase at the end of the day and delivered the following morning to clients various accommodation points. 

DVD or CD of photographs (approx 15)

Guides and Safety

Guides are fully trained professionals and all hold valid advanced first aid certificates.  Whilst every precaution is taken, it is essential that agents make clients aware that there is a risk of injury associated with the activity of rafting on the Zambezi.  A comprehensive first aid kit and skid stretcher are carried on each trip.  Each client is required to sign the White Water Rafting indemnity form prior to departure.  Each trip leader is in radio contact with our bases in Victoria Falls and Livingstone and direct with SES.

Rafts and Equipment

The company uses some of the finest equipment on the market to ensure that the trip is a safe and enjoyable one.  Rafts are purchased from Ark in South Africa and are the tried and tested river rafts required for the Zambezi River.  America’s Cup high flotation life jackets and Protec safety helmets are issued to clients before the day’s rafting.  Wet suits are provided and usually used by clients during the colder months (June / July).  Clients need to bring shorts, T-Shirts, costume, shoes, towel and tracksuit for the evenings, cap, sunglasses, sunscreen and toiletries.

Experience and Fitness

No previous rafting experience is required and clients need not be proficient swimmers.  At the beginning and at the end of the half, one and 2.5 day raft trip clients have to negotiate a steep path in and out of the gorge.  The walk out is 750 vertical feet up a gradient of 1 in 3, and a person of average fitness can manage this in about 20 minutes.

Minimum and Maximum numbers

4 pax minimum.  Large groups on request.

Age Restriction

The minimum age is 15 years.  The maximum age limit is dependent on the individual’s general state of health and physical fitness.

Visa / Client Requirements

Passports are required to cross the Zambian border for clients from Zimbabwe.  The cost of day visitors visas for clients from Zimbabwe are not included in the rate.


No valuables should be taken on the river, there will be a safety box kept and locked up at the Zambezi Waterfront for items such as clients wallets / jewellery etc but it is recommended that clients bring as little with them as possible.


All clients are covered for emergency evacuation, however this only covers them for emergency evacuation in life threatening situations.  It does not cover their hospitalisation and medication.  As such travel and medical insurance is compulsory for all clients.  Please ensure you bring the details of your insurance policy with you.  We will not cover you if you do not have insurance.

The company is covered by a US$1.5 million public and passenger liability cover.

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