At the entrance to the Victoria Falls, baboons abound. The mothers carrying the babies on their bellies as they walk on fours is the cutest sight. This one pictured below seems to have grabbed a finished drinking yogurt bottle from a trash can and was eagerly trying to get any last drop from it.
The featured image and the image below are taken from the same side of the falls, along the trail for the Rainbow falls and Knife’s Edge Bridge. During the wet season, the falls are significantly fiercer and double rainbows can be seen. People also get drenched by crossing the Knife’s Edge Bridge. As it is currently the dry season, I barely caught any mist and there was just a single rainbow. The falls aren’t as majestic during the dry season. Imagine water falling along the entire length of the plateau during rainy season! I’ll have to return one day.
However, a perk of the dry season is that one gets to walk over the top of the falls, as pictured below. I randomly met a guy who offered to guide me through this area with water level reaching generally halfway up the calves. He is a villager who lives in Livingstone. I trustingly agreed, as why not? In addition, my Ghanaian friend had mentioned that he met really hospitable villagers in Livingstone who took him to their home, gave him his own hut to live in and killed and cooked rabbit for him, all for free. How awesome is that?
The villager instructed me to take my shoes and socks off, tied the laces together, and held them for me. Dipping my feet in the warm, yet cool, water, a grin instantly formed on my face. We crossed a very narrow foot bridge–as wide as one foot–by going side ways, one step at a time, like crabs. Then, we climbed over rock scrambles and through some more water to the get to the edge of the falls. It was wonderful. He offered to show me more and I agreed. However, at this point, my soles were getting painful from the scratchy black substance on the rocks. I was amazed at his ability to navigate the rocks and water barefoot with such ease and grace. I nearly slipped and fell into the water multiple times, as the rocks under the water are extremely slippery. The guide was very patient and helpful. I also grew tried from heat exhaustion likely. Finally, I wanted to turn back. Before crossing back over the narrow foot bridge, he asked whether I would give him some money for the service. I was already thinking my in mind about giving him around 50 Kwacha. But, he nonchalantly asked for 450 Kwacha. I was mind-blown. I paid 200 Kwacha to get into the park itself. When I handed him a fifty and a couple small notes, trying to convince him that a) we hadn’t agreed on a price beforehand and b) this was all the money that I had as I still needed to catch a taxi back into town. He was adamant and even said dollars are fine too. Finally, he agreed to 20 USD, which is 200 Kwacha. (Later, I was also scammed by the taxi driver.) All in all, be careful with scammers in Livingstone.
A major plus is that I could breathe more easily at the Falls! 🙂