Zambezi Whitewater Rafting and Safari Adventure
Did you know you can find some of the best whitewater rafting in the world in Africa? Travel to the far south of this massive continent to find Victoria Falls, one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, along with the world-famous Zambezi River deep in the Batoka Gorge. The adventure begins on the wild Class IV-V rapids of the Zambezi, including “Stairway to Heaven,” one of the biggest commercially run rapids in the world and perhaps the most notorious rapid that exists anywhere, “Ghostrider.” After several days of warm water rafting, sandy beaches and sleeping under the stars, it’s safari time. Encountering Africa’s fascinating (and larger than life!) wildlife in Botswana’s Chobe National Park will prove to be an out-of-this-world experience. Perfect for adrenaline seekers, active travelers, and wildlife enthusiasts, the OARS Escape to Africa adventure is a whitewater rafting and safari trip unlike any other.
The Treasures of Zambia
Located in southern Africa, current day Zambia is where some of the earliest civilizations of the human race are believed to have originated more than 3 million years ago. Zambia’s rich archeological past, combined with its abundant natural beauty, and reputation for being one of the safest African countries to visit because of its peaceful and welcoming people, make it an ideal destination for travelers who want to experience a taste of Africa. However, still largely wild and unpopulated in much of the country, Zambia’s visitors often make the historic city of Livingstone their adventure hub (and we will too). Its proximity to the Zambezi River and Victoria Falls—with an unbelievable curtain of water over a mile long—has secured Livingstone’s label as the “Tourism Capital” of Zambia. From here, visitors can experience the country’s five massive lakes, abundant rivers, 17 waterfalls, national parks, rural villages and incredible wildlife viewing. And with all that water, it’s not surprising that whitewater rafting, kayaking, canoeing and even world-class angling are the activities that often lure people to this magnificent country.
The Zambezi River
At 1,600 miles in length, the Zambezi River is the fourth largest river in Africa. This impressive waterway starts in northwestern Zambia and flows through the countries of Angola, Botswana, Zimbabwe, and finally to Mozambique where it empties into the Indian Ocean. The Bundu people of Zambia call the Zambezi “the river of life” while its literal translation may actually mean “God’s river.” Both translations work. The Zambezi supports large populations of animals and fish while also helping multiple African countries with water for agriculture, transportation, hydropower and tourism. The Zambezi is ever-changing and goes from flowing serenely through sandy plains or rainforests in some areas to a dramatic and wild river tumbling through gorges in other places. Its power has carved the spectacular Victoria Falls and created the deep Batoka Gorge, considered to have some of the world’s best whitewater rafting.
Wild Kingdom: Chobe National Park
Across from Zambia, on the other side of the wild Zambezi lies the country of Botswana and Chobe National Park. The first national park of Botswana, Chobe National Park has four distinct regions: The Serondela (or Chobe riverfront), the Savuti Marsh, the Linyanti Marsh and the hot and dry hinterland, mainly occupied by the Nogatsaa grass woodland. With its perennial water supply from the Chobe River and large areas of marshlands, Chobe National Park is considered to be one of the best natural areas for bird and wildlife viewing in Africa. Depending on the time of year and region of the park, visitors are likely to catch close-up views of lions, hyenas, wildebeests, zebras, giraffes, hippos, antelope, and a rich population of birds made up of more than 460 species. The park is also home to one of the largest populations of African elephants in the world, making it a premiere destination for wildlife enthusiasts.
Why OARS in Zambia?
We were there for the first descent of the Zambezi River on the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe back in 1981. For more than 45 years, OARS has led travelers of all ages and abilities to some of the most stunning locations on the planet. We thrive on creating adventures that take you off the beaten path and away from the crowds to magical landscapes, rivers and coastlines. National Geographic, Outside, Men’s Journal andSunset magazines along with NBC, CNBC, Forbes Traveler and SmarterTravel.com have all recognized OARS for serving up some of the “Best Trips on the Planet.”
On top of huge thrills, we provide the best guide-to-guest ratio in the adventure travel business so you can feel at ease from the moment you step off the plane, to every new experience that awaits you on our Zambezi rafting adventure. Going above and beyond at any chance, our friendly local guides will ensure your questions are answered and your concerns are given the personal attention you deserve, all while sharing their extensive knowledge of the landscape, wildlife and ecosystem.
We believe it is a fundamental part of ecotourism is to work with local guides while at the same time bringing our wealth of experience to the table. Our like-minded partners in Zambia and Botswana realize they are accountable to OARS high standards, so you can rest assured you will be in good hands.
Traveling to an unfamiliar country doesn’t have to be challenging. With more than 150 years of combined experience in the adventure travel industry, our staff of knowledgeable adventurers has taken out the guesswork and added our guarantee.