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jet_setter Dec 4th, 2003 04:03 PM

Help in Victoria Falls REgion
Has anyone stayed at Chobe Safari Lodge (not Chobe Game Lodge), The Kingdom hotel in Victoria Falls or Zambezi Waterfront in Zambia? If so, please let me know what you thought of your experience.

Roccco Dec 4th, 2003 04:40 PM

The Kingdom Hotel is awful. It is plastic-like in appearance and the whole first floor is nothing but a ghost-town of a casino and bad food stands/restaurants, as if you are in an airport or mall.

Matetsi Water Lodge gets my vote for Victoria Falls area and is halfway to Chobe, making a transfer very easy, with only a single border crossing. If you stay on the Zambian side of Victoria Falls and then are expecting to do a road transfer to Chobe, you may be facing a border crossing both into Zimbabwe and then into Botswana, but I am not sure. If that is the case, it seems like it would be a big headache to have two border crossings.

If you are insistent on staying in Victoria Falls, there is probably only a couple places worth staying on the Zimbabwe side and they are the Victoria Falls Safari Lodge and the Victoria Falls Hotel.

If you do choose to stay on the Zambian side of Victoria Falls, there are a few nice places including Sussi & Chuma, The River Club, The Royal Livingstone and Tongabezi.

sandi Dec 5th, 2003 05:59 AM

I agree with Roccco somewhat re The Kingdom Hotel. If you've been to Las Vegas, their casino doesn't compare, but that wasn't what we were interested in; besides it's a separate entrance than for the hotel which has a lovely restaurant in the main part of the hotel.

We were only in VFA for 1-nt before continuing next day to Chobe Chilwero, and The Kingdom is the closest hotel to the Falls. That said, the hotel itself, while large, also has large rooms, each with a/c, balcony/terrace overlooking the property. And the service was excellent.

One thing I saw here, that I hadn't seen anywhere else - they have electrical outlets for plugs for hairblower, curling iron, shaver, iron, regardless what country you come from - so as long as you have a dual-voltage item to connect, you don't need an adapter plug - nice idea.

We did spend about 15-min. in the casino when the blackjack tables opened to get the feeling of betting 100ZD (officially about USD$2) - as opposed to USD$100 - but lost those as quickly as we'd loose USD$100 in Vegas. It was good for a laugh!

The Victoria Falls Hotel, right across the road was way "too stuffy" for us, and lots of tour groups stay here.

Can't comment on places on the Zambia side, but some that Roccco mentioned might not have a/c, so do check.

Depending on how long you're going to be in VFA, and more than a day really isn't necessary, it'll be easier to transfer from Zim than Zam to get to Botswana.

jet_setter Dec 5th, 2003 06:42 AM

Thanks Sandi. You bring up a good point about electrical outlets. Do most of the safari lodged have electrical outlets for the now ubiquitous digital cameras and camcorders? I would imagine so but thought I'd ask.

jet_setter Dec 5th, 2003 06:48 AM

It seems that most people's opinion of Victoria Falls is that it is a place that you stay no more than 2 days. Yet, it seems that there is an abudant amount of activities available their such as tour of the falls, white water rafting, elephant ride safaris as well as more traditional game drives. I am interested as to why the consensus on limiting your days at Victoria Falls.

Dottie Dec 5th, 2003 03:35 PM

We visited Victoria Falls in Sep. of this year. We stayed at the Royal Livingstone and really liked it.The outlets there were also setup, so that we didn't need our adapter plug either.

We did see both sides of the Falls, and did the Livingstone Island lunch,which was great. The best views of the Falls were from the Island as you are right at the edge of the Falls.Also went on a sundowner cruise. We were there 2 nights and would have liked to have stayed alittle longer.We were pretty busy just to do the things we did.I heard good things about the Elephant safari,and would have gone on that if we had had more time.We also loved just kicking back and watching the Hippo in the river,and the monkeys playing at the resort.

sandi Dec 10th, 2003 06:29 AM

jet_setter -

Re outlets for the digital cameras - let's just say that this whole process is a pain, especially when I'm on vacation. Thankfully I advised my partner to bring his 35mm as back-up. The batteries for the digitals don't last all that long and the 35mm did come in handy for him.

Now we were dealing with an early Digital, probably a 2.? (something), but wherever we were that had electricity (many tented camps don't but they can charge batteries for you somewhere in camp) we recharged batteries and to be certain the whole contraption didn't fall out of the outlet, placed a chair up again this to keep all in place.

I'm still a 35mm gal, so I have no problems at all, had extra camera batteries for my two cameras (I travel with two, the 140zoom my primary and a 90zoom as backup, and throw in a few disposable, just in case).

But for more current info on Digitals you need some on this board to advise.

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