Vic falls/ where to stay?

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Feb 25th, 2003, 01:32 AM
  #1
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Vic falls/ where to stay?

I need help, about to choose:
Royal Livinstone or Victoria Falls Hotel?
Chobe Game Lodge or Chobe Safary Lodge?
Filipa is offline  
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Feb 25th, 2003, 02:04 AM
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Filipa,

I have only been to the Victoria Falls Hotel and seen photo's of the Royal Livingstone. My opinion: It will be a better choice now to visit the Royal Livingstone Hotel because of location.

The Royal Livingstone Hotel is on the Zambian side of the Victoria Falls and The Victorial Falls Hotel at the Zimbabwe side. You will be ok staying at the Victoria Falls Hotel, but you will not be left alone when you leave the hotel by people asking for money. You will also not be able to change back any local currency.
Stienie
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Feb 25th, 2003, 08:30 AM
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Royal Liv has the following advantages:
a) Located in Zambia which waives visa requirements for bona fide tourists staying in Zambia. You can save $30 to $45 on the visa, provided your hotel or tour company informs the immigration at the airport and your name is on the manifest on arrival
b) Located almost on the lip of the falls and easy walking distance to it. Zambia side of Vic Falls offers better views than Zimbabwe side from Feb to June when the flood waters are at their peak levels (flood levels vary from year to year).
c)there is less hassle on the Zambia side regarding Forex and overcharging but you will still find beggars and curio sellers following you, however, not to the extent they do in Zim
d) relatively new hotel, very swish
e) entrance fee to park to see the Falls $10, compared to $20 for Zim side

Adv of Vic Falls Hotel:
1) Superb colonial charm and great grounds. I loved the setting.
2) Located within walking distance of the Falls on Zim side
3)Shopping in Vic Falls Town within walking distance but beware of beggars and curio sellers - they are like flies

Unfortunately, in Zim you will have to pay for visas and you will also have to beware of being charged at offical Zim/US forex rates which could make one meal cost a ridiculous $50 to $80. In Zim beware of using your credit cards as your credit card company applies the offical Forex rate to every purchase which is much poorer compared to the unoffical rate.

If you can afford either of the hotels, then I would like to suggest an alternative place in Zambia on the Zambezi, 18km upstream of Vic Falls - The River Club. It offers an all inclusive package (all meals, local drinks and 2 activites - Vic Falls visit, Zambezi cruise with sundowners, fishing - per day are included. The club has great colonial charm, all the rooms are on the banks of the Zambezi and open to great views of the river and sunsets, the host is an ex-English army captain who is great fun when around. You may also want to consider Tongabezi Lodge, located near River Club.

King
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Feb 25th, 2003, 09:01 AM
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Chobe Game Lodge vs Chobe Safari Lodge

Chobe Game Lodge adv:
a)Located inside Chobe National Park
b)all inclusive rates with all meals, local drinks game drives, river cruises, nature walks included
c) superior accommodation to Chobe Safari Lodge, however, safari lodge have superior Safari Rooms.
d) Excellent guides and vehicles for game drives
Chobe GAme Lodge also have a sister lodge - Chobe Savannah Lodge - which offers boat safaris on the chobe river in the Caprivi area of Namibia, not far from Chobe GAme Lodge.

Chobe Safari Lodge adv:
a) Cheaper than Chobe Game Lodge with a variety of accommodation available to suit your budget, including a camping site nearby.
b) You can tailor-make your daily program and are charged accordingly

Chobe Safari Lodge is an inferior experience to Chobe Game Lodge but if you are on a budget than it is OK.

Also consider Chobe Chilwero which is a small, upscale Lodge, probably the most expensive of the lot.
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Feb 25th, 2003, 02:02 PM
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Thank you a lot.
So your option is River Club????
Do you know how can I book flights and accomodations easly...and get good prices also!
If I stay in Zambia side it´s possible to visit ZIM, for a day tour???

Regards
Filipa
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Feb 25th, 2003, 02:50 PM
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I will be going to Victoria Falls and staying at the Royal Livingstone.We do have a tour booked for the Zim side of the falls.So at the momment, yes you can get a tour of both sides of the Falls.
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Feb 25th, 2003, 11:52 PM
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For more feedback see:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/pgMessa...ext=River+Club
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Feb 26th, 2003, 12:04 AM
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Dettie: how much will cost Royal Livingstone?
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Feb 26th, 2003, 01:39 AM
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You can get to Livingstone airport on Nationwide Airlines which flies from Johannesburg daily - http://www.nationwideair.co.za/
The return fares are approx $200 - $250 plus taxes.

River Club can be booked through agents of wilderness safaris - www.wilderness-safaris.com . Each country has many agents that deal with wilderness safaris. I normally book through www.vintageafrica.com but there are other agents who have been mentioned, Fish Eagle Safaris in USA and Sunvil in UK. There are also websites which have been mentioned here before. I suppose book through whoever you would feel comfortable with.

You can visit Zimbabwe easily but there is a day tripper's visa to pay. I am not sure of the current immigration rules on day trippers. You will need to take your passport with you and perhaps some photographs?? The best thing is to arrange the trip with Royal Livingstone or other hotels in Zambia.

BTW if you need cheaper places to stay by the Falls then there is Zambezi Sun on the Zambia side, next to Royal Livingstone.

Regarding River Club, yes the front of the rooms are open to the elements but that in itself provides a delightful experience - imagine listening to the sound of hippo and Africa at night while surrounded by adequate Mosquito netting and protected by insect repellant on your body. This secluded and tranquil Club has 10 cottages/chalets while Royal Livingstone has over 100, therefore you get very personalised service. River Club really provides you the flavour of old romantic Africa, while Royal Livingstone is just another resort hotel with all the fancy restaurants and accommodation. I know which one I would choose for 3 or more days. However, if you have only 2 days to spare for Vic Falls then it may just be better for you to be based at Royal Livingstone or Vic Falls Hotel.
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Feb 27th, 2003, 04:00 AM
  #10
 
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Filipa,

I booked my trip with Fish Eagle.I am not such what the exact cost is for the Royal Livingstone. You might contact an agent to get a quote.I do remember that the Zanbezi Sun Hotel next to the Livingstone is cheaper.
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Mar 3rd, 2003, 03:11 PM
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I have just returned from The River Club in Zambia, and I cannot recommend it more! You are close enough to the falls on the Zambia side, and if you wish, you may enter Zim for $30 for a one day pass. Vic Falls is very interesting as well. The fee changes it seems, as I was told one thing and paid another, but still the shops are nice and if you can ignore the people, then I think you will find it charming as well. Try and have sundowners at the Victoria Falls hotel if possible, or at least a drink. It is a beautiful spot. The River Club is fantastic, I would not go anywhere else!
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