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Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls: All You Need To Know (And How To Survive!)

Map of Africa with location of Devil's Pool Victoria FallsDevil’s Pool is a natural pool of water that’s situated atop of Victoria Falls, renown for being among the largest waterfalls in the world. Right on the edge of this massive waterfall, a calm pool of water forms. This is known as the Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls. And daring visitors can actually swim in this pool straddling the edge of Victoria Falls!

Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls is located in sub-Saharan Africa. It’s in the Zambezi River, along the Zambia-Zimbabwe border.

Devil’s Pool is a death-defying feat that even the most casual of thrill seekers must add to their travel bucket list.

When visiting Devil’s Pool, it’s even possible to lean over the edge of Africa’s Victoria Falls! This breath-taking experience in Devil’s Pool is every bit as mind-boggling as it looks. Visitors can literally get right up to the edge of what amounts more than a 100-meter waterfall drop.

It’s absolutely insane! Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls is the world’s ultimate infinity pool.

During our journey across Africa, as we neared Victoria Falls, we had so many questions about the unique experience of actually swimming in Devil’s Pool. Although we had viewed some videos showing off this unfathomable adventure, there otherwise wasn’t much info detailing exactly how to visit Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls.

It turns out there is a lot that you should know to prepare for a visit to Devil’s Pool Zambia. So in an effort to give back to the travel community, this post was written in a grand attempt to answer all your questions about Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls, so you can better plan your visit to this astonishing place in the world.

Swimming on the edge of one of earth’s largest waterfalls was one of the most thrilling, insane, and awesome experiences we’ve ever embarked on during our Oasis Overland trip across Africa, and perhaps all of our travels around the world.

Be sure to view the Devil’s Pool video, below, to get an idea of what this crazy thrill is like. Then read on for all the details you need to know!

Devil’s Pool Safety

Is Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls Safe?

Questions about Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls deaths and safety is usually the first thing everyone asks about this crazy adventure.

So is Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls safe? The answer is a matter of opinion. It is our opinion that Devil’s Pool is a relatively safe experience. But it is not without some significant risks that adventure-seekers should be aware of.

Is Devil's Pool Safe? It sure felt scary being so close to the edge but we thought Devil's Pool was relatively safe

In Devil’s Pool itself, there is a rock lip that protrudes upward which keeps you from falling over the edge. Under the low water conditions that you’re permitted to enter Devil’s Pool, you would have to make a concerted effort to actually go up and over that rock that’s naturally keeping you in. This rock lip seemed thick and sturdy to us.

Could that rock potentially give way one day? Perhaps. But that seemed very unlikely in our opinion. Still, like everything in life, there’s definitely some risk here.

Before getting to Devil’s Pool Zambia, you must take a short swim in the Zambezi River right above Victoria Falls, from Livingston Island to Devil’s Pool. Many people don’t realize this.

You cross a portion of the Zambezi River by swimming partially up-current for the first half of the swim. For the latter half, you transition to swimming across and down current. There are guides that will instruct you. The current wasn’t strong at all, but there was a current nonetheless. This swim through the Zambezi takes place in what we estimate to be about 50 to 100 meters from the edge of Victoria Falls.

Weaker swimmers are accommodated by wading through the water. Here, the water is about stomach-deep, depending on the water levels. Guides assist by holding hands, only if needed.

Swimming in the Zambezi River to Get to Devil's Pool

So has there been any Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls accidents?

Yes.

The guides told us that most Devil’s Pool accidents have been from people slipping on wet rocks, causing minor injuries. Be careful on these rocks! Don’t let your guard down just because you’re not right on the edge of the waterfall.

As if the threat of falling off this enormous waterfall wasn’t enough, you also must consider the risk of running into a hippo or crocodile in Devil’s Pool. Yes, there are also hippos and crocodiles in the waters atop Victoria Falls.

Guides do check for crocodiles before entering the water. Our guide told us he’s never seen any crocodiles in Devil’s Pool itself, but the Zambezi most definitely is their habitat. The waters here are fairly shallow and I’d like to think that such a large creature like a croc or hippo would be clearly evident. So we don’t view this as too big of a risk. Yet it is certainly not outside the realm of possibility. We did spot some hippos during the short boat ride to Devil’s Pool.

So is Devil’s Pool completely safe? No, of course not. Just look at it. You’re hanging off the edge of one of the largest waterfalls in the world and sharing the water with nearby crocs and hippos!

As with anything in life, there are definitely risks involved. You must weigh out the risks for yourself based on your personal comfort level.

That said, we felt safe during our Devi’s Pool trip and felt to be in good hands with the competent guides. At the time of writing this article, there has never been any major incidents, drownings, croc attacks, or anything like that. That at least gave us some comfort in taking the plunge. You’ll need to decide for yourself.

 

Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls Deaths – Has Anyone Died Going Over Victoria Falls?

According to the tour guides that operate this experience, there have never been any Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls deaths during the Livingstone Island tour, which is the only tour that includes a swim in Devil’s Pool. We’ve done some lengthy Internet research and couldn’t find any incidents to prove the guides’ claim to be incorrect.

You may come across a report online about a Victoria Falls death in 2009 from a tour guide going over the edge of while trying to save a tourist. But that story is inaccurate, as that particular Victoria Falls death wasn’t actually at Devil’s Pool. Rather, that death occurred in a different location atop Victoria Falls. So even though that unfortunate 2009 death did indeed occur at Victoria Falls, it was not a Devil’s Pool death.

Furthermore, that 2009 Victoria Falls death happened before they even began running official tours to Devil’s Pool. There are also other occasional Victoria Falls deaths, but there are no casualties on record of people plunging to their deaths at Devil’s Pool during the Livingstone Island tour, which remains the only tour to access Devil’s Pool.

Guide hangs over the edge of Devil's Pool Victoria Falls but there has been no Devil's Pools deaths at Victoria Falls, maintaining a good safety record

Also, be sure that you don’t confuse this Devil’s Pool in Africa with a different Devil’s Pool in Australia, in which there have, in fact, been numerous deaths.

So, no, there haven’t been any documented Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls deaths here in Zambia, Africa.

Is there potential for Devil’s Pool deaths? Of course there is!

You’re swimming on the top of an enormous waterfall. If someone were to somehow be completely careless and go over the edge, they would almost certainly die. So we would be remiss to completely dismiss the possibility of such a tragedy happening.

That said, you would have to really do something stupid or try hard to go over the edge. It would be very difficult and improbable to naturally be carried over the edge by the water. That rock lip holds you in.

Still, we wouldn’t be totally shocked if there were to be a major Devil’s Pool accident one day. So just be cautious, careful, and alert when swimming there and help maintain the Devil’s Pool safety record of no deaths so far.

Is Devil’s Pool Scary?

You’re literally on the edge of one of the largest waterfalls in the world. So, no, Devil’s Pool is not scary – it’s absolutely terrifying! But it’s still an exhilarating thrill that is a lot of fun.

Scared in Devil's Pool Victoria Falls

If the fear of going over the edge and the thought of crocs in the water aren’t enough to completely freak you out, there’s also another unexpected surprise in Devil’s Pool. There are fish that bite you during your dip in Devil’s Pool. It’s not enough to draw blood, but it will definitely make you jump a bit. So just be forewarned and don’t be startled enough to jump over the edge.

But yes, Devil’s Pool is indeed scary. Or, at least we thought so. Everyone judges the fear factor of this experience different from one another, but I think most sane people would agree that Devil’s Pool is a frightening experience. But it’s also a pretty awesome thrill!

What Happens If You Chicken Out of Devil’s Pool?

Swimming in Devil’s Pool is actually just one part of what is called “The Livingstone Island Tour.” You can join this tour and not actually go in Devil’s Pool at all.

Actually, over half the people during our tour opted to do just that. They didn’t chicken out though. They didn’t go into Devil’s Pool simply because they never intended to in the first place. The tour involves taking a boat across the Zambezi, walking around Livingstone Island, watching those of us daring enough to swim in Devil’s Pool, and enjoying a meal on Livingstone Island.

Many people come just to do those things and have no intention on swimming in Devil’s Pool. Going into Devil’s Pool is an optional component of the tour. You can decide if you actually want to go into Devil’s Pool once you get there. And it’s okay if you do chicken out.

So if you’re not sure, we’d suggest to still take the tour. Then arrive to Livingstone Island to assess the situation first-hand before making a decision whether or not to pursue a swim in Devil’s Pool. Even after swimming across the Zambezi River to get to Devil’s Pool, there is dry land to stand on in the instance that you’re too nervous to actually swim in Devil’s Pool Zambia.

Swimming in Devil's Pool Victoria Falls Zambia with rainbow

 

Do You Have To Jump In or Hang Over the Edge of Devil’s Pool?

No, you can test your limits as little or as far as you want to.

You can find many images online of people diving into Devil’s Pool and other mind-boggling poses hanging off the edge of this massive waterfall.

But you don’t have to jump in the pool (although it does make a cool photo!) You can instead carefully step down some rocks and wade into Devil’s Pool.

Jumping into Devil's Pool Victoria Falls

If the water levels are particularly low, some braves souls will lean out over the edge of the Victoria Falls as a guide holds onto their feet. Lean over Devil’s Pool if you dare, but only if you wish. This is your experience and you can decide to go as far over the edge as you feel comfortable doing. Or don’t peer over the edge at all.

How Fit Do You Need To Be to Swim In Devil’s Pool?

You must swim or wade across a portion of the Zambezi River to get from Livingstone Island to Devil’s Pool, so you need to be fit enough to do that. There is no rope to hold onto, so you will need to be able to get across the Zambezi River while the current is flowing.

Although there is no rope, most of the water is shallow enough to stand up in and still keep your head above the water. So if you were to panic for some reason during the swim, you should be able to stand up, which would prevent you from being carried downstream and getting swept away over the Falls.

Still, I wouldn’t recommend a visit to Devil’s Pool Zambia for anyone who can’t swim. Is it possible? Perhaps. But, I wouldn’t.

If you’re not a strong swimmer, that’s fine. You can wade across the Zambezi to get to Devil’s Pool depending on water levels. Just let the guides know. But if you’re unable to swim at all, Devil’s Pool probably isn’t an excursion for you.

Older people in Devil's Pool Victoria Falls

During our visit, there were older folks, heavier people, and weak swimmers who all accomplished the Zambezi River crossing without incident. Two guides are close by to instruct you and help ensure safety.

You are the best judge of your own fitness and capabilities. But most people should be able to make it across.

The challenge of Devil’s Pool is more mental than it is physical. You must overcome the fear of swimming in this death-defying pool.

Is There an Age Limit to Devil’s Pool?

Children must be at least 12 years old to go into Devil’s Pool. Children age 8 years old and up can go on the Livingstone Island Tour. But kids must be 12 years old to actually swim in Devil’s Pool.

Do You Need Travel Insurance for Devil’s Pool?

Travel insurance is not required but is strongly recommended. Devil’s Pool accidents can happen and the tour operator assumes no liability. You must sign a waiver to ensure this at the beginning of the Livingstone Island tour.

So before embarking on your trip to Africa, ensure that you have travel insurance. That way, if there is any unforeseen incident that occurs at Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls (or anywhere during an Africa trip), you should be covered.

We use World Nomads, as we have found they have what we find to be the best combination of cost and coverage provided. If you are pursuing other extreme sports while in Africa, consider their “Explorer” coverage, which includes coverage for additional adventurous activities beyond their Standard coverage.

It only takes about one minute to get a quote, so go here and enter the dates of your trip to get a quick estimate.

Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls Booking, Price, and Costs

How Much Does Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls Cost?

The price of the Devil’s Pool tour varies, pending whether you do the Livingstone Island Tour as part of their breakfast, lunch, or high tea package.

Current (2020) Devil’s Pool prices are:

  • Breakfast (7:30, 9:00, 10:30) costs $110
  • Lunch (12:30) costs $175
  • High Tea (15:30) costs $150

You must choose one of these tours that include a meal. There is no tour available only to Devil’s Pool, without a meal and visit to Livingstone Island. For the cheapest way to swim in Devil’s Pool Zambia, we recommend one of the breakfast tours, of course.

Most booking agents for this tour accept payment in US Dollars. They may or may not accept credit card.

This is the edge of Victoria Falls which is not possible to go to Devil's Pool Victoria Falls

 

What’s Included in the Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls Tour Price?

The Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls tour (AKA Livingstone Island tour) includes the following:

  • A five-minute boat ride from the Launch Site to Livingstone Island.
  • A complimentary welcome drink.
  • A brief tour of Livingstone Island
  • Swimming in Devil’s Pool
  • Two guides for the entire group (one who takes photos, another who assists in the pool).
  • Towels are provided for you upon getting out of Devil’s Pool.
  • A meal – breakfast, lunch, or high tea, depending on what Devil’s Pool tour you booked.
  • Drinks are also provided during the meal.
    Note: No alcoholic drinks are available during breakfast (not complimentary nor for purchase), but an assortment of wine and beer is included with the lunch and high tea tours. Interestingly, no tea is available during the “high tea” tour.
Breakfast on Livingstone Island Tour Victoria Falls

Breakfast consisted of a delicious eggs benedict, scones, muffins, and coffee.

Not Included in Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls Price:

  • Tips for the guides
  • Transportation to/from the Launch Site
  • Camera – Although photography is included, you must bring your own camera. (More on that in the What To Bring section of this post).
  • Visa fees for those who are arriving from Zimbabwe

Not Needed To Pay:

You do NOT need to pay any admission fees for the Victoria Falls World Heritage National Monument Site, part of Zambia’s Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park. Livingstone Island and Devil’s Pool is not part of the National Park, so no admission fee is required.

 

Is Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls Worth It?

Yes!

With a price over $100, Devil’s Pool is an expensive excursion for backpackers and those traveling on a budget. But this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience to do in Africa that we say is 100% worth every penny.

We’re traveling around the world on a budget, but sometimes you’ve got to splurge. We firmly believe that this is one of those experiences to splurge on. Victoria Falls is one of the three largest waterfalls in the world (Niagara & Iguazu being the others) and this is the only one of the trio that you can swim on the lip of.

We’ve talked to dozens of people that have splurged on the Devil’s Pool tour and we haven’t met anyone who regretted spending the cash on this unique trip. Yes, it is scary. But no one we spoke with has regretted it.

It’s our opinion that Devil’s Pool is absolutely worth it. And when you compare this to other adrenaline activities in Victoria Falls such as bungee jumping ($160), you’ll often find that the Devil’s Pool trip costs less.

You should also consider this experience includes a very nice meal too! So if you’ve traveled all the way to Victoria Falls, it’s our recommendation that Devil’s Pool is absolutely worth pursuing.

Couple sitting in Devil's Pool Victoria Falls with rainbow contemplating is Devil's Pool worth it

Can You Get to Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls on Your Own?

No, there’s no way to get to Devil’s Pool independently.

You must visit Devil’s Pool as part of the Livingstone Island tour, which you obviously must pay for. In the earlier days of Devil’s Pool, it was less regulated, and you could find unofficial “tour guides” that would take you out there for a fraction of the high price that is charged today.

Those days are over. Today, the only way to go to Devil’s Pool Zambia is to fork over the cash for the official Livingstone Island tour, ran by Tongabezi.

Besides, would you really want to risk your life with an unofficial tour guide, even if it did exist? There isn’t any way to get here on your own. You can see the picture below that shows the Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls location in respect to Livingstone Island.

Areal shot of Victoria Falls showing Livingstone Island and Devil's Pool Victoria Falls location

A boat is needed simply to get to Livingstone Island. So it would be virtually impossible to get to Devil’s Pool on your own.

If the thought of plunging over the falls to your death isn’t enough to scare you, you could also face being thrown in a Zimbabwean or Zambian jail cell since you are potentially making an illegal border crossing. Don’t even think about it.

How and Where to Book a Devil’s Pool Tour at Victoria Falls?

Most travel agencies on both the Zimbabwe or Zambia side of Victoria Falls can book a Devil’s Pool tour for you.

The Devil’s Pool tour (AKA Livingstone Island tour) is run by Tongabezi, a tour operator that also runs a luxury lodge on the Zambia side upstream from Victoria Falls. If you want to book directly with Tongabezi, they now accept bookings that can be made online directly on their website. You can also use that site to see up-to-date availability for the dates you’re traveling to Victoria Falls.

Otherwise, you can also book this trip through your hotel, hostel, tour company, or any travel agency in Victoria Falls. (That’s what we did.) The price should be the same whoever you book with. If it’s not, then book your Devil’s Pool excursion with someone else. Whoever you book with, just be sure to try to book at least a week or more in advance, as Devil’s Pool is becoming very popular and regularly sells out.

We traveled to Victoria Falls as part of an Oasis Overland tour across Africa, and Devil’s Pool was an optional excursion during our 56-Day Coast-to-Coast Trip. So our tour leader booked the trip on our behalf, which made it very easy. You can visit Oasis Overland to find out info about their Africa trips and we definitely recommend them. (You can read all about our detailed review of our 56-Day Oasis Overland Africa trip here.)

Very Important – Book in Advance!

This is perhaps the most important piece of advice we can offer. There are only five Devil’s Pool tours per day and they are composed of small groups of sixteen people. The Devil’s Pool tours sell out almost every day.

So if you want to visit Devil’s Pool, be sure to book it in advance or you will likely arrive to Victoria Falls disappointed that you can’t get a spot. We’ve already suggested to book at least a week before the date that you want to go. But booking a month or more in advance would be best.

Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls – When to Go

What Times Are the Tours to Devil’s Pool?

Currently, the Devil’s Pool tour (AKA Livingstone Island Tour) is operated 5 times per day at the following times:

  • 7:30-9:00 (Breakfast)
  • 9:00-10:30 (Breakfast)
  • 10:30-12:00 (Breakfast)
  • 12:30-3:00 (Lunch)
  • 3:30-5:30 (High tea)

 

Best Time to Visit Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls?

October and November can be an ideal time to plan a visit Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls, as those months provide the best odds for water levels being lower, which is necessary.

Visitors must plan a trip to Devil’s Pool based upon lower water levels in the Zambezi River. Typically, it is possible to swim in the Devil’s Pool from around mid-August to late-December. But it’s the water levels themselves, that are the true determination of whether or not it’s possible. So it all really depends on the climate and weather during your exact visit.

Even though the Livingstone Island tours operate year round, it is not possible to actually go into Devil’s Pool all year long.

The Livingstone Island tours do not include Devil’s Pool during the wet season (usually January to June), when higher water levels make it unsafe to enter Devil’s Pool. During that time, the Zambezi River waters are too strong to attempt a swim in Devil’s Pool. Hence you cannot go in when water levels rise.

Showing how to visit Devil's Pool Victoria Falls - lay right down on the edge of the waterfall!

There are some time periods on the cusp, where an area known as “Angel’s Armchair” is substituted for Devil’s Pool. Angel’s Armchair is another pool of water very close to the edge of Victoria Falls. But Angel’s Armchair is safer during higher water levels, when Devil’s Pool is not possible. With Angel’s Armchair, visitors don’t get quite as close to the edge.

During a few weeks of the year (usually around early August and again in January) when the water levels are just a bit too high to pursue Devil’s Pool, the Livingstone Island tour may instead visit Angel’s Armchair instead of Devil’s Pool.

Still, with high water levels during the wet season, the Livingstone Island tour doesn’t go to either Devil’s Pool or Angel’s Armchair, as both pools are unsafe during such times.

When’s the Best Time of Day to Visit Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls?

The best time of day to visit Devil’s Pool should be based upon your availability and your budget. Although, personally, we favor morning visits.

If you go to Devil’s Pool during one of the morning tours, you have the opportunity to swim in Devil’s Pool while the rainbows are showing from the Zambia side. The morning tours also are the least expensive times to visit Devil’s Pool. So the morning Devil’s Pool tours are a better deal.

So for the possibility of rainbows and it being cheaper, we suggest the morning as the best time of day to visit Victoria Falls.

What's the best time to go to Devil's Pool Victoria Falls? In the morning with rainbows!

But don’t dismiss the lunch or high tea tours. There are some interesting benefits to the afternoon tours that you most definitely should consider. Afternoon Devil’s Pool tours:

  1. last longer, and
  2. include beer & wine!

So if you want to indulge in a few drinks after the harrowing experience of visiting Devil’s Pool, those tours can provide value.

Regarding the longer times of the afternoon tours, you’ll have roughly the same time in Devil’s Pool as the morning tours. But the afternoon tours include more time on Livingstone Island to eat and drink.

The High Tea tour goes on for two hours, while the Lunch Tour is 2 hours, 30 minutes in total. Compare that to the 90-minute morning Devil’s Pool tour, which felt slightly rushed. So the afternoon High Tea tour gives you an entire extra hour!

Where Is Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls? Location & Directions:

To get to Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls, first you must get to this area in Southern Africa. To get to Victoria Falls in Africa, you can either fly into:

  • Harry Mwanga Nkumbula International Airport in Livingstone, Zambia, or
  • Victoria Falls Airport, on the Zimbabwe side

Devil’s Pool is located in the Zambezi River, which also acts as the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia. Devil’s Pool lies in the middle, but it approached from the Zambia side. Yet it can be easily reached from the Zimbabwe side of the river by taking a day trip into Zambia side of the falls.

Where Does the Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls Tour Start?

The Devil’s Pool begins on the Zambezi side of Victoria Falls, from the a place known as the “Launch Site.” This is located along the banks of the Zambezi River, between the Royal Livingstone Hotel and the town of Livingstone.

Note: the meeting point was formerly at the Royal Livingstone Hotel. But this is a change, as of 2019.

Also, we suggest arriving to the Launch Site at least a half-hour early. The Devil’s Pool tours depart strictly on time, so you don’t want to risk missing it.

Deck of Royal Livingstone Hotel on Zambezi River is the meeting point for the Devil's Pool Tour (Livingstone Island Tour)

 

How to Visit Devil’s Pool from the Zimbabwe Side of Victoria Falls? 

Access to Devil’s Pool is only from the Zambia side of Victoria Falls. However, if staying in Zimbabwe, it is easy to enter Zambia for the day to visit Devil’s Pool.

Just be aware of the visa fees associated with going back and forth between Zimbabwe and Zambia, which vary based upon your nationality. Most nationalities will need $20 for a Zambia day tripper visa (on arrival) when crossing the border from Zimbabwe to Zambia.

"You Are Now Entering Zambia" sign on the Zimbabwe to Zambia Victoria Falls Bridge border crossing

Also, when initially arriving into Zimbabwe, you will want to ensure that you get at least a double-entry visa (on arrival). This double-entry visa to Zimbabwe costs $45, which is $15 more than the $30 single-entry for most nationalities. (Canadians can only obtain $70 single entry visas – sorry!)

Failing to obtain the double-entry visa when first arriving to Zimbabwe will result in having to purchase two single entry visas which will be more costly since you’ll have to pay for two $30 single-entry visas ($60).

The $45 double-entry Zimbabwe visa + the $20 Zambia day trip visa = $65 in visa costs if you are traveling in Zimbabwe and making a day trip to Zambia for Devil’s Pool.

Check if the $50 KAZA Uni-Visa is Available: There is a $50 visa that allows you to travel between Zimbabwe and Zambia for 30 days with the single visa. This is a great option if it’s available. This KAZA Uni-Visa seems to be available at times but then runs out. If it’s available during your trip, we recommend getting that instead. This page provides updates on the visa’s availability.

A reader confirmed that the Kaza Uni-Visa was indeed available at the Zimbabwe-Zambia border, as of November 2018. It’s also been suggested that the KAZA Uni-Visa is available if flying into Harare, but may not be found at other airports or border crossings. If the KAZA Uni-Visa is available when entering Zimbabwe, it is advisable to get it if planning to pop over into Zambia for Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls.

How to Get From Zimbabwe Side of Victoria Falls to Devil’s Pool?

There are a few different methods to get from Zimbabwe to the Launch Site where the Devil’s Pool tour departs from. You can get to Devil’s Pool by either:

  1. walking,
  2. shuttle,
  3. taxis, or
  4. any combination of these.
Directions How to Get to Devil's Pool from Zimbabwe

Image courtesy of Google Maps

1) Walking from Zimbabwe to the Devil’s Pool Launch Site

This takes the most time to get there. It’s best for independent travelers on a tight budget who want to save $15 on the shuttle cost.

From the tourist area of Victoria Falls on the Zimbabwe side to the Royal Livingstone Hotel is a 5 km walk. The Launch Site is about another 1-km beyond the hotel.

If you were able to walk straight through, it would take about an hour and fifteen minutes. But we recommend to give yourself at least two hours for this walk from Zimbabwe to the Launch Site beyond the Royal Livingstone Hotel.

You need to budget time for border crossing procedures, pausing on the bridge to enjoy the views, take photos, watch the bungee jumpers, account for touts that may slow you down along the way, pause to admire wildlife you may spot, and/or any other unforeseen detours.

The route from Zimbabwe to the Royal Livingstone Hotel is easy to follow and well marked. We walked it ourselves without any problems.

Simply follow the main road, T1, to the Victoria Falls Bridge. Get your passport stamped out of Zimbabwe and proceed over the bridge. Once on the Zambia side, pay your $20 entry fee and get stamped into the country. Continue on the main road for nearly another 1-2 km and you’ll see the sign to The Royal Livingstone Hotel on the left side of the road. The Launch Site is another kilometer or so beyond the hotel, also on the left side of the road, with a sign indicating “Launch Site.”

It’s nice walk if you’re up for it. Check the weather though. It tends to get pretty hot in the dry season during the midday. So if you’re going on an afternoon tour, it may be uncomfortable to walk in the heat.

2) Taking the Shuttle from Zimbabwe to Devil’s Pool Launch Site

There is a shuttle that departs from the Kingdom Hotel in Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe) to the Launch Site, located beyond the Royal Livingstone Hotel (Zambia). This is the easiest way and the nominal cost is worth it.

The shuttle departs from the Kingdom Hotel on the Zimbabwe side, located here, right near the Zim-Zam border. This shuttle from Zimbabwe to the Devil’s Pool launch site costs $15 per person for the round-trip transfer. No discount is provided for one-way transfers. A reader comment has indicated that if you are the only person on the shuttle, the cost will be a $30 minimum.

This shuttle from Victoria Falls Zimbabwe is timed to coincide with the Devil’s Pool tours. You need to arrive at the Kingdom Hotel 15 minutes prior to the shuttle departure times, as they leave promptly. Departure timetable is as followed:

  • 6:15 for 7:30 tour
  • 8:15 for 9:00 tour
  • 9:30 for 10:30 tour
  • 11:30 for 12:30 tour
  • 14:30 for 15:30 tour

It is recommend to notify the tour operator that you want to take the shuttle. And be sure verify the aforementioned shuttle times when booking your Devil’s Pool tour.

3) Taxis from Vic Falls Zimbabwe to Devil’s Pool Launch Site

It is possible, but not recommended, to take taxis from Zimbabwe to the Devil’s Pool Launch Site. If you attempt this, you will need three separate taxis, which makes it complicated and costly.

A single taxi cannot bring you the entire way crossing the border due to regulations. Instead, you will need to take a taxi a few kilometers on the Zimbabwe side to the border. There are taxis on the bridge to take you the 1.5 kms to the Zambia border. Finally, you need a third taxi for the last few kilometers to the Launch Site.

If you’re not keen on walking, we recommend taking the shuttle instead of this series of taxis. Alternatively, you could walk part of the way and take a taxi for one of the segments. Expect to negotiate prices.

What to Bring to Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls

What to Wear to Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls

Wear light, comfortable clothes or wear a bathing suit. There are bathrooms on Livingstone Island to change, if you’d like. But you may find it more convenient to show up wearing a swim suit, so you’re ready to go.

Ladies, be sure to have a tight-fitting bathing suit so that you prevent an embarrassing wardrobe malfunction in the event that the current grabs hold of your top.

What to Bring To Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls 

👖 A change of clothes – you’ll want something dry to change into once you get out of Devil’s Pool.

👟 Water shoes – bring or wear a pair of water shoes like these men’s water shoes or these women’s water shoes. Or at the very least, wear some old sneakers you don’t care about getting wet. Although you can go to Devil’s Pool barefoot, we wouldn’t recommend it due to submerged rocks that can be sharp and slippery.

💵 Money – You’ll want to have some cash on hand to tip the guides. If coming from Zimbabwe, you also need $20 for the Zambia day tripper visa. Bring extra cash for incidentals, a drink, or anything else you may want to buy.

🆔 Passport – If you are arriving from the Zimbabwe side, don’t forget to grab your passport. If you’re staying on the Zambia side, a passport isn’t needed.

📷 Phone and/or Camera – If you’re going to Devil’s Pool, be sure you have a way to document it. Bring a waterproof camera like a GoPro. But be sure that it has a floating handle attachment like this.

📱 Waterproof Phone Case – If you’re bringing your mobile phone, consider protecting it with a waterproof case like this one. These inexpensive protective cases are so worth the minimal cost, just in the instance there’s a splash or a drop in the Zambezi.

☀ Sunblock – Prevent sunburn under the hot Africa sun. And remember to apply 30 minutes prior to entering the water or else it may wash off.

🕷 Non-DEET Insect Repellent – Victoria Falls is still considered a malaria zone, so mosquito repellent is important. But consider not bringing your strong DEET repellent, as it will wash off and harm the ecology of the Zambezi River, killing fish and other flora/fauna. Instead, consider natural mosquito repellent like this before any water-based activities.

🎒 Small Bag or Backpack – Simply to carry the aforementioned items.

😱 Courage – Be sure to pack some courage with you to Devil’s Pool. This is absolutely necessary when swimming on the edge of this enormous waterfall.

What Not To Bring to Devil’s Pool

  • A towel – You won’t need to pack a towel since one is provided for you.

Are There Any Lockers or Storage at Devil’s Pool?

No, there are not any lockers or storage facilities at Devil’s Pool, but it’s not at all necessary. You can take a backpack or small bag with you on the boat to Livingstone Island. You can safely leave this bag on Livingstone Island while you’re swimming in Devil’s Pool.

What Types of Cameras Can You Bring to Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls? 

You can bring whatever cameras you want with you onto Livingstone Island. But once you begin your swim to Devil’s Pool, only mobile phones, handheld digital cameras, and GoPros are permitted.

You give your phone or handheld camera to your guide, who puts them safely in his dry bag. The guide will bring your devices to Devil’s Pool for you while you swim. You can take waterproof cameras, like GoPros, with you in the water during the swim if you wish.

Using a GoPro Camera to capture photos and video at Devil's Pool Victoria Falls

Bulky cameras with changeable lenses are NOT permitted at Devil’s Pool. You may leave bigger cameras safely on Livingstone Island while you take your swim in Devil’s Pool.

 

How Can I Capture Photos and Video in Devil’s Pool?

There are two guides that will help ease you into Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls. One guide comes in the water with you while another guide balances on the edge of Devil’s Pool to take video and pictures. It all sounds pretty crazy, but somehow it works. The camera-holding guide really does a good job and holds tightly on to the devices with two hands.

He takes loads of pictures – usually at least 50+. So be sure to free up your storage on your phone or camera before going to Devil’s Pool. His photography on your device is included in the cost of the tour But you should consider a tip if you’re happy with the epic photos he captures.

Also, Go See Devil’s Pool from Above! 🚁

For the ultimate adrenaline combination while at Victoria Falls, also consider a helicopter ride to get a birds-eye view of Devil’s Pool! That is how we were able to capture the aerial shots of Devil’s Pool that we’ve included throughout this post.

Soaring above Victoria Falls is a magical experience. The video below captures ou



This post first appeared on Roaming Around The World - Travel Blog With Tales, please read the originial post: here

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Devil’s Pool Victoria Falls: All You Need To Know (And How To Survive!)

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