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  • Writer's pictureKirk

Zambezi River Hippo Cruise In Zimbabwe

This was the only paid excursion I did In Zimbabwe, other than admittance to Victoria Falls. For a cost of about $45 USD, I took one of the many river cruises available at sunset. You can choose from any number of cruises from dinner to luxury, but I chose the least expensive as I only was interested in the hippos.


Turned out to be fairly lame. There were many other cruise boats on the river at the same time so not very peaceful. That would be ok if we could have gotten closer to the hippos, but they were a bit away and just floating, no real activity. I have done great shots of some hippos interacting in South Africa I'll share soon. After seeing the ones in South Africa, these looked quite boring.



Not much to view, mostly just got to see their funny ears;


In 1996 there was a hippo attack here. A rogue hippo flipped a kayak occupied by a tour guide and two tourists. Another man in a kayak came to assist with his oars when a different hippo flipped him and attacked. The hippo tried to eat the man who came to help but was unable. He suffered multiple bite wounds and had his left arm amputated.


The two tourists had to swim through these crocodile infested waters yo safety but were uninjured. Their tour guide was found dead two days later.


Rogue hippo attacks are rare, but not rare enough that I would be comfortable being close to them in an unprotected environment. Like the elephant, they can be unpredictable. When dealing with creatures of this size, unpredictability is a bad thing.


I saw no kayaks while I was out there. Our boat was large enough this was not a concern:



With Victoria Falls do close by, I couldn't help but wonder in these large creatures ever get caught in the current and Ho over the falls. I just kept getting this image of falling hippos coming over and plunging to the bottom. What a great photo shot that would be. But alas, those selfish hippos would not accommodate!


There was other wildlife along the river:



Mostly birds, including one of my favorites, the kingfisher. I may do a separate post on this bird one day as I have plenty of photos from various river adventurers.


Some of the tourists got bored with the hippo experience and took to a boat crawl instead. Equally bored, I was tempted to join him.


I would not recommend this tour unless it's the only opportunity you had to see hippos in their native environment. This is just too touristy, and the price to wow factor (my homemade formula for determining the worth of an attraction) was just not high enough to warrant the money and time.


In the future I will share some great hippo shots I took in South Africa taken in their natural environment.


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Roger Wells
Roger Wells
Nov 08, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

👍🙏😊

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Kirk
Kirk
Nov 09, 2023
Replying to

Thanks for reading!

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Mike Wells
Mike Wells
Nov 08, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

It's good that you learn what tours are better tan others. Otherwise you would spend lots of money. The hippos are a huge animal and very unpredictable.

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Kirk
Kirk
Nov 08, 2023
Replying to

I’m not sure I know the best tours. I only know the ones I like. I take the ones for the main attraction without all the add on fluff that adds no value to me, like adding dinner to the experience.

Thanks for reading and commenting!

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