When visiting Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe or Livingstone in Zambia, it’s almost a must to visit the Devil’s Pool on Livingstone Island. There you can enjoy the cool water of the Zambezi, the beautiful nature, oh, and the mighty Victoria Falls crashing down 100m under your feet.
What is Livingstone Island on the Victoria Falls?
On top of the Victoria Falls, somewhere in the middle of its 1708m width, you can find an island. Named after the famous adventurer: Dr. Livingstone. It’s where he first saw the Victoria Falls, back in 1855. On that island, he saw the Zambezi falling down 108m down the gorge. He named the waterfall after Queen Victoria.
So what’s the Devil’s Pool on Livingstone Island?
Via the island, you get access to this little pool on top of the falls, named Devil’s Pool. No idea why it’s called that way tho. Why I recommend taking a dip in this pool? Well, it’s at the edge of the Victoria Falls. So you can literally hang over the edge see the waterfall down to the bottom.
Listen to the guide about the safety measures. Don’t do anything silly, as it is still a fairly dangerous place.
A visit to the place is not guaranteed. They are only open from mid-August to mid-January. It also depends on the water levels of the Zambezi river. Of course, this is all to be able to guarantee a more safe experience.
The trip to the Devil’s Pool on Livingstone Island step-by-step
- First, you all gather at the Royal Livingstone Hotel, where a boat is waiting for you.
- Second, you have a 2 minutes boat ride on the Zambezi river to bring you to Livingstone Island. On the way, it is possible to see hippos and crocs.
- Then you get a little tour on the island. A view over the Victoria Falls and a quick chance to change into your bathing suit. I recommend you wear them already under your clothes though.
- Now, it’s finally time to go into the Devil’s Pool and take photos of your amazing experience.
- Lastly, there is some food and drinks for you to enjoy while you discuss your experiences.
Booking your visit to the Devil’s Pool
Warning: don’t book the trip from guides on the street. Only one company is legally allowed to do the trips and complies to the safety measures.
The official tour-operator does 5 trips each day. Depending on the hour you choose it’s a different rate. This has to do with extra accommodation like food and drinks on the island.
- 7:30 am – 9 am: Breezer for $105
- 9 am – 10:30 am: Breezer for $105
- 10:30 am – 12pm: Breezer for $105
- 12:30 pm – 3:15pm: Lunch for $170
- 3:15pm – 5:30 pm: High Tea for $145
If you are coming from Victoria Falls it is possible you have to pay an extra visa fee to enter Zambia and Zimbabwe again. I recommend getting the double entry visa when entering Zimbabwe upon your arrival in Victoria Falls. This way you have fewer costs and hassle at the border going to Zambia.
A couple of FAQs and worries I had while booking the Devil’s Pool visit
Is it safe to visit the Devil’s Pool on top of Victoria Falls?
Yes, it’s safe to visit. Of course, it’s important to listen to your guides safety instructions.
Are there any animals nearby while I swim in the Devil’s Pool?
Going to and from Livingstone Island it is possible to see hippos and crocodiles in the river. However, they usually don’t come near the falls.
There are little fish swimming around though. So you might feel some nibbling your feet. Don’t worry, they don’t bite and it doesn’t hurt. It does tickle, so make sure not to overreact while you are on top of the falls.
Will I be swimming a lot?
You are required to do a bit of swimming to the Devil’s Pool. It’s not that far. Only 20-30meters.
Should I be a fit swimmer?
No, there are ropes to help you out. But even then, the current isn’t that strong in the part you will be swimming.
Will I get hurt?
Possibly. There are rocks where you have to walk over in the water. So it might hurt a little bit.
Did anyone die falling off the falls?
No, no-one has ever fallen over the falls. Don’t be the first one!
Can I take photos while I’m on top of Devil’s Pool?
One of the guides will use your smartphone or camera to take photos of you. Just enjoy the moment and make those memories. They will provide you with enough proof, at no extra charge. Just give them your camera/phone. They are pretty good at it!
Is there a safety line?
No, not really. You get two guides. One makes photos, the other coaches you around the water and the rocks. When you go and lie on top of the falls, he will hold your foot for safety.
Is it scary?
A little at first, but once you’re in the water and on top of the falls it’s a lot of fun. I didn’t want to leave the water anymore.
Can I go to Livingstone island without swimming?
Yes, you can do the visit and just stay on the island while others swim. I don’t understand why you would want to miss out on this, but it’s perfectly fine.
Is it hard to go in and out of the pool?
No, there are plenty of places in the rocks for you to grab on to. Climbing in and out of the pool it pretty much the same as in artificial pools with a ladder.
Should I bring a towel?
No, they have nice ones waiting for you.
Should I do it?
Would you dare to do this? Let me know in the comments!
Disclaimer: There is none, I just really wanted to write this piece of content for you. <3