Zimbabwe – Victoria Falls

Zimbabwe has featured in African history from the earliest times, when ancient civilisations migrated towards the south through this productive land, right up until our present day, as political movements continue to feature. This is a land of beauty and productivity, and is also the home of the magnificent Victoria Falls, one of the seven Natural Wonders of the World. In fact, the falls are on the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia, which makes it an ideal destination for visitors wanting to see these African countries as well.

Image of the Zimbabwe – Victoria Falls.
Zimbabwe – Victoria Falls.

The 500 000 cubic metres of water are made up of the Zambezi River, which falls in seven waterfalls and creates a dramatic sight and a deep rumble that penetrates your very core. In fact, a local tribe named these falls The Smoke that Thunders, and this aptly describes the impression created by this dramatic curtain of water. This waterfall is so vast that the mist of water coming off the thundering water sustains an entire forest opposite.

The Vic Falls and its town are part of a national park that stretches over 23 square kilometres. The national park includes both Zambia and Zimbabwe within its borders. The Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park (Zambia) and the Victoria Falls National Park (Zimbabwe) combine and were both recognised by the World Heritage List in 1989.

Guests to the parks of this area are urged to go on the guided game drives and safaris available. This will give you a unique glimpse into the fauna and flora of southern Africa, including the deadly crocodiles and hippopotamuses. Cruises along the river at sunset promise gorgeous and memorable sights and sounds that are sure to last a lifetime. These are not only offered by the national park surrounding Vic Falls, but by many other tour operators and accommodation providers in both Zambia and Zimbabwe. Before undertaking a trip to this part of Africa, ensure that you have found an operator that understands your needs and capabilities so that you can get the most out of your trip to the Victoria Falls.

Image of Matobo National Park near Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.
Matobo National Park near Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.

Adventurous travellers are well rewarded. The natural landscape allows for white-water rafting down the impressive Zambezi River or bungee jumping 110m into the deep gorge below the Vic Falls, Zimbabwe Bride. Riding on the back of an African elephant is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity offering a brand new perspective, one that is not to be missed. Helicopter flips over the expanse of the falls are other ways to witness this awe-inspiring sight.

The Chobe National Park and Okavango Delta are within relatively close proximity to the Victoria Falls. This means that visitors from all over the world are able to see much more of southern Africa without having to travel extensive distances.

Indeed the Victoria Falls are one of the world’s most beautiful and breath-taking sights. Tourists who are planning a trip to southern Africa are encouraged to dedicate a good couple of days in this area and experience these stunning thundering waters.
For more information, please view: http://www.victoriafalls-guide.net




Effects Of Climatic And Environmental Changes On Ancient African Civilisations

Hundreds of thousands of years ago, the entire planet earth looked very different to what modern man experiences today. Continents were not yet divided, and the vegetation and animals were different. Significantly, the climate was also vastly different to what it is today. Climate plays an integral role in determining the plants and animal that live in a certain areas, as well as how habitable a place is for human beings.

In fact, even the theory of the evolution of man was dependent largely on the climatic influences on our ancient ancestors. It is hypothesised that the ancient versions of man were forced to walk upright, lose body hair and develop their coordination for survival in a changing environment. New skills also needed to be learned as farming techniques and living habits had to be adapted.

Ancient Africa experienced major vacillations between mega-droughts and Ice Ages, although these fluctuations occurred over thousands and thousands of years. As humans continued to develop and evolve through these phases, they needed to make major adaptations, not only to their ways of life, but also to their personal body structure. Prior to 135 000 years ago, the whole of Africa was lush and fertile, with a tropical climate. Then, the most intense mega-drought ever to occur hit the continent in the period referred to as the early part of the Late Pleistocene epoch. This is believed to have led to the migration of most of our human ancestors into other areas that were more habitable and fertile. Lake Malawi has been used by scientists as a rain gauge to ascertain water levels in ancient times. Research has shown that, during this mega-drought, the lake’s level dropped at least 1968 feet, or 600 metres! Evolutionists claim that this severe lack of water not only pushed ancient man from the area, it also forced aquatic animals (such as fish) to develop the facilities to be able to survive on dry land, thus evolving into land animals.

As people flocked out of the continent, only a very small proportion of this specific generation remained. Humankind as we know it is widely believed to have come from these few remaining on the continent, who evolved significantly and in response to the climatic changes.

These conditions continued until about 70 000 years ago, when the climate was again characterised by wetter conditions. These led to the growth and renewal of fresh vegetation, as well as an increased water supply to the region. More people were in the area during this time of abundance, and the population grew. This increase in numbers eventually led to migrations due to space limitations and the ownership of land.

Then, about 20 000 years ago, an Ice Age overcame the entire earth. This meant that the planet underwent a long-term period of cold temperatures over most of its surface. In places like North America and Eurasia, giant ice sheets covered enormous proportions of the land, making it impossible to farm and, sometimes, even live in these areas. This final Ice Age lasted for about 9 500 years. It forced most of the populations to migrate to the highlands, where they would be relatively protected from the ice sheets. Again, these civilisations had to adapt their farming methods, and change their diet, social habits, clothing and migratory patterns. This forced an evolution to a certain extent. Body hair was necessary to keep people warm, their skin lightened due to a lack of the harsh rays of the sun that they experienced during the mega-droughts, etc…

When this Ice Age came to an end 10 500 years ago, areas like the Sahara were left fertile and healthy. This made it and the other areas like it the ideal spots in which to settle as ancient man began to descend from the highlands. Animals and plants thrived in this environment, which made it very desirable in the eyes of mankind. The abundance of food, water and sunshine again changed the habits and physical structures of our earliest forefathers.

These conditions lasted for some time, but the Sahara in particular continued to experience fluctuations between humid and dry conditions. These eventually left the entire area unable to yield crops or sustain life for any extended period of time. Today, it remains a large stretch of desert. Then, approximately 2500 years ago, the group of people who had made their home in the Sahara began to follow the direction of the Nile River, which held promise of a rich water supply. The arid conditions of the Sahara and its surrounds continue to the present day.

Africa has, since prehistoric times, proven to be a place of fascination, life and evolution. Changes in the climate were often dramatic, and these were, to a great extent, responsible for determining the ancient civilisations that inhabited this vast continent. It is no wonder that many researchers and scientists maintain that Africa is the Cradle of Mankind, and research continues to yield fascinating evidence of this theory.