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Victoria Falls to Mana pools self drive (where to stop)

Singapore
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Victoria Falls to Mana pools self drive (where to stop)

Hello my husband and I are thinking of doing a self drive Vic Falls to Mana pools in September. We plan to stay at Nyamepi for 3 nights (there is availability says zimparks).

Can anyone suggest a good/safe place to stay to break up the drive from VF to MP? We plan to do that drive over 2 days as it's quite long (800km).... Alternatively , is it better/safer(?) to drive from Livingstone in Zambia (but then we would have to deal with the border crossing at chirundu) ?

Thanks in advance!

Oxford, United...
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1. Re: Victoria Falls to Mana pools self drive (where to stop)

Hi! I did exactly that last year! We put our car on the ferry and it made the whole journey much less stressful! I blogged about it here if you'd like to read about it: greatzimbabweguide.com/kariba-ferries-our-jo…

Singapore
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2. Re: Victoria Falls to Mana pools self drive (where to stop)

@Beth that's an awesome trip report and it would have been a great idea for us if not for the ferry schedule. we are due to arrive in MP on a Monday and unfortunately Kariba ferries only docks in Mlibizi on Tuesdays (arriving Kariba on Wed I presume). I have requested for a Sunday departure from Mlibizi to Kariba, but not hopeful....

Meanwhile still working on where to stopover for the self drive .

Hermanus, South...
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3. Re: Victoria Falls to Mana pools self drive (where to stop)

Hi

I have not driven the route through Zimbabwe, I did research it quite a bit last year.

It was very difficult to find somewhere to stay, my feeling was that if you had a couple of nights it would be worth going into Matusadona national park or similar. It seems the lodges or camp sites were quite a distance from the road, on the river.

My research also indicated that the road can be very bad (In September it should be dry at least). I have driven the route through Zambia a few times. The border at Chirundu is no worse than some other Southern African borders. It is a new building and seemed pretty organised.

You will have to check exactly what paperwork you need for your vehicle though.

Good places I have found to stay on that route. 1 : Moorings camp near Monze, a nice little campsite and decent reasonably priced en- suite rooms/ chalets.

2: Masuku Lodge near Choma http: www.masukulodgezambia.com , 22 km off the road, but well worth it for a comfortable lodge with great food.

Enjoy your trip.

Linkie Grownewald

Owner-Truly Africa Tours

Edited: 08 February 2014, 02:13
Port Elizabeth
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4. Re: Victoria Falls to Mana pools self drive (where to stop)

Presumably seeing as Nyamepi is camping, you are looking for somewhere to camp?

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g477979-d365136…

The only campsites vaguely in the area that we came across was Antelope Park in Gweru, which I hated and is a bit far south for you. There is also a campsite at Chinhoyi caves, which isn't supposed to be very good.

Port Elizabeth
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5. Re: Victoria Falls to Mana pools self drive (where to stop)

Alternatively you can try the extremely rough road just south of the Kariba and stay at Chizaria National Park. Or the little used tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g477976-d477308…

Victoria Falls...
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6. Re: Victoria Falls to Mana pools self drive (where to stop)

Hi

Vic Falls to Mana Pools in 2 days on the Zimbabwe side is quite a long haul mainly because there is no where halfway to stay. Once you pass Binga coming from the Vic Falls side you hit the dirt road and there is nowhere close to stay until you either get to Karoi or Kariba, depending on which route you take. I did this road in Oct 2013 and was pleasantly surprised that is was in reasonable condition except for the corrugations which are bad in places but if you let your tyres down a bit and get to the right speed its okay.

However this was before the rains set in and no doubt the rains may have caused some damage which may or may not get fixed by the time you go in September. My guess is they will be fixed.

Only accommodation along this stretch is at the national parks like Chizarira or Matusadona but deviating from the main road is not a good idea as these roads are not maintained and are in bad condition, which will delay your journey considerably.

Binga to Karoi is about 344kms on dirt road and I would estimate will take you 6hrs so if you depart early enough from Binga you will be able to get to Mana in the day. It's a big drive but of you are up to it then it can be done. The vehicle you are in will make a huge differnce as the to comfort of this trip.

The road from Karoi to Marongora where you have to check in for Mana is all good tar and is only about 110kms you have to arrive here early enough for them to allow you do the remaining drive into Mana which is again on dirt from the bottom of the escarpment and is badly corrugated again but the distances are not that big maybe 100kms and max 2 hours drive.

The drive through Zambia is a whole lot quicker and easier except for the fact that you have to cross the border twice.

Nyamepi camp is fine and has ablutions which coud do with some updating, if you are completely self sufficient then try to stay at one of the private sites, like Mucheni or Ndungu, much nicer but they have absolutely no facilities at all.

7. Re: Victoria Falls to Mana pools self drive (where to stop)

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