There’s been a new kid on the Victoria Falls activity block this year. Wild Horizons launched the Canopy Tour in June 2013: a series of cable swings over the Zambezi River gorge. The tour consists of wooden walkways, rope bridges, ziplines and slides that criss-cross across the ravine, above the canopy of a hardwood forest. The rapids of the Zambezi River rush below, and the mist of Victoria Falls is in plain sight. The Canopy Tour is, without doubt, located in a spectacular area of Victoria Falls. A crowd of scenes clamour for your attention: the sheer cliffs; the menacing river; the green, ethereal forest and, finally, the white haze of Victoria Falls poised in the sky.
Why do the Canopy Tour?
People of all ages can do the Canopy Tour: the only requirements are an adventurous spirit and a good head for heights. The lack of age limit makes it more family friendly than the other adventure activities in Vic Falls, and younger kids can be strapped to adults in a double harness for extra security. The more relaxed feel of the Canopy Tour is also good way for visitors to get used to the cables before doing the more terrifying Zipline or Gorge Swing. What’s more, the large number of slides gives visitors the luxury of time – time to enjoy the grandness of the scenery and to see it up close.
At the time of writing, the Canopy Tour costed US $50, which is cheaper than the Zipline by $40, also making it one of the more affordable activities in Victoria Falls. I think it is versatile in terms of adrenalin level, cost and technicality, and is suitable for a wide range of ages, experience and budgets.
How the Canopy Tour works
Trained guides give a full safety briefing to visitors before starting the Canopy Tour. They explain how the harnesses work, how they are attached to the cables, and how to brake and turn around on the swings. They supply helmets and thick gloves to visitors in addition to the harnesses. This safety briefing and harness-fitting takes place at The Lookout, which is the base for the Zipline, Gorge Swing and Canopy Tour.
After a short walk towards the forest, the Canopy Tour begins with a relatively short slide to ease you into things. Standing on a wooden platform, you’re connected to two cables for safety. With a loose grip on the cable above your head, you lean back in the harness and let it swing you across the gorge to a platform below. A tighter grip on the cable will slow you down, so you have full control over how fast you cross the gorge. Two guides accompany each tour, so that there’s always one guide at the start and one at the end of each slide.
The Canopy Tour takes 2-2.5 hours including the safety brief at the beginning and a drink at the end (sliding is thirsty work!).
My friends did this activity and was there to hear first-hand how much they enjoyed it. We used it as a taster activity for the Zipline and Gorge Swing, and by the time they had done the Canopy tour they were completely at ease with the harnesses and cables, before stepping things up a notch later. I did the zipline the year before and had decided that once was enough for me, but I think I would do the Canopy Tour on its own if the opportunity came up again. Excuse the fuzzy photos – some of the swings and platforms are a fair distance away from the base!
To book this activity contact Wild Horizons. This post is proudly sponsored by Wild Horizons. Sponsored posts are written with the understanding that the writer can express her opinions honestly and openly.
Wild Horizons is a ‘one-stop’ ground handling & activity provider based in Victoria Falls, Livingstone and Chobe. Wild Horizons offers a range of tours, transfers and activities including Rafting, Canoeing, Elephant Back Safaris, High Wire Activities, Lion Encounters, Helicopter Flips & our lodges: Imbabala Zambezi Safari Lodge and The Elephant Camp.