African Four Corners

The African four corners is a name given to the approximate meeting place of four nations: Namibia; Zambia; Zimbabwe, and Botswana. The Caprivi Strip of Namibia; which has long been a disputed region is kind of a dividing point and a meeting point for the African four corners. It’s not a perfect point like the US version of four corners is where Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado and Utah-in fact there is no actual corner. However, the name sticks and all four are easily accessible from one another.
African Four Corners, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa
In my opinion, the African four corners is one of the world’s great places. There is so much to see and do no matter which country you are in. From the Caprivi Strip to the Chobe River and Chobe National Park to the legendary Victoria Falls and all its adventures-the region is loaded with sites and sounds.
African Four Corners, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa, Chobe River, Chobe National Park
The only thing that can get annoying, and I mean really annoying, is going back and forth a bunch between the countries and having to deal with immigration and visa formalities depending on what passport you hold, what method of transport you have, and how long the line is.
African Four Corners, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa, Chobe River, Chobe National Park, Kazungula, border
That said with a little planning you can minimize the hassles and get the most out of your trip to the African four corners region. Here are some of the highlights from my trip.
Victoria Falls, Smoke that thunders, Zambezi River, African Four Corners, Zambia, Zimbabwe, travel, Africa,
First and foremost you must see Victoria Falls. The “Smoke that Thunders” is one of nature’s greatest creations and a true natural wonder. I have written about Victoria Falls several times before but it is worth saying again that it is awesome. Pictures and words cannot due justice what it’s like to see and experience the falls and their sheer power.
Victoria Falls, Smoke that thunders, Zambezi River, African Four Corners, Zambia, Zimbabwe, travel, Africa,
Around Victoria Falls there are a ton of adventure activities that you can do ranging from bungee jumping and white water rafting to helicopter rides and hiking. You can stay on either the Zambia side in Livingstone-where I have stayed twice before; or you can stay on the Zimbabwe side. This trip I stayed on the Zimbabwe side in Victoria Falls (the name of the town) at the Stanley & Livingstone Hotel and Private Game Reserve.
Victoria Falls, Smoke that thunders, Zambezi River, African Four Corners, Zambia, Zimbabwe, travel, Africa,
What’s special and unique about the Stanley & Livingstone is that it has a private game reserve that features the big 5: lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants and buffaloes. The bush at the reserve is gorgeous and the hotel is equally beautiful. The pool is a nice reprieve from the African heat and simply sitting outside and listening to nature as you gaze out over the bush is priceless.
Victoria Falls, Smoke that thunders, Zambezi River, African Four Corners, Zambia, Zimbabwe, travel, Africa, pool, stanley and livingstone hotel
The Stanley & Livingstone is the most luxurious option in Victoria Falls but keep in mind that it is about 15 minutes out of town and totally in the bush, so you are very isolated. They are very good about transfers into town and around but it is still time consuming. That said, it is a great place to base yourself.
Victoria Falls, Smoke that thunders, Zambezi River, African Four Corners, Zambia, Zimbabwe, travel, Africa, pool, stanley and livingstone hotel, zebras
After seeing the falls from both sides, it is about an hour drive to the border of Botswana near Kasane, the main town and base point for the Caprivi Strip and Chobe National Park.
African Four Corners, Chobe River, Caprivi Strip, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa, Chobe National Park
Once you are in Botswana, you have an option of staying in Kasane and taking river safaris in small boats but never going into Namibia-the border is the Chobe River; or simply staying on land and doing a safari in Chobe National Park.
African Four Corners, Chobe River, Caprivi Strip, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa
Chobe National Park is fabulous and one of the most beautiful and unique parks in Africa. There are more elephants in Chobe than any other park in Africa and many of them congregate around the river to drink and bathe.
African Four Corners, Chobe River, Caprivi Strip, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa, elephants
The other option and the one I chose was to stay on a houseboat on the Chobe River but on the Namibia side of the river. I stayed on the Zambezi Queen.
Zambezi Queen, luxury, hotel, African Four Corners, Chobe River, Caprivi Strip, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa
The Zambezi Queen is a big houseboat with 20 something rooms and can comfortable fit over 30 people. The accommodations are great, luxurious and comfortable. The lounge space or common space is equally comfortable. But the best thing is relaxing and taking in the scenery.
Zambezi Queen, luxury, hotel, African Four Corners, Chobe River, Caprivi Strip, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa
The Zambezi Queen sails up and down the Chobe River where you can spot elephants, hippos and everything else you can imagine. The landscape is amongst the worlds greatest. I could look at the Chobe for days; which is basically what you do if you stay on the Zambezi Queen. However, they also run excursions into Chobe National Park; which is great.
buffaloes, Zambezi Queen, luxury, hotel, African Four Corners, Chobe River, Caprivi Strip, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa
The only issue is you have to go through immigration on both sides of the border twice if you do that which can take some time and is certainly annoying. The border post on the Namibian side of the Chobe is particularly rough as the uphill walk has very bad footing; which affected some elderly people who were on the boat with me.
elephant, Zambezi Queen, luxury, hotel, African Four Corners, Chobe River, Caprivi Strip, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa
So the African four corners are typical of Africa. It’s big, beautiful, fun, exciting, frustrating and annoying all at the same time. It is one of the most beautiful parts of Africa and very safe and well touristed.
Zambezi Queen, luxury, hotel, African Four Corners, Chobe River, Caprivi Strip, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa, sunset
My best advice besides go immediately is to plan it out so you can minimize your time at borders and immigration and maximize your time in the African four corners region.
African Four Corners, Chobe River, Caprivi Strip, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, travel, Africa
Note: Americans only need visas to Zimbabwe and Zambia in this region and all visas can be obtained at the border. I suggest getting a double entry Zimbabwe visa if you plan to go to the Zambian side of Victoria Falls from Zimbabwe. It will save you money and time filling out forms and answering stupid questions from the customs agents. Also, you can get a day pass visa into Zambia for $20 if you’re only going for the falls or go for free if you’re just going to see the bungee jump from the Victoria Falls Bridge.
Victoria Falls, Smoke that thunders, Zambezi River, African Four Corners, Zambia, Zimbabwe, travel, Africa, bungee, bungee jump, buggy
Disclaimer: I was hosted by the Stanley & Livingstone Hotel and also the Zambezi Queen. I received no financial compensation from either and in no way has my opinion or what I’ve written in this article been influenced.

Comments

  1. Your photos are stunning! I’m definitely adding this area to my list!

  2. What a wonderful place! I’m headed here in July and am debating between the two sides of the falls. I would just do it as a day trip. Taking visa considerations and hassles into consideration (I’m Canadian, but pretty sure I need a visa for both), which side would you recommend visiting if I don’t have time to do both?

    Thanks

    • Both sides are more or less the same to be honest. I think the restaurants in Livingstone may be a bit better in town but the hotels are better in Zimbabwe. I don’t know your budget but theres also hood cheap accommodation on each side too. Def see both sides of the Falls…different views/angles

  3. That first photo is mind blowing, really great shot!

  4. Larissa says:

    Wow is all I have to say with these photos Lee.

  5. I want to go to Victoria Falls so bad! Ever since I saw Niagara I have wanted to go there!

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