No one goes to Victoria Falls solely for the game viewing. The great spectacle of the falls overshadows Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park in Zambia and Zambezi National Park in Zimbabwe. But that doesn’t mean these parks aren’t worthwhile. The former is more compact, and it’s home to a group of rhino that you can visit on foot. The much larger Zambezi National Park has more expansive, sweeping landscapes, sheltering rare species such as sable antelope.
We visited Mosi-oa-Tunya from Toka Leya. Our guide took us first to the rhino, which are tracked and protected by armed rangers. Accompanied by two rangers and surrounded on all sides by towering thunderheads, we proceeded on foot. Five rhinos emerged from the green brush and gathered in a clearing, close enough for us to hear them chewing. Backdropped by occasional lightning bolts, they were an exhilarating sight.
In a different spot in the park, we observed herds of graceful antelope, lumbering wildebeest, warthog, zebra and giraffe. A troop of baboon took no notice of our approach, and we watched adults grooming one another and babies frolicking at close quarters. We had all these beautiful creatures entirely to ourselves; we saw not a single other safari vehicle. Traveling in the “green” rainy season has its benefits.