Is it safe?
While there is an inherent element of risk in every outdoor adventure, running rivers with our professional guides should not be considered dangerous. Our professionalism is unsurpassed and our safety procedures are second to none.
Note that Zambezi River is known as one of the best and less risk rivers for rafting in the whole world because of its warm water, big volume, less exposed rocks and being a pool drop river that means even if you go for a swim through the rapid pick you up in the big pool. Rapids are not continuous like other river around the world. In the unlikely event of an emergency, our guides are thoroughly trained in First Aid and CPR.
Is it safe rafting with your company?
Shockwave Adventures located in the center of Victoria Falls, office # 6 Bata buildings, offers trips for every level of rafter and include quality equipment, experienced guides and a priority on safety. Be assured that we don’t compromise on safety issues on the river. Our trip leaders are the most experienced guides around: all of them have 20 years and more rafting on the mighty Zambezi
What are the guides’ qualifications?
We pride ourselves on our professional guides, most of who have been with Shockwave Adventures for many years. Over the years, many of our adventures have resulted in long lasting friendships between our guides and clients.
Every couple of years, we train new local guides at our own intensive whitewater school, and choose only the most qualified to work for us. Our guides are knowledgeable about the outdoors, and are trained in local and natural history, conservation, camp cooking, and in both CPR and first-aid. Many have advanced medical certifications and extensive river rescue training.
Our owner is still 100% involved in the day to day operations of the business. By rafting on the river, he can share the tour experience with the clients. Also, he can observe changes in the river, equipment and guides. Currently, he is the only owner who does that, and it is much different than running the business from an office.
All our guides, including the owner, raft year round. For example, Philani Moyo rafts in Colorado, USA during off season in Victoria falls. Dougie Mathe (OG) has been doing the same thing for the last past 8years, and Tabuya Sibanda rafts in Norway when the season is closed here and has been doing it for 9 years now.
What is included or can we rent rafting gear?
We are a full service company. Your comfort and safety are our highest priority. We have state of the art equipment such as life jackets, helmets, paddles for all our guest. We offer complimentary transport to and from your hotel as well as tea /coffee in the morning, mineral water during your tour, lunch, soft drinks and beers after the tour.
Do I need any rafting experience?
Prior rafting experience is not required on most of our trips. The majority of people who join our expeditions are first time rafters. You'll receive a detailed safety talk before getting on the river, and it will cover every aspect of your river adventure. Once trained, your crew can work in harmony with their guide to maneuver a raft in the most challenging rapids. It's only natural for you to be apprehensive about running rivers, however our staff is specially trained to address your concerns and prepare you for an experience you'll never forget.
Do I need to know how to swim?
Knowing how to swim is recommended but it's not necessary on this river. Everyone wears the very best Type V life jackets at all times while on the water and they float regardless of whether or not you do. This will not limit you to rafting. Also all our trips are escorted by a professional safety kayak man.
Who can go on a rafting trip?
Shockwave Adventures offers a river trip to satisfy all types of adventurous individuals. We welcome anyone, young or old, in reasonable physical condition. Age requirements vary depending on the trip. Persons who are extremely overweight should try and meet our Trip leader the day before the trip to size the Class V Life jacket first. If you or a member of your group are pregnant or have special health or physical considerations, please call our office and consult a physician for recommendation.
Do you use paddle or oar boats?
We offer 3 types of boats or rafts as we explain and make you choose the one you feel much more comfortable.
There is a thorough explanation and practice session for paddlers before we start out.
Type of boats:
Oar Rafts are good for seniors, beginners and children. This raft has an aluminium frame mounted in the middle of the raft with two long oars for the guide to row guests through the rapids. Guests do not have to paddle, and they just hold onto the safety line in the big waves. On this type of a boat, chances of flipping are slim to none since the guide does not need any assistance to maneuver
Stern Mount Rafts are good for family and those who have done rafting before but prefer not to swim. This raft is the same as the oar raft, except it has a frame at the back. Guests paddle with the assistance of the guide rowing his oars. The guide is in full control of the raft even if the guests do not paddle. Guests can paddle through the small waves then stop and hold onto the safety line in the rapids.
Paddle Rafts are the craziest option where the guide and guests all have paddles. There are no frame or oars and the guide shouts instructions as guests navigate rapids under the guide’s watchful eyes. Imagine going through a class 5 rapid without holding onto the rope but just a paddle with your guide shouting instructions to paddle hard. Chances of flipping on this option are high. We make brief stops above some rapids to give our guests options and explain how we run the next rapid, chances of the boat going upside down, and where the safety kayaker will be waiting to pick you up if you end up in the water.
I have young children, can I take them rafting?
Most definitely! Our guides will pay special attention to the younger guests as long as they can swim and fit in our USA made Class V Youth Life Jackets. All age requirements are variable with water levels and conditions, which can only be determined the day before the trip. We do also offer a Class I-II trips for little ones as young as 5 years old, this is below rapid number 18 to rapid number 23. Parents may do all big rapids and our staff will help and bring kids to join the rest for the last 5 or so kilometers.
How many people fit in a boat?
It depends on the number of people. We take 16f or 18f boats on the river and these accommodate 8-10 people. If it’s few people booked for the rafting on that day we add our trainees to come along and help with paddling.
When is the best time to go?
For those looking for the most action, the time to go is August through December as this will be a full stretch rafting with lots of class V rapids. January, February, March, May, June and July the rafting will be short between 10 and 18 kilometers will be covered as this will be high water.
Which Section would be best for me?
We will recommend to you the best section to go rafting for example during full day trips if you are a bit scared you may skip the first 10km which has lots of class V rapids and join your family or friend for the last 18km.
What about singles, couples, or one- boat trips?
Absolutely! Just call our office and we'll make arrangements to include you with other single bookings or small groups. Everyone can experience the excitement of whitewater rafting.
If you feel your boatman, cook, or bus driver has made your trip especially enjoyable, tipping is a great way to express thanks and appreciation but remember it’s not compulsory.
What if the weather is bad?
All trips run rain or shine. Only rarely do we cancel due to bad weather. In the unlikely event that we cancel a trip, a full refund will be offered. Any person choosing not to participate because of weather will not be eligible for a refund or rain check.
When should I arrive?
We have very specific pick up times at each hotel and lodges in the Victoria Falls areas. We make every effort to be there 5 minutes ahead of time and hope you are as well. Tardy guests only make the next pick up later.
How long does the trip last?
All trips have set departure times and predicted return times posted in the trip descriptions. With any activity, it depends on Mother Nature; a number of variables come into play when we predict how long a trip will take.
For example, if you are doing a half-stretch trip you will be picked up from your hotel or lodge at around 7.30am and you will be dropped back between 1 and 2pm. For a full-stretch trip the pickup time is the same but will be back between 2pm and 3pm.
Please take this into consideration when planning activities upon your return from a rafting trip
Can I reserve my own boat?
Please direct special requests to our office in advance. Reservations are based on available space in each boat. Chartered trips and reserved boats can be made available in special circumstances. Our staff of guides will keep parties together whenever possible and they reserve the right to make final crew assignments.
Can I have a private rafting trip?
Absolutely yes, we offer private rafting tours for all of our whitewater trips!
While some of our guests enjoy getting to know other people during their rafting trip, a few others prefer their raft be exclusive to their group, and we are happy to accommodate them by providing private raft, guide, transfer, food and a requested time.
Private Rafting is perfect for families, reunions, wedding parties, birthdays and any other occasion where privacy is desired. Private rafting is available for high water, low water, overnights and multi days
Can I request my guide?
Our guides are professionals in their field, and requests for a specific guide are not uncommon. If you have had a guide you especially liked, and would like to have them guide your next trip, we will do our best to match their schedule to yours. Simply request your guide when you make your reservation.
What about cameras?
We encourage you to bring cameras especially if it’s a Go Pro one as we have helmets with Go Pro Holders. We provide professional photographers who take photos of your trip on the biggest rapid sections, and make those shots available for purchase after your trip
Is the trip all whitewater?
No. Zambezi River is a "pool and drop", which means that stretches of exciting whitewater are interspersed with calm sections.
Do I need to make reservations in advance?
We highly recommend you make reservations as far in advance as possible to ensure that there is space available on the trip you want when you want it. By contacting us ahead of time it will also give our staff the opportunity to discuss the different options with you to make absolutely sure that the right trip is chosen. However, we are always busy taking last minute reservations and are happy to accept walk-ins if we have space available. Please call us at any time +263 772 814 545 or +263 13 40850 after hours.
What do I need to wear?
Nylon swim trunks, swimsuits, river sandals or old tennis shoes are great for rafting. Try to stay away from anything cotton if possible. Hats are good for sunny days and for those rare overcast or cool days a fleece pullover, a wool hat and socks and a windbreaker would be a great way to stay warm. Please note: Cotton WILL NOT keep you warm when it is wet.
What else do I need to bring?
sunscreen lotion, and your medication if you are on so that our guides can keep it safe and dry inside our first aid kits and dry bags. DO NOT TAKE ANYTHING THAT YOU DO NOT WANT TO LOSE OR GET WET! We recommend that you leave everything with our drivers or in your hotel room.
Didn't you find what you were looking for? please send us an email us at:
Zimbabwe Victoria Falls, September thought May +263 772 814 545
Think local and raft with locals