The water of the mighty Zambezi rushed violently over our legs as we grasped one another’s hands. The rapid kerthump of our hearts blasted louder than a bass drum at the Full Moon Party. But the colossal water falling 180M into the gorge below us silenced all of that. We then realized why this was called Devil’s Pool, a place only Satan himself could have designed.
“The risk of plunging to our deaths 7,000 miles away from “home” was palpable, but the thought of not immersing ourselves into the beauty of life far outweighed the danger.”
Devil’s Pool is nestled on the banks of the mighty Zambezi River in Victoria Falls, Africa.
While Victoria Falls straddles Zimbabwe and Zambia, Devil’s Pool calls Zambia home. Thousands of years of erosion caused many rock pools to form in the river and the Devil’s Pool is by far the most famous.
As we arrived at Livingstone Island, Zambia, the home of Devil’s Pool, we felt as though we were walking side-by-side with David Livingstone, discovering these larger-than-life forces for the first time. The untouched lands glisten under our feet as the roaring waterfalls beckon us to come hither.
After a short single-engine boat ride across part of the Zambezi, we were instructed to get in our swim gear and head out to the water. Our guide said, “we’ll get in the water here…and swim across to the Devil’s Pool.” Wait…what? Pump the brakes. You mean … we don’t just walk out to Devil’s Pool and hop in? We have to swim across this river? But I swear I just saw hippos in the river. What did we sign up for?
As we stepped into the taciturn water, we realized just how deep the danger was.
We followed our guide through the Zambezi, navigating around treacherous rocks and making sure to respect the current. While you don’t have to be Michael Phelps to navigate this water, we would recommend some prior swimming experience.
As we approached the Devil’s Pool, the roar of the waterfalls had become deafening. Every single hair on our bodies was standing straight up. Adrenaline coursed through our veins as aggressively as the water rushed over the rock lip. They beckoned us to jump in. It was time.
As we jumped into the Devil’s Pool, you are quickly carried to the edge of the falls, where a rock stops you just at the edge. Our guide took us by the hand and assured us that everything would be ok. He then invited us to peer over the ledge. As we looked over the ledge, we were welcomed with all of the grandeur of Victoria Falls, 108m up in the air.
According to Zambia Tourism, “over 500 million liters of water a minute cascade over the falls,” so you can imagine what the sound is like when you’re lying on the edge.