ABOUT Zimbabwe boasts several tourist attractions, located in the North West of the country. Before the economic changes, much of the tourism for these locations came to the Zimbabwean side but now Zambia benefits from the tourism. The Victoria Falls National Park is also a tourist attraction in this area and is one of the eight main National Parks in Zimbabwe, largest of which is Hwange National Park. Slowly but surely, British tour operators, safari specialists and travel agents are beginning to re-engage with Zimbabwe. Expect to see even more operators offering trips over the next few months, we are being told it is all right to go back because the coalition government, featuring Morgan Tsvangirai and the barely reformed Robert Mugabe as joint leaders, is taking the country into a new era of prosperity and freedom. The magnificent spectacle of African Wildlife is a key factor in Zimbabwe’s tourism success. Tourists are either moved or excited by a sight of a herd of elephants moving with a ponderous grace to a waterhole, or rolling in mud-baths like children at play; a lion moving stealthily in pursuit of its quarry, herds of skittish wildebeest or neat zebra, or the see-saw gallop of giraffe. The “Big Five” i.e. elephant, buffalo, lion, leopard, and rhinoceros can all be seen in their natural habitats in the country. As one of the progressive countries in Africa in the field of wildlife management, Zimbabwe has reserved 5 million hectares, or 13% of the country’s land area, as parks and wildlife estates, conserving one of the largest remaining concentrations of animal life.
CLIMATE The rains come principally in December, January, February and March; the further north you are, the earlier the precipitation arrives and the later it leaves. By April and May most of the rain is gone, leaving a verdant setting, which is starting to dry out. The nights in June, July and August become much cooler. For Zimbabwe, this is the start of the 'peak season' days are often cloudless and game sightings continually increase. Into September and October the temperatures rise once again. November is unpredictable; it can be hot and dry, it can also see the season's first rainfalls.
BEWARE There is a moderate level of crime, including occasional armed robberies targeting foreign residents. You should ensure that your place of accommodation is secure at all times. Mugging, pick pocketing and jewellery theft are also common in city centres, especially after dark. You should be particularly cautious when leaving banks and cash points and at Harare airport. You should avoid travelling alone. There have been recorded cases of thefts and smash-and-grab robberies from vehicles, especially at main intersections along the route to Harare Airport.