The Matobo Hills is a place for adventurers, romantics, mystics, seekers and those who dare to get off the beaten path.
Whether you prefer a picnic with your family, climbing a hill to new heights or just a gathering with friends, the Matobo area is abound with landmarks that offer experiences worth sharing.
Al you have to do is to leave the big city hassles behind and discover heritage and true African hospitality in one of Zimbabwe’s most famous Cultural Landscapes.
Here are the 5 Landmarks you must see in Matobo.
1 . Inungu Hill
Inungu Hill.Read more about Hills in Matobo Here.
Natural splendour mated to the rich spiritual and cultural traditions appeals to the pilgrims in particular.
2 . Lumene Falls
3 . Mother and Child Kopje
Weathering upon the granite has produced some of the most spectacular rock scenery found anywhere on the planet.
The Mother and Child Kopje is one such impressive formation in the #Matopos.
Travelers from all over the world are drawn by mystery of the unusual rock formations, which look like the result of some volcanic eruption yet they were formed by unimaginable erosion over two billion years ago.
4. Breakfast Rock at Laing’s Field
The Matobo Hills are renowned not only for their beauty and abundant flora and fauna but also for their unique historical significance.
5. Maleme Dam
An African Safari with your Squad is nothing but epic adventure. But, travelling with your squad may be fraught with conflict & misunderstanding.
Here are 6 Tips to help you Safari together and stay friends.
Before the Trip
1. Verbalise your expectations
Consider everyone’s wants and agree on the basics: where you’re going and how much time you’re spending there. Then agree on what you’ll do during the trip.
For example, everyone might agree on three days in the Matobo Hills and four days in Hwange National Park and Victoria Falls. But one person may want to see more of game animals, while another wants to do more of culture trips and village tours.
Make sure everyone is on the same page with at least a rough schedule before you leave.
2. Agree on budgets
Establish how much to spend ahead of time.Discuss what reasonable amount of money to spend on dinner and accommodation for example.
Money is the cause of more arguments among friends than probably anything else. Be willing to compromise where needed and go it alone if necessary.
During the Trip
3. Take a break from each other
Everyone will need some personal time. Part company for part of the day to explore on your own and then reunite for dinner.
Too much togetherness can put a strain on your trip especially when different people want to indulge different interests.
Just because you’re traveling together, doesn’t mean you need to do everything together.
4. Go with the flow
Bring along your patience and flexibility. These two virtues can augment the epicness of an adventure, yet a lack of them may ruin it.
Be sure not to steamroll your travel companions with ideas all the time. Give everybody an equal chance to call the shots in your adventure. It cannot be about what you want to do all the time.
Don’t focus on being right all the time, instead just focus on being a good travel companion. You’ll have to compromise, make your peace with it.
5. Be present
A Safari with your squad will definitely create shared memories and experiences. In short, it will likely bring you closer together with your friends.
Make the most of being together by limiting your time on social media. in the worst case scenario, too much texting while on a Safari with friends may come off as a sign of disinterest and boredom on your part and may lead to resentment.
6. Communicate openly
Bring up issues openly and respectfully as they arise. If there’s something your friends are doing that’s bothering you, SPEAK UP.
You may think you don’t want to ruin your vacation by talking about your feelings and risking a fight, but the truth is that travel brings out stress and any bottled feelings will explode.
You are better off speaking out about problems early and calmly, so you have a chance to amend behaviours and improve the rest of the trip. Acknowledge your shortcomings too, and be willing to apologise.
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YES you read that right. There is a right and wrong way to be a wildlife tourist.
We all love animals. It is in our nature to care for animals.
We want to know more about them.
We even want to interact with them and that’s where our misguided love for wildlife becomes problematic and detremental to the animal.
Riding elephants, walking with lions and taking photos WITH wild animals sounds fun, but in reality, these are unnatural ways of interacting with wildlife.
The truth of the matter is that you need to be wide eyed and alert to unethical behaviour throughout the entire safari industry.
The problem with the so-called ‘intimate’ wildlife encounters.
The major problem with such kinds of ‘intimate’ wildlife encounters is that they sometimes rely heavily on breeding wild animals in captivity without a clear plan for release back into the wild.
At worst, they also rely on inhumane handling of wild animals under the guise of ‘training’ them and making ‘safe’ for human interaction.
How else would you train an elephant without separating it from its mother while it is young and instilling fear in it? How else would you make a lion safe to walk with, pose for a selfie with and touch without declawing, drugging it or simply keeping it in habituation.
Clearly, paying huge sums of money to interact with wild animals in this manner is the wrong way to be a wildlife tourist in our country and anywhere else in the world.
Instead, the right way to be a wildlife tourist is to ensure that your own interaction with wildlife is ethical. Here are three ways.
1. ENSURE that at all times, you are viewing wild animals engaging in natural behaviours in their natural environments.
In the same vein, if you want to see lions, go to Hwange National Park and observe them in the wilderness.
Who knows, you might see a lion hunting for its next meal and that will surely be a much more interesting encounter than taking a selfie with a lion in captivity.
2. LOOK out for red flags
At times, we view animals in places called Wildlife ‘Sanctuaries’ and ‘Orphanages’.
Whilst some of these places are doing a good job to conserve wildlife and protect it, some of them get sloppy and begin to exploit the animals they purport to save.
Your job as a wildlife tourist also is to scrutinise the welfare of wildlife kept in these places.
Question whether or not the environment is appropriate for the animals.Be sure to observe shelter, and check if there is ample space for the animals to live comfortably and rest.
Also observe whether or not they have a secluded place to retreat from crowds.
Observe the appearance of the animals themselves. Are they injured? Are the animals being forced to perform for tourists like giving rides and posing with them.
Most importantly, ask when the animals will be released back into the wild and check if the sanctuary has released any in the past.
A lion cub which has been handled by hundreds of humans can almost never be successfully released into the wild according to Conservation Travel Africa, an organisation dedicated to bridging the gap between wildlife conservation and community development.
3. ACT responsibly
When viewing wildlife in their natural habitat or otherwise, you have to act responsibly so that you do not cause distress to the animals.
For instance, when on Safari, dress appropriately – in khakhis, dark greens and browns so that you blend in with natural environment.
Bheki Jiyane, a tour guide with a Safari operator in the Matopos National Park, advises wildlife tourists to “make very little noise and turn off camera flashes so that your presence is less distressing for the animals.”
Loud and unnatural noises distress wildlife.