We receive a few repeat questions and have, for your convenience, listed these (with their answers) below. If your question is not answered here, please click here to leave an enquiry and a member of our team will revert.
Plan for one luggage bag to check, and one backpack that the volunteer can carry onboard, filled with important items, i.e. medicine, wallet, passport, yellow card (vaccinations), glasses or contact lenses, camera, book to read, sweatshirt or anything else they may need on the plane or would need in case a flight is delayed. Bring (and wear) minimal jewelry as bulky accessories could be a hinderance in the bush.
Laundry will be washed twice during your stay at Nakavango Conservation Centre. We suggest that you not pack blue or black clothing – it attracts tsetse flies which are a biting insect. Also, please note that IT IS ILLEGAL for civilians to wear any form of camouflage clothing.
SUGGESTED PACKING LIST
- Short & long sleeve shirts (not blue or black or camouflage)
- Short and long pants (not blue or black or camouflage)
- Hiking boots and sneakers
- Sweatshirt/fleece top and windbreaker/rain jacket (not blue or black or camouflage)
- Warm hat & gloves
- Underwear & socks
- Binoculars & camera (remember batteries)
- Personal medications in original containers with correct dosages and physician information if a prescription—enough for the entire trip
- International plug adaptors—voltage is 220V plugs: square 3-pin plug (as used in the UK)
- Sleeping bag and flashlight
The Victoria Falls Private Game Reserve and Nakavango Conservation Centre site fall within a malarial area and the risk of contracting the disease is considered moderate. We recommend that you contact your local travel clinic/CDC to find out more about anti-malarial drugs suitable for this trip. Volunteers should bring an adequate supply of malaria pills as prescribed by a physician, and insect repellent. Polio and tetanus shots should be current, and while yellow fever is not required to enter Zimbabwe from the U.S., it is recommended in case a flight is delayed or rerouted into another country that does. Another vaccination you may want to consider and discuss with your physician is Hepatitis A.
Keep in mind that when traveling overseas, items are not always readily accessible nor is the brand you may prefer. The centre staff will bring the most common over the counter medicines for day-to-day treatments: antacids, antihistamines, motion sickness relief, and routine aches & pains. Be sure to review and sign the. Nakavango Conservation Centre staff CANNOT DISPENSE ANY MEDICATIONS WITHOUT PARENT/GUARDIAN PERMISSION. Especially for ladies, do plan to bring feminine hygiene products even if you do not anticipate needing them. Travel can alter the body’s normal routine.
Safety and security are of paramount importance to Nakavango Conservation Centre. The level of crime in Zimbabwe is no higher than many other countries around the world. The Nakavango team stays up to date with local issues and notes any potential problem areas to avoid.
There are doctors at the clinic in nearby Victoria Falls. For any serious emergencies, guests can be evacuated by air by the Medical Air Rescue Services to the nearest appropriate hospital. In case of any emergency, centre staff will communicate with parents just as quickly as phone service allows – we will have an international call enabled mobile phone with us – as to the nature of the illness/injury and treatment plan in action.
The site we will be using as base camp in Zimbabwe, Africa is Nakavango Conservation Centre based at the Victoria Falls Private Game Preserve. The curriculum will focus on conservation research projects, as well as community development and sustainability. The site is about 10 minutes outside of the town of Victoria Falls.
Victoria Falls is one of the natural wonders of the world and is recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. While at Nakavango, volunteers will have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in conservation management activities and research projects, and contribute to community development as participants in the “Children in the Wilderness” program, (CITW).
Yes, a passport and visa are required, and each person will need to have $60US (currently) in cash for the visa when coming through immigration since no credit or debit cards are accepted. CASH ONLY. Volunteers are to ensure that each passport and visa is stamped correctly.Allow at least 3 months to apply for a passport. All visitors traveling to Zimbabwe need to have a least 4 completely blank pages in their passports for use by immigration upon arrival. Passports must be valid for 6 months after the anticipated return date to your country of origin.
VISA FEES APPLICABLE TO INTERNATIONAL VISITORS:
Single entry US$50
Double entry US$80
Day tripper US$20
Single entry US$60
Double entry US$75
Multiple entry US$95
Single entry US$65
Multiple entry US$130
Single entry US$75
Multiple entry US$125
Single entry US$55
Double entry US$ 70
Single entry US$30
Double entry US$ 45
First aid is available on site and during all activities, as your volunteer guides are first aid qualified. There are doctors and a clinic in Victoria Falls. For any serious emergencies, patients are evacuated by air by MARS (Medical Air Rescue Services) to the nearest, appropriate hospital. The Victoria Falls area is a malaria area; however, the risk of contracting malaria is moderate as the area is not a high risk area. Volunteers are advised to seek the advice of your doctor regarding anti-malaria precautions, and should bring insect repellent and an anti-histamine cream and tablets approved by your doctor.
Please ensure that your medical insurance while you are travelling is in order. You will need to pay cash to any doctor, clinic or hospital in the area should you need to make use of their services. You are advised to keep such receipts so that you can claim back from your insurance company after your trip.
It is very important that you include all necessary information, as per your booking form, regarding specific medical conditions.
HIV & AIDS: This disease is a huge problem all over the world, and in Africa especially; Victoria Falls is no exception.
To learn more about how it is affecting Africa, please visit the following website:
The tap water at the facility and in the surrounding areas is drinkable, but contains a bit of lime. Water on the Nakavango Estate is sourced from boreholes. Should you not enjoy the taste of the water, you are welcome to purchase bottled water.
Please ensure that you bring any medication specifically related to specific medical conditions, e.g. asthma, allergies, diabetes, etc. and ensure that you provide us with all necessary details of such conditions on your booking form.
Volunteers are not to exit the boundary of Nakavango, unless accompanied by your volunteer guide, or leaving with an arranged transfer – we are situated in a dangerous game area.
When visiting the town of Victoria Falls, it is unsafe to walk around at night, specifically due to dangerous wildlife that readily enter the town at night (and sometimes during the day!) Also, it is advised that volunteers do not engage with informal sellers of various goods in the streets as this invariably leads to harassment until the goods are purchased, and usually at unreasonable prices. There are tourism police readily available to escort you to various sites around town, and it is recommended that you make use of the services of the tourism police.
The tourist police are funded by private establishments in the Victoria Falls tourism community, and are easily recognisable by their navy blue police uniform and yellow bibs stating “Victoria Falls Tourism Police”. However, the people in the town are very friendly, and we make the above recommendation in the interest of your enjoyment of Victoria Falls. Please feel free to seek the advice on any topics, especially related to your health and safety, from your volunteer guide.