We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Location is the only thing that makes this four star”

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 10 more sites!
AVANI Victoria Falls Resort
Ranked #3 of 17 Hotels in Livingstone
Certificate of Excellence
Dublin, Ireland
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Location is the only thing that makes this four star”
Reviewed September 20, 2008

This was a pleasant hotel, but we did find it a little overpriced. The location was absolutely excellent, being only 5 minutes from a view of the Zambian side of the Vic falls.

However, our room was tiny. We paid for a family room, but what we got seemed to be the size of a normal double room elsewhere, but with 2 double beds stuffed in. The hotel may have made a mistake, as the housekeeping staff consistently sent us only enough towels for 2 people. The ground floor rooms also do not have mosquito nets. There was some sort of plug in device, but this didn't stop us from being visited by insects in the night. The light switches were also not working properly, and the shower door was missing a small fixture, to keep it closed!

Overall, we found it overpriced for what we got, and would only recommend staying there a day or two to be near the falls.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Price
  • Stayed September 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank Oisin88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

1,686 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    615
    735
    262
    52
    22
See reviews for
402
652
91
186
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (329)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Hebrew first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Oberursel (Taunus), Germany
Level 4 Contributor
23 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed September 13, 2008

The Zambezi Sun is like going to Disney Africa. The bright colored decor, the zebra wandering the grounds, the "native" dancers.....it's all so over the top. However, you just can't beat the location and it's access to Victoria Falls.

You can wander down to the falls anytime you want, they have raincoats for use, and there is no admission charge for hotel guests.... They also book all kinds of tours and activities at the hotel for reasonable prices.

The breakfast is also over the top, but is very, very good. We ate at some of the other restaurants and they were good, nothing special or inspired, but good. Everything is a bit overpriced.

Another thing that is hard to beat is the sunset deck at their sister hotel (Royal Livingston) You can take a shuttle or walk 10 minutes and have to most beautiful setting for sunset cocktails - over the Zambezi river. Get there early - the tables fill up quickly! The restaurant is nice too.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Tacky tourist vibe
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank GaijinKim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Helendale, California
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed September 4, 2008

Zambezi Sun in Livingston - Victoria Falls was great! The rooms were clean and spacious. Meals here can be expensive. Although we had dinner one evening at the Royal Livingston and it was GREAT! A bit pricey but a wonderful experience. The Royal Livingston has a wonderful outdoor bar for a sunset drink and a game of croquet!

The hotel provides rain slickers free of charge for your walk around the falls - WEAR THEM - or you will be soaked down to your undies. There are several young men that will offer a "Tour"- pass them by as it is completely self guided and even I could not get lost there!

Lots of animals running around within the resort and it is attached to the Royal Livingston Hotel. We did not stay at the Royal Livingston since we did not plan on spending a great deal of time in our room. There are SO MANY ACTIVITES in Victoria Falls - Stay at least 3 days. We did the Lion Walk in Zimbabwe as well as the Elephant Safari - they were great. We also Bungy Jumped - WOW. The Crocodile Farm in Zambia was wonderful and we even held the small crocodiles and petted the largest crocodile for a little extra tip to our guide! The segway tour on the grounds of the resort sounds a bit campy but was quite fun! Shopping in Victoria Falls is right next to the hotel but is fairly limited.

Victoria falls is just amazing and it would be difficult to have a poor time there!

  • Liked — spacious and clean rooms - friendly and helpful staff
  • Disliked — food was a bit pricey
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Elane M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jersey City, NJ
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed August 22, 2008

We really enjoyed our stay at the Zambezi Sun. The location can not be beat- it is just steps from Victoria Falls. The staff were so friendly and nice. The rooms were colorful, nice and spacious. We even saw zebras right on the property. Since we didn't have a car, we weren't able to leave the hotel to eat elsewhere. Prices for dinner were very expensive and the food wasn't great. Overall, I would recommend staying at the Zambezi Sun.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Overpriced food
  • Stayed July 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Jerseycitygirl07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed August 10, 2008

We flew to Zambia from San Francisco to speak at a conference and afterwards my daughter and I went to Livingstone to stay at the Zambezi Sun.

Overall, the hotel was wonderful. It is steps away from Victoria Falls and all you do is take a hotel slicker with you and there is no cost to enter the partk. "The Smoke that Thunders" is awesome.

As the taxi from the airport entered the hotel grounds, we came across a giraffe - since the hotel is in a national park. We arrived before our room was ready, so we went to the activities center to book our fun. We were only going to be there on a Thursday, Friday and Saturday, with a departure on Sunday. At the activities desk, we booked a helicopter ride to view the falls, a walking safari the next morning, an African Queen boat ride that evening and high tea at Livingstone Island.

The helicopter ride was fantastic and highly recommended. You see the entire layout of the rift of the falls. We also saw a herd of elephants from the air.

We returned to the hotel and found our room ready. As the porter drove us by cart to the room, we had to pause to let the zebras move on by. We also saw the hotel animal handlers working to get the vervet monkeys off the balconies. We had a nice room with two beds that faced the pool.

It was wonderful to find that we could drink water from the tap because all of their water is filtered and we had no problems eating the food. The hotel electrical sockets take the round three prong adapters and one socket accepted a square three prong adaptor. The room included a hairdryer, safe, television, phone service and we had a view of the pool, zebras and monkeys from our room. Water conservation efforts were in place which we appreciated.

The following morning we were picked up for the walking safari - highly recommended. Our guide had us walk single file for safety reasons and we were escorted by armed guard for our protection. We saw a white rhino, giraffes, zebras, buffalo, wildebeast, gazelles, monkeys, baboons, birds and lots of animal droppings! The elephant herd had left its destruction. We came across one lone elephant and had to quickly back out of the way - we did not know if it was hurt, confused or a mother with her baby. The morning safari is preferable because it gets warmer in the afternoon.

That evening we took the African Queen cruise up/down the river. We saw hippos and a beautiful sunset.

It seems that anywhere you travel in Zambia that VISA cards are immediately accepted - not so for other credit cards or travelers checks. Hotel/airport taxi took US dollars.

Breakfast and dinner was buffet style with many selections - European, American and African. Lunch by the pool was a la cart. The hotel had a resort feel to it and the restaurant staff were eager to please.

The business office had Internet access available although it was busy with conference cyber cafes underway. We were there for at least two conferences and on the day we left, a reception for a wedding was being set up. The grounds were clean and well-kept with iron and stone sculptures.

The walk to the Hotel Livingston was short and we took a look at the river deck and facilities. It seemed that no one was there that weekend and that the place to be for music and activity was at the Zambezi Sun. The boat trip to Livingston island for high tea was memorable. We did not realize that we would be walking at the edge of the falls, in the water, with our guides holding on to us. If you are afraid of heights, I do not recommend it. It gave true meaning to "walking in the steps of Dr. Livingstone!"

I would not hesitate to stay at the Zambezi Sun again.

  • Liked — Location, Resort and Food
  • Disliked — Internet Access Not Free
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank FireflySanFrancisco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed August 1, 2008

We booked our rooms using the Suninternationa.com website which offered Internet special pricing that was 1/3rd of the travel agent pricing! At that price, it was a steal and a wonderful experience. The hotel is right next to Victoria Falls and entrance to the Falls is included in the price and a 2 minute walk is all you need -- nothing better than to be able to casually visit the Falls at different times of day or to dry off quickly in your room on your return! The swimming pool is wonderful, as are the helpful and friendly staff.

The highlight though is the large herbivores that casually stroll through the grounds mere feet from the walking paths, and the cheeky monkeys who must be watched. Take a walk to the adjoining ultra-luxury Royal Livingston and see the magnificent river pour into the Falls and have their decadent tea (a piece of cake and a pot of tea is the affordable compromise) but watch out for monkeys who will enter into the hotel and eat the frosting off the cake!

  • Liked — proximity to falls and zebras and giraffe strolling on grounds
  • Disliked — very expensive internet access options
  • Stayed February 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank rpaditya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lambertville, New Jersey
Level 5 Contributor
52 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 77 helpful votes
Reviewed August 1, 2008

After 6 nights on safari in Botswana, my wife and I spent our last 2 nights in Africa at the Zambezi Sun and it was very relaxing and pretty. The hotel is well laid out, with the rooms all centered around a central grassy area with an outdoor bar, pool and music all the time. The rooms were comfortable, clean and exactly what you need. Location wise, you can't be closer to the falls and it's great to come and go as you please through the gate leading to the falls. They are truly amazing.

The sister property, The Royal Livingstone is a step up but honestly, not necessary. We walked to that hotel to watch the sunset from their deck on the river, have drinks and eat light food and it's great. They welcome you and you can stay as long as you like, walk around (watch out for monkeys and zebras) and enjoy their property as well. For half the price, I suggest staying at the Zambezi Sun as we did. The food was good, not great, but everything else is quite nice.

One note, the poverty at the African Market and on the bridge to Zimbabwe is sad and eye opening. We brought some shirts to trade for souvenirs, but if you have old shoes that is what we were asked for most. They need everything, but again shoes seem to be at the top of their list.

Overall, this hotel makes for a great stay and an interesting comparison to the scene just outside the gates. Africa is a land of contradictions and seeing both sides betters us all.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — food, but it wasn't that bad really. we had just been on a safair where the cuisine was amazing!
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank nycastle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Livingstone
0.4 mi away
Royal Livingstone Victoria Falls Zambia Hotel by Anantara
3.9 mi away
Protea Hotel Livingstone
Protea Hotel Livingstone
#5 of 17 in Livingstone
265 reviews
1.5 mi away
The Victoria Falls Hotel
The Victoria Falls Hotel
#6 of 16 in Victoria Falls
2,287 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
12.8 mi away
Tongabezi
Tongabezi
#1 of 17 in Livingstone
391 reviews
1.6 mi away
Ilala Lodge
Ilala Lodge
#8 of 16 in Victoria Falls
1,145 reviews
2.5 mi away
Elephant Hills Resort
Elephant Hills Resort
#10 of 16 in Victoria Falls
578 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to AVANI Victoria Falls Resort? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about AVANI Victoria Falls Resort

Property: AVANI Victoria Falls Resort
Address: Mosi-Oa-Tunya Road, Livingstone 20100, Zambia (Formerly Zambezi Sun)
Location: Zambia > Southern Province > Livingstone
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Family Hotel in Livingstone
#3 Luxury Hotel in Livingstone
#4 Romantic Hotel in Livingstone
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — AVANI Victoria Falls Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 212
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Zambezi Sun, located on the edge of the eastern cataract of the Victoria Falls, reflects the richness and diversity of the country’s heritage; capturing the very soul of Africa – unpretentious, fun and welcoming. With its warm, earthy architecture, inspired by an African walled village and simple finishes highlighted in bright mosaics and fabrics as well as intoxicating Zambian artworks and accessories, the Zambezi Sun is set to turn your stay into a memorable experience. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Booking.com, Orbitz, Travelocity, Hotels.com, Cheap Tickets, Priceline, TripOnline SA, Hotwire, Cancelon, getaroom.com and HotelQuickly so you can book your AVANI Victoria Falls Resort reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Zambezi Sun Livingstone
Zambezi Sun Hotel Livingstone

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing