The Victoria Falls are a waterfall of the Zambezi River on the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia , between the border towns of Victoria Falls and Livingstone . By UNESCO in 1989 to the Victoria Falls World Heritage Site declared.The first Europeans who discovered the falls was David Livingstone , Scottish missionary and African traveler. He heard them in 1851 and discovered it four years later, on 16 November 1855. He named it in honor of Queen Victoria Victoria Falls .
The local Kololo called the falls Mosi-oa-Tunya (in German: the smoke that thunders ). The name comes from the mist that rises up to 300 meters and still be seen in 30 km distance. It arises because pour the waters of the Zambezi River to a width of 1708 m over a 110 m steep rock face. Thus, the Victoria Falls on the widest part cascading waterfall in the world. During high water flow up to 10,000 m³ / s of water down the waterfall, as opposed to 170 m³ / s during the dry season. To the Victoria Falls, there is a rain forest , which owes its existence to the moisture from the ever-lasting spray. Not only in February and March, when the Zambezi River takes a lot of water, the largest curtain of water on earth is present. At low tide – as it happens, especially in drought years and over again – is in September and October from the noise of the amount of water left only a small trickle.
The cross-border and 68.6 km ² Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park has been protected since 1934 and reported since 1972 as a zoological park. It lies above the Victoria Falls, which he covers is opened up by good routes and has many large animals. In addition, the Victoria Falls are in the area of the Kavango-Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area , a planned cross-border conservation area.
After his appointment as World Heritage by UNESCO were also conflicts as to the use of hydroelectric energy potential on the Zambezi. The development of the river as an energy source because it forms the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe, both bordering countries of great importance. So the plans Zambezi River Authority below the falls to build another dam at the Batoka Gorge. This would be in addition to the Kariba Dam and the Cabora Bassa Dam project on the third major dam Zambezi. By conservationists warning it was regarded as the unique flora and fauna in the previously undisturbed canyon. With the damming of the river so close to the cases they fear only harms the natural environment and changes in the gorges below the falls and declines in the lucrative tourism business.