Best time to visit Zimbabwe

In line with its spellbinding sunset, Zimbabwe's weather - though clear cut and comfortable - is dramatic; you won't find rain without a magnificent storm.
A year round destination, the best time to visit depends on whether you like heat, rain, or more temperate conditions. For safaris, the ideal time to go to Zimbabwe is from May-Nov, though the latter part of this season sees temps soar into the 30s. July-Aug hover in the mid-20s, but can get pretty chilly at night. Some camps around Hwange close during the rainy season (Dec-Mar), but the animals are still very much there to be seen, as are the guides that need their jobs. Zimbabwe’s storms can be incredibly atmospheric bringing migratory birds, beautiful sunsets and really clear skies.

Zimbabwe Weather Chart

 
MIN °C
MAX °C
RAIN (mm)
JAN
20
31
171
FEB
19
30
140
MAR
18
31
76
APR
16
30
20
MAY
11
28
3
JUN
8
26
0
JUL
7
26
0
AUG
10
29
0
SEP
15
33
1
OCT
19
34
20
NOV
20
33
64
DEC
20
31
163

Zimbabwe, month by month

The dry season is excellent, particularly April, May and September, as the temperatures are not too extreme and malaria risk is low. Also, this is when the wildlife gathers around the waterholes. October is also dry but very hot with temperatures soaring into the thirties. It may be heating up, but September and October are considered the best time to see elephant herds in Hwange National Park. Around Mana Pools National Park, many lodges close between January and March for the low, rainy season. By contrast, July and September is a brilliant time to visit. Open for business and yet not busy at all. Similarly some lodges close during the rainy season at Hwange National Park (December – March) and it is at its most crowded between June and October. Although you would be forgiven for thinking that Victoria Falls might be best in full flow, this isn’t the case as the spray obscures really good views. So go when the water is lower, the best time being June to September. November and December is when the rainy season begins and lasts through until March, although it usually consists of afternoon showers. This is also when a lot of wildlife is born though. So, the grass is greener and all that. If you are hoping to raft the River Zambezi, the best time is when the water is low, as the white water is more dramatic. August to February are great months. When the waters get higher around March or April, it is unlikely that runs will be offered.

Our top Zimbabwe Holiday

Zimbabwe safari holiday, tailor made

Zimbabwe safari holiday, tailor made

Safari combining some of the most diverse areas of Zimbabwe

From £3530 8 days ex flights
Tailor made:
This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
Travel Team
If you'd like to chat about Zimbabwe or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help.

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN IN ZIMBABWE

Debby Oscroft from our supplier, Sunway Safaris:
“Zimbabwe is a great destination all year round, but possibly the best weather and game viewing would be from June to October, especially as the game viewing at waterholes is fabulous. From a photography point of view, the summer months have clear air and the morning and afternoon light is magical. Of course the dusty winter months mean that the sunsets are rich orange and reds. The dry winter months also mean that the bushveld has less grass and foliage, so the clear view of wildlife can make photography a bit easier.”

Andrew Appleyard, from our supplier Exodus Travels:
“If you are in Vic Falls on a full moon the park is open for special guided walks to see the lunar rainbow which lasts three days.”

Festivals & events

Did you know about…?

As well as all the other magnificent wildlife, one of the most spectacular migrations is that of the carmine bee-eater. This migratory species spends the breeding season here, from August to November. They are a truly spectacular sight with their brilliant crimson plumage.
Written by Catherine Mack
Photo credits: [Page banner: Steven dos Remedios] [Top box: frankdoylezw] [Did you know about: Uncovery]
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