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Hotels Sold Out in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, as Festival-Goers Throng Resort

  • Gibbs Dube

More than 40 acts from around the region were performing on the banks of the Zambezi River with the festival scheduled to end Saturday with a performance by the Parlotones of South Africa

Hotel rooms in the Zimbabwean resort town of Victoria Falls were sold out this week for the first time in more than a decade as thousands of visitors flocked to the Zambezi River destination for the Victoria Falls Music and Arts Festival.

Hotel managers said more than 5,000 people - Zimbabweans for the most part - started arriving early in the week and by Thursday afternoon the local airport was jammed with travelers from Harare, Bulawayo and neighboring Southern African countries.

Some visitors from South Africa, Mozambique and Zambia resorted to sleeping in their vehicles due the shortage of accommodation.

More than 40 acts including popular South African and Zimbabwean musical groups were performing on the banks of the Zambezi River. The festival was scheduled to end on Saturday with a performance by the Parlotones of South Africa.

Festival spokesman Siphambaniso Moyo said hotels and restaurants were doing a brisk business - the best the the northwest town has seen since 1998.

Festival-goer Shelly Lasker of Bulawayo said she never expected to see so many people in Victoria Falls when the Zimbabwean economic recovery remains fragile.

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