And an Alternative…
Place: Victoria Falls Hotel on the Stanley Terrace
High Tea: Served every day
Time: 3 – 6 pm
Dress code: None
Booking: Not required – just walk in
Cost: US$30 serves 2-3
You must have heard about the Afternoon or High Tea Victoria Falls Hotel offers daily from 3 – 6 pm.
Setting – The Stanley Terrace
It’s truly picture perfect, you couldn’t ask for a better view while sipping your tea and buttering up your scones! One reviewer called it a “million dollar view!” and I totally concur! It certainly feels like you have taken a step back in time and are sampling a moment of history.
From the terrace, you can see the Victoria Falls Bridge, any trains passing on it and the spray from the Victoria Falls which billows into the sky. It is particularly pretty at sunset, where it mixes with the golden light.
The Stanley Terrace, with large columns, potted petunia or geranium flowers and a clean colour code of white and maroon, make for a delightful setting for refreshments! Wicker chairs and tables under shaded cream umbrellas are set out with heavy silverware and placemats (drawn by local artist Larry Norton).
Lush green lawn and huge trees, keep the air cool and fresh. Warthogs and a mongoose family show up sometimes to entertain and delight all Stanley Terrace visitors. 🙂
After ordering the famous high tea & cakes, a three-tier server stand loaded with delicious goodies to tuck into, arrives – tea sandwiches with a variety of fillings, scones (with the butter, jam and cream – my favourite!!!) and an assortment of yummy tea cakes.
If you are on a budget you probably could share it among 4 people with extra drinks and an extra plate of scones on top.
Next, silver pots of tea and all you need to get started arrives. The waiters give an excellent service and pour out your first cup of tea.
Tip – Oh, just be sure to make clear you want coffee and not tea, if this is the case, as traditionally tea is served. FYI – their coffee is amazing!
Don’t forget they also have a wide selection of other flavoured teas for you to try, be sure to ask about these – at least to have a look see, it’s quite impressive! I am very fond of the Earl Grey.
Tip – What to do if you miss the times for High Tea at Victoria Falls Hotel…
Perhaps you have already earmarked this as something not to be missed!
With all the activities you have lined up though, scheduling it in might be getting tricky…
An alternative to think about, is to have tea with scones and cream in the morning! Budget friendly…
We treat ourselves to this, it’s affordable – (and when we have visitors it’s like the default activity) – tea and scones at 10 a.m! Obviously not High Tea, but a lovely experience non-the less.
The scones are fresh, made that day and are light and delicious. Served with whipped cream (not clotted cream) and strawberry jam.
It is very reasonably priced and you get to experience the whole atmosphere and soak in the epic view.
Get there between 10 and 11 am, any later… no scones for you! 🙁
The All Day Menu starts at 11 am and you guessed it… no scones and tea are on this menu! (Well, tea is…) So you would have missed out! Unless you come back at 3 pm for the Real-Deal – High Tea on the Stanley Terrace…
Another tip – Flying into Victoria Falls Airport is practical, the check out queues are something else… So prepare your minds – know it’s going to take a while… and have High Tea as your first port of call in Victoria Falls. You are going to need refreshments anyway, and it would be a delightful start to your holiday! From there, you can go and check into your accommodation, relaxed and refreshed. Or better yet, stay at the Victoria Falls Hotel!
A little History of the English High Tea…
As the British built this Hotel and got the whole tradition started, let’s have a quick look into this delightful custom.
While there is some variance as to the exact origins of the Traditional English High Tea, and who started what – it does seem that over the years it has turned into something quite distinctive.
History tells that two meals were commonly served daily in England – late breakfast and late supper (dinner). To bridge the gap, an afternoon tea was introduced, that included, a few snacks that resemble what we commonly know now as a ploughman’s meal and this was complemented with lots of tea.
A ‘high tea’ and a ‘low tea’ were names given to reference how the tea was taken. For workmen, they were dirty and just wanted a bite to eat and then get back to work – they usually stood at a counter or bar of sorts (high tea). Whereas, those at home had the luxury of making something of the occasion and had it seated with the tea tray placed at a lower level for convenience (low tea).
The upper-class circles, adopted the ‘High Tea’ reference, to name their afternoon custom, as it sounded eloquent.
Over time, more thought was given to the tea time spread. Folk got creative and sandwiches were invented and these began to be served with other savoury treats along with the sweet. Scones have been there from the beginning and were served with butter, jam and clotted cream – and of course, how could we not mention cake!!!
Okay, so the whole ‘High Tea” concept may not be “exactly” what is done in England – back then or nowadays. Every place has their own take on what it should include, with culinary chiefs today making all sorts of the new and the wow! additions to the fare … but it has become a desirable special treat, sort after by many!
High Tea – A fun-filled experience where you get to feel quite posh and proper for a bit! Lol!
I am so happy the Victoria Falls Hotel has kept this traditional afternoon tea available for their visitors!
If you know of anyone else travelling to Victoria Falls – be sure to give them these tips!
Want to get a real feel for the hotel?
Here’s a video by Real Life Productions.
How do you like to prep your scones?
Do you eat scones? Have you got into a debate about what goes on first – the cream or the jam… If you aren’t sure, try it both ways to find out. Let us know below! Personally, I am a jam then cream gal, and require lots of both! Lol! 🙂