Each year about 300,000 people visit Victoria Falls, located between the countries of Zambia and Zimbabwe. But few experience the waterfall like 28-year-old professional Cliff Diver Jonathan Paredes, of Mexico City, did one December afternoon, when he hurled himself from a 100-foot bluff into the waters below. More than a mile wide and 354 feet high at points, the waterfall, the world’s largest, spans the Zimbabwe River and is generally too dangerous for even the most experienced divers. But Paredes decided to give it a go—though not without a considerable amount of trepidation.
“I was so scared,” he recalls about when he reached the crag and prepared to jump. “But at the same time, I was just astonished, because I was diving in one of the most beautiful places. It was just surreal.”
Once steady, Paredes flipped into the water, traveling at some 53 miles per hour, and landed smoothly feet first.
“That feeling when you come out of the water and you know that everything went well—honestly it was one of my best memories ever,” he says. Here’s a clip of Paredes cliff diving bits of Victoria and Rainbow Falls.