by Thanda Mhlanga on June 22, 2018
5 min read

Seclusion, tranquility and luxury meet at Victoria Falls Island Lodge, an oasis hidden along the banks of the Zambezi River. “Your feet will never touch the ground,” is the promise, and with three exclusive Treehouse Suites embedded on the river, canopied by trees and connected by a labyrinth of wooden walkways, it’s a promise delivered.

Victoria Falls Island Lodge is a 5-star hideout on the banks of the Zambezi River

A dream getaway on the Zambezi? Coming right up!
Photo credit: Victoria Falls Island Lodge

Rhino Rating:

5/5

Where?

Zambezi River, Zimbabwe

Why?

It doesn’t get more natural and untouched than the setting and layout at Victoria Falls Island Lodge. One wonders how luxury was so seemingly integrated into spaces that are designed to conform to and not disturb nature’s own architecture.

Waking to the sounds of rousing nature scored by a hippo’s rumbling exhale can only be bested by a cruise along the waters that house these majestic brutes. Nothing is more enchanting that a sunset seen from a cruise along the Zambezi’s bush-flanked crystal waters as nature retreats into itself and the sky hangs up its lanterns – such is the romance of the Victoria Falls Island Lodge experience.

Victoria Falls Island Lodge lets you cruise the Zambezi River, the 4th largest river in Africa

Sleeping outdoors, the luxurious way
Photo credit: Victoria Falls Island Lodge

Who?

The Staff

Zimbabweans’ signature warmth is on display at Victoria Falls Island Lodge where, from guide to chef, understated excellence prevails. You only have to probe your sunset cruise guide to learn the secrets of the land or your chef to discover the ingenuity of dishes made from locally sourced produce. Whether it’s this property’s superior recruiting or a nature indigenous to this beautiful country, the ability to create an atmosphere of relaxation and comfort delivered with an approachable confidence is certainly commendable.

Interestingly, the Zambezi River originates in the Mwinilunga District in north-west Zambia

The Lodge was constructed so as to not disturb or alter its natural surroundings
Photo credit: Victoria Falls Island Lodge

At a Glance:

Three Treehouse Suites on the banks of the exclusive Kandahar Island, each with a plunge pool and private deck. Perfectly located in a private island with sightings of hippo, zebra and elephants along the shore. Guests can enjoy guided game drives and river cruises to explore the Zambezi’s plentiful wildlife.

Best Time to Go:

“Zimbabwean skies are always on your side'” they say (and by ‘they’ we mean us). Our last visit to Victoria Falls was in June and there was still plenty of sunshine during the day and sunsets were as breathtaking as ever. If anything, these winter months offer more seclusion and a lower volume of crowds – one of our favourite ways to safari. That said, jumpers and jerseys are must for morning and evening drives as warm days make way for nights that can get quite chilly in winter. Definitely, a year-round destination.

The Nyami Nyami, described as having the head of a fish and the body of a snake, is believed to be the guardian of the Zambezi River Valley by the Tsonga people

Out in the open. Nature is an integral part of the decor.
Photo credit: Victoria Falls Island Lodge

How to Get There:

Running through many game reserves and national parks, the Zambezi sustains a diversity of game, birdlife and fish species.

The lodge lies inconspicuously along the banks of the Zambezi river
Photo credit: Victoria Falls Island Lodge

Fly into Victoria Falls International Airport. The team at Victoria Falls Island Lodge will pick you up on arrival and drop you off when it’s time to leave. The hotel is less than an hour’s drive from the airport.

Visa Information:

There are three visa categories for Zimbabwe; countries whose citizens don’t require a visa, can receive a visa at port of entry – airport or border post- and countries whose citizens must get a visa before traveling. All categories need a passport valid for at least 6 months from your date of entry, a return ticket to your country (or enough money to buy one), sufficient funds to cover your stay and enough blank pages in your passport to fit the required entry visa.

Victoria Falls Island Lodge's sister lodge Victoria Falls River Lodge is just a short cruise away

Some aspects of the lodge resemble a tropical island paradise
Photo credit: Victoria Falls Island Lodge

Facilities & Amenities:

Victoria Falls Island Lodge has private plunge pools for each suite and guests are serviced by a personal butler (1 butler per 2 rooms/ 4 guests). All the elevated suites are connected to a dining area and sunset bar through a raised walkway. WiFi is also available.

Rooms:

All Island Lodge Treehouse Suites are river facing and fitted with plunge pools and a private deck from where sightings of game on the banks can be  enjoyed. The decor is minimalist and modern, with polished finishes and delicate, natural textures.  Each structure is designed to blend into the surrounding nature. The bathrooms are styled in the manner of a luxury spa and come with oval freestanding bathtubs and organic toiletries.

Hippos abound in the waters beyond Victoria Falls Island Lodge

Morning rays streaming into the main area
Photo credit: Victoria Falls Island Lodge

A stay at Victoria Falls Island Lodge:

Included:

  • Luxury accommodation on the private Kandahar Island
  • Personal Butler service (1 x Butler per 4 guests / 2 rooms)
  • Transfers from/to the Victoria Falls Airport
  • All meals
  • Local and superior beverages
  • A daily transfer from the Island to the jetty and then by road to Victoria Falls town
  • A Tour of the Falls  – the entry fee into the Rainforest is for guest’s own account
  •  Two game activities – a choice of either a morning/afternoon game drive in the Zambezi National Park, and a sunrise/sunset river cruise per person per day.
  • Laundry

Additional cost:

  • All unspecified transfers
  • All National Park entrance fees, conservation fees, heritage fees
  • Customs and Visa fees
  • Imported / premium brand beverages
  • Spa treatments
  • Additional game drives and other activities
  • All off-site activities
The lodge is about 30 minutes from the town of Victoria Falls

Food is made from the freshest, locally-sourced produce
Photo credit: Victoria Falls Island Lodge

Dining Experience:

The chef uses locally-sourced produce to create fresh and authentic dishes that are refined and yet accessible and extremely delicious. Breakfast served in the main area near the river is a highlight –  from a selection of fruits, health juices and grains to hearty fair in the form of eggs, breakfast and other English Breakfast staples. Dinners are served under candlelight with guests offered a choice of decadent starters, mains and desert.

Perfect for:

Romantics, couples and honeymooners – we can’t imagine a dreamier setting. To find out more about this divine hideout, click here.

Practically got your bags packed to visit this island-style paradise? Contact one of our expert consultants to plan your stay at Victoria Falls Island Lodge.