Zambia | all-inclusive, eco-friendly, family, group, honeymoon, safari, sustainable, tailor-made | lodge | river | luxury
Tongabezi Lodge is located on the banks of the Zambezi River in Zambia, just a short journey away from the magnificent Victoria Falls. Guests can stay in a variety of unique and eclectic houses or cottages, each with their own unique character, features, and stunning view of the Zambezi; and are suitable for couples wanting a romantic getaway, groups of friends or families. The main lodge has an open dining area – where guests can feast on delicious food – a gym, and sparkling swimming pools, with poolside bars. The lodge is ideally located for prime exploration of the area, adventure out on foot, on a game drive, or on a boat safari and find out about the wonders of the area. Day trip to Victoria Falls and marvel at its striking beauty, or immerse yourself in nature in the Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park – guests will never be bored with the range of activities on offer, and can finish their days relaxing at the sand bar, or dining in the middle of the glorious Zambezi, creating memories which will last a lifetime.
Tongabezi Lodge, Livingstone Way, Livingstone, Zambia
Tongabezi Lodge sits on the riverbank of the Zambezi River. This is Africas fourth largest river and works its way through Angola, Zambia, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Mozambique, forming the borders of many of them, including the southernmost border of Zambia. The diversity of fish species which live in this river is impressive, with Bream, Tigerfish, African Pike, Barbel and Upper Zambezi Yellowfish as well as many more. Lazy pods of hippos also frequent the river, as well as a sly crocodile or two.
Around half way down the river is the mighty Victoria Falls, locally known as Mosi-oa-Tunya, which means ‘smoke that thunders’ in the local language of Kololo and Lozi. At 1708m wide, the falls are astonishing, with beauty which is unmatched anywhere else on earth. Close by is the Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park, which showcases the best diversity of the area, from elephant, zebra, impala and giraffe, to an amazingly diverse species of bird such as pigeons, doves swifts, kingfishers and Egyptian geese. Wherever guests chose to go they will never be far from luscious rolling grasslands, sparkling flowing water and twisting trees. Guests can access Tongabezi Lodge by flying into Victoria Falls International Airport or Livingstone Airport and then arranging a vehicle transfer to the lodge.
- Located on the riverbank of the Zambezi River, a short trip away from the stunning Victoria Falls
- Unique cottages and houses are luxurious and classy, and all afford fantastic views of the Zambezi
- Friendly and welcoming staff can cater to guests’ every needs
- Ideally situated for exploration of Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park, on foot or on a game drive
- Activities on the river include a boat safari, fishing and white water rafting
- Dinner is served in the dining room, on your own private decking or on a floating deck in the middle of the river
- Tangala House operates separately, with its own guide, chef and safari vehicles
- Guests can workout in the gym at Tongabezi, with a view of the luscious trees outside
- To escape the afternoons heat grab a refreshing dip in the cooling swimming pool
The area surrounding Victoria Falls enjoys pleasant and warm weather throughout the year. Summers last from August to April, and are characterised by temperatures which average around 34°C and the rains, which fall from November until April. These rains only act to enhance the beauty of the surrounding area, they fall in short downpours, usually in the afternoons with clear skies returning soon afterwards.
During this time of year the water levels of the Zambezi are at their highest, meaning the amount which falls at Victoria Falls is even more impressive. Just before the rains fall are the best time to see game, as hot and thirsty animals gather at sources of water to grab a refreshing drink and try to cool down. During the winter months – from May to August – temperatures dip slightly to an average of 27°C, with slightly less humid air.
The river cottages at Tongabezi Lodge are luxurious, stylish and comfortable. Thatch roofs add authenticity to the cottages, and they are exposed inside, adding dimension and creating character in the rooms. Wide windows with bespoke wooden frames line the walls of the cottage, flooding the space with natural bright light. The walls are curved, making the space feel inviting and comfortable, soft white curtains hang from the windows and the beds are romantically draped with mosquito netting.
Home touches run throughout the cottages with patterned scatter cushions, soft sofas and authentic rugs. The ensuite bathrooms include a walk in shower, surrounded by unique wall tiles, and a large standalone bathtub parallel to the window, so guests can enjoy a soak with a view. A large private decking outside the cottages comes complete with comfortable sun loungers and seating, and is the perfect place to marvel at the wide, glistening Zambezi River or to arrange a romantic private dinner.
Nut House is romantic, luxurious and authentic. A natural atmosphere is created from use of the soft colour palette, clay exposed plaster walls run throughout the house and wide windows let in bright natural light, as well as affording stunning views of luscious trees and the azure Zambezi. Warmth exudes from this house, being lit at night by soft glowing lanterns and feature light fittings hanging from exposed beams.
The house is double tiered, with guests entering on the level which has a comfortable sofa with soft cushions and the elegant ensuite bathroom. Up a few stairs is the bed, which overlooks the pool and the view of the stunning river. The bed sits in the centre of this level, romantically swathed in mosquito netting and a black and white zigzag headboard; the placement is ideal, allowing guests to gaze over the horizon through the doors from the comfort of the bed.
An expansive decking sits along the front of the house, and includes comfortable sun loungers and space for a romantic dinner under the stars, by the sparkling plunge pool which affords a view out across the Zambezi River and Zimbabwe on the other side.
Accessed from a hidden path, the Tree House is secluded and exclusive. Authentic thatch roofs and wooden features, including branches of a feature Ebony tree, create a space which has an atmosphere of nature and tradition. The room has open sides, which overlook the Zambezi River and lets natural light, as well as a fresh breezes flow throughout the house, and the bright colours of the outside sit in happy juxtaposition of the dark wooden features of the interior.
A king size bed sits in the middle of the space, covered in crisp white bed linens and red feature cushions and bed runner, and is draped in mosquito netting allowing guests to have an undisturbed sleep. Traditional rugs lie either side of the bed, which add a homely touch to the room. An open plan ensuite bathroom includes a deep, standalone claw footed bathtub where guests can relax and enjoy a soak with the sounds and smells of the nearby Zambezi filling their senses.
Positioned on a cliff face above the Zambezi River, the views from the Bird House are second to none. The house is nestled in amongst trees and a thatch roof blends in seamlessly with the trees, making the house feel natural and blended with the environment. Along the front of the house and sliding doors, which can fully open creating an open side, which fills the house with natural bright light, and fresh Zambian breezes.
The bed sits in perfect placement for guests to be able to gaze at the view whilst snuggled in the duvet, and draped mosquito netting allows guests to sleep without the visitation of pesky bugs. A soft colour palette is punctuated by red scatter cushions and authentic rugs, and at night the space is lit by unique light fittings, hanging from the exposed thatch ceiling. An ensuite bathroom sits to the side of the room, and includes a wide window and feature stone basins.
An outdoor bath offers guests a unique experience of bathing whilst the sun is setting, and the large decking area includes a refreshing plunge pool and relaxing sun loungers. In the evenings dinner can be arranged to be eaten on the decking, so guests can sit under the wide starry sky whilst enjoying a romantic private dinner.
The Honeymoon House at Tongabezi Lodge is cosy and comfortable, with an eclectic mixture of white, blue and turquoise fabrics, with authentic light wooden features which keeps the house feeling bright and unique. A feature patterned wooden headboard sits behind a large king size bed, which is romantically draped with mosquito netting. The house is full of natural light and fresh air, coming in through the wooden framed sliding doors and soft cream curtains hang either side. A cosy sofa offers guests a place to sit inside, and view the sparkling Zambezi. And a small table and chairs, surrounded by authentic wall art, offers guests a place to dine if they so wish. The ensuite bathroom includes a open shower, backed with bright turquoise tiles and an open air standalone bathtub, allowing guests to soak with a view.
The private decking comes complete with a plunge pool, perfect for the warm afternoons, and comfortable sun loungers. Guests can chose to have dinner on their private decking, immersing themselves in the sounds, smells and sights of the Zambezi whilst enjoying delicious food.
Nestled in amongst twisting trees overlooking the Zambezi River, guests staying in the Dog House will feel like they’re surrounded by the Secret Garden. Sleeping 5, the Dog House is perfect for families. The house is wide and spacious, with polished wooden floors running throughout the house, and exposed beams adding dimension and authentic character to the interior.
The house has two bedrooms, the larger of the two having a comfortable king size bed covered in crisp bed linens and swathed in mosquito netting sat in the centre of the room. A traditional wicker chest sits at the end of the bed, and a cosy sofa sits opposite the windows affording a stunning view of the Zambezi. The second bedroom comes with 2 single beds, which are also covered in crisp bed linens, with patterned scatter cushions and draped in mosquito netting for a comfortable sleep.
Wooden features throughout the house serve to bring the outside in, and whilst the house feels classy, luxurious and stylish, it also feels down to earth and authentic. En-suite bathrooms include a standalone claw-footed bathtub with a view, allowing for a unique bathing experience and a large lounge and dining area between the two bedrooms is filled with traditional art pieces, comfortable furniture and a feature fireplace. On the expansive decking guests will find an infinity pool with a view over the sparkling waters of the Zambezi, which is the perfect place for some fun family time.
The Garden House also sleeps up to five people, making it another perfect house for families or groups of friends. The house is spacious and authentic, decorated with nature in mind. A natural colour palette draws on colours from nature, from clay coloured walls and stone coloured curtains to wooden furnishings and feature wall art. Exposed thatch in the interior of the house adds character, and expands the space – allowing fresh air and bright natural light to flood the rooms, through wooden framed Georgian windows and doors.
A four poster bed sits in the centre of the main bedroom, covered in crisp bed linen and draped in mosquito netting, with feature lamps sat either side of the bed. The main bedroom has one wall which is open to the outside, and looks directly over the luscious green garden. The second bedroom has two single beds, both swathed in mosquito netting, with authentic feature wooden headboards. Both rooms come with en-suit bathrooms come complete with an open-air walk in shower and a copper style basin.
An open sided lounge area offers the perfect place for guests to spend some quality time together, and guests can relax here with a fireplace keeping the room warm on chillier evenings. The house itself is wrapped around the garden, which includes a stone plunge pool, cushioned sun loungers and plenty of luscious grass space for children to play.
Tangala House operates completely privately from the main lodge of Tongabezi, with a private vehicle, boat and guide for activities and a private chef and waiters for mealtimes. The house can sleep up to six guests, ideal for larger families or groups of friends, and offers a private and exclusive holiday experience. The house feels unique and eclectic whilst still feeling homely and relaxing, and includes all the home comforts one might need.
Exposed thatch ceilings add space to the house, and the rooms are filled with light through wide windows and open sides. Traditional and authentic art is scattered around the house and is complimented by authentic rugs, shades of red, brown, orange, cream and wooden furniture. A large fireplace lies just off the lounge for those cooler evenings, and a winding stone staircase will lead guests to the bedrooms.
Four bedrooms are individually decorated in earth tones, with large beds which sit in the middle of the room covered in crisp bed linens, unique bed runners, and romantically swathed in mosquito netting, so guests can have a comfortable nights sleep. Three of the four bedrooms have ensuite bathrooms, which come complete with tiled bathtubs, walk in showers and unique tiled vanity areas. There is something for every member of the family on offer in this house. There is a gym, for guests who like to start their days with a workout, a children’s play room which will keep the kids entertained, and a spacious garden area, with comfortable outdoor seating and a large glistening swimming pool with a view over luscious trees and the wide Zambezi River.
Guests can also stay in the chalets at Sindabezi Lodge, which is just a short way away from Tongabezi. The chalets here are luxurious and authentic, with thatch roofs and made out of natural wood. Wood is a running theme and feature of the room, with polished wooden floors, wooden beds, and wooden chests placed around the room. The chalets have floor to ceiling windows, which allow bright, natural light to fill the space. Configured as either twin or double rooms, the beds will sit in the centre of the space, draped in mosquito netting and covered in crisp bed linens. All chalets are open plan, with an ensuite bathroom which has feature copper basins. All chalets come with their own private decking, which offers guests the ideal space to wind down and gaze over the stunning vista.
Also at Sindabezi is the Honeymoon Chalet, which sits in its own private beach cove. An authentic thatch roof, which is exposed inside, adds character and dimension to the interior and makes the chalet feel spacious and open. Traditional African art hangs on the walls and authentic wooden travellers chests feature in the room. The sides of this chalet are open, which works to bring the outside in and make guests feel as if they are truly immersed in nature. Oversized cushions sit on the bed, which is covered in crisp white bed linens and romantically draped in mosquito netting. The chalet comes with an ensuite bathroom and a standalone bathtub on the decking area, for a soak surrounded by the wild nature of Zambezi. Just a few steps away is the riverbank, where guests can wind down and marvel at the flowing waters of the Zambezi River.
Meals are served in the open air dining area. Covered by a tall thatch roof, so guests are protected from any bad weather, guests can eat while marvelling at the amazing Zambezi River, which flows directly past the area. Delicious and fresh food is served by friendly and kind waiters and cooling beers and fine wines can be served from the bar. Dinners can be arranged to be eaten privately outside guests’ own cottage or house, or in the bush – for an al fresco dining experience under the stars.
The sand bar is an adventure to find, often moving places guests will have to travel a bit to find it. Once they have, they will be greeted with director style deck chairs, delicious lunches or snacks and refreshing beers as well as creative cocktails.
Guests can spend the day at the magnificent Victoria Falls. Get up in the early morning to see the tumbling waters in the gentle light of the sunrise, or wait until late afternoon to see the falls in the golden glow of the sunset. It is a remarkable sight, and will leave guests with a renewed love for nature and a greater understanding of why it is known as one of the seven wonders of the world.
Guests can travel to the diverse and wild Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park and see the wildlife up close and personal whilst on a game drive. Travel around the park in the comfort of a 4×4 open sided vehicle with a knowledgable guide and see if you can spot giraffe, zebra, impala and buffalo. Guests can also arrange to have a day trip to Chobe National Park in Botswana. This national park has the greatest density of elephants in Africa, and guests can see these elephants drinking and playing in the waters, whilst on a boat safari.
Guests can learn more about conservation efforts in the surrounding area from the interacting with orphaned elephants at the local sanctuary. Stand by the elephants and appreciate their beauty and their necessity in this area of the world. Guests can also arrange to go on a rhino walk through Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park, feel truly connected to nature on foot and follow your knowledgable and friendly guide to areas where rhinos have been spotted. As well as learning about the surrounding flora and fauna form your guide, you will leave with a greater understanding of why its so important to protect the rhinos.
The Zambezi River is sat on Tongabezi’s doorstep, offering exciting and unique activities. Guests can glide down the river on a boat cruise, sitting in comfort with the wind rushing though your hair whilst you look out for some of the diverse riverine life. Lazy pods of hippos inhabit the river, as well as sly crocodiles, and on the river bank guests may be able to spot an Egyptian goose or kingfisher, as well as many other species of bird. Spend some more time in the peace and quiet of the river with an afternoon spent fishing. Tigerfish are the most rewarding to catch, however there is a diverse range of fish which you can try your hand at catching. For the adrenaline seekers amongst the guests, white water rafting can be arranged. Explore the gorge below Victoria Falls for a unique and exciting afternoon.
Guests can arrange to spend the day at Livingstone Island. A short boat journey will take you down the Zambezi River to this historic UNESCO world heritage island; the place where explorer David Livingstone first saw Victoria Falls. Enjoy a guided tour of the island, and a unique view of the breathtaking falls. For the more thrill seeking of guests, a short swim with a guide will take you to Devil’s Pool, a rock pool which sits on the edge of the waterfall. After the excitement of this, guests can make their way back to the island for food and drinks, provided by Tongabezi Lodge.
There is a rich culture and community in the area surrounding Tongabezi Lodge which is waiting to be discovered by guests. In the local town of Livingston is Livingston Museum, which has a variety of artefacts including David Livingstone’s personal diaries, and exhibitions on the diversity and history of Zambia. Hop on the Livingstone Express just before dinner time and travel through the Mosi-oa-Tunya on an historic railway line whilst the wild flashes past enjoy a fine dining experience. For guests who wish to immerse themselves in the heart of Zambian life then the Maramba and Mukuni village markets can be visited with a guide. Purchase local crafts and items and learn more about the traditions and culture of Zambia. For a more intimate cultural experience, guests can go with a guide to the local village of Simnoga and meet some of the villagers.
For a unique dining experience, be rowed out to a floating platform in the middle of the island and enjoy dinner in the tranquil evening air. The golden tones of the sunset will fill the sky, and reflect off the water. Immerse yourself in the sights, smells and sounds of the Zambezi and relax as the evening turns to night, when you can gaze up to the wide starry skies.
For a once-in-a-lifetime experience take to the skies in a helicopter and soar over the Magnificent Victoria Falls with a unique birds eye perspective. Enjoy uninterrupted views from every angle and over the endless horizon. For a more adrenaline filled flight, take to the skies in a microlight aircraft and glide over the falls to truly be able to appreciate their magnificence.
For guests who like to start their day with a workout the gym at Tongabezi is the perfect place to do so. Floor to ceiling windows flood the space with light and offer beautiful views for while guests are using the machines. Guests can also spend the morning or afternoon by the large glistening turquoise pool. This pool has everything guests could want, from a relaxed bar and lounge area and cushioned sun loungers, this space is the perfect place to enjoy the heat of the afternoon.
All Green Safari lodges are “purpose-built green.” Ila Safari Lodge, Green Safari’s first lodge, is considered a “trailblazer” with its eco-friendliness and sustainability credentials and was built “in the most sustainable way, actively involving the local communities.” Sindabezi Safari Lodge specifically is on “Fordor’s list of top 10 eco-lodges in Africa.” Harnessing the renewable energy of the sun means their carbon footprint and the impact they have on the environment is dramatically reduced. Not just power is generated from the solar panels – all the hot water is also “generated by solar water heaters.”
Wastewater is treated and disposed of without being soaked into the soil. Electric game drive vehicles were developed for and used first at Ila Safari Lodge, which has led to electric cruisers and electric boats also being used, with no reliance on fossil fuels, these vehicles don’t pollute the atmosphere. To help support and empower the local communities, Green Safaris and Sindabezi shop for produce from the local markets and their own farm, reducing their food miles and supporting local farmers. Green Safaris aren’t just trying to have a minimal footprint, they are actively trying to make a positive impact – with a tree planting program which has already been highly successful in planting “hundreds of trees.”
Tujatane pre-school was opened by one of the founders of Green Safaris, and has since developed into a primary school which educates over 160 students which strengthens the relationship between Sindabezi and the communities around it. Another Green Safaris property, Ila Safari Lodge, has their own community farm. First started by ‘Green Safaris Conservation Foundation’ the farm is now run by members of the local Nalusanga community. This farm offers a sustainable livelihood for the members who work on the farm and a sustainable way to source food for the lodge.
Green Safaris supports the Zambian Carnivore Programme which conducts scientific research to help “protect carnivores and their habitats” and also benefits the community as they understand the importance of supporting the wildlife.
At Green Safaris they strive to make all they do eco-friendly. One major step to becoming more eco-friendly is using biodegradable cleaning products instead of chemicals and also having biodegradable guest amenities. Water is provided in reusable bottles to help cut down on single-use plastics and cling-film and straws are no longer used. Solid waste is sorted and filtered before being transported, and it is kept out of the reach of any animals while it is awaiting disposal. At Sindabezi a greywater system is used “to minimise water wastage.”
Tongabezi Lodge welcomes children aged 7 and over