Kariba's best-kept secret - Hornbill Lodge

Wild Zambezi • 4 May 2018

If you're the kind of person who shies away from large hotels and likes the simple things in life, then I've got a little secret to whisper in your ear....

If you are lucky enough to get to visit Lake Kariba, Zimbabwe's hugely underrated inland sea with a tropical climate, and need somewhere to stay for a night before embarking on a water-based adventure... check out pretty little Hornbill Lodge.  It's the best-kept secret in Kariba Town.

Situated near the top of Mica Point, one of the iconic hills upon which the town of Kariba was built in the 1950s, this little gem of a place, which caters for 12 people max, is nestled into lush tropical gardens, with fabulous views out over the lake.

It's just what I like.  Simple, natural, stone-under thatch rondavels each with an en-suite bathroom at the back and a verandah in front.  Some people may not like the open-plan nature of the rooms - there are no doors or windows, and the bathroom is integrated into the back of the chalet room separated by a shoulder-height wall.  But I just LOVE how cleverly sensible and informal the design is.

The room might be simple, but everything in it is of top notch, luxury, quality.  The beds are huge and extremely comfortable with fresh, crisp linen and expansive, walk-in mosquito nets.  The shower provides copious quantities of hot water and every bathroom accessory you can think of is provided.  There are tea and coffee-making facilities in each room and a fan, air-conditioning or heater, depending on the weather.

 

Meals are provided on the terrace near the sparkling plunge pool overlooking the garden and Lake Kariba, or in the main central lodge, which houses the bar, sittingroom (with TV) and dining room. 

The food is farm-grown, home cooked, delicious and plentiful and is served and hosted personally by the owners, the Millar family.  Expect farm-fresh succulent meat and eggs, delicious, home-made, ice-cream, and a huge array of fresh fruit and vegetables. And the wine's great too!

Despite it's apparent simplicity, Hornbill Lodge's  attention to detail, high standards and personal service are reflected in their mid-range rates.  Don't expect all this for nothing...

But if you're looking for a little Kariba getaway as a treat... and you don't do hotels, then this is JUST the place for you.  You'll LOVE it.

 

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