Mlibizi, Msuna & Deka

Zimbabwe

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Mlibizi is the western terminus for Lake Kariba ferry services. Msuna & Deka are popular fishing centres along the Zambezi River between the Batoka and Devil's Gorges

The little fishing village and boating harbour of Mlibizi lies at the extreme western end of Lake Kariba and is the traditional terminus for the passenger and vehicle ferry service that plies Lake Kariba.  Link to Kariba from here on a 22-hour overnight journey via Kariba Ferries

The overnight ferry service which carries vehicles (but has roof space for only three high-roof 4x4s) is a popular way for visitors to traverse the lake to Kariba town from the Hwange/ Victoria Falls area - or vice versa.  Be aware, however, that sailing dates for the ferry can only be confirmed if there is a minimum of 30 passengers on board.  Early booking is essential. 

The ferry departs at 9.00a.m. but passengers need to embark an hour before this.  Some tour operators in Victoria Falls and Hwange offer road transfers to Mlibizi for  travellers without a vehicle. However, since the transfer journey is 3+ hours long from Vic Falls, unless you want to make an extremely early morning start, it is usually more convenient to stay in Mlibizi  the night before the ferry departs to Kariba. 

Accommodation in Mlibizi is restricted to a few privately-owned lodges, self-catering houses, a small hotel and a lakeside resort (self-catering chalets and a campsite) next to the ferry terminal.  Pontoon-style boats can be hired for fishing at a daily rate. 

The Zambezi is navigable  for houseboats and fishing boats upstream from Mlibizi, where the river enters Lake Kariba via the magnificent, steep-sided Devil's Gorge.  There is spectacular cruising and some wonderful overnight mooring spots here and up the Gwayi River which meets the Zambezi just above the Gorge.  

Further upstream the river opens up at Msuna, (featured in our main image photo courtesy Shaun McMinn Photography) where a number of attractive fishing lodges and chalets are available on a self-catering basis on the mainland or on Msuna Island.  

Upstream of Msuna Island, at the confluence of the Deka and Zimbabwe Rivers is the strangely-named Deka Drum - a remote fishing location overlooking the Zambezi River - and yet further upstream (80 kms from Victoria Falls, just below the downstream end of the Batoka Gorge), is Sidinda.  There are a few private fishing camps in these areas.  

For assistance with booking accommodation, houseboats, transfers and activities in and around the Mlibizi, Msuna, Deka and Sidinda areas, contact:-

Baobab Bookings (agent in Harare & Kariba)

Heartveld Adventures  (agent based in Kariba)

Simwenge & Ngwenya River Lodges (Deka & Msuna) (bookings from Harare)

 

Related articles:-

TRAVEL ADVICE FOR SELF-DRIVERS: Tackling the remote "Back Route": Victoria Falls/Hwange to Kariba/Mana Pools (Travel Blog, April 2022)

 

Travel listings for this area

Simwenge & Ngwenya River Lodges

Luxury fishing lodges on the Zambezi River near Deka Mouth and on Msuna island, between Victoria Falls and Lake Kariba.

Getaway Specialised Tours

Specialised, Harare-based, owner-operated tour company catering to special Travel Package needs

Executive Air

Private, professional air charters throughout Zimbabwe and the Africa region, including remote areas.

HAC (Halsteds Aviation Corporation)

High quality air charter service throughout Southern Africa, including remote areas of the Zambezi region. Medical Air Rescue evacuations.

Central Air Transport Services (CATS)

Air charter services to Zimbabwe destinations (including remote areas)

ZimParks - Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife Authority

Self-catering lodges/chalets, tented camp, campsites & picnic sites within the Zambezi Valley's major National Parks and Protected Areas.

Baobab Bookings

Booking agency for accommodation, houseboats, transfers, fishing safaris and other activities throughout Zimbabwe - Lake Kariba specialists

Heartveld Adventures

Travel information, bookings and tours around the Zambezi region and the rest of Zimbabwe

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