Not only does Tanzania offer first-class wildlife viewing…
Kungwe Beach Lodge: Our full report
Kungwe Beach Lodge is situated on the shores of Lake Tanganyika on the western border of Mahale Mountains National Park - one of the most remote areas in Africa, giving visitors a true sense of wilderness. Kungwe has ten safari-style tented rooms, all spread out along the beach and overlooking the lake.
Currently we don’t have first hand experience of Kungwe, however a member of the Expert Africa team is due to go and visit the lodge later this year. So this report is based on information that we have received from the team at Kungwe, and we’ll update it when we have visited.
We are told that the accommodation consists of ten light, spacious tents, each of which is raised on a wooden deck and covered by a thatched roof. Each has a private patio area with chairs and a coffee table where guests can relax after their day and look out over Lake Tanganyika. Seven of these rooms have four-poster double beds, two have twin beds and one has a double and a single bed. All of the tents have mosquito nets, electricity and an en suite bathroom with running hot and cold water, a flushing toilet and a shower.
The primary activity at Kungwe Beach Lodge involves guided walks to see some of the last wild communities of Chimpanzees left in Africa. These treks take you deep into the Mahale forest where there is an abundance of wildlife; the various bird species are said to be particularly notable. We hear from the lodge that there are also opportunities for boat safaris, kayaking, snorkeling and fishing on the lake. Alternatively, for those who simply want to relax, there are sun loungers and umbrellas set out on the beach.
The lodge is available on a full board basis where all meals are included. We understand that there is a buffet breakfast in the morning and the same for lunch if you are at the camp, alternatively packed lunches can be made for you if you are in the forest. There is a set menu for dinner, which is usually served in the main thatched mess where there is a dinning and lounge area. We are also told that guests are able to enjoy a candlelit barbeque dinner on the beach if requested.
Our viewThe lodge will undoubtedly be in a stunning location and it offers a slightly cheaper alternative to other lodges in the area. It will most likely be adventurous yet comfortable and the opportunities to go and see the Chimpanzees make this a fantastic place to stay. Having said that, the travel costs of getting over to the Mahale Mountains National Park remain high, and so despite Kungwe offering lower cost accommodation in the area, it remains one of the more expensive destinations in Tanzania.
Ideal length of stay: There are only 2 flights a week (on a Monday and Thursday) to Mahale, so stays are restricted to either 3 or 4 night stays.
Owner: Mbali Mbali
Food & drink
Usual board basis: Full Board
Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining
Property’s age restrictions: Children under the age of 12 years are not permitted on Chimpanzee trekking. All Children under the age of 12 years at the Lodge should be accompanied by a supervising adult at all times.
Special activities & services: No Baby Sitting Services are available
Power supply: Generator
Communications: There is internet access and a satellite phone in case of an emergency. There is also a hand held radio – there is no mobile phone coverage.
Health & safety
Malarial protection recommended: Yes
Medical care: First Aid Kits are carried by Guides whilst on activities or excursions. First Aid Kit’s are also available at the Lodge. Emergency evacuation is from Mahale Airstrip – only day landings are possible.
Dangerous animals: High Risk
Disabled access: Not Possible
Laundry facilities: Available as a charged extra.
Accepted payment on location: No credit card facilities at the Lodge. All additional payments directly at the Lodge should be in Cash.