Reviews of Islands of Siankaba
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Islands of Siankaba review
What a wonderful place. We'd definitely go back here.
The location was magnificent, the rooms wonderful, the food amazing and plentiful. We had a great trip to visit the local village with absolutely no pressure to give money - which is so unusual. We loved the fact that the lodge gives so much support to the local villages.
Not a place for children but a wonderful opportunity to unwind and a great place to end our holiday.
Doom and gloom in the tent
Accomodation was dismal, dark, dreary and depressing and looked unclean.
The new managers were overly ingratiating.
Our trips on the Zambesi were memorable and without fault. Two nights would have been sufficient. We would definitely not return.
Expert Africa comments
The rooms at Islands of Siankaba were being refurbished when these travellers stayed, and the lodge was sorry that they were not able to give them one of the new rooms. Since their stay in June, the refurbishments have been completed; they tell us that this has made the rooms feel much brighter and more modern.
Islands of Siankaba review
A good place to spend a relaxing couple of days at the end of our safari experience. We found that it was a good halfway house back to the "real world" and did feel more like a hotel/luxury resort than a top safari lodge. It wasn't quite such a personal and flexible service which we had at the bush camps we stayed in, but for what it was, it was really nice.
It's worth noting that because you are based on the islands in the middle of the river, it's a very relaxing place to be, but it's more tricky to arrange ad hoc activities off the island as this depends on boat/driver availability rather more than elsewhere. Our trip into Livingstone with a guide was very good, and the in-house masseuse was fantastic! The food here was also particularly good (though we never came close to finishing the three course breakfast!!), though the cake at afternoon tea was a bit stale.
There is a very good range of activities available, though it's worth mentioning that the majority of these are at an additional cost.
Islands of Siankaba review
We had been concerned about coming into Victoria Falls and finding ourselves in a more touristy environment. Well, we shouldn't have worried. Siankaba is very individual and 30 km away from the falls, so feels exceptionally peaceful.
The level of comfort might feel out of place in the bush but closer to Livingstone it felt fine and we appreciated the luxurious touches, such as the electric blanket! The staff are very well trained but delightfully warm. This is a water place. The sunset river cruise and the tour of Victoria Falls were great.
We were particularly interested in seeing the next door village, where many of the staff come from, and which has benefitted from the support of the Lodge and the guests. The new pre-school is impressive and it felt as if the village community were co-owners of the project, which made the village walk feel comfortable rather than voyeuristic.
This was a great place to end a trip. To sleep listening to the mighty Zambezi flooding past and to return to the UK with the spray from the Victoria Falls in your hair and clothes (yes, you will get a bit wet) was terrific.
Islands of Siankaba review
Stunning location on a couple of heavily wooded islands on the upper Zambezi which in May is a veritable torrent of water. Layout of the lodge one of best I have visited with excellent food and service standards. Rooms elevated and very nice with interconnecting walkways. Sunset boat-trip lovely and walks around the area and nearby village full of birdlife. Due to the high water levels, some of the walks were restricted and mokoro trips not possible. Vic Falls visit early in the morning a wonderful way to finish. Great place to relax and I wish we could have stayed longer!Read more about the whole trip
Excellent lodge with community project
We had only 2 nights here and requested to be taken to the falls straight from the airport. Our flight was over one hour late but we were still able to do so. They even provided us with a picnic lunch. Sydney picked us up and took us for the tour of the falls. We were overwhelmed by the falls. The feeling of being completly drenched while walking in what feels like the fall itself is difficult to describe. Having seen lots of pictures of the falls we were surprised at how different you feel when you are actually walking there, in the spray, with the roar and the massive amount of water of the falls. Of course at this time you do not get a clear view of the falls, but you do get a feeling of its power!
The following morning Victor took us for a village tour and again this is an amazing experience, difficult to describe properly. We spent a couple of hours walking around the village and meeting the local people. We also met the headman (who offered to marry us and give us a big party!) and the school teacher Malindi. We were impressed by the school and its facilities. We visited on a Sunday so the children were not at school, but we had a chance to talk to Malindi and he explained to us what they do. Everything was really well organized. They were building an outside playing area as well. It seemed to us that they put a lot of effort in educating and teaching these children.
Everyone we talked to undelined what big difference the lodge has made. Most people working at the lodge are from local villages and the old school used to be just a tin roof, before the lodge. To us this a excellent example of running a "responsible" lodge, giving something back to the community. We really liked all this.
The lodge itself is beautiful, with "jungle-like" footbridges, a perfect terrace where meals are served, a nice pool and great location. Our "tent" was not short of luxury and the veranda is a private window on the river.
We missed our sunset cruise as the weather changed and it rained. We liked the remoteness of the lodge, but it may not be the place for people who want to be in the middle of the falls activities as it is about one hour drive from there.
Food quality was really good and they catered for vegetarian really well.
All the junior members of staff were great with us.
In our personal opinion the atmosphere created by the managers was too formal, especially at dinner, during which there were a few awkward conversations.
Islands of Siankaba review
A perfect way to end a trip. The rooms are luxury especially the baths! Food, company and optional activities really enjoyable.Read more about the whole trip
Perfect post-safari relaxation
Staying on the Islands of Siankaba was the perfect relaxing end to our trip to Zambia. It is far enough away from Victoria Falls to feel very peaceful, but only took around 30 minutes to reach the Falls. The Islands provided both a tranquil setting and enough birdlife to keep my partner occupied! There were sightings of resident African Finfoots, four different species of Kingfisher and Orange-breasted bush-shrike among lots of others.
There are plenty of activities available or you can just sit on your deck watching the Zambezi rush by.
The staff are very friendly and attentive, but if you have a special dietary requirement it is best to keep reminding so you are not served fish for dinner, or meat at breakfast, when you are vegetarian! That aside the vegetarian menu was very good.
What a location!
From departing at the mainland to arriving by boat, it is an exceptionaly beatiful and well liad out camp. The accomodation is superb and waking up wit hthe sun straming in and seeing the river and wildlife so close by is an amazing experience.
All the staff are excellent and the guides are very knowledable. River trips by mokor are a must - what a great way to expeience the Zamezi! Evening sun downer trips, massages, swimming and great food! The local village expeience is well worthwhile and the ethos of the owners supporting the local community and school is very commendable.
Thoroughly enjoyed our experience here and we will return!!
Peace and relaxation at Siankaba
We loved Islands of Siankaba and were so pleased that we had started our trip with the more relaxing part of the holiday. Ok you are a fair way of out Livingstone but the setting is stunning and the lodge is so peaceful.
We were given the honeymoon "tent" which was lovely - the shower and WC could do with a spruce up (nothing significant) but the room and open areas were very comfortable and nicely designed. Housekeeping and laundry were excellent.
The staff were friendly and accommodating. We did not see that much of the managers Sonja and Paul but Sarah, Nami and Steven were always around to talk and see that we had all that we wanted. We were particularly impressed with the waiting and bar staff as they were extremely efficient but charming with it. No wondering where your food/drinks had got to but not rushed either.
The food was consistently very good. A good choice for breakfast and lunch and, although the 4 course dinners had a set menu, all dinners were excellent. As with the safari lodges, the only difficult part is that you are served so much food and we always felt bad about what we could not manage (and we are big eaters!) With breakfast, a substantial lunch, afternoon tea, canapes on the river and then dinner, we had to ration ourselves.
We were really at Siankaba to relax so we may not have done as much as other guests but we did not feel pressured to do anything. We went out on a sunset cruise each evening. Victor, our guide and boatman, was very interesting to talk to and knew a lot about the bird and animal life in and along the river. We also did a nature walk around the islands with Victor and were amazed at the different trees and plants and what they can all be used for.
We had a half day trip to Victoria Falls and went to Livingstone Island and to swim in the Devil's Pool - quite an experience! Although the falls are low at this time of year on one side, there is a lot to see on the far side of Livingstone Island so we were pleased that we made the trip. It also meant that we saw some of the Livingstone hotels that we could have stayed in. For us, Siankaba was perfect as it felt outdoorsy and like part of our safari and the hotels that we saw would not have given us this. Anna was spot on in suggesting Siankaba for us.