Divava Okavango Lodge & Spa

Divava Okavango Lodge & Spa: Our full report

Rooms
20 chalets
Traveller's rating
Excellent (92%) From 5 reviews
Children
Best for 12+
Open
All year

Divava Okavango Lodge & Spa is nestled high in the riverine forest on the banks of the Kavango River, just downstream from Popa Rapids (also known as Popa Falls) in Namibia's Caprivi Strip. Larger than most properties in the region, it feels more like a hotel in the bush than a traditional safari camp.

In Namibia, the river that flows alongside Divava is known as the Kavango, but once it reaches Botswana, it goes by the Okavango. So while the lodge is definitely in Namibia, the owners have included the more famous Botswana name of the river in the full lodge title: Divava Okavango Lodge & Spa.

Divava is the sister property to Le Mirage Lodge in the Namib-Naukluft area. Like its sister lodge, and compared to most lodges in the Caprivi (now known as the Zambezi Region), it is quite a large property, with 20 spacious chalets. These have a light and airy feel, with plenty of windows as well as air conditioning, and are decorated in neutral sandy tones, with colour from one or two orange 'accents'.

Each chalet is split over two levels. The upper level, where you enter the room, has a large wooden wardrobe with plenty of hanging space, shelves, mini fridge and a small electronic safe. Down a few steps is the bedroom, where you’ll find two queen-size beds surrounded by a mosquito net, with bedside tables and an armchair.

From the bedroom a large door opens out on to a private viewing deck with two heavy outdoor chairs and a coffee table – the perfect place to soak up the views of the river in peace.

The en-suite bathroom has both indoor and outdoor showers, a bath, his and hers basins and a separate toilet. Again, there are plenty of windows allowing natural light in – though on our visit in June 2017, we thought that the outdoor showers could have been slightly better screened off to ensure total privacy.

The main area of Divava is a series of large thatched buildings. The reception houses a small lounge where free WiFi is available, and the lodge’s curio shop. A fairly long flight of stairs leads down to the main bar and restaurant. This building is right on the river’s edge and from the outdoor seating areas there are partial views of the rapids just upstream. Inside, next to the main bar there is a lounge area with comfortable seating and some traditional games and books of interest scattered amongst the tables. Head down a couple more stairs to the restaurant and its smartly dressed tables, there is also an accompanying deck, so meals can be enjoyed both inside and alfresco.

As well as a stunning free-form swimming pool, Divava has a spa facility, the ‘wellness village’. which consists of individual or couples’ treatment rooms, changing rooms, sauna and a steam room. On a previous stay we were lucky enough to enjoy some very relaxing massages – the perfect antidote to bouncing around in a safari vehicle. If you would like a treatment, it is best to let the lodge know as early as possible, preferably the day before. We nearly missed out because we had not been made aware of this!

Activities at Divava, as with many of the lodges in the Caprivi, focus predominantly on the river and include fishing, sundower cruises, mokoro trips, boat safaris and even island dinners. The lodge also offers village visits and game drives into Mahango National Park and the buffalo core area of Bwabwata National Park.

Our view

If you are looking for a larger lodge or would like to be pampered in the spa, Divava makes a comfortable base to indulge yourself for a day or two. It also makes a good platform from which to explore the Mahango and Bwabwata national parks.

Geographics

Location: Caprivi Strip, Namibia

Ideal length of stay: 2 - 3 nights

Directions: Divava Lodge is located 7km southwest of Divundu in Namibia's Zambezi Region (formerly known as the Caprivi Strip).

Accessible by: Self-drive or Fly-and-Transfer

Key personnel

Staff: Karel Urjon - manager Dec 2016

Food & drink

Usual board basis: Half Board

Food quality: Although we did not have a chance to sample the menu on our most recent visit in June 2017, on a previous stay in December 2016, we were impressed by the food, even if the service was a little slow.

Breakfast at Divava takes the form of a buffet with a selection of continental-style pastries, breads, pancakes, jams, cereals, fresh fruit, fruit salads and fruit juices. A cooked breakfast is also available to order.

Lunch is from a small à la carte menu which, when we last visited, included salads, sandwiches, pasta and pizza.

For dinner, which was five courses, we had a pre-starter of grilled pineapple with bacon. This was followed by vegetable soup, then smoked salmon and cream cheese, before the main course: a choice of kudu or hake fillet served with seasonal vegetables and baked potatoes. The meal was rounded off by a choice of desserts.

Dining style: Individual Tables

Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining

Cost of meal e.g. lunch: £10-15

Drinks included: None. We were informed that the tap water was safe to drink, but as it was still slightly brown during our stay- we feel it would be safer to stick to bottled water.

Further dining info: None

Special interests

Wellbeing: Divava Okavango Lodge & Spa has a wellness spa with a sauna, steam room and treatment rooms, making it a good choice for a spa holiday in Namibia.

See more ideas for Wellbeing in Namibia

Children

Attitude towards children: Divava welcomes children of all ages.

Property’s age restrictions: None

Special activities & services: None

Equipment: The lodge can provide highchairs and an additional single bed in chalets for younger children on request.

Notes: There are a lot of steps and drop offs around Divava. There is also unfenced access to the river and an unfenced, unguarded pool so children would need constant supervision here.

Infrastructure

Power supply: Mains Electricity

Power supply notes: There is a back-up generator in case the mains power fails.

Communications: There is cell phone reception throughout the lodge and free WiFi in the reception area.

TV & radio: None

Water supply: Other

Water supply notes: Water is pumped from the river and treated.

Health & safety

Malarial protection recommended: Yes

Medical care: The nearest doctor is in Divundu (7km away), and there is a hospital in Rundu, (210km away).

Dangerous animals: Moderate Risk

Security measures: There are guards on the gate during the day and patrolling the premises at night.

Fire safety: There are fire extinguishers placed throughout the property.

Extras

Disabled access: Not Possible

Laundry facilities: A laundry service is available at an additional cost.

Money: There is a small electronic safe in each chalet.

Accepted payment on location: Cash payments may be made in South African rand, Namibian dollars, Botswana pula, euros and US dollars. Visa and Mastercard are accepted card payment methods.

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