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Rivertrees Country Inn
Rivertrees Country Inn
Rivertrees Country Inn
Rivertrees Country Inn

Rivertrees Country Inn

3°22’25.3"S 36°51’50.6"E

Rivertrees Country Inn: Our full report

On the banks of the Usa River, Rivertrees Country Inn is set in ten hectares of lush tropical gardens.

Filled with flame trees, bougainvillea, hibiscus and banana trees, these are a haven for birdlife. On a clear day, from the lodge's vantage point at the end of a long tree-lined driveway, halfway between the town of Arusha and Kilimanjaro International, it is possible to see both Mount Meru and Mount Kilimanjaro.

On arriving at Rivertrees guests are led to the reception area which also has a large well-stocked curio shop.

The dining room and bar ar Rivertrees are in an open-fronted thatched building, with views over the gardens. The walls are part plaster and part exposed brick, and comfortable sofas create a small seating area around a fireplace. Tucked around the corner from the dining area is a rustic bar, made from the wood of an old dhow, and lined with chunky wooden bar stools and a satellite TV.

There is another newly-built, open-sided dining area nearby, which means the lodge can cater for large numbers of diners. It's a popular place for locals to eat too, so there is often a good atmosphere in the evenings. The new pizza oven and barbecue are also proving very popular!

Rivertrees has 34 rooms dotted around the large property, all of which are en suite and have fans and mosquito nets. These are made up as follows:
  • 30 standard Garden Rooms form the bulk of the accommodation, with each small cottage housing two separate rooms. Two of these cottages have interconnecting rooms, providing a good option for families. In terms of disabled access, room #9 caters for disabled visitors. It is closest to the main area, has no steps and has spacious interiors.

    Each room has red polished concrete floors dotted with traditional grass mats, under a whirring ceiling fan. The furniture comprises a wooden four-poster bed (or twin or triple beds), draped with mosquito nets, a writing desk and chair, a day bed, and a simple wardrobe. It's all very solidly built, and remain cool – even when temperatures outside are high. Comfort is not at the expense of style, though, as each room features pretty soft furnishings and striking pieces of furniture and art. The rooms are often decked out with large zinc buckets of fresh roses (Tanzania is one of the largest exporters of roses to Europe).

    The white-tiled en-suite bathroom is small and functional with a single smooth concrete basin, shower cubicle with shower curtain, and a toilet. All the rooms also have a striking insulated concrete bath. Complimentary toiletries are provided. Outside each room is a small, covered veranda with two wooden chairs and a table.
  • Four rooms within the old farmhouse accommodate up to ten guests; it can be booked exclusively, making it ideal for large families or groups. Private dinners can be held here, but otherwise the farmhouse is open to any guests at the lodge for relaxing.

  • Two River Cottages stand on the banks of the Usa River, with the relaxing sound of flowing water nearby. These are very similar in style and furnishings to the standard rooms, and can be either twins or doubles, but are quite a bit larger. Each has a small seating area with two armchairs and a table beside a fireplace – lovely for chilly evenings.

    These cottages have en-suite bathrooms that feel fairly light and spacious, with double basins set into a wooden cabinet, a separate bath, a shower cubicle and toilet. A door leads from the bathroom to a private outdoor shower. Fluffy white towels and bathrobes and complimentary toiletries are provided.
  • The River House is secluded and is located in its own private garden on the banks of the Usa River. It has two separate en-suite double bedrooms – one which can sleep three people, a separate living room with fireplace and satellite TV, and a wrap-around veranda, with views of the river, where you can eat dinner if you want some privacy. Since the beds are doubles, and the bathrooms are fairly open, we would recommend this as a good option for couples travelling together or for families with older children.
Rivertrees is a lovely place to relax, whether wandering through the tree-lined gardens or by the large swimming pool, with its own changing room and sunloungers. A wooden deck, set with armchairs, overlooks the Usa River and is a great place to sit and listen to the sounds of running water, birdsong and blue vervet and colobus monkeys playing in the trees.

In 2023 Rivertrees built a spa. It is located near the river and has one treatment room with two beds, ideal for couples who wish to share their treatments to the sound of flowing water nearby.

A range of activities is available, although these really need to be booked in advance. It is possible to do a village walk, tour a nearby coffee plantation, or go to see the local market. Horseriding is also an option, organised on a nearby farm; so is mountain biking and canoeing on the Usa River or nearby Lake Duluti.

Our view

Rivertrees' location makes it a relaxing place to stay overnight at the beginning or the end of a safari, or to relax for a few days and enjoy the surrounding area. It's a comfortable lodge and feels rather like visiting a homely country house for the weekend, in a calm and tranquil rural setting.

Claire Scott

Claire Scott

Tanzania expert


Arusha, Tanzania
Ideal length of stay
One to two nights, depending on whether you are staying overnight at the beginning or end of a safari, or a bit longer to explore the local area.
Rivertrees Country Inn is approximately half an hour's drive from the east side of Arusha town, a similar distance from Kilimanjaro International Airport, and around an hour and a half's drive from Arusha Airport. Timings should be used as guidance and will depend on traffic.
Accessible by

Food & drink

Usual board basis
Bed & Breakfast
Food quality
Breakfast is served from 6.30 to 9.30am. As well as a selection of continental options, you can order a cooked breakfast, including pancakes.

Lunch is a flexible, with a wide selection of dishes on offer on the à la carte menu. On our last visit, we enjoyed a hearty pumpkin soup and roasted vegetable pizza – made in their own pizza oven and very enjoyable!

Dinner, served from 7.00 to 9.30pm, is usually a four- or five-course meal featuring international-style food with an African influence. There is a choice of a set menu which changes daily, or an a la carte menu.

Dining can take place in a variety of locations around the lodge – both indoor and outdoor, depending on the weather. On sunny days, the dining tables may be set out on the lawns under large shady trees. There is an open kitchen, so you can watch the chefs as they prepare your home-cooked evening meal using fresh vegetables, herbs and fruit from Rivertrees' extensive vegetable gardens. With this in mind, we'd expect all the food here to be very fresh and well-prepared.
Dining style
Individual Tables
Dining locations
Indoor and Outdoor Dining
Further dining info, including room service
Room service is not provided as it attracts monkeys found in the gardens.
Drinks included
No – although filtered drinking water is provided.


Attitude towards children
Children are welcome at Rivertrees
Property’s age restrictions
Young children are not allowed in the River House but can be accommodated in all other rooms.
Baby cots and highchairs are available.
Generally recommended for children
Children under five years old are accommodated free, if sharing with adults.


Power supply notes
There is 24-hour power and guests can charge batteries in their rooms.
Free WiFi is available in all areas and the rooms but is stronger in the main areas.
TV & radio
There is a satellite TV in the Bar.
Water supply
Water supply notes
All rooms have plumbed in facilities.

Health & safety

Malarial protection recommended
Medical care
There is a hospital nearby in Arusha.
Dangerous animals
Moderate Risk
Security measures
There is a guard at the main gate and security guards patrol the grounds at night.
Fire safety
There are fire extinguishers outside each room as well as in the main areas.


Disabled access
In Place
Laundry facilities
Laundry is available at an additional cost, but is not possible for guests staying only one night.
No exchange is possible at Rivertrees, but there are banks in Usa River.
Safe deposit boxes are available in reception.
Accepted payment on location
Visa, Mastercard and American Express are accepted. Rivertrees also accept cash in US dollars, euros Tanzanian shillings and pounds sterling.

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