Isanga Bay Lodge

Isanga Bay Lodge

Isanga Bay Lake Tanganiyka, Mbala 80100 Zambia
Isanga Bay at Sunset
Traveller (48)
Campsite ablutions
Pool & Beach (15)
Room & Suite (10)

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Prices are provided by our partners, and reflect average nightly room rates, including taxes and fees that are fixed, known to our partners, and due at time of booking. Please see our partners for more details.

About

4.5
#1 of 1 lodge in Mbala
4.8 of 5 bubbles
Location
4.8 of 5 bubbles
Cleanliness
4.9 of 5 bubbles
Service
4.4 of 5 bubbles
Value
There are 3 chalets on the beach that have a beach and lake view (people with children love them, because the kids can go early morning and play in the sand without supervision) The 3 rondavels on the other side have no beach, but overlook the rocks with amazing views out to the Lake. These chalets are built with rock and are thatched. The Lodge sleeps only 20 people and all rooms are a couple of minutes away from the beach. Each chalets has an en suite bathroom with hot and cold water shower and toilet. There are no power points, however, we do have a facility to charge phones, lap tops, cameras, etc. We have no TV as we are deep in the bush and besides, you won't need one! The lodge offer bed and breakfast with an a la carte menu for lunch and dinner. Our specialty is delicious fresh fish from the lake - Nile perch and Nkupi (Yellow belly, a type of bream). We have an extensive bar with very reasonable prices.
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Property amenities
Free parking
Bar / lounge
Restaurant
Beach
Room types
Suites
Family rooms
Good to know
HOTEL STYLE
Romantic

Location

Isanga Bay Lake Tanganiyka, Mbala 80100 Zambia
Getting there
Kasama Airport
173.8 km
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31Reviews2Q+A8Room tips
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Detailed Reviews
Jon wrote a review Sept 2020
Lusaka, Zambia7 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
We wish to express our greatest satisfaction in staying at Isanga Bay from 12th to 17th September 2020.

We were warmly welcomed by Morkel and Yolande at the beach with a special drinks as we arrive to the lodge, that made us feel special.

We felt ourselves in exotic island with White sand Beach and Clear shallow water. Surrounding area was well maintained and immaculate. The view from the beach front Shalets were amazing and the sound of the waves were very relaxing.

Friendly staff were supportive during our stay by offering high care service. They even went extra mile by helping us keep an eye on our Five and Two years old kids who enjoyed Swimming and Playing on the beach all day long.
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Date of stay: September 2020
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Frank H wrote a review Dec 2020
East London, South Africa25 contributions8 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Isanga Bay Lodge is an absolute gem nestled on the Zambian side of Lake Tanganyika. I simply cannot recommend it more highly. The managers, Morkel, Yolanda and their girls are hospitality sector lifers and it shows in every single thing they do. They simply cannot do enough to make all their guests stay more special and you really feel like you are part of their family (but, and this was Important for me, completely unobtrusively). The three beach chalets are delightfully located and I had hot showers every day. Great food with a hot flask of water brought to make your filter coffee delivered in the early hours of the morning. Super smooth transfers to and from the lodge and exceptional value for money... honestly what more could one ask for... the day trip to Kalambo Falls was a real highlight as was kayaking for hours on their pristine bay. I’d worry about this gem getting out too far for fear it could be overrun but with the way the managers are leading it, it just won’t happen. Well done and for sure I will return x
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Date of stay: December 2020Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
pragati9 wrote a review Jan 2023
Zambia813 contributions125 helpful votes
+1
4.0 of 5 bubbles
We were staying at Mpulungu but decided to spend few hours at Isanga.
They sent their own speed boat to collect us and even agreed to take us to Luke's beach for extra charge.
After Luke's beach we landed here (it's almost 1 hour away from Mpulungu)We immediately ordered food and as we waited ,decided to chill out at beach.
The water level is waist high and calm.It gives you a feeling of being at Zanzibar.
We spent nice hour relaxing on beach and water before were called for food.
The food is amazing.We ordered chicken burger,rice with veg curry and fish.All the dishes were mouthwatering .It added to the overall experience of a happy holiday.
Again spent few more hours in water before leaving for Mpulungu.
The lodge has limited accomodations which gets booked quickly so if you need to experience it then book well in advance.
They have camping area where many families were camping so I guess the access by road is not very challenging.
We have good memories of the place and will definitely visit again if we are in the area.
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Date of stay: December 2022
4.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
4.0 of 5 bubblesService
Room Tip: Book it advance if u want to stay.... order well in advance to allow them to cook their best food
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
james-lindie wrote a review Sept 2020
Lusaka, Zambia1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Had such a lovely time at Isanga Bay. Felt like we were on an Island with lovely weather and beautiful sunsets! Swam all day and enjoyed the kayaking too...water is beautifully clear so you can even see some pretty fish with goggles and a snorkel. The dinner at the restaurant was amazing...fresh soft mouth watering fish fillet:)
Amazing place with lovely people running it and affordable prices. Will definitely go there again!
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Date of stay: September 2020Trip type: Travelled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Maria V wrote a review Oct 2023
1 contribution
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nice and welcoming place with the nicest staff. The mama in the kitchen makes wonderful food and the service is good. We went on a trip to Kalambo falls and we went fishing. Both good trips for us and the kids.
Nice place to spend a relaxing holiday - we enjoyed our stay
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Date of stay: October 2023
4.0 of 5 bubblesValue
4.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
ToprodTN wrote a review Feb 2012
Knoxville, Tennessee328 contributions105 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Kalambo Falls in northern Zambia is beautiful, breathtaking, magnificent and very hard to get to. I traveled there for the first time in 2009 and took a long rough overland trip in a Land Cruiser from Mbala. The road was dry but I imagine that even with 4-wheel drive you wouldn’t make it in the rainy season. But in May of 2010 I wanted to approach the falls from the bottom.
But I will tell you how I got there and why it is worth the trip in a moment.
Go back a few days. I flew from Johannesburg; SA to Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe and checked into the Victoria Falls Hotel. It is my favorite hotel in the whole world with its amazing views of the falls and its long history. Had “afternoon tea” on the terrace, an evening river cruise on the Zambezi River and a traditional boma (dinner of local wild game and dancing) before overnighting at the hotel. After a walking tour of the falls from the Zimbabwe side I walked across the bridge into Zambia, had lunch at Zig Zag Cafe and caught the next flight to Lusaka and a charter flight to Kasama. In Kasama I stayed at the Thorn Tree Guest House and the next day had a two hour drive north to Mbala and on to Mpulungu on Lake Tanganyika.
At Mpulungu, Zambia’s only port, I caught a boat for the one hour trip to Isanga Bay Lodge on the shores of Lake Tanganyika. The boat is capable of carrying 8 adults plus luggage and your vehicle can be parked with no charge, at Mpende Fisheries.
Isanga Bay Lodge http://www.isangabay.com/ sits on an expansive white beach shaded with palm trees overlooking the bay and at night you can see dozens of small fishing boats, illuminated with lights, as they prowl their favorite fishing spots. You will see their catch the next day all along the lake front as they fish dry in the sun.
The lodge offers exceptional friendly hospitality at this off the beaten track, a gem in the heart of remote Africa.
The next morning I set out at 7:10 AM for a 10 minutes boat ride to Myamba Village, near to where the Kalambo River empties into Lake Tanganyika. As the children see the boat approaching they long along the beach and into the water yelling, “Baba, (father) give me money, please.” Resist the temptation wherever you are in Africa as it only encourages more begging.
I departed the village at 7:25 AM with my guide (provided by the lodge) and wandered through the village and an overgrown soccer field and began a very slight uphill climb. I thought to myself, “this isn’t so bad.” Don’t kid yourself the real climbing is just ahead.
Also, as I discovered after making the reservations at the lodge, you cannot reach the bottom of the falls by beginning at the mouth of the river and working your way up the river. I am told that climb is impossible. While the gorge is up to 1 km with a depth of 300 m it is too steep and rocky to reach the actual bottom of the falls. You will only see the falls from the top.
Back to the climb. Soon I was climbing, what seems to be straight up. Up and over giant rocks and boulders on a very narrow but well worn path, hard hand over hand climbing as you work your way further and further from the lake. I reached the top of the escarpment at 8:10 AM after a 45 minutes climb. The views looking back toward the lake and the village are breathtaking and it gave me a real sense of accomplishment. I was most grateful for the friend in Mbala who had prepared a walking stick for me. I had to ignore the women, with baskets of fish on the head, climbing right past me.
Once I reach the escarpment I had a long walk through cassava fields and reached the western view of the falls at 9:05 AM (total climbing time: 45 minutes to the top of the escarpment and 55 minute walk through the fields. It was about another 10 minute walk to the edge of the falls. Here the river forms a large pool before dropping off 772 feet into the ravine below.
Did I say pack plenty of water? I quickly ran out of the water I was carrying and thankful my guide was carrying more.
The falls is one of the tallest uninterrupted falls in Africa (after South Africa's Tugela Falls, Ethiopia's Jin Bahir Falls and some more waterfalls).
Once you reach the falls a park attendant appears from nowhere to collect the park fee.
I quickly hired another guide to take me across the river, above the falls, into Tanzania. I stripped down to my skivvies and entered the river just above the falls. I was so thankful for the strength of my guide as I began to lose control in the swift water. He grabbed my arm, and like giant pneumatic wench pulled me up and across. I wandered around the Tanzania side of the falls, without a visa, for a short time and then made the treacherous swim back to the Zambia side and then the long decent back to the lake. It took much longer going down, 2 hours and 10 minutes) then going up.
In the village of Myamba I met with the headman, Jerald and gave him money the buy pencils and notebooks for the children of the village and told him I hoped he would prohibit the children from begging. He said he didn’t like it but that the tourists did.
That afternoon after returning to the lodge and a hot shower and good meal it was back to Mpulungu and Mbala for an overnight stay at Lake Chila Lodge. The next day I flew a charter out of the Zambian Air Force base to Mfuwe, in the southeast part of Zambia and to Mfuwe Lodge and a couple of days viewing game in South Luangwa National Park.
If you are thinking about a trip to Kalambo Falls and Isanga Bay Lodge and you have any questions please contact me at Larryvan47@aol.com.
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Date of stay: May 2011
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
4.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Cricketmann wrote a review Jan 2013
Torquay, United Kingdom43 contributions59 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Isanga Bay Lodge lies right on the shore of Lake Tanganyika at the northern border of Zambia.
To get to the Lodge you must get to the fascinating town of Mpulungu, and then phone to be collected by boat. We were collected by Titus, the boatman, who had a penchant for speed! He just opened the throttle and we completed the 18 kms journey at 45 degrees and deep in prayer. Isanga Bay is an absolute paradise, and the lodges amongst the palm trees are everything you could wish for, You get up in the morning as the waves lap gently onto the sand and decide whether to swim, snorkel, fish, or opt for another adrenalin rush with Titus!
We spent a few wonderful days here, mostly photographing birds on the Kalambo River, until it was time for some really good food and a well stocked bar. Thoroughly recommended!
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Date of stay: October 2012
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
4.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Room Tip: All the chalets are perfectly positioned to enjoy the site
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Girll83 wrote a review May 2009
Ireland1 contribution4 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
I stayed at Isanga Bay for a few nights and it was just lovely..
The sand was white and warm, the sunsets were stunning, the food was really nice and the staff very friendly. It's an ideal honeymoon location actually.
Fresh coffee outside your door in the morning..
They can also organise local guides to bring you to the falls nearby and on treks and so on - well worth a visit. I would love to go back!
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Date of stay: August 2007
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
4.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
KamleshPatel wrote a review Oct 2015
169 contributions10 helpful votes
+1
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Isanga Bay Lodge is situated on the shores of the vast Lake Tanganyika on Zambia's northern most border. The spectacular Kalambo Falls, the second highest in Africa, are nearby and make a popular hike.In front of the lodge is an expansive white beach shaded with palm trees overlooking the bay.This is a place to relax and enjoy the spectacular views over this huge ocean-like Lake, while you savor the delights of the calm waters, swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, fishing, water skiing and more.
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Date of stay: May 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Cindy V wrote a review Sept 2015
San Antonio, Texas35 contributions41 helpful votes
4.0 of 5 bubbles
This is a beautiful property under new and capable management. Improvements are being made as we speak. The meals were simple, but pleasing. The grounds are beautiful and the beach front lovely. Ventilation inside the units is the greatest need although overnight was bearable. All in all, a very pleasant atmosphere for relaxation and lake activities.
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Date of stay: September 2015Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
boydkatongo asked a question Apr 2016
Mbala, Zambia
how much are your prices
Answer from Cindy V
San Antonio, Texas35 contributions41 helpful votes
Try looking online. I have a phone number. +260966646991. I hope by now that they have updated where to meet the boat that takes you there. The road is awful and there are political reasons it isn't fixed. The gentleman's name is Morkel and if he's still there he should be able to answer questions by email. It's worth the effort and reasonably priced. ..or was last August.
pragati9 wrote a tip Jan 2023
Zambia813 contributions125 helpful votes
4.0 of 5 bubbles
"Book it advance if u want to stay.... order well in advance to allow them to cook their best food"
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Philippa wrote a tip Dec 2021
Johannesburg, South Africa353 contributions202 helpful votes
3.0 of 5 bubbles
"chalets on the beach have a great view of the lake & quick access to the lake"
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Princeps01 wrote a tip May 2019
Yogyakarta Region, Indonesia61 contributions2 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Chalets on the beach"
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LindeMkushi wrote a tip Nov 2016
Mkushi4 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
"The bedding and towels and the mattress on the bed!! The new mosquito nets was a bonus!"
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Nicoletta wrote a tip May 2015
swakopmund8 contributions4 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"We camped - so I cannot provide any information on the rooms."
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LOCATION
ZambiaNorthern ProvinceMbala
NUMBER OF ROOMS
19
Prices are provided by our partners, and reflect average nightly room rates, including taxes and fees that are fixed, known to our partners, and due at time of booking. Please see our partners for more details.
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ISANGA BAY LODGE - Reviews (Mbala, Zambia)

Frequently Asked Questions about Isanga Bay Lodge
What are some of the property amenities at Isanga Bay Lodge?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include an on-site restaurant, a lounge, and free parking.
What food & drink options are available at Isanga Bay Lodge?
Guests can enjoy an on-site restaurant and a lounge during their stay.
Is parking available at Isanga Bay Lodge?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.