Lodges

Ilala Lodge

So near the falls you can feel the spray

Ilala Lodge

This boutique hotel is perched virtually on the edge of the Victoria Falls gorge, and its relaxing atmosphere is offset by the rumble of 'The Smoke that Thunders' and the spray that rises from them day and night. From this magnificent setting, it's just a 15-minute walk to the cascade. The town is close too, with its markets, shops and restaurants – and hustling vendors. This luxury retreat, with its discreetly elegant decor, thatched colonial buildings and beautiful gardens, is the perfect place to stay to visit the falls or take part in some of the adrenalin-spiking activities on offer.

At the lodge

The hotel

The elegant main lodge has comfortable seating areas, a bar and two restaurants – the award-winning Palm Restaurant, which has an à la carte menu (ostrich steak is a must), and the Kubika Restaurant, which specialises in stirfries. Don't miss the huge and excellent breakfast buffet. The service is friendly, although it can sometimes be a little slow. Outside, there's a pool and bar, and lovely gardens that are regularly visited by warthogs, monkeys and mongoose.

The rooms

Ilala Lodge has 56 rooms and suites, all spacious and with en-suite bathrooms. The decor is stylish and understated, the lighting is good, the aircon is very welcome in summer, the beds are comfortable and lovely toiletries are provided. All have patio doors leading onto either an open lawn or a balcony.

On safari

Experiences

Looking for excitement? Skim the rapids on a raft, kayak on the Zambezi, bungee-jump from the Victoria Falls bridge (it's an 111-metre plunge to the river!), swim in the "Devil’s Pool" (a small rock pool right on the edge of the falls) or view the splendour from above in a light aircraft. Prefer less-frantic adventures? Explore the national parks, cruise on the river (lovely at sunset) or take a heritage rail trip. Activities can be arranged at the lodge.

When to go

Victoria Falls by month

January

Season: Wet
  • Temperatures are hot but comfortable, humidity varies throughout the month and there is a 1 in 2 chance of rain, although it usually falls at night.
  • The Zambezi River's water levels begin to increase, improving the Victoria Falls spectacle.
  • White water rafting is good at this time of year particularly in the first half of the month.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.

February

Season: Wet
  • The water level of the Zambezi River continue to climb, enhancing the Victoria Falls spectacle.
  • Take advantage of the Victoria Falls spectacle with an aerial view from either a light aircraft, helicopter or a micro light.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.
  • Temperatures are hot but comfortable, humidity is unpredictable and rain falls regularly but usually at night.

March

Season: Wet
  • Temperatures are hot but comfortable, humidity has dropped and rain is falling only a couple of afternoons a week.
  • The Zambezi River water levels are nearing or at their peak, providing views of Victoria Falls at its most impressive.
  • A great time to fly over the falls in either a micro light, helicopter or a light aircraft, offering a unique aerial look at this natural wonder.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.

April

Season: Dry
  • Temperatures are high but comfortable, with little to no humidity, cloudy skies and rain is still a possibility.
  • The water level of the Zambezi should be at its peak, showcasing Victoria Falls in all her glory.
  • Take advantage of the Victoria Falls spectacle with an aerial view from either a light aircraft, helicopter or a micro light.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.

May

Season: Dry
  • Day temperatures begin to cool with the onset of the dry season, rain is unlikely.
  • The Zambezi River is near its peak but starting to recede, providing breathtaking views of Victoria Falls.
  • Water level dependent, visit 'The Angel's Armchair', a pool on the edge of Victoria Falls providing high excitement for those looking to get a little closer to the drop off.
  • A great time to fly over the falls in either a micro light, helicopter or a light aircraft, offering a unique aerial look at this natural wonder.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.

June

Season: Dry
  • Day temperatures are warm and comfortable with little to no chance of rain, potential for morning frosts.
  • Victoria Falls provides incredible spectacle, with the Zambezi River level still being high.
  • Water level dependent, visit 'The Angel's Armchair', a pool on the edge of Victoria Falls providing high excitement for those looking to get a little closer to the drop off.
  • Take advantage of the Victoria Falls spectacle with an aerial view from either a light aircraft, helicopter or a micro light.
  • Enjoy the intensifying game densities along the water's edge with a boat, canoeing or horse riding safari.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.

July

Season: Dry
  • Day temperatures are warm and comfortable with little to no chance of rain, potential for morning frosts.
  • The Zambezi River level is slowly dropping but still high enough to inspire awe and wonderment at Victoria Falls.
  • Water level dependent, visit 'The Angel's Armchair', a pool on the edge of Victoria Falls providing high excitement for those looking to get a little closer to the drop off.
  • A great time to fly over the falls in either a micro light, helicopter or a light aircraft, offering a unique aerial look at this natural wonder.
  • Take advantage of the peak game densities along the water's edge with a boat, canoeing or horse riding safari.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.

August

Season: Dry
  • Day temperatures begin to heat up but are still comfortable with little to no chance of rain.
  • The Zambezi River waters have receded somewhat but still offer impressive spectacle.
  • Water level dependent, visit 'The Angel's Armchair', a pool on the edge of Victoria Falls providing high excitement for those looking to get a little closer to the drop off.
  • Take advantage of the Victoria Falls spectacle with an aerial view from either a light aircraft, helicopter or a micro light.
  • Enjoy a boat, canoe or horse riding safari, with game viewing at its peak along the water's edge.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.

September

Season: Dry
  • Temperatures are high with relative humidity, there is little chance of rain.
  • The last opportunity to experience Victoria Falls before the full extent of the dry season sets in.
  • Water level dependent, visit 'Devil's pool', a rock pool on the edge of Victoria Falls providing high excitement for those looking to get a thrill closer to the drop off.
  • Zambezi River rafting is approaching its best, but can get busy, so book early.
  • Experience wildlife densities along the water's edge at their peak, with a boat, canoeing or horse riding safari.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.

October

Season: Dry
  • Temperatures are at their hottest, with humidity reaching an all year high before the fall of the first rains, usually towards the end of the month.
  • Victoria Falls does not offer the same spectacle during this month, with water levels low and in dry years, the fall's can dry up altogether.
  • Water level dependent, visit 'Devil's pool', a rock pool on the edge of Victoria Falls providing high excitement for those looking to get a thrill closer to the drop off.
  • Zambezi River rafting is at its best, with exciting rapids and drop-offs, be sure to book early and beat the crowds.
  • Take advantage of the peak game densities along the water's edge with a boat, canoeing or horse riding safari.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.

November

Season: Wet
  • Temperatures are hot and humid for the first half of November, becoming less intense with the increase of rain throughout the month.
  • Victoria Falls does not offer the same spectacle during this month, with water levels low and in dry years, the fall's can dry up altogether.
  • Water level dependent, visit 'Devil's pool', a rock pool on the edge of Victoria Falls providing high excitement for those looking to get a thrill closer to the drop off.
  • Zambezi River rafting is at its best, with exciting rapids and drop-offs, increasing the thrill factor.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.

December

Season: Wet
  • Temperatures are hot with unpredictable humidity levels and high evening rainfall is to be expected.
  • After the dry season, the Zambezi River water levels begin to increase in late December, improving the Victoria Falls spectacle.
  • Water level dependent, visit 'Devil's pool', a rock pool on the edge of Victoria Falls providing high excitement for those looking to get a thrill closer to the drop off.
  • The rapids and drop-offs provide high excitement for river rafting down the Zambezi at this time of year.
  • Partake in the numerous adventure activities like bungee jumping, jet-boating, quad biking or zip lining.

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