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The Matusadona - on Lake Kariba, Zimbabwe


Lake Kariba is the largest artificial lake in the world, measuring approximately 220 km from East to West and up to 40 km wide, covering almost 5,600 square kilometres. The Dam was built in the 1950’s for hydro‐electric power generation and was officially opened in 1959. Besides wildlife, a large number of families were relocated and homed in new towns and villages, now on the shores of the Lake such as Kariba, Binga, Mlibizi and Siavonga. The filling of the Lake between 1958 and 1963 caused more than 20 earthquakes of greater than 5 magnitudes on the Richter scale. The Lake soon became a tourist attraction on both the Zambian and Zimbabwean side of the Lake, frequented by local and international visitors. Kariba has many mooring opportunities both on the main land and on islands and offers romantic spots with idyllic waterfalls in places like the Sanyati Gorge.

The Matusadona National Park is the centrepiece in this beautiful landscape surrounding the lake. Kariba also has the most incredible birdlife to be found, rivalled only by the Okavango Delta in Botswana and the land around Lake Kariba on the Zimbabwe side is full of big game, such as: Lion; Elephant; Rhino; Leopard; Cheetah; Impala; Kudu and Eland.

Meticulously built over a number of years the “Matusadona” house boat is the ultimate of style and comfort on Lake Kariba. She is finished in African hardwood timbers and furnished with rich fabrics, leather and Egyptian cotton; Matusadona has been described as “an intimate luxury lodge on the water”. With spacious air-conditioned cabin accommodation for up to seven passengers, situated right on the waterline, you’ll feel at one with nature. The gentle lapping of waves, the frequent grunt of the hippos, the distant lion’s roar, the cough of a leopard, the eerie cry of the Fish Eagle and all the attendant sounds of Africa – you’re in the real bush whilst cocooned in the lap of luxury.

Attached to her is a speed-boat for transfers and a game-viewing pontoon geared for water-based game viewing. Matusadona offers a completely different experience to land-based game viewing, watching a herd of elephants coming down to drink, so close you can almost touch them, their calves frolicking in the water with their mothers suspiciously standing by, is a truly memorable experience.

On sweltering summer evenings, sip on refreshing cocktails in the Jacuzzi under the stars, or at the bar, and on the odd chilly African evening, warm up with a Cognac in the cosy saloon and watch a variety of wildlife documentaries.

Travelling to a different and secluded mooring every day, you will always awaken to a new experience, be it on one of the numerous islands, up one of the rivers, or in the Matusadona National Park, these are experiences that many can only dream about.

Matusadona is perfect for an amazing family holiday, a romantic honeymoon or simply a break from ‘real’ life.

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