Review by: Lincoln Foran

Overall Impressions

We loved our guides and lodges so much!

Countries Visited


Beautiful country with lovely people

Accommodation Visited

The Residence Zanzibar

This was the only hotel I don't think we would rush back to. Beautiful aspects of it, like the view from the pool. But the road in is extremely long and rough and just so unpleasant it makes you not want to leave, which is okay but after a couple of days you sort of do want to go explore a bit and it's just not as easy as some of the other places on the island seemed to get to places. Also, if we went back I think we would want to try staying in the North of the Island because seems to be closer to more activities / etc. there. Also, the rooms are nice and big but no view, and the pool would be cool except that there are these monkeys that are so aggressive it's truly terrifying and make you never want to go outside.

Lemala Mpingo Ridge

So incredible and the total honeymoon spectacular experience we were looking for. If anything, the Residence was worth it just because then getting to Mpingo was even more breathtaking. Amazing view, amazing food, amazing people. We were so sad to leave them even though we had somehow only known them for 3 days. We want to go back tomorrow!

Lemala Ngorongoro

Also so lovely - a different experience than Mpingo but we learned so much about the Maasai people from our kind, and genuinely Maasai, staff (Mollel, Denise and Allois). Taught us so much in such a short time. We still had delicious food and they made you feel so cozy in the tents at night.

Lemala Kuria Hills Lodge

Also beautiful - not quite as spectacular as Mpingo because it's not as new and it doesn't have the dramatic view, but still beautiful, we loved the decor, loved the wildebeest roaming so close outside our room. I wish they had a bathtub (like Mpingo) on the deck instead of a pool, especially because it is still pretty cool at night, but otherwise fabulous!

Hamerkop House by Lemala

Loved Hamerkop house and Moi, the caretaker. So sweet and lovely, running around doing everything for us and making sure we had the best time in our 6 hours there. Again, very delicious food and very nice / new vibe - seemed to be same level as Mpingo (although completely different setting of course). We want to go back here tomorrow too!

Staff Review

Great, very responsive, patient at answering all of our questions, and always cheery / upbeat. The only critical feedback we have for Mahlatini is that it would be really great if there were a 24-hour hotline / email response line. I don't know if this is possible with staffing and hours but if it is, we think it would be a great asset. The night before we flew from Zanzibar to the mainland, we were confused about our flight time because the flight number and destination (which had been sent to us weeks before) was not showing up on the airline's website. It turned out to be fine / expected, and once you have flown in the bush planes you get that at the last minute the flight path may change, they may make extra stops, etc. But as first-time Africa travelers, we definitely had some angst the night before our very early morning departure not sure if our plane would even be there. We did email the "emergency" team but didn't get a response in time for it to be helpful. They did check on us the next day, and everything was really fine in the end, but it's our only constructive suggestion to make Mahlatini an even better travel agent. We will definitely book more trips with Mahlatini though and 100% recommend our friends to it!