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“The most beautiful place you can imagine (Barra Lake Camp)”

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Namizimu Forest Retreat
Reviewed 13 August 2015

we stayed 4 nights at Barra Lake Camp, the campsite at the lake run by the owners of Namizimu Forest Lodge. They recently extended the place with somr tree houses. We were the first guests to stay there. We had an amazing 4 days at thus place. Sleeping in a tree house is a stunning experience in itself - outdoors, comfortably tucked in in a warm and cozy bed, looking out at the lake, being waked up by the sound of fisheagles, hearing the hippo's during the night.
The place is an interesting mixture of basic and luxurious. No unnecessary or superfluous luxury, but everything is there for your comfort. Tara, Dave and their staffare warm and generous hosts, who do everything possible to make you feel at home and relax. They give you your attention and leave you in peace.
The atmosphere in the place shows care for people, animals and environment and attention to details. The food was very tasty and of great variety. Looking at the sunset while sitting on the deck is an experience we could never get enough of. Highly recommended!
Although we stayed in Barra Lake Camp at the lakeside, we also visited the lodge uphill in the forest reserve. This has a charm of its own, different from the lake camp, but equally impressive.

  • Stayed: August 2015, travelled with friends
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Thank A3ana63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 12 January 2015

Namizimu Forest Retreat is not something you would easily find in this region of Africa. It is special and not the usual touristic location one would expect - it is amidst a beautiful forest reserve with a stunning view at Lake Malawi. Even though it is a perfect location if you are on your way to the border to enter Mozambique, do not make the mistake to only stay for a night, stay at least a couple of nights or longer and give a hand to the owners who are deeply involved in conserving the forest and working with the surrounding communities.

  • Stayed: December 2014, travelled with family
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Thank Unguja1989
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 December 2014

I had always wanted to visit Namizimu Forest Retreat after viewing the stunning photographs on their website and from listening to the rave reviews of friends. While I stayed there in February 2014, the overall experience was so memorable and immersive that it seems like I only travelled there yesterday.

What makes Namizimu stand out from the other properties in Malawi is the customised experience you get according to your preferences, be it sitting and relaxing at the Big Rock with a stunning 360 degree view, reading a book, engaging conversations about life with Tara and Dave, hiking up the forest on Uzuzu Hill and having your breath taken away each time you reach a viewpoint, or simply sitting still and relaxing to music in tranquil surroundings.

The property is a 'home away from home' mainly due to the welcoming hospitality of Tara and Dave. Rooms are cozy with comfortable beds, just perfect after an invigorating day out. The best part about this colonial era building is the library with a fireplace, an invigorating place to have a glass of wine and reminisce about life.

The helpful staff greet you with a smile and go the extra mile to cater to your individual needs. Tara and Dave treat you not as a stranger but as a true friend. But Namizimu is also really special due to the intangibles. There seems to be a spiritual aspect to the place that rejuvenates you along with the healing force of nature. It is also worth mentioning the passion the owners have for the local community and for conservation of the 'Small 1000 animals, flora and fauna', and ultimately, their enthusiasm for making a difference in people's lives.

A highly recommended retreat which is ideal for individuals to get away from it all, re-connect with nature and celebrate being who we really are. Ultimately, Namizimu Forest is arguably the most beautiful place I've visited in Malawi, alongside the Nyika.

Room Tip: Nothing specific.
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  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled solo
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Thank arvikrishh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 December 2014

I was there in September with a small group of volunteers working in Malawi. We were made to feel so welcome by Tara, Dave and their lovely staff. The homemade food, especially the bread and cakes are delicious. The room. The rooms are small but charmingly appointed with individual decor and very comfortable beds. Most rooms have a toilet and sink but not necessarily a shower. The woodland surrounding the lodge is great for walks and the views from the hill behind, where there is an enormous rock that you climb up a ladder onto, are spectacular - glorious to be there at sunrise or sunset. above the canopy of the woodland.Public transport from Mangochi will reach the village at the base of the hill and it is then about a 20 minute walk up. Well worth adding to your itinerary even though you may originally have intended to continue up the lakeshore!

Room Tip: Each room is unique so it depends on personal choice. The whole are is quiet, natural and no electri...
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  • Stayed: September 2014, travelled on business
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Thank Sally A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 June 2014

Its so good that I have been back twice since I took my parents there at Christmas. A place where you can relax, enjoy the forest and outside showers and pool, or take part in some hikes to wonderful places. Well done to Tara and Dave for creating a space to relax as a group, with your (adult) family or solo.
I will be back again soon....

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled solo
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Thank Iain_2014_T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Namizimu Forest Retreat

Address: Mangochi - Chiponde Road | P.O.Box 12, Mangochi, Malawi
Region: Malawi > Southern Region > Mangochi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 30 Speciality Lodging in Mangochi
Price Range: $81 - $190 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A peaceful and private sanctuary, set in untouched mountain woodland, south-east of Lake Malawi, with stunning panoramic views and a natural environment which hosts many unique plant and animal species. A network of well-maintained paths within our owner managed 16 acre estate gives easy access to incredible picnic locations and scenic walks. Individual needs and requirements can be catered to and group/events bookings are also welcome. We are easily reached from Lilongwe or Blantyre. ... more   less 

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