Mufindi Highland Lodge is owned and run by the Fox family, a British family who have lived in the area since the 1950s. The lodge was constructed in 1997, as an addition to a parcel of land purchased in 1986 and converted into a working farm. Service standards are superb – the charming hospitality of the Foxes makes for a very relaxing pre- or post-safari stay or longer break. Accommodation is booked on a full-board basis, including all meals, a selection of alcoholic and soft drinks, and parking. The lodge is open all year round.
ACCESS & LOCATION:
The lodge is situated in the Southern Highlands, amidst fragrant tea plantations and at an altitude of over 1,800 metres above sea level – the air feels very fresh here. Daily flights are available from Ruaha National Park, the Selous Game Reserve, Dar es Salaam, and Zanzibar, touching down at the local airstrip. You can also drive from Mafinga Town, a journey of 45 kilometres.
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES:
Guest accommodation consists of ten timber chalets, including a family chalet, as well as a honeymoon suite. All are well spread out across the hillside, and positioned on sturdy brick blocks. A few wooden steps lead up onto the porch, which receives some shade from the overhanging metal-and-timber pitched roof. Inside, there’s a double bed or twin beds, bedside tables and lighting, a writing desk and chair, and ample storage space. Timber-framed glass windows let in plenty of light, and the views over the valleys below are breathtakingly beautiful! The en-suite facilities comprise flush toilet, washbasin, and bathtub with shower attachment. The family chalet boasts two storeys and features two en-suite bedrooms in addition to a separate living space upstairs, complete with balcony. And the honeymoon suite has a four-poster double bed, a cosy log fire, and gorgeous soft furnishings such as cushions depicting a zebra on a yellow background! All accommodation has a fresh and homely feel – you can really settle in here.
Mufindi Highland’s communal lounges, dining room, and other spaces are found in the property’s lodge, a solid two-storey timber-and-stone building. In common with the guest rooms, all interiors are homely and pleasant, while timber-framed glass windows admit a lot of light and provide amazing views! The main lounge, on the ground floor, features comfortable leather sofas and cushioned armchairs around a coffee table, beside a very welcoming open fireplace. This room has bookshelves too, as well as wildlife wall art and a few curios. In the dining room, a few long tables are carefully laid and flanked by smart upright chairs in readiness for delicious meals. Upstairs, there’s a smaller lounge, various seating areas, a TV room, and even a billiards table! There’s a long veranda too, offering spectacular vistas across the landscape. And Mufindi Highland Lodge benefits from extensive gardens, which contain not only tall trees and colourful flowers, but also a tennis court, a badminton court, a bowls green, a croquet lawn, and a 3-hole golf course!
As well as a load of land sports, Mufindi Highland provides an exciting variety of activities slightly farther afield. The Fox family owns 15 horses, all stabled at the farm and grazing the valley throughout the day. Horse rides are available for beginners and experts alike, and the Highlands has an enticing range of trails. Mountain biking is possible too, along footpaths, bridleways, and farm tracks, through tea plantations and forests, and around the area’s scenic lakes. These lakes are fantastic for kayaking, and the lodge has four kayaks for guests seeking a really relaxing experience on the water. You can fish here too, using lodge equipment, and enjoy a trip to the local hatchery with its impressive stock of rainbow trout. Birding in the region is brilliant, and anyone interested in culture will appreciate excursions to the local orphanage, school, and dispensary. Finally, there’s a lot of farm fun to be had in the lodge grounds, getting to know all the resident animals! During some months of the year, you can interact with lambs, calves, foals, and sprightly little piglets. There’s a great veggie garden too, which is a lovely location for an evening wander.