- With its charismatic ‘Robinson Crusoe’ castaway atmosphere, Greystoke Mahale radiates an undeniable air of adventure. This intimate and remote tented is located at the foot of the densely forested Mahale Mountains, home to the world’s largest known population of chimpanzees.
- Greystoke Mahale enjoys a breathtaking position on a golden beach along the shores of Lake Tanganyika, sheltered by the lush forest of the Mahale Mountains.
- The lodge has six Double Tents set under thatched roofs and shaded by palm groves that overlook the waters of Lake Tanganyika.
- Go trekking in the Mahale Mountains for Chimps. During August and September, the chimps occupy the lower slopes of the mountains, even entering camp.
- Evenings end with sundowners on the rocks of the headland, where drinks are served around the lamp-lit bar or aboard a romantic dhow.
- Tuck into mouth-watering dinners in a splendid setting along the shores of Lake Tanganyika.
- Spend the morning exploring the forest before retiring to the comfort of your private deck — request your favourite beverage and while away the hours in front of the Lake.
- Swim in the gin clear waters of Lake Tanganyika and relax on the beach.
EXCLUSIVE LUXE VOYAGER VIP BENEFITS & BEST PRICE
We negotiate rates & benefits for our clients directly with the hotels’ senior management. Our rates match or in many cases are lower than the best online rate for the property. Our clients also enjoy a suite of extra VIP privileges and recognition while staying at a partner hotel.
- Complimentary room upgrade on arrival.
- Daily complimentary buffet breakfast for two.
- Up to $100 dining or spa credit per stay, and or in-house dining / spa discounts.
- Welcome amenities (wine/chocolates/fruit) and card from the GM.
- Complimentary private airport transfers.
- Complimentary roll-away bed if required.
- Early check-in and late check-out.
- Complimentary Wi-Fi.
- Enhanced recognition through VIP status at all touch points in the guest experience.
A complete or partial suite of VIP benefits will be offered, subject to the property T&C, including availability, category of room & length of stay.
Nomad share the mountains and the lake with so many animals, but it’s the chimps that inspire; it’s hard not to compare their daily lives, their movements, feeding, squabbling, foraging and grooming, with our own. Time spent with them is time away from everything else that is ordinary. The Greystoke guides have watched, over the years, as families have grown, alpha males have come and gone, bonds and friendships have been created and then broken, and then created again. They are not so different from us. After tracking them, for an hour or two, maybe more, only aware of the sounds they are making ahead of you, you find them; suddenly they are everywhere. You sit quietly on the forest floor and take a deep breath, this is what it’s all about. For the next hour it’s as if you scarcely breathe, so wrapped up are you in watching them go about their daily life. You become aware of the subtleties of different relationships, through gesture, sound and expression. One dictating the pace, another courting favour, yet another perhaps plotting a coup. There is humour too as the young chimps fall about the floor and play remarkably human games.
Hike the forest paths looking for birds and butterflies, as well as the other shy mammals who quietly live there. Swim in ice-cold pools up in the mountain waterfalls, take a kayak out for a dawn paddle towards the middle of the lake; drink your morning coffee there and enjoy the sunrise coming up over the mountains. Go for sundowners on the old wooden dhow, lazily following the shoreline and stopping to fish along the way, or just relax on the warm sands of the beach with a drink in hand.
Paddle along the sand-lined shore of Lake Tanganyika, Africa’s deepest body of water, enjoying the tranquillity and dramatic scenery around you.
This lake is a phenomenal natural habitat for us to explore. But we also pleasure-seek here, unashamedly: kayaking towards the Congo at sunrise, the unsurpassable feeling of diving off the dhow into its sunset waters, and watching hippos moonwalk through the depths.
On winding forest trails, our guides show life beyond the chimpanzees; eight other species of primate alone, insects unseen elsewhere, a pharmacopeia of medicinal plants. Often you get just a flash of what’s in the shadows: the silhouette of a red-tail monkey, the scarlet wing of a turaco, the neon of a beetle’s back.
Get the feel of a Tanganyika village and see the work of the Nomad Trust, with a visit to Katumbi on the park boundary. You can call in at the primary school, where we have built and furnished classrooms and installed solar power, and the community clinic, where we fund vital healthcare from first aid and midwifery.
With its charismatic ‘Robinson Crusoe’ castaway atmosphere, Greystoke Mahale radiates an undeniable air of adventure. Greystoke Mahale enjoys a breathtaking position on a golden beach along the turquoise water of Lake Tanganyika, sheltered by the lush forest of the Mahale Mountains rising behind. This isolated setting is home to the world’s largest known population of chimpanzees. Greystoke affects people in a way that no other place does; perhaps it’s because of its remoteness, and because of the mountains rising from the beach at your backs, the wide lake with its many different moods and the feeling that you are the only ones here.
Six wood and thatch bandas are set on the edge of the forest line and open-fronted to offer the very best views of Lake Tanganyika and the adjoining bathrooms are accessible by means of raised wooden walkways. An upstairs viewing deck offers a tranquil haven after a rewarding day of chimp viewing. Your days can start there, eating breakfast whilst waiting to hear news of the chimpanzees and deciding what to do with your day. After a day’s ’chimping’, you can kayak along the lake shore, snorkel, fish (on a catch and release basis), or have a private barefoot dinner by candlelight on the beach. Evenings end with sundowners on the rocks of the headland, where drinks are served around the lamp-lit bar whilst the mountains, rising behind camp, disappear into the darkness.
There are six guest bandas, all two-storey structures spaced well apart and nestling into the forest that borders the lake beach. Each banda is made out of old dhow wood and palm tree thatch, blending beautifully with the landscape. A few steps lead up into the bedroom space. This combines with the deck area, as the bandas are open fronted. Here you’ll find a double bed or twin beds with mosquito nets, bedside tables and lighting, a couple of wooden benches, a writing desk and chair, and two sunloungers. A pair of heavy curtains at the front of the banda can be closed and secured for privacy. Storage furniture is positioned in the dressing area, which is behind the bed or beds. There’s hanging space for clothes, as well as a lockable chest. Farther back still, there’s the washroom, with flush toilet, washbasin, and shower. Additional seating is situated on the upper floor of the banda, approached via steep steps carved out of an old canoe! In one banda, this space can function as a bedroom for a child.
Greystoke thatched rooms
The six rooms at Greystoke are entirely in-keeping with the setting. When Roland Purcell established his camp here, he was conscious of the responsibility of ensuring a light footprint. Built of thatch and salvaged dhow wood, each of the open-fronted rooms is tucked into the treeline, almost invisible to the passing fishermen in their small canoes. The rooms all have verandahs and an upstairs chill-out lounge with views across the white sand to the vastness of Lake Tanganyika. The rooms are open-fronted with great canvas drapes which can be closed in the event of a storm. The twin or double beds nestle beneath a canopied net. A dressing area leads on to an en-suite bathroom. There’s running water here, with a boiler that is lit on request to preserve energy, and a flush loo. The rich foliage that gives the camp such character can be enjoyed while you are showering in privacy.
Greystoke’s lounge and dining areas are housed in the property’s iconic lodge, a wood-and-thatch banda on the beach. In common with the guest bandas, the lodge has two storeys. It’s entirely open sided, to admit cool breezes. The lounge features comfortable seating around coffee tables, and a selection of reading material. In the dining area, there’s a long table flanked by campaign-style chairs. This is usually the setting for the camp’s delicious buffet breakfasts and light lunches, with everyone eating together and chatting about their experiences of Mahale and surrounds! Three-course dinners are served in the dining room too, following pre-dinner drinks at the spectacular ‘Sunset Bar’. This is found on rocks at the end of the beach, and it’s the perfect place for sundowners at the end of every day! The lodge also contains a reading room, on the upper floor. There are a few board games here too, and breathtaking views over the lake waters.
Dinners and ice cold cocktails are served in the spacious torch-lit mess tent at the water’s edge, or on a 50-foot mahogany dhow on the waters of Lake Tanganyika. The cosy bar is perched on the rocks of the northern headland with large decks leading down to the water’s edge. Fresh sashimi and iced vodka are served while you soak up the tranquil lake views or marvel at the African night sky.
The main dining area is a huge thatched building on the beach loosely modelled on traditional Tongwe architecture. It sits beneath the soaring mountains and from here you can dine on decliscious cuisine, or gaze at the stars over cocktails at the bar on the rocks.
Back at the camp, unwind on the sandy beach, relax in the thatched Tongwe-style lodge, or enjoy the views from the upper decks.Unwind in the cosy bar, perched on the rocks of the northern headland with stepped decks leading down to the water’s edge.
Other activities from camp include swimming, kayaking, sundowners on a dhow sailing on Lake Tanganika and guided nature walks.
Greystoke Mahale enjoys a breathtaking position on a golden beach along the shores of Lake Tanganyika, sheltered by the lush forest of the Mahale Mountains. This isolated setting is home to the world’s largest known population of chimpanzees. On a wide golden beach along the eastern shores of Lake Tanganyika, sheltered by the lush green forests of the Mahale Mountains, is the magical sanctuary of Greystoke Mahale.