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5 Reasons Vilanculos Beach Lodge is the best place to stay in Vilankulos, Mozambique
In February, 2019 we spent 6 days in the beautiful Vilanculos Beach Lodge, and I would be lying to you if I said anything but good things about this place.
From our arrival, it was clear the entire establishment was ran, managed and owned by people who not only care deeply about their guests and their comfort, but about the local community, the environment, and Mozambique in general.
Upon arrival, we were greeted with fresh drinks, a very friendly front desk staff, and an unforgettably decorated lobby in front of the beautiful Mozambican sea. It felt like paradise!
But before I go on rambling about how much I truly loved this property, let’s review the 5 things we look for: Value for money, Location, Amenities & Facilities, Staff and Social Responsibility.
1. Value for Money
While Vilanculos Beach Lodge is not a budget destination, it’s certainly worth its price tag. Bungalows range from $160USD to $600USD a night and you won’t feel more pampered anywhere else in these part of the world.
The rooms are beautifully decorated with a combination of luxury and local gems, such as recycled wood crafts made in the next door locale Machila Magic ( which is a community up-liftment, arts and crafts endeavor to provide jobs for over 50 local artist who create exclusively mozambican crafts. ) Most rooms have either ocean or garden views, and they each have a porch/ front terrace area where you can lounge and watch the sunset or have your morning coffee while hearing the birds chirp.
All rooms have air conditioning and automatic mosquito sprays (you’ll know why this is so necessary when you visit Mozambique). Beautifully handcrafted local robes are provided inside each room… nothing like local colors to make you feel like you fit in. The place is a moving honeymoon set! The decor is beachy and comfortable but with an undeniable touch of luxury. There won’t be anything you wish for that this hotel won’t have already thought of or can provide for you.
The lodge is right on the ocean, where you can depart for any excursions you have planned. Or you can sit on the lawn loungers and watch the beach/sea endlessly from the comfort of some breezy areas all around the property. Though a bit retired from the town center, you can ask the front desk to call you a Tuk Tuk and you’ll be in town in no time.
The area is very quiet and peaceful, you can walk along the coast during sunset and enjoy a low tide that allows for you to go miles in where the ocean used to be on high tide. Aside from this, the red sand dunes are only a short boat ride away to the left.
During the mornings, you can watch the most spectacular sunrise over the infinity pool… it’s the most beautiful sunrise I have ever seen.Right next door, you can go shopping for local crafts in Machila Magic.
Most things you’ll want to do in Vilanculos will be ocean related, and the hotel itself offers many excursions and tours. More on that below.
3. Amenities & Facilities
The hotel offers al fresco dining, with a restaurant that serves all three meals including a breakfast buffet. The restaurant has western and local cuisine, and of course, plenty of seafood. We tried several dishes, and many of their wines, and everything was delicious!
The hotel boasts with a perfectly placed infinity pool from which you can watch the sunrise, and a huge lounge area. In the entire time we were there, we never once struggled to find a lounger by the pool.
From the pool area you can rent/borrow snorkel equipment, life vests, paddle/surf boards and almost anything else you might need to make your day more pleasant.
Aside from this, it has a considerable green area along the front of the entire property. This area is carefully landscaped with beautiful palm trees, an electric ( and thus silent ) lawn mower called Hank, and many options for sitting or lounging around; from swings to sofas and even dining tables.
They have a spa, a full bar, a store in the lobby with beautiful local goods, and the entire property makes you feel like you’re in some type of beach wonderland. Just walking along the property alone is a treat. There are also outside showers conveniently placed by the pool and on the entrance from the ocean so you don’t have to walk around with sticky/sandy feet.
They also offer any tour you might want to do in the area, from jet ski rentals and tours (they’re the only ones in Vilanculos with Jet Skis) to boat charters, trips to Bazaruto, sunset trips to the red sand dunes etc.
As if there weren’t enough things about this hotel I absolutely loved, I have to admit the staff was one of my favorite aspects. From the super hands on owner, Angela, who hosted us with such hospitality all the way to the restaurant staff who always had a smile on. We were lucky enough to be taken out on a Jet Ski tour with the owner’s son Nino and his friend Nardy who showed us such a fun day out in Death Island.
Leigh, the manager can be seen daily greeting guests and making sure they are having a good time and that all their needs are met. The entire restaurant staff is so sweet, always attentive to anything you might wish. They will go all the way to the pool and the loungers to ask if there is anything they can bring for you.
The cleaning staff does a splendid job. The rooms were cleaned daily, and I’d be lying if I said there was anything lacking.
My personal favorite, and one of the reasons Vilanculos will always hold a huge place in my heart, is Eddie, a front desk/ tours operator staff who also has his own local cultural tour company. One of my favorite experiences from the entire trip! Eddie became a friend of ours on this trip. A person with incredible drive, charisma and a natural gift for hospitality.
5. Social Responsability
The entire lodge practices responsible use of resources, and operates with mostly green products whenever possible. All toiletries are eco friendly, the use of natural and local resources is visible throughout the entire establishment and they have modern and up to date equipment for tours and recreation so as to decrease waste and emissions.
They have a rechargeable electric lawn mower, which creates no noise pollution. The good construction and architecture of the lodge allows for breeze and good ventilation with the use of fans, without requiring air conditioning use except for in the bungalows and offices.
They operate in close relation with local organizations and the local tourism board to bring awareness to the community, the municipality and aid as much as possible around the Vilanculos area. They recommend tours operated by locals (including their staff) and encourage their staff to improve themselves and excellent on a personal level.
Overall, I would recommend this hotel to anyone wishing to have luxury service, amenities and location in Vilanculos. I would also recommend Vilanculos Beach Lodge to anyone wishing to have an unforgettable experience in Mozambique while being pampered by the most personable hotel staff I have ever met.
When we left, we hugged almost everyone… that’s how close we got ( and we’re not the only ones, we actually saw many people doing this too ) with the beautiful people of this paradise lodge.
Have you been to Vilanculos? If so, where did you stay?