Set on the crescent of a white sandy beach a 2-hour drive south of Dar es Salaam, Ras Kutani consists of 15 en-suite cottages and suites made from natural materials that blend with the environment. The cottages have day beds and hammocks and the suites have private plunge pools. There is also a family unit incorporating 2 cottages and a shared living room. This is a tranquil location, well away from tourist crowds.
There are cool, thatched areas for dining and relaxing. Breakfast and lunch are generous buffets and dinner is a 3-course meal. Fish and seafood figure prominently on the menu. The bar offers beer, wines and cocktails. The outdoor swimming pool offers welcome respite from the sun. While here you can treat yourself with a soothing massage from the local masseuse at the spa.
Water-based activities include snorkelling, body boarding and kayaking. Horse riding is good way to see more of the area and there are nature trails in the coastal forest and around the freshwater lagoon behind the lodge that can be explored on foot. Guided visit to the local fishing village offer insights into the local way of life.
Open: Ras Kutani is open from June to mid-March.
Location: The lodge is 67kms south of Dar es Salaam on the coast, with a freshwater lagoon and coastal forest behind. The journey from Dar es Salaam takes about 2 hours by car and 10 minutes by light aircraft.
Rooms: There are 15 self-contained cottages, 11 standard and 4 suites, built from local materials and with large verandas with hammocks and daybeds. Inside they have a bedroom, dressing area and an en-suite bathroom with a stock of toiletries. The suites are set on the hilltop above the lodge. They have private plunge pools. There is also a larger, family unit with 2 connecting cottages and a shared living room. You'll find a beach bag, beach towel and bathrobes in your room.
Activities: Relaxation is to the fore, but there are activities on offer. Leisurely strolls along the beach, nature trails in the forest and around the lagoon, horse riding and visiting the local fishing village are all possible here. The sea, though tidal, is fine for swimming and snorkelling when the tide is in, and body boarding when the surf is up. The lagoon can be explored by kayak. The lodge provides all the necessary equipment for these water-based activities. In season guests can get involved in turtle welfare programmes, looking after the mothers and hatchlings. This is a good area for bird watching.
Facilities: The reception area leads out to the central swimming pool. There is a sunken lounge, bar and dining area beyond the pool, overlooking the beach. There is a well-stocked bar. The whole place has a relaxed feel. There is a spa offering relaxing massages. The lodge offers a laundry service and a book exchange.
Dining: Meals are taken at individual tables. There are themed dinners each night, such as Swahili, barbecue, beach dining etc. Private dinners can be organised on request.
Children: Children aged 6 years and older are welcome.
Health: This is a malarial area.
Communication: There is internet access.
Spend time in two of Tanzania's finest but less-visited game reserves followed by several days at a gorgeous coastal lodge on the Indian Ocean.
"A gorgeous place with excellent, charming management. We were allocated a super cottage overlooking the lagoon and the sea but unfortunatley were disturbed throughout the first night by extremely loud frogs. We were moved and even given an upgrade on our last night."