Tucked away from the typical geomorphology of the Eastern Highlands of rolling moorlands, high altitude heath, trout- filled sparkling river waters and lush green undulating slopes, lies a resort of different stamina, the Osborne Dam Recreational Park.
The dam is the biggest in Manicaland on the western foot of Mount Jenya, in Mutasa communal lands, is a scenic gem and a tourist attraction that can hold its own.
Osborne Dam is the largest lake in the Manicaland region and is one of the major inland lakes in Zimbabwe. The large lake covers in excess of 2 600 hectares of land with a carrying capacity of over 400 million cubic metres of water.
The lake stretches for 16 kilometres up to the Odzi River and 15 kilometres along its Nyatande tributary. The lake is over 6 kilometres wide and 66 metres deep. The area’s has a moderate climate with an average temperature of 24 degrees Celsius.
- Fishing – one of the most popular activities. Bass Masters Societies view this dam as potential record catch territory. Anglers will most certainly enjoy this experience in the generally cool environs.
- Boating – the vast water body gives boating enthusiasts an expansive area to race or just cruise around.
- Birding – this an increasingly popular activity as the park has become home to a wide range of aquatic and terrestrial birds.
- Walking safaris – walking paths along the dam wall and around the shores, down the Odzi River and in the nearby hills (Mt Jenya) provide a wide range of scenery for trail enthusiasts.
- Game drive – there is a 102 kilometre drive around the lake which includes access to several of the nearby rural areas.
- Pony rides – pony rides around the lake shore can be arranged with the tourist office
- Windsurfing – Ideal conditions with a steady western breeze
- Canoeing – Beautiful inlets and waterways for the canoe enthusiast
Where to stay
Amber Hotel Mutare
On Zimbabwe’s border with Mozambique lies a verdant valley with what many say is the country’s most picturesque city – Mutare. It is Zimbabwe’s gateway to the east and the Indian Ocean and home to African Sun’s Amber Hotel Mutare.
Its clientele is a mix of the business traveller and the adventurous leisure seeker. Only a short distance from the border post with Mozambique, it is a favourite stopover and meeting place for Zimbabweans & Mozambicans.
Business and leisure travellers are well catered for by African Sun Amber Hotel Mutare’s 20 twin rooms, 49 deluxe rooms, 1 paraplegic room, 4 suites and 23 executive rooms, all superbly appointed and maintained.
The Forester Arms Bar, paying tribute to the surrounding forest areas, is a favourite watering hole for locals as well as guests, who can also enjoy refreshments by the swimming pool and on the Sun Deck.
African Sun Amber Hotel Mutare has a total of 96 rooms all overlooking the city centre. The rooms are of different types depending on the facilities and services available in the room. The rooms therefore range from twin rooms, deluxe rooms, executive rooms, suites and one paraplegic room.
The twin rooms and deluxe rooms are suitable for people staying over for a conference because they have two separate beds and families can request for interlinking rooms which have a door that leads to the next room without having to go outside.
Inn on the Vumba
Situated on a mountain-top overlooking a valley that is the border between Zimbabwe and Mozambique, Inn on the Vumba is only 10 minutes’ drive from the city of Mutare.
It is also en route to the Chimanimani Mountains, Hot Springs, Great Zimbabwe and the South-East Lowveld. This was the first Inn opened in July 1991. The Inn is a convenient place to stay for businessmen and holiday travellers passing to and from Mozambique.
The Inn features four 2-bedroomed cottages as well as 18 suites in two blocks reaching north and south of the central area. The central area consists of two lounges, a restaurant and a cocktail bar with well-appointed decor.
The Inn has become well known for its fine Table d’Hôte dinner and Á La Carte lunch. There is also a swimming pool in the garden.
The Inn has converted two of the cottages into self-cater offering visitors the opportunity to cater for themselves and should they wish to take a break, they can dine at the Inn. The Inn now has a conference venue, Veryan’s Suite which seats up to 25 pax.
The suite overlooks Mozambique – it is away from the main public area for privacy and has access to the generator in times of load shedding along with internet service. Ideal for seminars, meetings and cocktail receptions and delegates may dine in the hotel and also stay.
At the foot of pine-forested hills and overlooking a trout-filled lake is Troutbeck Resort. Located just beyond World’s View, this hotel is perfectly positioned to explore the scenic beauty of Nyanga, situated in Zimbabwe’s picturesque Eastern Highlands region and savour the crisp mountain air. This country resort has earned a reputation for the warmth of its hospitality and courteous service.
Troutbeck Resort’s 70 well-appointed rooms are increasingly used by those wishing to combine pleasure with business. Conference facilities, with the Rainbow Trout Suite holding up to 400 people, are complemented by the resort’s own 9-hole golf course and well-stocked lake.
As well as golf and trout fishing, a swimming pool, tennis, volleyball and squash courts are there for the holidaymaker or conference-goer to enjoy.