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Sable Sands

Situated just outside the Hwange National Park on its own private concession, this reasonably priced lodge is easily accessible from Victoria Falls and is a perfect place from which you can explore the area

Sable sands chalets At the bird bath Buffalos in Hwange At the main lodge Watch from the distance

PRICE before special offers

Approximate price per person sharing per night

US$ 292  January to March & November to December
US$ 336  April to October

US$ 237  January to March & November to December
US$ 264  April to October


Sable Sands Lodge, situated on the magical Dete Vlei just outside Hwange National Park Main Camp, is the perfect safari getaway within a close range of Victoria Falls only 180 km away on the main road to Bulawayo.

The Dete vlei (pronounced “flay”) is a dried up river with multiple waterholes of which a 7 km stretch belongs to the lodge's concession, which allows them private game viewing in this area. Although it is positioned outside the boundary of Hwange National Park, it is essentially the same area as game wanders freely through this concession and the park, there is no difference. Safaris can be taken into the Park but quite honestly that is not necessary.

Lodge co-owners and managers Brian Sabeta and Marleen Post, known for the resurrection of neighbouring Sikumi Tree Lodge, took on the challenge of renovating the old Sable Valley Lodge, which famously hosted Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip in 1991.

Operating in partnership with the Forestry Commission of Zimbabwe and Tanzanian based safari operator Moivaro Lodges & Tented Camps, and renamed as Sable Sands, the lodge reopened at the end of 2012 with the unveiling of the impressively restyled main lodge building and refurbished chalets.

The lodge is located just within the shady tree line, with the main lodge building, a stunning thatched structure, overlooking the vlei and waterhole where the patient observer is rewarded by large herds of elephant, buffalo, zebra and various antelope species as well as being regularly frequented by lion, cheetah and occasionally leopard, as well as hyena, wild dog and other predators. The region has a wealth of birdlife with over 400 species recorded.

The eleven forest chalets, or 'rondavels', generously spaced around Sable Sand’s central swimming pool, have been designed with flexibility in mind and can be arranged as twin, double or family rooms, with on-suite bathrooms and shower and complete with small private terrace areas.

The five newer Vlei rooms are lined along the edge of the tree line in front of the vlei, and overlook the waterhole. These are more modern rondavels, and updated shower, basin and toilet behind a red wall.

Marleen and Brian are known for their warm hospitality and have created an atmosphere where guests become friends. The perfect place to base your safari activities, relax around camp and enjoy the views of the vlei from the comfort of the main lodge, or enjoy the peace and quiet in a tree slung hammock under the shade of the trees. A tree-house is located within the forest section - great for kids to hang out and even have lunch.

Safari options include game drives on their private concession, which extends across the vlei and includes a variety of habitats, and also trips into Hwange National Park itself, where special overnight camp options are also available. One of the special benefits of operation within a private concession, Sable Sands can offer clients night drives within their concession. The nearby Painted Dog Conservation Project’s visitor centre is also well worth a visit.

Our Opinion

Sable Sands is positioned in an area with fantastic game viewing, and although it is a mid-ranged safari lodge, you will be well taken care of.

Most safari camps in Hwange are highly priced, luxury lodges targeted at the very wealthy. At Sable Sands they have aimed at the middle market, prices are much more reasonable and although not absolute luxury you are still well looked after in more than comfortable surroundings and are positioned in a fantastic game viewing area, that easily rivals any of the more expensive options.


The varying seasons in Hwange will have a huge impact on your wallet and Safari experience.

The Green season (rainy season) will see incredible bird and insect life but reduced animal sightings. However lodge prices in most cases are dramatically reduced offering really good value.

The High season (dry season) is when animals congregate in vast numbers around the waterholes and National Geographic type scenes are commonplace. This is peak season and lodge prices escalate substantially.

Please feel free to contact us with details of your preferences and allow us the opportunity to discuss which time of year is going to suit you best.

**NB** Hwange Lodges in the peak season get over booked, it is advisable to plan and book well in advance to ensure you get what you want.

• Positioned on a private concession on the Dete Vlei just outside the Hwange National Park
• Excellent game viewing area
• Safari activities on their private concession or in Hwange National Park
• 180 km from Victoria Falls and 260 km from Bulawayo
• Transfers easily be arranged from Victoria Falls
• Rebuilt in late 2012
• Cheaper than many of the luxury lodges in Hwange
• Several optional activities close by

Accommodation at Sable Sands

• 16 spacious rondavel (round) cottages with thatched roofs and private terraces
• Twin and double bed arrangements and extra beds can be added for family rooms

All rooms have:
• En-suite bathrooms with shower and wash hand basins, toilet, towel and luxurious bathroom amenities
•  Large mosquito nets
•  Solar lights at night (when the silent generator is switched off)


• Excellent game viewing on private concession
• NOT luxury safari lodge prices
• Exceptionally good hosts who are passionate about this area and the lodge
• One of the most easily accessible lodges in Hwange
• Several optional activities close by


• Excellent wholesome home cooked meals using fresh ingredients from local produce
• Breakfast, lunch and daily 3 course dinner menu
• Tea/coffee/drinks and snacks at the lodge and before/during safari drive

Facilities and Services

• Indoor public dining area, lounge and bar area with library and loft
• Outdoor terrace with fire pits and BBQ and relaxing seating under the shady trees and starry sky
• Swimming pool
• Treehouse
• Mineral water and clean water from private water source on property
• Beautiful view of Dete Vlei
• 3 hour safaris on the estate and 1 hour night spot safaris to see nocturnal animals
• Safari Trips to Hwange National Park, visits to rural homes, school and clinic in Mabale Village
• Guided tour to the painted dog visitor and rehabilitation centre

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How to Get to Sable Sands

• 2 hour drive from Victoria Falls (180km) 3 hour drive from Bulawayo (260km)
Road transfer easily arranged but can be costly
• Hwange airport is very close by for private air charters.

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PRICE before special offers

Approximate price per person sharing per night

US$ 292  January to March & November to December
US$ 336  April to October

US$ 237  January to March & November to December
US$ 264  April to October


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Client Testimonials

by Kate (Zimbabwe)
Many thanks for all your assistance. You have probably been the most responsive and helpful tour organizers I have worked with- anywhere in the world. I'll be sure to recommend you to my colleagues and friends.

All the activities lived up to the hype!
by Alex (Swaziland)
Good Afternoon Boo,
Just wanted to let you know that we are now back in Swaziland and had an incredibly fun time enjoying Victoria Falls! All the activities lived up to the hype and I would like to thank you for all your help in organising a busy but full holiday for us! Everything went smoothly from the moment we arrived to the time we left.
Also wondering where you prefer to have your reviews written?
Thanks again!
All the best

Memory I will not forget
by Sunitha
Hi Jane
Hope you are keeping well.I must say a very big thank you for all your assistance and advice for my trip. I had the most amazing time at Vic Falls, a memory I will not forget.
Thanks a million once again.

Fantastic Itinerary
by Graham & Janet (United Kingdom)
Dear Boo
We would like to offer our thanks for sorting a fantastic itinerary for our all too short visit to Vic Falls. The cruise on the Zambesi at sunset was a delight and the helicopter flight breathtaking! The pick ups were punctual and staff members were all very smiley, friendly, helpful and good company. The whole experience of the actual Falls and the town itself was outstanding.
We will return! Your company will be our first port of call. Many thanks for a very efficient service.
Best wishes

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