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“Vilanculos , hot but cool !”
Review of Vila Do Paraiso

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Vila Do Paraiso
Certificate of Excellence
Sandton, South Africa
Level Contributor
4 reviews
“Vilanculos , hot but cool !”
Reviewed January 15, 2014

The place is fantastic . The butlers supplied with each unit really made this a carefree and relaxing holiday . Nothing is too much trouble for the support staff or management . Great activities available , walking , swimming , fishing , island hopping and all normal water sports ! We will be back ! Pity the flights are so expensive but the easy 2 day drive is interesting !!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
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Thank RussellHooker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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83 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Steamboat Springs, Colorado
Level Contributor
10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed September 8, 2013

We loved Villa Do Paraiso, would go back again. Vilanculos and this resort get my highest recommendation for an excellent cultural and beach/ocean experience. Our host/butler was Roman who we loved and was also an important part of our experience. Our villa was very comfortable for our two families - 2 couples and four kids. We liked the grounds, the pool, the little restaurant and the staff. We caught or bought fish, went to the market, got wine and beer and enjoyed lavish evenings at our villa. Every night Roman cooked us a feast which we ate under our thatched veranda where we played games, ate well and enjoyed each other's company. We went diving, snorkeling and to the Bazaruto islands 3 of the 6 days we were there. The diving was 4 out of 5 stars mainly due to the visibility. The beaches were beyond gorgeous and it was just a pleasure to be able to go out on the boat and enjoy the scenery. We hired the resort boat and our captain and skipper were friendly, professional and made sure we had everything we needed. We brought a cooler full of food and beverages and one day went to lunch at Indigo Bay (delicious and beautiful but total ripoff in terms of price). We took a must-do side trip to an island with large sand dunes and yes, we brought a snow board outfitted for sneakers and sand-boarded down the dunes! Our captain also quietly boated past a sandbar that had a huge flock beautiful black-winged flamingos - watching them is insanely amazing. The men went fishing beyond the reef and caught 5 big tuna which was a feast not just for us but for the staff who quite proficiently filleted the fish, made sushi and filets for our future meals and took rest home to their families with big, big smiles on their faces. All is right in the world in Vilanculos, a small, somewhat poor fishing village filled with markets, children, schools, very few cars and miles of smiles - walking through the village brought this American down to earth where I am reminded that you can live easily and happily without so much stuff. We witnessed some crazy stuff (a stand full of used bras). From our villa, we watched everyday, how the village fishes with old-fashioned nets heaved in by young men and women with babies on their backs and how they get paid not w/money, but with their catch. It was a great experience for our whole family. The honeymooners are more apt to enjoy the islands and places like Indigo Bay but if you are looking for a cultural, ocean-side experience, please go to Vilanculos and I highly recommend Villa Do Paraiso. XO - Enjoy.

Room Tip: I believe the villas are all beach-facing but double check
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
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1 Thank QueendeColleen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Harare, Zimbabwe
Level Contributor
64 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed June 16, 2013

Possibly the best property in Vilankulos and without a doubt the best managed, The husband and wife team were outstanding and our personal chef/valet was nearly packed in our luggage when we left !. There are regular flights by LAM and SA Airlink and the lodge has its own airline HAC, with a mix of South African and Zimbabwean aircraft and crew. The airport is modern and clean and VISA's can be purchased on arrival (it takes about five minutes per person). The lodge management collects you in a large four wheel drive but you can hire vehicles at the airport, although its expensive. The management team will buy in your groceries in advance for you and the chef seemed able to make literally anything as well as prepare our freshly caught fish. The lodges have ample fridges and freezers and when not preparing five star meals the chef tackles laundry mountains with a smile. The bar has an excellent range of snacks and also full meals and drinks are served cold with plenty of ice. Within a few minutes walk are several other good restruants and bars if you don't feel like eating in. Definitely take a boat out to sea to try the fishing and consider at trip to the islands if you have time.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Coleman M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Morgan's Bay, South Africa
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed May 3, 2013

My sister and her hubby invited Neville and I, together with my nephew, son and his girlfriend to holiday with them at their Vila do Paraiso Lodge, Vilanculos – Mozambique. We jumped at the chance. Armed with malaria tablets, enough Doom spray to extinguish a zillion blood sucking mozzies and an extensive 1st aid kit we flew in from Gauteng. Getting through customs was tedious but the duty free shopping made up for it. It amazes me that one cannot take more than 100ml of liquid in hand luggage but once on the other side of customs you can purchase a couple of bottles of wine and happily pop them into your bag.
After flying just under 2 hours we made a stop over in Inhambane and that is where the first of the 5 senses kicked in, starting with the taste bud experience of an ice cold “Doshem” – the local beer – delicious thirst quencher. It might give Castle a run for its money. Then it was off again for a quick flight to Vilanculos, where customs were almost non-existent. We received a smiling welcome from the Vila’s driver and more ice cold beer!! . It was difficult to believe that we were on the same continent as SA but worlds apart. A surprise for us on our drive to the Vila was the sight of 100’s of uniformed school children walking in both directions from the only school in town. My sister explained because of the lack of schools in the area, the children went to school in 3 separate “shifts”, starting with the younger ones and only ending late in the afternoon with the teenagers. I wondered if they utilised the same teachers the whole day. We passed row upon row of tidy grass huts bordered by neat green hedges surrounded by white sandy lawns. Every so often the presence of Vodacom’s logo sprang out at us in the form of brightly painted red houses advertising the brand – Vodacom will paint your house free of charge, as long as its red – clever marketing ploy.
Ten minutes later we reached the shady oasis of the thatched villa, where we met Shaun and Sharne, the Vila's managers, who were always most helpful and friendly and William the Magnificent (well, that’s what I called him). With huge smiles and warm handshakes, he handed us cold face towels to wipe the dust and perspiration off. He was to remain with us for the length of our stay, to pamper, indulge, cook up a storm and laugh with us. Let me say, I could have brought him home to SA on our return.
The more than adequate comfortable villa was a mere 100 metres from the soft gentle ocean, protected by the multiple archipelago islands of Marquereuk, Benguerra and Bazaruto which could be seen from our veranda. Sunrise and sunsets were one of the most spectacular sights to behold, partially covered by giant palm trees swaying in the warm tropical breeze.
The following glorious morning we were up before dawn, slipping, slapping and slopping loads of sunblock on, grabbing towels, costumes and hats making our way down to the awaiting 48 foot super cat for a magnificent day out on the ocean. Catching enormous yellow fin tuna, wahoo and dorado was the order of the day. Back breaking fishing but a whole lot of fun. I can now attest to the fact that Neville is no longer a feeder of fish, but a fisherman. Can’t say if the look on his face was pain or pleasure but catch he did- I have photographic evidence. My son, Jay with a proud grin on his face after hauling in a big tuna, and who had looked a bit green around the gills on the turbulent trip out to deep sea could no longer hold his sea sickness in and was “man down” for most of the day, only recovering once the skipper had taken us to a deserted island for a refreshing swim. I would hate to put a number on all the different blues and greens surrounding us and the island – aquamarine blue, midnight blue, sky blue, sea green, spring green, jade, cyan, turquoise…. The list goes on and on.

On our return home in the warm late afternoon sun, William once again (this time in knee deep water) was there to greet us with his ever welcome cold face towels and ever present smile from ear to ear.
The tradition after a long hard day at sea – according to my brother-in-law – is to jump into the swimming pool and partake in an R&R – Rum and Raspberry drink. The local rum “Tipo Tinto” and Sparletta raspberry (which tastes different to ours or maybe after having quite a few, it tastes different, not to sure which)
With the full moon above, that evening was spent eating our delicious catch prepared to perfection by William all washed down with our duty free wine of course and then our air-conditioned, mosquito netted, Doom sprayed bedroom, with that “out of Africa” feeling beckoned us to sleep. Can’t quite remember if Nev snored that night?
And so our fabulous holiday rolled by, each day more fascinating than the previous. 11 days of pure magic.
Must tell you about the best ever seasickness tablets: It’s known as the placebo effect. After Jay’s episode the first day, my brother-in-law gave him 2 “tablets” before going out on the boat everyday after that – telling him they were the best pharmaceutical discovery in decades. He was more than willing to take anything at that stage. He never experienced even the slightest nauseas feeling after taking the “tablets”. We even joked with him that he was Jacques Cousteau. On our last day of the holiday Jay was presented with the “miracle” drug: “Sweetex” sugar tablets. He still can’t get over the fact. I never even ended up using my extensive 1st aid kit – besides the soothing Aftersun Lotion.
The only word that comes to mind to describe our holiday of fishing, swimming, coral reef snorkelling, dolphin watching, relaxing by the sparkling pool, bartering with the locals for bait & curios, market shopping, shell collecting, island braaing good old SA Karoo chops and wors, trying to learn a bit of the language, the sharing of fun and laughter with family, the sights, sounds, tastes, smells and touch is PARADISE and I think that’s the 6th sense. It was a memorable experience for all of us to be treasured forever.
A huge thank you to all the excellent staff at the Vila, it was a pleasure. Can't wait to see you all on the next trip.
Jen Williams
Morgan Bay
Eastern Cape
South Africa

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank Jen W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kloof, South Africa
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed April 8, 2013

You can look at any picture to see how beautiful Mozambique is and I’m sure there are many luxurious resorts. I’m going to tell you why I think Vila Do Paraiso and HAC Airlines are the ones to choose.
There were 8 of us traveling from Johannesburg, we were luckily enough to fly by private charter on HAC Airlines. I have flown on Emirates, KLM, Air France, BA. SAA and our local airlines but I have never experienced anything like this.
We were met at Lanseria Airport by the HAC crew. Our luggage was whisked away and not seen again until we were in our Villa in Mozambique. We were flying in the morning so had a scrumptious buffet breakfast with everything any one could ask for.
Our seats were made of soft leather which reclined and swivelled so you could talk to anyone on the plane without breaking your neck to do so. Our crew consisted of Dave, our pilot, Craig, the co-pilot and Sue, our wonderful stewardess. I always thought private charters to be for the rich but if you are travelling in a group it is worth it checking out the price. It may work out more or less the same as a commercial airline.
We were met at Vilanculos Airport by Sean, it was a short drive to Vila Do Paraiso were we Shown to our Villas by our Stewards who also took care of our luggage.
Our Steward was William who obviously wanted to make sure we had everything we wanted or needed. The Villa was beautiful, we had 4 double bedrooms, a downstairs and upstairs lounge, an upper deck and a lower deck with a private pool. Each villa has a selection of board games which we found to be great fun.
We ate breakfast and dinner at the pool bar situated just above the beach. The food was delicious and the seafood freshly caught.
On both days we were there we took a boat to the Islands. We saw Dolphins, Dugong, Sand Sharks, Leather Back Turtles and more fish than we can remember.
Can you imagine an island without a single foot print, it felt as though we were the only people to have ever been there. The water was crystal clear, we swam and snorkelled with the swarms of small fish that thrive in the area.
Our crew set up a gazebo and a delicious braai for us for lunch. We sat under the gazebo eating, chatting and playing board games until the tide changed and the water crept up or legs forcing us to return to the boat. By the time we set off for our Villa our island was gone, only to return with the next turn of the tide.
When we got back to Vila Do Paraiso we were met on the beach by our stewards with cold scented face cloths which were very welcome after a long hot day in the sun. It was then into the pool for an hour until dinner.
I could go on and on about how amazing our trip was. If you are thinking about going to Mozambique please contact HAC (flyhac.com) or Vila Do Paraiso (viladoparaiso.com). They made us feel more than just a customer, they made us feel welcome and to me that makes all the difference.

Room Tip: We stayed in Villa 5. Fantastic view, 2 lounges, 2 upstairs bedrooms had private decks.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank Lesleykzn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Welkom, South Africa
Level Contributor
29 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed January 3, 2013

We were a group of seven guys that visited VDP on a fishing trip. We were picked up at the airport and once we arrived, we were welcomed by the friendly staff to a stunning 4 bedroom (all en suite) house, outside was a patio with it's own private pool, overlooking the beautiful ocean. During daytime we would go fishing on a huge supercat. Once we got back on land we would treat ourselves at the pool bar with some fine R&R ( Rum & Raspberry ) and then we would go up to our unit's patio to be spoiled by our butler ( William ) with some Tutti Fruitti ( a cocktail made with vodka, fruit juice and some fresh fruit ) , there William would treat us with superb dinners like shrimp cocktail, peri-peri prawns, fresh sashimi to nice bbqd steak and chops. We really enjoyed our stay and we were treated like nobles, perfect venue for family or friends!

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled on business
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Helpful?
1 Thank Klipkraal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vilanculos
2 reviews
Reviewed October 4, 2012

I am sure any one with descent family values can only agree to rate VDP as exceptional. This destination is for people who want time with their family having great fishing, snorkeling and scuba diving adventures which include your whole family, then this is for you. The managers and staff work hard to please you but also give you your privacy, wonderful people wonderful place, no problem recommending this one on.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Kynic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Vila Do Paraiso

Property: Vila Do Paraiso
Address: Bairro 19, Rua De Outubro | Mahaque Beach, Vilanculos 1304, Mozambique
Phone Number:
Location: Mozambique > Inhambane Province > Vilanculos
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 24 Specialty Lodging in Vilanculos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Vila Do Paraiso 4.5*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Villa Do Paraiso is a resort of 6 individual luxury villas set right on the beach in Vilanculos, capital of tropical adventure in Mozambique. Each of the superb thatched villas are free-standing double-stories with wonderful ocean views, set amongst lush tropical gardens within a secure 24-hour patrolled perimeter. Each accommodates 8 guests in 4 double rooms with en-suite facilities and a private pool, as well as your personal house Butler who can cook meals, do laundry and assist with all your needs while at Vila Do Paraiso. ... more   less 
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