The Eastern Highlands is a mountain range stretching for 300km down the eastern side of Zimbabwe, forming the country’s eastern border with Mozambique. The highlands comprise of three mountain groups: the Nyanga range to the north, the Chimanimani Mountains to the south, and the Bvumba Mountains centrally located, near the city of Mutare. This region is sparsely populated, and one of the most scenic areas in the country, providing visitors with awe-inspiring views, cool weather and fresh mountain air.
Nyanga National Park, occupying 47 000 hectares, is a vast area with lush, rolling hills, cascading waterfalls, and steadily flowing rivers. The mountainous terrain is home to a vast array of animals, including wildebeest, kudu, sable, eland, waterbuck and zebra. The glistening fresh water rivers provide an abundance of fresh water fish, such as the indigenous Nyanga trout, which make for an exciting day of fly-fishing.
Natural attractions in the Nyanga range include: Mount Nyangani – Zimbabwe’s highest point (2593 m) and mountain, which offers climbers a challenging summit with spectacular, almost-aerial views of the surrounding countryside; Mtarazi Falls – the highest waterfall in Zimbabwe
; and the scenic viewpoint over the Pungwe Falls and Gorge.
The Bvumba Mountains, or Vumba Mountains, lie approximately 25 km south east of Mutare. Referred to as the "Mountains of the Mist", (the mornings often start with mist, and Bvumba is the Shona name for "mist"), the Bvumba rise to 1911 m, at Castle Beacon.
These cool green hills shelter a number of hotels, a casino, a golf course and the spectacular Bvumba Botanical Gardens, with otherworldly views over the rolling countryside. The botanical gardens are a nature-lovers paradise; home to innumerable bird species, rare butterflies, and a number of mammals, including leopards and samango monkeys.
All in all, the Eastern Highlands
are a delightful region to visit, offering visitors much sought after peace and quiet in an idyllic setting. Hidden within the sloping landscape are comfortable, secluded, and luxurious accommodation options, stunning scenic drives, and captivating walking trails with magnificent sights.