The Kisasa Waterfall, also known as Izasa or Kizasa (depending on who you ask), is an epic spot in amongst the Usambara Mountain Range. While it is possible to drive to the entrance and do a short walk down to the base of the falls, I suggest combining the falls with a hike throughout the village region. I walked from Irente Farm Lodge, passing through the village of Yogoi and was able to observe lots of local scenes on the route to the waterfall.
KISASA WATERFALL VISITORS GUIDE
In this blog post I will give you all the details about the Kisasa Waterfall and several great hiking options to make it a full-day adventure.
WHERE IS THE KISASA WATERFALL
The Kisasa Waterfall is located in the Usambara mountains near the towns of Lushoto and Yogoi. Most visitors to the region will be staying in Lushoto town or Irente, which is nearby. I stayed at Irente Farm Lodge and from there it was just a 7-kilometer walk to Kisasa Falls, although I took the long/scenic route to make it more like 10 kilometers to the falls.
I found the route on Maps.me app to be the most accurate and it showed the path perfectly. Below is the Google Maps pin location for Kisasa Waterfall.
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KISASA WATERFALL ENTRANCE FEE
The entrance fee for Irente Viewpoint is 5,000 Tanzania Schillings, which is about $2 USD. There’s a small booth where you can submit the fee before entering the base of the falls. You can actually view the falls from the viewpoint above without paying the fee but when it is just $2 you may as well go enjoy the raw power of the falls at the base.
WHERE TO STAY NEARBY KISASA FALLS
There are two great spots in Irente I can recommend if you want to base somewhere near enough to Kisasa Waterfall.
- Irente Farm Lodge: I spent two nights at the farm lodge before my huge Lushoto to Mtae trek and found it a great place with excellent food and budget prices. It had a very peaceful vibe and I could highly recommend it.
- Irente View Cliff Lodge: This one is a little fancier than the farm lodge and has an incredible cliff-edge location. Sunrise and sunset time are epic with expansive views and easy access to Irente Viewpoint. Surrounded by lush forest, it’s an experience you will never forget and the prices are modest with nights available for under $70 USD.
MY EXPERIENCE HIKING TO KISASA WATERFALL
Kisasa Waterfall can be reached by boda-boda, which is the motorbike taxi found all over Tanzania, so by no means is this blog post suggesting you need to do a massive hike to reach the falls. However, you will probably be staying in Lushoto or Irente while visiting Usambara, and Kisasa Falls is within reach of those towns by foot. So, why not turn the waterfall into an adventurous outing and a great workout.
I decided to walk all the way from Irente Farm Lodge and my hike ended up being a round-trip 24-kilometer journey. However, if you just go out and back from Irente with the shortest route the distance would be six or seven kilometers one way. You have lots of options because you could hike there and catch a boda-boda back as there are many guys waiting there in the town. Basically, you have the freedom to create your own route.
I chose to combine a number of viewpoints with my route. I took the long way through Yogoi on the way to the falls to explore the local village roads and passed by a number of sunset viewpoints on the way back. It was a long day but the sunset viewpoints were worth the effort. So, now that you know you have a lot of options (use Maps.me to plan yours), I’ll share my experience with you.
After some morning rain at Irente Farm Lodge, I set off towards Yogoi town. Along the way, I detoured several times to explore different viewpoints. They were cloudy but would clear up when I returned later that afternoon.
However, my main route to Kisasa Falls was via the long, scenic route through Yogoi. It was interesting to meet lots of locals, see what they were up to, observe the farms, and greet lots of curious kids.
Make sure to keep an eye out for Chameleons because the Usambara Mountains are a hotspot for these color-changing reptiles. I was lucky enough to spot one during my time in Lushoto!
It took me 13 kilometers to reach Kisasa Waterfall with this route. The path to the falls was a little hidden but once I made it close to the pin on the map, I asked the locals who pointed me down to the path.
There are about 100 meters of drop along a dirt path to get to the base of the falls. Halfway down you will find a little viewing point on a rock. This is a free view and you only need to pay once you enter the base of the waterfall.
A little further down some muddy stairs, I reached the booth to pay the 5000 Tanzanian Schillings ($2 USD). At the base of the falls, you can sit and enjoy the cooling spray of the waterfall while relaxing at one of the many picnic tables. I was literally the only person there on the day I visited and relaxed for an hour taking in this powerful, tiered waterfall. It’s one of the top attractions in the area and a great place to take a packed lunch and enjoy the afternoon.
On my walk back I took the more direct route through Yogoi rather than the looping route on the highway side. I then chilled at one of the viewpoints known locally as ‘German Viewpoint’. Here I was treated to a clear view and an epic sunset where I could really appreciate the grandeur of the Usambara Mountains. These were my drone shots from that evening at the viewpoint looking back towards the mountains.
After sunset, I made the final few kilometers of walking back to Irente Farm Lodge in the dark and had no safety issues. It ended up being quite a large 24-kilometer look but an awesome first day in Usambara. The next day I would set off on my Lushoto to Mtae trek but it was good to get to know the area near Lushoto before setting off.
I hope you enjoyed this guide to the Kisasa Waterfall and have a great experience in Usambara.
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