Just refurbished, beloved Wilderness Vumbura Plains has re-opened, welcoming you into its waterworld, inside and out. With spectacular land- and water-based adventures and incredibly diverse wildlife encounters year round, Vumbura Plains has long been one of our star camps in Botswana’s Okavango Delta. Its new look brings even more of the outside in, more deeply reflecting the landscape and local culture.
Celebrated through new design elements is Vumbura’s core purpose: a pioneering two-decades-long community partnership with the Okavango Community Trust (OCT). Through the Trust, we lease the 60 000-hectare Vumbura Protected Wildlife Area from five villages, sharing the benefits of conservation tourism with local stakeholders.
‘It is this core purpose, combined with Vumbura’s beautiful Delta setting, that has inspired the design, décor, and furnishings for the refurbishment’, says lead interior designer on the refurbishment project, Cate Simpson of Reflecting Africa. ‘Not only rejuvenating the camp, but weaving these extraordinary conservation and cultural stories into bespoke design pieces that bring the local culture alive for guests in a tangible way’.
Paying homage to the Delta – a UNESCO World Heritage Site – the camp’s colour palette now flows in shades of turquoise, blue, purple, and green. Enlarged underwater photographs by Andrea Crawford adorn clad wardrobe doors and shower screens. Redesigned doors and windows throughout maximise expansive views of the floodplains, ilala palms, and small islands. Furniture has been reupholstered or replaced in line with the new colour scheme.
Vumbura’s lounge now sports a unique wall installation, as well as artwork, screens, and maps, on the Delta’s formation and the vast range of life it supports. Visual emphasis is placed on some of the area’s species: sable, cheetah, African wild dog, common reed frog, coppery-tailed coucal, and many others. Tribute is paid to the OCT community, showcasing stories on their heritage, such as fishing culture and basket weaving. One entire lounge wall is hung with colourful locally woven baskets, whose diverse patterns tell different stories or depict particular animal patterns.
Locally sourced food and drink are on show at a new coffee bar, as well as in the camp kitchen. The iconic waterlily (twsii), for instance – gracing Delta waters almost everywhere – makes a culinary appearance. It has long been harvested by locals for its nutritional and medicinal uses. Vumbura’s menu incorporates traditional food and ingredients from the nearby villages, enabling the chefs to create original, world-class dishes while providing local communities with an alternative revenue stream.
Your Vumbura experience will now be even more exceptional: as before, an ongoing wildlife parade, changing with the seasons and ebb and flow of the waters – but even more awesomely immersed everywhere you turn.
‘Vumbura’s diverse habitats and range of activities – from game drives, walks, and mekoro (dugout canoes) to hot-air ballooning from April to September each year – makes this a must-visit destination’, says Kim Nixon, Wilderness Botswana MD. ‘One that truly celebrates the best of Botswana’s natural and cultural heritage’.
Let’s plan your next journey
When we say we’re there every step of the way, we mean it, literally. From planning the perfect circuit, to private inter-camp transfers on Wilderness Air, and easing you through Customs. We’re with you on the ground, at your side, 24-7, from start to finish. Ready to take the road less travelled? Contact our Travel Designers to plan an unforgettable journey.