Reviews of Little Vumbura
Wildlife sightings and reviews
121 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Little Vumbura and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa
"Little Vumbura review"
The food was acceptable but not of the same high standard as some of the other Wilderness camps we have visited. The staff were very friendly and helpful but unlike other camps it was not clear who was in charge. Being a water camp we were able to do boat trips and a mokoro ride as well as the usual excellent game drives. Our guide, G, was very knowledgeable and personable. There was plenty of game and the bird life was exceptional.
We had three nights here which was ideal - we had time to relax as well as seeing everything we wanted to." See all these reviews: 8n in Botswana; 2n in Zimbabwe
Being able to drive off-road brought a whole new dimension to the game drives: driving through water that often came up to the bonnet and bundu bashing was a rollercoaster in itself. Our guide G was superb and we had wonderful close-up sightings of sable antelope, lions with four cubs and a leopard with her cub - although a coupe of drives were very quiet. The mokoro allowed us to see the delta from a different perspective, as well as see a tiny reed frog and red lechwe leaping through the water in front of us.
What made Little Vumbura so magical, though, was the wonderful welcome from all the staff and the great atmosphere in the camp. The managers Anton and Laura were ever-present and superb company. Nothing seemed like too much trouble.
Our son loved having his own Bush Buddy, OB, looking after him. Our daughter does not drink fizzy drinks so had spent two weeks watching the rest of us having sundowners with nothing to have herself - but the chef, Antonio, not only arranged for her to get some chocolate milk but put it in a special bottle too. Two of the female staff also took ages to braid her hair. We were very lucky that our last night coincided with the weekly boma night, which was the perfect end to our adventure in Africa." See all these reviews: 7n in Namibia; 3n in Botswana
"Little Vumbura review"
Rooms: The room was superb. It was very roomy and had a sunken living room area with a desk,sofa, cocktail table, guide books and other chairs. There was a porch on the front of the tented room with a sofa and several chairs. It was literally over the water. We saw so much wild life and birds just sitting on our front porch. We had Red Lechwe, a hippo and lots of bee eaters and King fishers! There were 2 fans in the room which provided a wonderful breeze in the room.
We were able to use our CPAPs wih no problem. No distilled water was offered so we used bottled water.
Service: was outstanding. The guides and the hosts were very attentive and it was a joy to spend time with them.
Food: was outstanding. The meals were all served buffet style. There was a huge variety of local dishes and there were items right off the grill at the end of the buffet. Morning included eggs cooked to order.
Activities: Our guide, Sam, was a delight to be with. He knew his birds very well. We were able to see a Secretary bird which can be tough to find. We enjoyed his ability to track animals by "reading" the foot prints on the road. My husband quite enjoyed learning the footprints as well.
We were originally alone in our vehicle with Sam. However, two days before our departure 3 American men (grandfather, father and son) joined us. They had never been on safari before and seemed to only be interested in large game. The father asked us if we had flown all the way to Africa just to see birds!! When Sam asked them what they would like to see the 27+ yr old son replied "black mamba snakes and puff adders" as he was versed in snakes. Our guide Sam picked up immediately that we were not happy to be with this group of people and asked us if we would like to go fishing to which we happily replied "absolutely". Not sure who or how it is decided what vehicle to put people into but putting 3 people who had never been on safari with 2 people who are pretty well versed in animals, etc. was a huge mistake by the camp! Anyway we had a great time fishing and my husband caught a fairly good sized Tilapia which he gave to our fishing guide.
Facilities: were top notch! The main eating, sitting and library areas were spotless. The dining room was well about to handle guests with out stepping all over each other. A grill in the dining area was wonderful as the food was piping hot! The tents were well designed, the pathways were raked I suspect several times a day and there was always some body to walk us to our tent after dark. There was also a very well stocked gift shop on site. One late afternoon, at tea time, there were 3 local ladies weaving baskets. Our guide, Sam, gave an excellent presentation to all the guests about the importance of basketry to life in Botswana.
We would return here again and again and stay longer. It was the best of all the camps!" See all these reviews: 9n in Botswana; 6n in Zambia
"Little Vurumba adventure"
The game drives were fantastic although we kept having to ask our guide to stop when we saw animals/birds that he had not noticed or did not think worth stopping for. He seemed distracted and often engaged in conversation with the preserve inspector that accompanied us on every game drive. Although it was clear we were an older group of guests, we had to ask for a step and help getting in and out of the vehicle nearly every time.
The staff and accommodations were first rate. An intimate camp with gorgeous views and lots to see. The water tours are stunning in terms of the colors of grasses, reeds and water reflections. Also big skies with fabulous sunsets." See all these reviews: 8n in Botswana
"Great finish to our trip"
In fact the camp was visited by elephant during our visit & we had a hippo in the pool just outside our tent. the drives were expertly organised & we found all the expected species including a brief sighting of a leopard & a very good sighting of a group of wild dogs. There is an excellent atmosphere about the camp & the staff seem genuinely happy to be there & made several complementary comments about Wilderness Travel which was good to hear.
Overall we would strongly recommend this camp as giving a good insight into the delta." See all these reviews: 15n in Namibia; 5n in Botswana
As with Selinda, guide and activities excellent, particularly with boat and mokoro trips as well as drives. Also, slightly preferred later start and earlier finish. We benefitted from having one of the local Trust guides with us too so could learn about the partnerships. And we managed to see the Wild Dogs (none at Selinda) and again having the time to be with them as they formed up to hunt is a bonus.
Only issue was a mouse on the first night which kept us awake - I saw it a few times and cornered it once but then had nothing to hand to deal with it. Reported it next morning and camp manager said they would deal but all they did as to check they could not find it. Hence next night it (perhaps lust others) also there - ate through some kit and (worse) soiled clothes as we had not been warned we needed to keep all our stuff in rodent proof bags. So next morning escalated issue (not made any easier by the fact that all the staff wear the same uniforms - who is in charge??) and got moved to another room.
Chatting to guide/manager later it seems the mouse/rodent problem is know and gets worse at this time of year - so they should have put traps in after first night. Luckily did not spoil daytime activities." See all these reviews: 6n in Botswana; 2n in Zimbabwe
"Beautiful island camp"
Very noisy animal night life which we were not expecting , ear plugs might help some people !
All drives set off and return across watering a boat and so one need to return before dusk . Many drives had areas when the vehicle was covered almost up to the bonnet in water ." See all these reviews: 9n in Botswana
"Little Vumbura review"
The standard of food was excellent.
The accommodation was very comfortable with large rooms following this years upgrade.
The team went out of their way to provide memorable experiences such as the surprise lunch on an island, drinks in the middle of the river and cultural evening. The staff team made a very specially effort to celebrate one of the other guests birthday.
Anyone visiting the camp has to be prepared for quite a hectic daily schedule, especially once the river has flooded as each excursion starts with a twenty minute boat ride to and from the parked vehicles." See all these reviews: 9n in Botswana
"Little Vumbura review"
We loved being out on the water." See all these reviews: 10n in Botswana; 3n in Zimbabwe
"Didn’t quite match my high expectations"
The room was cosy, more than adequate for one person, but certainly not as spacious as other camps I have stayed in; apparently they are planning to slightly extend the rooms at the end of this season. I enjoyed frequent sightings of elephant, kudu and puku immediately outside my room (#5).
A great addition was the hospitality tray provided in the room, supplied with a fresh flask of hot water, and a great choice of teas. However, the same choice of teas was not offered during the tea break on the morning game drive or at afternoon tea served at camp. After repeated requests they failed to supply the tea of my choice and eventually I gave up asking! If they could provide the tea in the room, why couldn't they also provide it in the central areas?!
I enjoyed the company of the other guests I was paired with for the game drives. However, the general atmosphere in camp I felt was somewhat lacking. JB, the camp manager, did a fantastic job, and when he was around the mood certainly lifted, but at other times when he was absent, it was definitely noticeable, and things didn't run quite as harmoniously.
On arrival the person conducting the briefing sounded like he was just reading from a script, I almost felt I was being lectured to, rather that being greeted and welcomed into camp. At this point it would also have been nice if they had explained the choice of activities which were on offer. But instead, at the start of each day, I was just told what they had lined up for me, i.e. whether that be a game drive, motor boat excursion or mokoro. I've been on safari several times, and at other camps the managers/guides would make suggestions and then the days’ activities would be planned (as far as possible) to meet guest’s desires. After requesting a change to the activities they had assigned me to, they did try to accommodate my wishes.
The food was good. At all other camps we would enjoy a light breakfast sat around the campfire (joined by guides and/or camp managers) before heading out on the early morning game drive. However, here they would formally set out a table for everyone to sit at (guests only, no staff joined), which again added to the slightly less than relaxed atmosphere - it was most strange, a table was really unnecessary, it was a self-service breakfast, and I would much preferred to have been sat around the campfire. We're on safari, I can take breakfast at a table anytime, let's embrace the different surroundings!
Now more of the positives, highlights of the game drives included a group of 4 young adult lions, which were a great source of entertainment each day - tree-climbing females, attempted hunt of impala and watching the antics of the inexperienced males was tremendous fun. And on my final morning sighting the wild dogs was very special.
The boating activities offer a completely different perspective to that experienced on the drives.
The camp is sited in an incredibly beautiful area, surrounded by wildlife. A special place to enjoy all that the Delta has to offer." See all these reviews: 8n in Zambia; 7n in Botswana; 5n in Tanzania; 1n in South Africa
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