We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Lovely Camp with special staff”

We can't find prices for this accommodation
Our online travel partners don't provide prices for this accommodation, but we can search other options in Okavango Delta
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Wilderness Safaris Little Vumbura Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 6, 2010

This is one of Wildnerness Safaris "classic" camps, a notch down from their 'premiere' camps. We stayed here prior to going to Little Mombo (see my other TA review), which is a premiere camp, and we also saw the rooms at Vumbura Plains (a premiere camp) while following a wild dog pack and their impala kill! so we were able to get a good sense of the difference.

The setting of Little Vumbura is lovely, surrounded by waterways. You drive most of the way to the camp before taking a boat the rest of the way. We were greeted by singing staff, which is an enormously pleasant way to arrive at a property. In fact, the staff here are really one of the gems of Little Vumbura. Nearly all from Botswana, they have amazing voices and one night treated us to a spectacular concert before dinner. The food and drink here were fine, especially given the remote location, but a signficant step down from the food at Mombo. Still, you definitely won't go hungry. One night we had a candlelit dinner in the bush together with about 100 people from other camps, and had excellent bbq meats and a fantastic local singing group.

Our room was small, but quite comfortable. unfortunately our first night there was a windstorm, and the heavy flaps of all the tents in the camp made a horrible racket keeping all of us up for hours. We complained the next day, but no one really seemed to know what to do about it.

Our guide was a wonderful, sweet, incredibly smart and knowledgeable guy named Sam. Our typical day would start with wakeup at 430am, breakfast at 5, and departure at 530am, just as the sun was rising. It's a beautiful time of day listening to the birds over the marsh and sometimes the distant roar of lions.

Our drives were sometimes slow at Vumbura, with no 'big' game, particularly in relation to Mombo, but we always enjoyed them immensely. Sam was an incredibly knowledgeable birder, and we could, and often did, spend hours just identifying and learning about birds! But we also saw some incredible things including the highlight...a large pack of wild dogs kill an impala. This chase took us into the Vumbura Plains property which was closed for some renovation. These rooms were much larger than ours, with their own plunge pools and extensive decking. It looked like a nice property, but not as intimate and friendly as Little Vumbura.

We did not participate in the mokoro or boat rides, instead choosing to go on safari each time. I'm not sorry because everyone who came back described those as 'relaxing', which we kind of read to mean 'boring'! We were very happy on the drives and even when we didn't see the so-called big things, we had a great time. The elephant action here was very, very good, better even than at Mombo. We saw large herds every drive, and the elephants are good fun, mock charging and trumpeting and interacting.

I can't say that I would go back here, mainly because the overall game viewing at Mombo was soooo much better, but it is a special place and you certainly won't be sorry you went!

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank SheaG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (157)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language

134 - 140 of 157 reviews

Reviewed February 24, 2010

We had high hopes for Little Vumbra as it was our first safari camp in Botswana. Unfortunately, we were disappointed as it was not what we expected. It is a classic level camp and unfortunately, it did not compare to the classic camp we stayed at in Zambia (Toka Leya).
Upon arrival, the buffet lunch had already been served so they had some snacks prepared for us. Grated cheddar cheese on white bread with soggy lettuce was what we were presented with along with 2 cold salads. Having just told the camp manager that we would prefer not to eat raw vegetables, we nibbled on the bread with cheese and went to check out our room. The room was disappointing as well. There is no outdoor shower which is part of the fun of being on safari. The room also had two twin beds pushed together. Although this is common, usually they put a king size mattress cover and king size sheets on the 2 twin beds to make it feel more like a king bed. This was not the case at Little Vumbra. We both had our own sheets for our respective twin bed. The tents are also very close together. Ours being the closest to the common area meant that we heard everything. The tent was also quite small and felt a little too rustic.
Overall, rigid would be a great word to describe this camp. There was no selection or menu at dinner as it was a self serve buffet. All meals were buffet. Had we ended up staying with our original plans and stayed at Little Vumbra for 3 nights we would have survived on bread and cheese for the entire stay. The highlight was burnt, dried out toast before our morning drive. Another example of rigidity is that since this camp is on an island, they aren’t too keen on doing night drives (this was never offered to us) since you would have to take a boat in the dark. They are very strict with the time of your return to the camp after the evening drive because they want to get back to camp before the sun sets and in time for the dinner buffet which is always at the same time. And in reality, if you miss first crack at the buffet, then only the food left is the food that no one wanted. The rigidity was also evident on our first afternoon when we decided to skip afternoon tea, we had a knock at our door asking us why we weren’t coming for tea. I don’t feel I should be forced to attend afternoon tea, but unfortunately this is how we felt. Really though, we had no desire to sit around and sip tea with retirees which seemed to be the typical guest at the camp. Essentially, we couldn’t get out fast enough. Luckily, nearby Vumbra Plains had availability so it was an easy move. If you are looking for an affordable safari experience then I am sure you will enjoy Little Vumbra. If you are looking for a more intimate, luxurious, private and less rigid place then I would recommend Vumbra Plains. Vumbra Plains is heads above Little Vumbra in ALL aspects – service, food, quality of staff, etc. (of course you are also paying a significant amount more).

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank WeLoveToTravelNYC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 14, 2010

We stayed at Little Vumbura for two nights in January before moving on to Duma Tau. We cannot say enough good things about both camps, and Wilderness Safaris in general. Situated on an island and accessible only by boat, Little Vumbura was recently refurbished and is truly luxurious (apparently there is an even more luxurious Wilderness camp nearby but we cannot see how it could get any better ...), done in a tasteful rugged Afro chic style. Our tent looked out onto a grassy plane where animals would rest and graze at night. The game viewing was fabulous. What makes this place (and Duma Tau) special is that not only do they have all the "classic" game, but one gets to see a very up-close-and-personal view of elephants, giraffe, lion, wild dog, you name it. It is not unusual to drive all day and not see another vehicle; so you feel that the game are there for you alone in a wonderful unspoiled wilderness. We also did a sunset boat cruise on the Delta; highly recommended as a "foil" to the game drives. The staff were so very attentive at Little Vumbura and made you feel that they truly cared about making your stay special. Food delicious, though the group eating set up got a little tiresome (that said, I mentioned this in passing and as a result we got a lovely surprise private romantic meal organized for us at Duma Tau; apparently Little V radioed ahead and arranged this. How is that for personalized service?). The flights between camps in small planes are an extra adventure treat!

We have done safaris in a number of African countries and in India. We believe Botswana (and Wilderness Safaris specifically in Botswana) offers a truly unique experience. It is a once in a lifetime thing to come here, see the amazing game and be pampered by staff like those at Little Vumbura and Duma Tau. Hats off to you all.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank krisztinav
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 4, 2010

Just to endorse other posters' descriptions -- this is the best of the best. Fantastic game viewing including the rare opportunity for a walking safari led by Sam and lion cubs playing, found by super-guide Rain. The hospitality was world-class in professionalism and at the same time warm and genuine. Delicious food at every meal and a jolly little bar.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Spadina2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 2, 2009

Little Vumbura is absolutley, words cannot describe, INCREDIBLE!!!! We had the most wonderful honeymoon staying here for 3 nights. You arrive by boat and are met with local people singing their welcome song, the "tents" have ebony furniture and are unbelievably luxurious. The honeymoon suite where we stayed even has an outside bath so you can watch the elephants from the bath! You can choose to go out on safari in the mornigns and afternoons by jeep or boat, and if you don;t want to go then you can chill out by the lovely pool or sit in the open air library / sitting area! I really can't recommend it highly enough!

  • Stayed: April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank mswann
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 31, 2009

What a gorgeous camp! We were so happy that we stayed here. It was really different than the other camps where we stayed. Arriving by boat to the camp set the tone for what would be three unforgettable days. We went on game drives, a mokoro ride, a sunset cruise and our guide even took us fishing in the delta. It was a nice change of place from the two game drives a day that we had been doing. We felt we could relax and just enjoy the scenery here. Our room was bright, clean and spacious. We had the family tent and it worked out perfect for us. Each side had its own bathroom. The staff was FANTASTIC! Everyone was so friendly and they all really seemed happy to be working here. We did see plenty of wildlife as well. We had to wait to be escorted to tea one afternoon because an elephant was blocking our path. I highly recommend this camp!

Stayed: August 2009, traveled with family
2  Thank Angeline13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 7, 2009

Little Vumbura is not to be missed! This small concession hidden in the waters of the Okavanga Delta provides the perfect entrance-way to Africa. With a strong management team, devoted trackers (SAM was awesome!), amazing cooks and a beautiful staff LV has it all! The food was divine (the best spring rolls, guacamole-ok every tea time and sundowner was a culinary delight!). The Mokoro ride through the reeds at sunset was one of the highlights of our trip! We saw Lions (two brothers), a pack of wild dogs, and herds of water buffalo, elephants, zebras and more!
Enjoy this unique camp for the water experience.
and this camp is rated at as Classic!!! (underrated)

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank goodgirlfriend
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these Okavango Delta hotels
15.7 mi away
Wilderness Safaris Mombo Camp
Wilderness Safaris Mombo Camp
#8 of 29 in Moremi Game Reserve
232 reviews
43.8 mi away
andBeyond Xaranna Okavango Delta Camp
andBeyond Xaranna Okavango Delta...
#15 of 73 in Okavango Delta
158 reviews
20.4 mi away
Sanctuary Chief's Camp
Sanctuary Chief's Camp
#4 of 29 in Moremi Game Reserve
241 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
19.5 mi away
Kadizora Camp
Kadizora Camp
#4 of 73 in Okavango Delta
134 reviews
42.4 mi away
andBeyond Sandibe Okavango Safari Lodge
andBeyond Sandibe Okavango Safar...
#12 of 73 in Okavango Delta
242 reviews
7.7 mi away
Mapula Lodge
Mapula Lodge
#19 of 29 in Moremi Game Reserve
80 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Wilderness Safaris Little Vumbura Camp? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Wilderness Safaris Little Vumbura Camp

Address: North of the Moremi Wildlife Reserve, Botswana
Location: Botswana > North-West District > Okavango Delta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #31 of 73 Specialty Lodging in Okavango Delta
Price Range: $936 - $1,209 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Wilderness Safaris Little Vumbura Camp 4*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Iconic and perennially popular Okavango island camp with great game viewing.Little Vumbura epitomises island living in the midst of a water wonderland. Designed to blend in with its surroundings, this beautiful camp is shaded by the canopy of an ancient Okavango forest that covers the island. A plunge pool and reading area are raised to provide a fine view over the floodplains and a star-deck leads off over the water from the dining area. HighlightsSurrounded as it is by water and lying close to large channels, aquatic creatures are easily found, but general wildlife viewing is consistently good all year round, with lion, leopard, elephant, sable and buffalo along with extensive plains game. Little Vumbura is situated in a concession leased from remote rural communities organised under the Okavango Community Trust and aims to help bring the benefits of ecotourism to local people.6 Tents: Spacious canvas tents; en-suite bathrooms; honeymoon suite has an outdoor bathtubExperiences: Game drivesMokoro excursionsBoatingGuided walks (on request) ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Wilderness Safaris Little Vumbura Camp Botswana/Okavango Delta

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing