Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Bumi Hills Safari Lodge & Spa (Lake Kariba, Zimbabwe)

If it’s location, location, location then prepare to be awed by Bumi. It is well-nigh impossible to walk out onto the main deck and not exclaim a loud WOW! The 180 degree panoramic vista affords dramatic views of both sunrise and sunset over the massive lake and game-rich shoreline.

The uniqueness of Bumi is not only in its world’s best location and luxury but also in the added dimension of the water that provides tantalising opportunities for tiger-fishing, cruising, sailing on one of the world’s largest man-made lakes – it’s an astonishing 300km long and 40km at its widest point.

Safari drives in open 4 x 4 vehicles are on a private reserve with species such as prolific elephant and buffalo, lions, warthog, kudu, impala, leopard, hippo, crocodiles, waterbuck, baboons, monkeys all within a 15-minute drive. There are rhino is the nearby Matusadona National Park that may be tracked on foot with an armed professional guide.

The spa is also simply breathtaking in its location overlooking the lake from its hilltop vantage point. The rich history and culture of the area is also an attraction for international incentive groups seeking local folklore and authentic, remote wilderness. Modern mankind’s largest animal rescue, dubbed Operation Noah, unfolded in the late 1950’s when the mighty Zambezi River was dammed to create the lake and provide hydro-electricity. As the valley flooded so thousands of animals - from rats, snakes and elephants and rhino – were stranded on islands and were rescued by a heroic and hardy bunch of rangers.

To enable to dam to take shape the local Tonga tribes were – against their will - moved out of their ancestral villages in the valleys. They vowed that their mighty river god, the serpent-like Nyaminyami, would not allow this injustice to happen and, incredibly, during the early construction phase there were thousand-year floods that destroyed the coffer dams – twice! These are indeed fascinating stories to add lustre to incentive groups, who also have a 12-seat boardroom and 60-seat air conditioned conference room on offer.

Bumi has 20 lake-facing rooms (10 standard and 10 premium suites), satellite television lounge, wireless internet, spa, full-size snooker table, library and offers shoreline dinners and sunset cocktails in a stunningly raw segment of Africa.

Access is via a direct very scenic light aircraft flight from Victoria Falls that takes just 1hr 10min. Indeed incentive groups have the tantalising opportunity of a two-centre incentive that takes in a wonder of the world (Victoria Falls) and an untamed and undiscovered unique wilderness that is Bumi Hills. Here lies a real African adventure your winners will relish.

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