Umlani Bushcamp

Umlani has dedicated itself to environmentally friendly practises and a true African experience for the visitors. Located in the Timbavati Game Reserve Umlani Bush Camp is a prime example of how luxury can be created with local materials and a Fair Trade Certification. Renowned for its experienced Shangaan rangers and trackers Umlani offers rewarding game drives and wildlife encounters on foot. Meals are cooked from local produce and are served by firelight in a dry riverbed.

Accommodation

Umlani Bushcamp offers simple luxury. With a maximum of 16 guests, Umlani ensures that all guests have an exclusive experience and get all the attention they need. The camp is built in a traditional Shangaan style and was upgraded with luxuries such as outdoor showers, linen from organic cotton and mosquito nets. The huts are constructed from thatch a reed creating an organic and calm atmosphere.

The camp consists of four double huts, three huts that sleep four people and one hut that accommodates three guests.

Activities

The extremely knowledgeable rangers and trackers at Umlani make all the difference. Two game drives a day offer regular sightings of the Big 5 and the rangers are always to share their knowledge of the local environment. After breakfast guest can join guided walks, which offer a more in depth information about the plants and habitats in the Greater Kruger National Park. Thanks to the experience of the rangers wildlife encounters on foot are always safe and make for excellent stories around the campfire.

The camp management can arrange additional activities in the area including:

  • Microlight flights
  • Balloon Safaris
  • Ringetani Acornhoek Village Tour
  • Elephant Back Safaris
  • TSAU – White Lion Research and Heritage Centre
  • Moholoholo Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre
  • Horse Back Riding
  • White Water Rafting Trips
  • Golf Courses

The communal areas as well as the rest of the lodge are constructed almost exclusively from organic materials. The dining area overlooks a waterhole and a pool is fed by a river in the area. The camp is run without electricity and bonfires, petroleum lamps and candles give the camp a romantic glow at night, while providing sufficient lighting for the huts.

The kitchen staff use only local ingredients and serve awarded cuisine. Dinners are often served in a dry riverbed nearby, creating a unique experience and an authentic African setting.

Eco-friendly tourism

Umlani Bushcamp has been awarded the Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa certification. The certificate awards environmental as well as socio-economic aspects. Umlani has taken measures to provide a product that is at the forefront of sustainable tourism:

  • The camp is operated without electricity (except for a solar supplemented generator that powers the office)
  • A towel and linen reuse programme is practised.
  • Low-flow shower head and toilets are installed.
  • All waste is recycled and organic waste is composted on site.
  • The restaurant runs on locally produced and organic products.
  • As many cleaning products are non-toxic.
  • Staff is hired and trained from the local community.
  • A tracker apprentice programme is run.

Umlani Bushcamp is located in the Timbavati Game Reserve in the Greater Kruger National Park. On the western boundary of the Kruger Park a group of conservationist created this private nature reserve in the 1950’s. Timbavati has since opened its borders to the Kruger National Park allowing wildlife to roam freely between the wildlife areas. The Greater Kruger National Park now forms an area of four million hectares.

Umlani Bushcamp is situated about 5 hours by car from Johannesburg. Flights to Eastgate/Hoedspruit Ariport depart daily from Johannesburg.

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