Seven months into the pandemic and travelers' sense of wanderlust is only growing stronger. But finding a way to hit the road safely is still paramount. Luckily, Matetsi Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe just made it possible. The stunning safari retreat just unveiled its very own private airstrip and a new buyout concept that allows guests to safari in their own bubbles.
The lodge is the only one in the region with a purpose-built licensed airstrip and helipad, so travelers can fly into Victoria Falls International before hopping on a helicopter and landing directly at Matetsi Private Game Reserve. This maximizes time and eliminates contact with other travelers.
Once on-site, guests have the option to buy out a portion of the lodge or the entire thing. A partial buyout includes exclusive access to Matetsi's West Camp (one of the two camps which make up Matetsi Victoria Falls), which has seven rooms, a family room, and three private vehicles. A full buyout allows guests to take over the whole lodge. Both options include a personal chef, butler, and safari guides. Groups can also opt to book a private four-bedroom villa dubbed the Matetsi River House.
"Being the only property in the area with a private airstrip and helipad sets us apart and positions us perfectly to create our own' safari bubble' with our ideal combination of water and land-based safari activities all on the property on the 136,000-acre Matetsi Private Game Reserve," Jono Hudson, General Manager, told Departures.
Ultimately, it's that exclusive access to nature that makes the experience bucket list-worthy. Groups can go on a private morning, evening, and full-day game drives and enjoy a walking safari. Imagine seeing various species such as elephant, buffalo, lion, and leopard with no one else around. You can also take a sunrise or sunset Zambezi river cruise for an added wildlife excursion.
"Our family vision has always been to showcase everything exceptional about our home country, Zimbabwe," Sara Gardiner, Co-Founder, told us. "And now with more of a focus on single-country and specific destination itineraries, our 'safari bubble' gives us the opportunity to do so, while ensuring the ultimate comfort and ease of travel for our guests."
The cost for a partial buyout starts at $9,500 in 2020 and $11,000 in 2021. A full buyout starts from $22,000 per night and $140,000 per week in 2020, or $25,000 per night, and $155,000 per week in 2021.