Mumbo, beloved by honeymooners and active families alike, has earned some serious kudos: in 2012, it was one of only 10 establishments in Asia and Africa to
be included in the UK Sunday Times Travel Magazine’s Top 100 Hotels in the World. In 2015, it was shortlisted for the title of Africa’s Leading Tented Safari Camp at the World Travel Awards. It wears its luxury credentials lightly, though. Like Domwe, the lodge is fully off-grid; no bricks and mortar were used in its
construction, and there are bucket showers and pit latrines (very nice ones
at that). Cuisine (fresh fish, grilled chicken) is “gourmet camp food”, as another guest aptly (and rapturously) describes it on our last night.
Our stay melts away, a blur of swimming and paddling and snorkelling and lazing in the hammock. When it’s time to depart, we decide to get a lift on the motorboat carrying our bags this time — too lazy to paddle the 10km back to Cape Maclear. We wave goodbye, and I turn to face land. The bars of cellphone signal expand — reality beckons; so does home. Instead of the melancholy I expected, I feel a rush of something else, something insistent, iridescent. Four days unplugged and afloat in an island paradise has changed me, recharged me. I feel radiant and ready to face the world.
Alexander Matthews was a guest of Kayak Africa.