Situated in the heart of the Okavanga Delta, Botswana’s Ker & Downey-operated Shinde is an old-school camp. Though not as sumptuous as some of the more top-end modern luxury competition, it’s charming, down to earth and in 2015 was renovated to increase the comfort levels.
Shinde sits at the edge of an area of lagoons and other waterways, amongst stands of ebony and mangosteen trees. The main camp is a multi-level, treehouse-style affair, with a lovely open-sided dining level at the top and a series of cascading mezzanines that provide numerous semi-private venues for relaxation. There is plentiful decking and stretches of canvas and thatch, also, for in-camp wildlife-watching, a plunge-pool and a relaxed but amply-stocked bar where local beers, spirits and soft drinks are available free of charge. There is also a small ‘shop’ selling local wares, some produced by Shinde staff and guides.
Accommodations at Shinde comprise eight classic safari tents, all of which are raised and afford breath-taking views over the open floodplains or the mysterious waterways of the Delta. All rooms are spacious. Each includes private decking, twin beds that can be combined into a double upon request, flush toilets and large showers, and offer also appealing and quirky touches like a decanter provided for pre-meal drinks and home-baked confectionary in the rooms. The décor has all the comfort of a western hotel but feels properly African, with plenty of dark woods and local crafts alongside the fresh linens and running water.
Activities at Shinde include mokoro rides, game drives, guided walks, fishing and night-drives.