26 February 2012
Solenta Aviation pulls out of Zimbabwe by WildZambezi.com Solenta Aviation, which, for the past two years has provided small aircraft charter services throughout Zimbabwe and scheduled services linking Harare and Victoria Falls with Bumi Hills, Kariba, Mana Pools and other remote destinations in the Zambezi Valley, has announced that it is suspending its operations from 1 May 2012. “Any reservations taken after 30th April 2012 will unfortunately be cancelled. We will be in touch with our clients to discuss other options and solutions regarding current bookings beyond May 2012”, says a Press Release issued by the company on 16th February. This is very disappointing news for visitors, travel agents and operators seeking air access into Zimbabwe’s lesser-known destinations like Kariba and the Zambezi Valley which are not currently serviced by an international airport hub like the one at Victoria Falls.
Alternative solutions are, however, springing into life to fill the gap left by Solenta.
1) The new Safari Logistics’ “Air Taxi Service” operated by African Bush Camps links Victoria Falls with Mana Pools and offers various destination hops along the way. This is a single-engine Cessna 206 service carrying four passengers. For more information see this link: New Air Taxi Service links Vic Falls-Hwange-Bumi- Kariba-Mana Pools.
2) Bumi Hills Safari Lodge starts a new twin-engine air service on 1 March 2012 with a 5-seater Baron 55 linking Victoria Falls with Bumi Hills and offering flexibility on additional hops to Kariba and other lakeside destinations. More information on this and a new Bumi boat transfer option will be published by Wild Zambezi shortly.