It’s a warm evening in September as you enter the Boma restaurant for the first time. We sure you have heard so much about this quirky-themed eating experience just two kilometres outside Victoria Falls.
Before you get to the main entrance, you will already bewearing an African shawl which will be handed to you by a friendly chap as you jumped off the bus in the car park. Youcan feel the buzz inside as you sign your name in the guest book and make your way into the circular eating area.
There’s a roaring fire in the middle of the Boma which is open to the stars, and tall columns of wood hold up the thatched roof that covers raised seating areas. The place is full of happy guests and each person is wearing some type of African garment the atmosphere is alive with anticipation.
They will lead you to your table and sit down to take in the scene. It’s not long before an old man with a beard comes over and offers your a variety of cocktails. He doesn’t look like your average cocktail waiter but his drinks sound delicious anyway.
It’s buffet time and you make your way over to the line of people waiting eagerly with plates in hand. There’s a variety of meat on offer as the chefs fry up a storm right in front of me.
While you feast, the dancers will already already line up for what seems like quite a production. The drumming begins and four dancers line up and begin their routine in unison.
Their movements are strong and purposeful, each thrust and stomp perfectly is timed to the rolling African beat of the djembe drums behind. They leap into the air like springbok and their faces seem to burst with passion and expression. This is no ordinary show.
Once the show is over, the crew gets everyone involved and the next thing I have a drum in hand, beating away with the rest of the guests in the restaurant.
The mopane worms
As you head off back to the buffet to get some desert and on the way you will be intercepted by a man holding a bowl of brown, shrivelled things. Where he offers you a “mopane worm” with a big smile on his face.
“You’ll get a certificate as proof if you eat one,” he says.
“Ok, why not.”
It doesn’t taste too bad. Like a salty mix between biltong, beef jerky and dried fruit.
There are local sellers who sit in the middle of the Boma, thats where you can get them.
More than a restaurant
The atmosphere of the Boma is something that makes this place truly unique, and the combination of experiences; ranging from the food, to the staff, to the entertainment, leaves you wanting more. o