Seldom does a single nation offer so many different ecosystems and regions, but Botswana — the landlocked country in the southern portion of Africa — manages to do just that. From water-based activities and exploration to some of the continent’s most sustainable tourism sites, Botswana is a treasured destination where one can enjoy many experiences all within its borders.
At Tribù, we recommend dedicating a good portion of time during a visit to Botswana to allow for exploring the wide variety ecosystems found there. Known across Africa for its safety and stability, the country offers a vast array of experiences; one day you might explore one of Botswana’s many deltas, while another you’re embarking on water-based travel via mokoro (canoe-like boat). The next, you can enjoy traditional game viewing, followed by a desert experience including tribal influences and culture. In short, this single destination offers the unique opportunity for a highly eclectic itinerary.
Tribu’s founder, Marni Granston, visited most recently in December and noted a few of her top 5 experiences for anyone considering travel to Botswana in 2019 — and beyond.
Makgadikgadi Pans — Jack’s Camp
Head to Eastern Botswana and the Makgadikgadi Pans — giant salt pans offering pristine views and wildlife. In the midst, find Jack’s Camp, which brings the feel of a bygone era with its green canvas tents and impeccable interior décor. The look is reminiscent of an old English safari with its luxe textiles, drapery and wooden furnishings. Jack’s story is intriguing as well. As the camp’s namesake, Jack Bousfield, was an avid safari leader in the 1960s and died in a plane crash on the site where the camp now sits. His son has carried on his legacy through the extraordinary experience Jack’s Camp offers.
Here, in the center of the pans, the sky has no light pollution, making it perfect to lay beneath the stars with a sundowner in hand. By day, visitors can take quad bikes across the terrain in search of native meerkats, or can interact with the bushman tribe that lives near the property — an unusual experience in Botswana, where tribal life is typically rare. From stargazing to quad safaris, the experience here is marked by elements of surprise throughout.
Marshes of Linyanti — Heli Safari and Linyanti Bush Camp
Known for its huge herds of elephant and buffalo, we love to experience the marshes of Linyanti by helicopter safari. Here, visitors can fly over the herds just before sunset, and land for a sundowner and BBQ overlooking the marshes. The journey will delight photography buffs as the birds-eye vantage points are abundant for viewing the natural wildlife below.
Linyanti Bush Camp offers an intimate safari experience, with just six luxury tents. Bordering Chobe National park, the camp sits on the banks of the Linyanti Wetlands, which draw a wide array of wildlife for up-close encounters.
The “Garden of Eden” Wildlife Experience — Duba Plains Camp
Nestled in the heart of the Okavango Delta, Duba Plains Camp is owned by National Geographic filmmakers, conservationists and explorers who selected a special site for wildlife viewing. Here, the density of wildlife alone is breathtaking; Botswana’s own “Garden of Eden.”
Visitors to the camp, which comprises five bespoke tents designed to blend into their surroundings and evoke a 1920s safari era, will enjoy the extraordinary array of wildlife from elephants to lechwe, buffalo, hippo, antelope and more. Here there are also unusual Kalahari species like aardwolf and aangolins, which will delight, entertain and surprise even the most experienced safari-goers.
The Okavango Delta by Water — Jao
A unique combination of elements, Jao is traditional water-based delta experience meets the opulence of a Balinese treehouse-style camp (and full spa!) in the bush. The traditional experience relies on travel through the delta by Mokoro — or the local shallow canoe-style boat native to Botswana. Here, travelers can traverse the many shallow water channels via guided Mokoro to see local wildlife and miles of terrain.
The camp, Jao, provides a world-class spa experience in the middle of the bush with the backdrop of treehouse-style accommodations and luxury safari surroundings. The highly unusual and unexpected combination is a unique way to experience one of Botswana’s most treasured elements.
Elephant Viewing on the Chobe River — Chobe Game Lodge
Tucked away from the area day trippers who tend to flock to the Chobe area, Chobe Game Lodge is a secluded getaway within Chobe National Park. The area is a haven for photographers and wildlife enthusiasts as it holds the highest concentration of elephants.
The Lodge is very forward-thinking in its approach, with all female guides and a focus on sustainability. Visitors can board one of the Lodge’s electric vehicles for a land-based safari, or one of the electric-powered boats for traversing the river. Among those electric boats, which maintain the peace and tranquility of the area with their quiet approach, three are also solar-powered.
Elephant viewing at Chobe River is a major draw, while the Moroccan-style Lodge is a quiet, five-star refuge centered around eco-tourism and safari — by land or by water. This cutting-edge site is sure to please anyone seeking solace in the midst of one of Africa’s most exciting destinations.
Contact a Tribù travel specialist today to start planning your safari to Botswana at email@example.com or 858-201-3079.