The Okavango Delta is a large inland delta in a near pristine state, located in northwestern Botswana. Instead of draining into the sea, its waters drain into the desert sands of the Kalahari Basin. Permanent crystal clear waters create an exceptional rare and scenic beauty in the otherwise dry Kalahari Desert. Carefully controlled access to the inner Delta is by air only, with limited accommodations in temporary tented camps.
The Delta’s permanent marshlands and seasonally flooded plains are an integral part of a complex ecosystem that supports a unique biosphere. Populations of some of the world’s most endangered large mammals thrive here. It also sustains the world’s largest elephant population (130,000).
Small, chartered aircraft take us for a low level flight over the UNESCO World Heritage Property allowing us to view the wildlife from above. We land on a dirt track where our 4×4 open sided game viewing vehicles are waiting to take us to see the animals up close.
Concerned that ancestral lands were being depleted of wildlife, local residents took matters into their own hands and established this protected area, the only one in the Okavango Delta. With its rich and diverse eco-systems, Moremi Game Reserve is ranked as one of the most beautiful in Africa. The absence of fences around parks means African wildlife roams freely through the landscape.
From the safety of the Land Rover, you’re likely to see herds of elephants, wild dogs, large concentrations of lions intent on the migrating zebras, leopards, and cheetah. Where there are lions, there are also hyena’s, formidable hunters in their own right but also opportunistic, taking up to twenty percent of lions’ kills. In addition to all indigenous herbivores and carnivores, there are over 400 species of birds, and with the introduction of Black and White Rhino’s, the reserve is now a ‘Big Five” (leopard, rhino, lion, buffalo, and elephant) destination.
Game drive schedules are always dictated by what we see on the trucks, and the afternoon’s drive will bring us into camp near sunset. As a courtesy, showers—a bag of hot water hanging from a nearby tree—are available for those who want to freshen up.
Upon arrival your tent will be up, your sleeping cots, pillows, and duvets all inside. Our cooks create the evening’s meal on the open fire and we eat at a long candlelit table, retiring afterwards to the fireside to watch stars and listen to the night sounds.
Morning comes early in Africa. Even so, we’ll be up before the sun to grab a quick coffee, then hopping on the trucks again for our second drive in Moremi. By the time we arrive back at camp for lunch the tents will be down, and the vehicles packed, ready for our drive back to Maun.
These 24 hours in the Okavango Delta are a definitive highlight for all our guests as it allows us to show the splendor of African wildlife both from the air and up close from the ground.