It feels odd to be posting about travel in a time where coronavirus means none of us can actually travel. It’s scary and crazy and just absolutely mad to see how this has impacted the world. It’s served to remind me how fragile things can be – both human and economic. We live in a truly global world and the impacts of this will be felt globally, for a very long time.
However, one of the things getting me through the days working from home with limited social contact (oh how I miss wine nights with my friends) is reminiscing and writing about my travels. I know travel isn’t important at this time, but future trips will mean even more when we all get to actually go on them! And for now I will continue to post about past trips, because reminiscing to happier times is a nice tonic. So, to Botswana we go…
Botswana is such a beautiful country, both due to its landscape which is defined by the Kalahari Desert and the Okavango Delta, and due to its people who are friendly, welcoming and warm.
When thinking about where to go for a safari in Africa, many choose South Africa – parks like the Kruger are undoubtedly amazing. Places like Namibia and Kenya are also firmly on the safari map. Zimbabwe is also trying to increase tourism to its national parks, following the end to Mugabe’s time in power (and is a good bet if you’re happy to trade a bit of economic instability for no crowds). However, to me Botswana has the edge and is without doubt one of the great safari destinations in the world. It is well established, and the country is a stable democracy meaning it’s safe for tourists. And its wildlife is epic.
You can reach The Okavango Delta in lots of different ways. The closest airport is Maun and you can fly directly there from Johannesburg or Cape Town. It’s then a road/boat transfer to the camp you choose. We actually came from Chobe National Park to the east so took an utterly terrifying and sick inducing light aircraft flight between the two. I’m sure the plane was sealed with brown tape – but luckily we survived to tell the tale.
We stayed in the Okuti Camp in the Moremi Game Reserve. This camp is almost like glamping, with the rooms being like big tents. It sits right in the Delta with gorgeous views out to the African landscape.
From the Camp, you are then allocated a guide who can take you out to explore the Delta. It’s such a vast expanse, listed as one of the 7 Natural Wonders of Africa and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The incredible wildlife you can see is truly spectacular and getting up close to the animals is something really special.
One of the things I love most about Africa is the sunsets, and the Okavango Delta is no different. You can go out on the water to experience the wildlife from the rivers, and also the most spectacular red and orange sunsets.
Like with all safaris, it’s best to head out at sunrise and sunset to make the most of the wildlife. This means early starts and back for breakfast with time to kill before going out for the next safari drive/boat cruise. In that time, the hotel has a lovely pool which you can swim in, a communal dining table to eat and meet other people visiting the area and some nice walks around the lodge grounds.
I think it’s safe to say, this place of the world is a true slice of peace and serenity in a busy, crazy world. It’s so special to see these majestic animals in their natural habitat and I only hope that future generations still have the opportunity to see landscapes and animals as we have.
Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed this post. Hopefully we can all get back to travelling soon – and in the meantime, stay safe.