Luxurious Toka Leya Camp enjoys a prime location overlooking the Zambezi River. The east side of the camp is shaded beneath a canopy of trees, while the west side enjoys an open setting next to an ancient baobab tree. Wildlife around the camp includes elephants and crocodiles along the riverbanks and islands, and plenty of resident hippo that often create a ruckus nearby. A wide variety of birds are also on display.
The camp's 12 tents are raised on stilts and connected by wooden walkways to the main common area, minimizing the footprint on the land. Tent interiors utilize earthy hues in harmony with the natural environs. All have private shaded wooden decks with expansive views over the Zambezi’s braided channels. Each tent has individual climate control settings to ensure a cool summer sanctuary. Gauzy mosquito nets are draped over poster beds, and spacious en suite bathrooms have double-basin vanities and large showers. The camp’s shared central area incorporates a lounge with plush sofas and reading lamps, a bar, and a canvas-sheltered dining area complete with traditional pizza oven. A swimming pool is surrounded by a large wooden sun deck with lounge chairs overlooking the river.
Activities in the area include a Victoria Falls tour, sunset cruises, and guided nature walks and game drives in Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park, home to Cape buffalo, giraffe, zebra, wildebeest, impala and more. A special highlight includes the possibility of spotting a white rhinoceros in the park. Guests can also explore the town of Livingstone and its museums, and a nearby village. A visit to the village offers a chance to see how local people live, with insights into their culture and traditions. Other activities available at an additional charge include helicopter flights, canoeing, jet boating and whitewater rafting.
Linyanti Private Reserve, Botswana
Situated in the southern part of the Linyanti Wildlife Reserve in northern Botswana, Savuti Camp is built on the banks of the Savute Channel (yes, two spelling in this area), an elusive waterway that ebbs and flows over the years. This is the heart of a legendary wildlife region best known for its large number of predators, as well as one of Africa’s biggest elephant populations. These are Kalahari elephants, the largest elephant species.
Accommodating 14 guests in seven spacious walk-in tents, Savuti Camp is a small and intimate enclave in an isolated area, far from other visitors. Each elevated tent has its own bathroom with a large indoor shower, twin copper hand basins and a separate flush toilet. Four-poster beds are draped in gauzy mosquito netting and ceiling fans keep the air moving overhead. Look out onto the riverbed from oversized chairs on your private veranda, or pen a safari-inspired letter at your writing desk. Each room has a private safe. In the common area, relax in the lounge and enjoy fine meals in the separate dining room and pub, sheltered under reed and thatch. A plunge pool is also available for afternoon refreshment.
The Savute Channel has been in flux in recent decades, creating an ever-shifting habitat for a wide range of wildlife. It stopped flowing between 1980 and 2008, and what was a once hippo-filled river became wide-open grasslands. Curiously, in 2008, the Savute Channel once more became a deep, clear waterway harboring hippos, aquatic life, and myriad water birds. In 2016, the constant shift of the earth’s tectonic plates caused the Savute Channel to again become a dry wilderness. The erratic source of water creates both opportunities and challenges for local wildlife, which have to adapt to a shifting environment. Besides the normal plains game, the area has good concentrations of roan, sable antelope and southern giraffe. All the predators are found in the area—lion, leopard, cheetah, spotted hyena and wild dog. Game-viewing activities include day and night drives and walks with an armed guide. There are also a number of hides where guests can view animals quietly and safely away from vehicles.
Tubu Tree Camp
Okavango Delta, Botswana
Tubu Tree Camp is located in one of the largest areas of permanently dry land in the Okavango Delta. The camp is surrounded by a diverse mix of habitats, from lush grasses to mopane forests and dry Kalahari sandveld, ensuring excellent game viewing with a broad mix of species. Eight traditional canvas tents are built on raised wooden platforms to enhance the views over the scenic plains. In addition to an elegantly appointed bedroom, each tent has a private deck and en suite bathroom facilities with an outdoor shower open to the African sky. Guests enjoy meals in the main dining area or outdoor pub under the shade of a large marula tree. The pool and lounge area provide inviting spaces for relaxing, after explorations beyond the camp.
Activities at Tubu Tree vary throughout the year. During the winter months, when the floodwaters have poured down from Angola to their fullest extent, the floodplains fill and water activities are available. From roughly May to September, when the region is in flood, guests may enjoy boating, fishing and mokoro (dugout canoe) excursions. Day and night game drives in open 4x4 vehicles, and guided game walks, are also available year-round. An additional highlight is a visit to one or both of the wildlife-viewing hides in the concession.
Chitabe Lediba Camp
Okavango Delta, Botswana
Neighboring the Moremi Game Reserve in the southeast of the Okavango Delta, Chitabe Concession covers 28,000 hectares with a multiplicity of habitats, from savannah to forested islands and floodplains. Chitabe Lediba is a small and intimate camp within the concession – perfect as a private accommodation for small groups or families, as its two family units have adjoining bedrooms and en-suite bathrooms. All five spacious Meru-style tents are built on raised decks. En-suite bathrooms complement the outdoor shower "with a view." A dining area, lounge and pool have glorious views over the surrounding floodplains and a small lediba (remnant lagoon that has become a waterhole), after which the camp is named, where game comes to drink during the day.
Morning and afternoon game drives explore the area in search of its denizens, with the evening drive usually returning after dark in order to get a chance at spotting the shy nocturnal animals such as genet, civet, serval, porcupine and possibly aardwolf. Wildlife on view here includes elephant, buffalo, lion, leopard and cheetah and wild dog are sometimes found in the area. Guests should also see zebra, tsessebe, giraffe, kudu and impala.
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