Chobe National Park | Botswana Travel Tips & Reviews | Africa Point
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Chobe National Park
Elephant, Chobe National Park, Botswana
Chobe National Park
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Chobe National Park
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Chobe National Park

Snapshot

As you sip an ice-cold drink and watch the setting sun, you listen to the unique soundtrack of the African Bush; the distant roar of a Lion, the lonely call of a Hyena and the soulful cry of the Fish Eagle.  Then another sound intrudes - splashing, snorting, blowing and trumpeting as a huge herd of Elephant splash into the river just meters from your boat. Welcome to the Chobe experience!

 

Best Time to Visit:

The dry months (May to October) are the best time for game viewing.
 

Average Visitor Rating:

5 out of 5 'Pawprints' Based on 0 Review(s)
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Elephants for Africa!

The exceptional Chobe National Park (or just Chobe, to the locals) in the north-west corner of Botswana is renowned for its incredible density of Elephants, and if these remarkable pachyderms are a favourite of yours, this is the place to come and see them in all their majesty.  But marvellous Chobe is not just about the Elephant population, (although they are probably the primary draw-card); this Park is home to all the Big Five, and has one of the highest concentrations of game in all of Africa including some unusual antelope and plenty of predators.  

 

Have you been to Chobe National Park?

 

The Elephants of Chobe, Safari Cruises and other Chobe Park Highlights

The Elephants of Chobe

There are few other places on earth that can compete with Chobe when it comes to getting up close and personal to an Elephant in its natural environment.  Chobe boasts the highest concentration of Elephants in Africa, and the population is estimated to be about 70,000, so even a brief game drive will reward you with many sightings, usually heralded by a rustling and the sound of snapping branches as a herd quietly moves through the bush – how can such large creatures be so silent?  The Elephants that live there are all Kalahari Elephants, the largest of all the species, and they are more than thriving here – in fact, contraception is on the cards to limit further growth of the population as they are seriously impacting the environment, which is battling to support such large numbers.  The Elephants spend the dry months in the Chobe River and Linyanti River areas, and by the end of the winter there is very little left in the way of sustenance.  When the first summer rains have fallen, around November to January, they migrate over 200kms south, where there are now water holes and fresh grasses and trees to feed on.   Watching them cross a river is magical...they swim quite expertly, with their trunks held high like periscopes!

 

Once these seasonal pools start to dry out, the Elephants start their long journey back north to the Chobe River, their lifeline.

 

Safari Cruises

A definite highlight of any visit would be a game viewing cruise on the river where you will be treated to some of the most unusual wildlife viewing opportunities in Africa.  Watch huge herds of Elephant, sometimes numbering over a hundred, come down to drink, swim and generally enjoy themselves cavorting  in the water, while Hippos wallow and snort just meters from your boat.  Crocodiles sun themselves on the river banks, or lurk menacingly just below the surface of the water, opportunistically waiting for an unsuspecting thirsty animal to approach.  

 

Bird Watching

Bird watching is particularly good in Chobe, where over 450 species of birds have been recorded.  Along the river there are some wonderful opportunities to observe water birds such as the African Skimmer, the Giant Kingfisher and Green Backed Herons.  If you visit the Park after the first summer rains (in about November/December) there are large numbers of migratory birds who come here from the cold Northern regions to over-winter.

 

 

Safaris in Chobe National Park

A Chobe Safari is a great adventure! All the camps and lodges in and around the Park offer guided game drives, both morning and evening, and one of the ultimate highlights is the Safari cruise, a morning or evening 3-hour excursion along the river on a large and comfortable river boat.  Even better, charter your own small boat if you can...this way you can linger as long as you like when you come upon a great find!

 

Fit and fearless visitors can also choose a walking safari at a couple of lodges located in conservancies on the boundary of the Park; many believe this is the very best way to experience the thrill of wildlife viewing.  Night drives are also available at some of these private lodges.

 

Combined Safaris

The ultimate Safari experience  in this region would be to include the excitement of the Victoria Falls, the Caprivi Strip and the Okavango Delta in neighbouring Zimbabwe, Zambia and Namibia; your Tour operator can tailor-make the ideal itinerary for you depending on the amount of time you have available.

 

 

Other Activities in and around the Chobe National Park

The mighty Victoria Falls on the Zambezi River is the largest body of moving water in the world!  You can easily include a day-trip to the falls from Chobe, as it is only 75mins by road or a quick flight.  At Vic Falls there are endless activities to be enjoyed, especially for adrenalin junkies!  Choose from a sedate but unforgettable scenic flight over the falls (or helicopter flip) or scare yourself half to death and win ultimate bragging rights with a Bungee jump or White Water rafting adventure.

 

 

Accommodation at Chobe National Park

There is only one Lodge located inside the Park itself, but there are many accommodation options located on the border of the Park, most in extremely beautiful locations with excellent views and easy access to the Park or the river.  Those that have river frontage offer excellent game-viewing opportunities without even leaving the premises!

 

For something a little different, you can take to the river on a luxury houseboat.  These are fully equipped floating lodges, complete with all you would expect in terms of luxury and you only need to sit on your private patio to see the animals.  They also have small boats to take you closer to the riverbanks for an incredible water-based viewing experience.

 

 

How to Get There

Kasane is the closest town to Chobe and has regular scheduled and charter flights from Livingstone, Victoria Falls, Maun and Gaborone.  Savute and Linyati have their own airstrips for Fly-in charter flights.  It is about 75min drive by road from Livingstone in Zimbabwe.

 

 

Best Time to Visit  

Game viewing is always best in the dry months (May to September) when the animals are all forced to move to the river for water.  The grass is also shorter which makes for better viewing on the game drives.  However, after the first spring rains (around November/December) is the best time to see baby animals and migratory birds.



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