A Safari in Selinda Game Reserve

Welcome to Selinda Game Reserve, an extraordinary wildlife destination nestled in the heart of Botswana. As experts in the field, we have had the privilege of exploring this remarkable reserve firsthand. Today, we’re excited to share why Selinda Game Reserve should be at the top of your safari bucket list.

A couple canoeing in the Selinda Spillway

The ultimate in carefree exploration in Selinda Game Reserve, Image Credit: Selinda Explorers Camp

1. Pristine and Private Location

Known for its untouched wilderness and exclusivity, Selinda Game Reserve is one of our favourite hidden safari gems. The region thrives between the wetlands of Linyanti Wildlife Reserve and the legendary Okavango Delta. And it’s here that nature reveals one of its most spectacular creations: the expansive floodplain known as the Selinda Spillway. 

Giraffes crossing the waterways

Selinda’s Spillway connects the Okavango Delta to the Linyanti Swamps, Image Credit: Okavango Explorers Camp

The Spillway ebbs and flows, its floods dictated by the whims of rainfall, creating a whimsical spectacle of ever-changing waterways and attracting animals in abundance. Moreover, as a private concession, the reserve offers an intimate safari experience with limited vehicle access and a low number of guests. You’ll have the privilege of exploring vast stretches of wilderness, free from crowds and relishing the feeling of being immersed in nature.

Boat cruise on the Selinda Spillway

A private paradise virtually all to your own, Image Credit: Zarafa Camp

2. Diverse Habitats and Enthralling Scenery

One of the unique features of Selinda Game Reserve is its remarkable variety of ecosystems. From sprawling floodplains to lush woodlands and meandering waterways, the reserve showcases diverse habitats that attract a wide array of wildlife. The scenery creates a beautiful backdrop for your safari, making every moment a visual delight.

Elephants crossing the waterways in Selinda Game Reserve

A range of diverse habitats, including marshland, riverine woodland, savannah and more, Image Credit: Selinda Explorers Camp

3. Unparalleled Wildlife Encounters

From lions navigating river crossings to cheeky hippos asserting dominance, Selinda Game Reserve offers thrilling encounters with wildlife. Home to the endangered African wild dog, Selinda also provides a rare opportunity to observe these incredible creatures in their natural habitat.

African Wild Dog sighting while on a game drive

The animal population thrives in this remote oasis, Image Credit: Selinda Camp

With sightings of rare roan antelope, giraffe, buffalo in their masses, and the gentle giant elephant, Selinda Game Reserve captivates with its wealth of wildlife. We can also attest that, thanks to verdant vegetation and waterways, Selinda is a magnet for a menagerie of avian residents, making every moment a delight for the bird enthusiasts amongst us.

Wildlife in Selinda Game Reserve

See an abundance of species in this flourishing ecosystem, Image Credit: Selinda Camp

4. Immersive Safari Activities

Having ventured into the deepest corners of this extraordinary region, let us share a secret with you… Selinda Game Reserve offers an abundance of ways to explore its wonders. From exhilarating game drives and walking safaris to tranquil boat cruises and catch-and-release fishing, there’s an activity to suit every preference.

Game drive vehicle taking guests through the waterways

You’ll be treated to an intimate and exclusive safari, Image Credit: Okavango Explorers Camp

Imagine tracking a pride of lions through the bush, witnessing a leopard gracefully perched on a tree branch, or marvelling at the colourful birdlife that graces the reserve’s waterways while silently gliding in a canoe. These immersive experiences will allow you to connect with the natural world on a much deeper level.

Canoeing along the Selinda Spillway

Bear witness to wildlife wandering along the banks on a canoe safari, Image Credit: Selinda Explorers Camp

5. Limited Camps, Limitless Experience

Selinda Game Reserve offers a safari experience like no other, thanks to its limited number of camps that create an intimate and exclusive ambience for visitors. Seamlessly blending contemporary comfort with the natural elements, the camps provide a lovely fusion of luxury and wilderness. Without further ado, allow us to present our top picks.

Our Favourite Places to Stay:

Main bonfire area at Zarafa Camp

With the small number of camps, you’re treated to an intimate and exclusive safari, Image Credit: Zarafa Camp

Optimal Time to Travel to Selinda

To make the most of your safari experience in Selinda Game Reserve, it’s essential to consider the best time to visit. The dry season, from May to October, is generally regarded as ideal. During this period, the vegetation thins out, and animals gather around water sources, making wildlife sightings more frequent and concentrated.

Additionally, the cooler temperatures also ensure more comfortable game drives and outdoor activities. However, it’s worth noting that each season offers its own unique charm, so consult with our Travel Experts to tailor your safari adventure according to your preferences.

Zebras traversing shallow waterways

Wildlife interaction is at its best, Image Credit: Okavango Explorers Camp

Discover Selinda’s Untamed Splendor

With its exceptional wildlife encounters, exclusive and spellbinding landscapes, diverse habitats, exciting safari activities, and sublime accommodations, Selinda Game Reserve has it all. Get in touch with our Travel Experts, and let’s start planning your extraordinary journey to one of Botswana’s most coveted destinations.

Featured Image: Selinda Explorers Camp

Dining table set for two on the main viewing deck with elephants in the background

Five Times the Fun: Tim Sanders’ African Odyssey Continues

Setting off on his fifth African odyssey with Rhino Africa, Tim Sanders recently experienced a two-week adventure, braving the wilds of South AfricaBotswana and Zambia. With Allison, one of our exceptional Travel Experts, meticulously attending to every detail, his trip once again exceeded all expectations. Delve into Tim’s extraordinary expedition and discover why his profound admiration for Africa is ever-so evident.

“I spent the most glorious two weeks in Southern Africa under the superb guidance of Rhino Africa, who planned every step with total precision.” – Tim Sanders

Tim at the Blyde River Canyon

“The Blyde River Canyon view was unbelievable” – Tim, Image Credit: Tim Sanders

Tim’s Relentless Return to Kambaku River Sands

Returning to Kambaku River Sands for the fourth time, Tim was once again ecstatic with the lodge’s excellence. With its convenient location in Timbavati Game Reserve, just 30 minutes away from Hoedspruit Airport, Tim has always loved how easily accessible the lodge is. And, as per usual, Kambaku’s friendly staff, delectable cuisine, and cosy lodging left a lasting impression.

empty chair with side table adorned with tea and coffee, on the private outdoor viewing deck

Comfortable thatched suites with private viewing decks for observing animals, Image Credit: Kambaku River Sands

Tim was thrilled to witness the Big 5 and an array of other remarkable wildlife, including African wild dogs and a charismatic chameleon. The communal dining approach at Kambaku enhanced the camaraderie among guests, especially during the memorable Boma night, where staff and guests participated enthusiastically. 

“Kambaku continues to have the friendliest of staff and most superb food (and just the right amount too).” – Tim Sanders

Boma area with bonfire

At Kambaku, you can dine al fresco or alongside the riverbed surrounded by campfires, Image Credit: Kambaku River Sands

A Tranquil Haven and Panoramic Delights

Following his safari experience, Tim reveals the elegance of Oliver’s Lodge, a charming country house situated on the outskirts of White River, a small town near the Greater Kruger National Park. This peaceful retreat provided a welcome respite after days of thrilling safari adventures.

Additionally, while exploring the Panorama Route, Tim was pleasantly surprised by the breathtaking view of the Blyde River Canyon, an experience he describes as nothing short of unbelievable.

“Panorama Route was an unexpected blast as I really did not know what to expect.” – Tim Sanders

Viewing point of the Three Rondavels along the Panorama Route

The Panorama Route is a natural wonder in South Africa and one of the world’s most beautiful driving routes

Botswana is Brimming with Elephants

Returning to Ngoma Safari Lodge in Chobe National Park for the second time, Tim was enthralled by the flood plain in its full splendour. The lodge’s friendly staff and fellow guests created an inviting atmosphere, making Tim, a solo traveller, feel at ease. Tim was delighted by the abundance of wildlife sightings, particularly the numerous elephants and lions that roamed freely.

“The friendliest of staff and fellow guests; as a solo traveller it was a real pleasure to be asked to be with other guests.” – Tim Sanders

Dining deck with view of Chobe River and floodplains

Overlooking the Chobe River, Ngoma Safari Lodge blends with its surroundings, Image Credit: Ngoma Safari Lodge

A boat cruise along the river provided a unique perspective, allowing Tim to witness the captivating sight of elephants playing in the water. The lodge’s well-appointed rooms, complete with private plunge pools and breathtaking views, ensured Tim’s stay was nothing short of superb.

Tim on a river cruise with elephants nearby in the background

Chobe is known for its thriving population of elephants, Image Credit: Tim Sanders

Authentic Africa in Zambia

Tim chose Anabezi Camp in Lower Zambezi National Park for his first visit to Zambia, which perfectly embodied the essence of African life. The vibrant countryside, with locals dressed in colourful attire going about their day-to-day activities, left a lasting impression on Tim. A thrilling flight to the luxury camp in a four-seater aircraft added to the sense of adventure.

“It was my first time to Zambia, and will not be my last! I really felt the life in the countryside epitomised Africa.” – Tim Sanders

Zambian woman in colourful clothing

Locals in a village going about their day

Anabezi Camp’s ultimate luxury and personalised service impressed Tim with the game drives tailored to his preferences. Offering a plethora of safari options, including vehicle, boat, walking, and canoe safaris, the camp ensured every wildlife encounter was up close and unique.

The spacious rooms, waterfront terraces, and private plunge pools provided an idyllic retreat, while the sightings of leopards, lions, elephants, hippos, and crocodiles delighted Tim throughout his stay.

“I experienced brilliantly comfortable lodges, superb game drives, excellent cuisine and timely ground support.” – Tim Sanders

Beautifully furnished main deck area

The camp’s communal areas evoke a classic African style with a modern touch, Image Credit: Anabezi Camp

Further Unforgettable Encounters

Tim’s journey was filled with unforgettable moments that highlighted the true essence of Africa. Remarkable sightings included witnessing multiple generations of leopards, getting up close to a crocodile slipping into the Zambezi, and observing elephants joyfully playing in the Chobe River.

Mother leopard with her young cub and juvenal

A very rare sighting of a multi-generational leopard family, Image Credit: Tim Sanders

But it’s not just the abundance of wildlife that continues to captivate Tim’s heart – it’s the people he meets along the way. From our attentive Travel Experts like Allison, who ensure every detail is taken care of, to the friendly staff at each lodge who make him feel like part of the family, Tim has been embraced by the warmth and hospitality that’s uniquely African.

“This was my fifth time with Rhino Africa, and it definitely will not be my last! Five stars all around!” – Tim Sanders

Two elephants in the river

Elephants frolicking in the river, Image Credit: Tim Sanders

Here’s to Your Next Chapter, Tim!

As the sun sets on Tim’s latest adventure, he eagerly awaits his next, yearning to once again set foot on the hallowed soil of our extraordinary continent. However, he knows that this parting is only temporary, for Africa’s irresistible charm beckons him back to create a collection of even more extraordinary memories.

We extend a heartfelt invitation for you to immerse yourself in the resplendence of Africa, allowing it to seize your imagination. Contact us to help you weave your very own story that will leave you forever captivated by the spirit of Africa.

Le parc national de Chobe est connu pour sa population florissante d'éléphants

South Africa is the Greatest Country on Earth!

Nearly 30,000 experienced travellers have voted for their favourite destinations, airlines, and travel companies (among others) in this year’s Telegraph Travel Awards. And we’re over the moon to share that our wonderful Rainbow Nation was voted the greatest country in the world! South Africa is brimming with diverse cultures, languages, culinary experiences, landscapes and seascapes, wildlife and birdlife… Find out more about what makes it better than all the rest.

Scenic photo over vineyards in the Cape Winelands

Explore the Cape Winelands and many other scenic landscapes in South Africa

South Africa, the Greatest Country in the World

South Africa might be at the bottom of the world map, but it’s at the top of the Telegraph’s list of best countries. Considering the kaleidoscope of landscapes and experiences, our home is truly the world in one country.

Expect a world-class Big 5 safari experience in Kruger National Park while immersing yourself in pure luxury at some of the most famous private safari lodges.

Indulge in award-winning wine and unique culinary experience in the Cape Winelands, where every corner is Instagram-worthy! Picture-perfect moments await you here, framed by vineyards and dramatic mountain ranges. 

Clifton 4th Beach dotted with umbrellas and beach-goers

Clifton’s beaches are the place to be during the holiday season in Cape Town

Then there are the world-famous beaches of our home, Cape Town. Clifton and Camps Bay are worthy of their praises. Hues of blue water glitter in the sun and wash up on champagne-hued sandy beaches, almost as if bowing down to the majestic Table Mountain and Twelve Apostles mountain range.

South Africa even has its own version of the Garden of Eden, known as the Garden Route. Emerald mountains wing lush green forests and winding roads, with the tanzanite Indian Ocean on either side. It’s the ultimate self-drive destination!

Robberg Nature Reserve along the Garden Route, South Africa - voted the greatest country in the world

Our Garden Route is a paradise for nature lovers and families

Oh, but wait, the good news doesn’t end here. Not only was South Africa lauded as the best country on Earth, but three other African destinations also made the top 10, namely Maldives, Kenya, and Botswana.

The Idyllic Maldives

Reaching third place in the Telegraph Travel Awards, the Maldives is a place of dreams, love, and adventure. As translucent waters encircle the string of islands, you can expect to find some of the best diving and snorkelling sites in the world as you explore gardens of coral. 

Back on land, marvel at the intricate decorations and Quranic script on the country’s oldest mosque in Malé, Hukuru Miskiy, and stroll in the old bazaar area. Wondering when to visit this island paradise? Find out more in our blog post about the best time to travel to the Maldives.

Photo: Bienvenido al paraíso, Crédito de la imagen

Welcome to paradise, Image Credit: Maldives Manafaru Beach House

Wildlife-focused Kenya

In seventh place, Kenya offers a front-row seat to the spectacle of the Great Wildebeest Migration, when more than two million animals – including zebra, antelope, and gazelle – travel across the plains to follow the rainfall in search of greener pastures.

The scenery of the Maasai Mara National Reserve, Amboseli National Park, Lake Nakuru, and the shoreline embrace mountains, forests, deserts, and waterscapes. It’s also the ideal destination for a hot air balloon safari!

Rinocerontes desfrutando de um lanche saboroso no Parque Nacional do Lago Nakuru

East Africa should be on everyone’s bucket list

Remarkable Botswana

Botswana’s spectrum of contrasting landscapes and wildlife makes it a premier safari destination. At number 10 on the list, our neighbouring country has grown in popularity.

The veins of the Okavango Delta create a watery web bustling with wild- and bird life, including antelope, lion, leopard, and the African wild dog. Furthermore, there’s the home of the gentle giants, Chobe National Park, well-known for its thriving population of elephants.

In contrast, the Kalahari Desert is probably one of the most untouched wilderness areas in the world and features enormous salt flats, the Makgadikgadi Pans. Expect vibrant sunsets and night skies drenched in stars.

Elephant drinking in Botswana, one of the greatest countries in the world

Explore Botswana’s wilderness with us

It’s Time to Visit the Greatest Country in the World

Seeing four destinations from the same continent under the top 10 of the greatest countries on our beautiful planet is impressive! Besides feeling very chuffed about the performance of our home continent, we’re also excited to share our travel expertise with you. The entire Rhino Africa Crash lives, breathes, and loves Africa.

So, if you were looking for a sign, waiting for a confirmation from the universe, or for the African stars to align… Well, the time is now! Contact our Travel Experts to plan your luxury African adventure with us today.

blyde river canyon sunrise

Chief’s Island: Where All The Wildlife Go

Welcome to Chief’s Island in Botswana, the crown jewel of the Okavango Delta and a sanctuary for an astonishing array of wildlife. As the largest island in the delta, Chief’s Island, holds the key to an unrivalled wildlife experience. Join us as we unveil the captivating secrets that make this destination a true haven for nature enthusiasts.

Mokoro safari along the shallow waterways in and around Chief's Camp

Experience the Delta in the most authentic way possible, Image Credit: Oddballs’ Enclave Camp

Location and How to Get There

Chief’s Island in the Okavango Delta is located within the pristine Moremi Game Reserve. To reach this remote wilderness, in most cases, you’ll have to catch a light aircraft from Botswana’s Maun International Airport to a nearby airstrip. From there, a thrilling game drive or a short boat transfer will bring you to the Chief’s Island lodges.

Elephant sighting on viewing deck

The game viewing opportunities at Sanctuary Chief’s Camp are awe-inspiring, Image Credit: Sanctuary Chief’s Camp

Why is Chief’s Island a Wildlife Mecca?

When the delta’s waters surge, Chief’s Island becomes the largest area of refuge for countless animals. It’s here, in this extraordinary setting, that you’ll encounter the richest concentration of wildlife in Botswana.

You’ll find lion, leopard, buffalo and elephant roaming freely. And, for those seeking rare sightings, both the black and white rhino grace these lands. Additionally, with a stroke of luck, you may even catch a glimpse of the endangered African wild dog, adding a touch of intrigue to your adventure.

Mother leopard with cub

Chief’s Island is home to the Big 5 and a wealth of other wildlife, Image Credit: Wilderness Mombo

Yet, the wildlife encounters on Chief’s Island extend far beyond African wild dogs and the famous Big 5. In fact, there are almost too many species to list! Here, you can witness zebra, giraffe, numerous antelope species dotting the landscape, flourishing birdlife in the skies, and so much more!

Lion and antelope standing in a grassy-area on Chief's Island

There’s no end to the array of animals you’ll find on Chief’s Island, Image Credit: Wilderness Little Mombo

Chief’s Island Activities

Discover a world of safari activities that will keep you captivated during your stay on Chief’s Island. Prepare to get up close and personal with throngs of wildlife on sensational game drives, intimate nature walks, bush breakfasts, brunches and lunches, and, of course, classic boat and mokoro excursions.

While the availability of mokoro and boat trips may vary depending on the season and water levels, rest assured that our team will be there to assist you in planning your trip to ensure you make the most of these unique experiences. We’ve been to the Okavango Delta many times and know exactly what experiences you shouldn’t miss!

Picnic in the wilderness

From game drives and walks to mokoro safaris and bush picnics, enjoy a host of activities, Image Credit: Wilderness Little Mombo

Our Favourite Chief’s Island Lodges

As a very secluded and exclusive destination, Chief’s Island offers a limited but exceptional range of camps and lodges. However, whether you’re looking for a lap-of-luxury escape or something with a little rustic allure, Chief’s Island has the perfect lodgings for you. Here’s a selection of our personal favourites.

1. Sanctuary Chief’s Camp

Found beneath a grove of jackalberry trees, Sanctuary Chief’s Camp offers a remote oasis where you feel like you’re the sole human presence for miles. Moreover, the camp has been designed in a “safari chic” style and boasts a number of facilities. 

Views of the delta from the camp's viewing deck

Relax and appreciate the views of the Okavango Delta, Image Credit: Sanctuary Chief’s Camp

The bar and library area offers a refined space for relaxation, while the extended dining room and pizza deck allow you to delight in delectable creations. Alternatively, if you’re seeking a bit of rejuvenation, a tranquil spa and well-equipped gym await, while a kids’ playroom ensures your little ones have their own adventures.

Notably, Sanctuary Chief’s Camp’s accommodations are just as impressive, with big bush pavilions and luxury suites, each enjoying its own private dining area, outside seating area and a terrace pool – all ideal for absorbing the surrounding nature and wildlife passing by.

Plunge pool and outdoor deck

You can often view game without even leaving camp, Image Credit: Sanctuary Chief’s Camp

2. Mombo Camp and Little Mombo Camp

For those seeking an authentic African safari, Mombo Camp and Little Mombo Camp are the ultimate choices. Perched on elevated platforms, these two camps treat you to some of the best views of the Okavango Delta. Moreover, embracing their historical roots, both camps proudly preserve the traditions of “old-world” safaris.

Firepit area overlooking delta views at sunset

A perfect choice for those interested in a rich and immersive African safari experience, Image Credit: Wilderness Mombo Camp

Tucked away in a verdant thicket of towering mangosteen and fig trees, Mombo Camp’s spacious wood and canvas suites beckon with their plunge pools and expansive decks, offering sweeping vistas of the flourishing floodplains. Additionally, other facilities include a gym, spa, viewing deck and pool area, as well as a hide.

Outdoor private pool deck

An in-room massage treatment is a great way to recharge and relax, Image Credit: Wilderness Mombo Camp

Designed for exclusive-use groups and connected to its larger sibling, Mombo Camp, by a raised wooden walkway, Little Mombo maintains its self-sufficiency with its own lounge, dining area, firepit, boma, bar, and plunge pool. Its three spacious canvas rooms exude elegance and are exquisitely equipped with their own lounge, sala, verandah, and opulent bathroom.

Women enjoying the serenity of her private veranda and day bed

Little Mombo allows you to feel as if you have it practically to yourself, Image Credit: Wilderness Little Mombo

3. Oddballs’ Camp and Oddballs’ Enclave

Bordering the Moremi Game Reserve on a small island just off the edge of Chief’s Island, you’ll find Oddballs’ Camp and Oddballs’ Enclave. These two remarkable camps have been meticulously designed to leave the lightest possible footprint on the environment.

Viewing deck

Raised viewing decks overlooking the Delta, Image Credit: Oddball’s Camp

What truly sets these camps apart is the sole provision of a personal guide for each pair of guests. These guides are not only intimately familiar with the area but were also born and raised here, granting them a wealth of knowledge about the intricate local culture and the fascinating dynamics of the ecosystem.

Dedicated guides offer fascinating insight into the complex ecosystem as well as the local culture, Image Credit: Oddballs’ Camp

In terms of accommodation, Oddballs’ Camp presents elegant ensuite tents perched on raised decks, providing an elevated vantage point to admire the breathtaking delta. What’s more, the camp features a central bar and lounge area where you can unwind and socialise.

Tented room

Al fresco en-suite tents are built on elevated decks, Image Credit: Oddballs’ Camp

On the other hand, at Oddballs’ Enclave, the smaller, more exclusive counterpart to Oddballs’ Camp, you’ll find only a handful of “mini-Meru” tents, carefully crafted to provide a cosy and peaceful retreat. The emphasis is on tranquillity and privacy, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the wild surroundings and enjoy a true sense of seclusion.

Tented room interior with view

A more intimate and secluded offshoot of its sister camp, Oddballs’, Image Credit: Oddballs’ Enclave

Discover the Enchantment Chief’s Island for Yourself

The captivating wonders of Chief’s Island await! With its unrivalled wildlife encounters, stunning landscapes and lodges, this is a destination beyond compare. So, what are you waiting for? Start planning and delve into the secrets of this wildlife mecca, where each moment is filled with unapparelled natural splendour. 

Chief's Island in the Okavango Delta