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Chobe National Park: The Ultimate Guide

Chobe National Park is located in the northern part of Botswana, near the majestic Okavango Delta. It is home to the Savute Channel as well as the Linyanti River Chobe is simply a must-see destination for wildlife enthusiasts.

Botswana Linyanti Ebony Chobe

Chobe was Botswana’s first national park and covers nearly 11,000km2. The park is renowned for having the largest concentration of wildlife in Africa, especially elephant and buffalo, who you might see congregating along the Chobe River.

Chobe offers a variety of adventures, including private river cruises, game drives, birdwatching, and extraordinary photographic opportunities.

Highlights of Chobe National Park

  • Home to the largest elephant population on Earth, more than 120 000.
  • Chobe River offers some of the most beautiful safari boat cruises anywhere in the world.
  • One of the most important concentrations of wildlife in Africa.
  • Chobe is a top-class birdwatching location with more than 450 species.
  • Birdwatching and extraordinary photographic opportunities

Wildlife in Chobe

Chobe is rich in wildlife. In the dry months, elephants and buffalo can be found along the riverbanks. The park interior is home to smaller numbers of greater and lesser kudu, impala, and plains zebra. You might also be able to spot lions and wild dogs. The floodplains are home to thousands of animals, which creates the perfect opportunity for photos, especially at sunset. Some of the smaller mammals, such as the Chobe subspecies of bushbuck, are less obvious. You can also expect to see Red lechwes in marshy areas, as well as Selous’ mongoose, and serval.

Elephants Drinking Wildlife

For the birdwatcher, Chobe has more than 440 bird species around the park. It has the highest concentration of Southern African raptor species, including the bateleur and vulnerable lappet-faced. The river’s most prominent bird is the endangered African skimmer. The banks of Chobe are dotted with burrows created by the amazing Southern Carmine Bee–Eater. The kori bustard, Africa’s largest flying bird, the Pel’s fishing owl and the Pallid Harrier are other notable species in the park

During the wet season, the wildlife moves into the deeper regions of the park. You’ll have a better chance at seeing big game on a boat or mokoro safari. This way, you will also be able to see some crocodiles, hippos and fish eagles. You might even see a herd of elephants drinking on the banks of the river.

Where to Go

Chobe is located in the north of Botswana and includes the Savute, Linyanti and Linyanti regions. We’ll highlight the significance of each of these regions below.

Linyanti Marsh

Linyanti can be found north of Savuti, in a corner within the Chobe National Park. Linyanti Swamp is the park’s most beautiful area. It is home to a wide range of wildlife and offers a tranquil atmosphere. The Linyanti river crosses Chobe’s north-western corner, and forms a swamp, which is fondly known as the Linyanti swamp.

Okavango Delta

Midway between Kasane, northern Botswana and the Okavango Delta is the Kwando and Linyanti Rivers. Faulting causes the river to change its course often. The Linyanti river follows the line of East Africa’s Great Rift Valley in its extreme southern extension.

With its papyrus-lined waters, large reed banks, and towering riverine forests, the Linyanti river is very similar to the Okavango Delta. Although the river forms a swamp, it is much smaller than the Okavango Delta, which covers more than 900 kilometres.

 

Our Camps in Linyanti

Savuti Marsh

The Chobe Riverside is a completely different experience than the Savuti, which is often dry, wild, and always surprising. The Savute Channel is 100km long and flows periodically. It follows no visible laws and flows only when it will, despite being dry for many decades. The answers may lie in tiny shifts in the tectonic plates beneath, or high levels of water in the Zambezi/Chobe.

The Savuti channel does not need to be flowing for you to have amazing wildlife experiences. This is a year-round destination that is well-known for its large concentrations of game. Savuti is well-known for its predators. This includes big cats like the leopard, lion and cheetah, as well as birds of prey. Spotted hyenas and their cold cries are a common sight. Many bull elephants spend their entire lives alone here. The area has several camps that provide waterholes for animals, which attract them in the dry season between May and October.

When to Go

Chobe National Park is a popular destination for dry-season game viewing. Most visitors visit Chobe National Park for its famous dry-season game viewing.

Hippos Botswana Chobe National Park Safari Camp

May and June are dry with cold nights, but temperatures rise quickly as the rainy season arrives. August and September offer spectacular game viewing under extremely hot conditions. If you are able to handle the heat, this is the best time to view a Chobe Safari.

The rains bring about a dispersal in game from the Chobe River region. However, the warm and rainy December-March summer months are best for bird watching and impala birthing season (great to predators!) To see the Savute Zebra Migration. Many safari experts agree that early summer is the best time to visit Savute.

How to Get to Chobe National Park

There are many entry points into the park. Your location, will determine which entry point you will enter through.Visitors from Kasane will find the main entrance at the Sedudu Gate in the north-east corner of the park. The Ngoma gate is the best entry point for paying your park fees if you are coming from Namibia.The southern entrance to Mababe gate is ideal for visitors arriving from Maun. It is also the route that connects with the Moremi Game Reserve.If you’re coming from Maun, you should use the southern gate at Mababe to get to the Savuti Marsh, which has a very hogh concentration of wildlife.

Our Camps Around Chobe National Park

Botswana Camp Map

Additional Chobe Facts You Should Know

Here are some interesting facts about Botswana’s most popular national parks

  1. There are four different areas in Chobe National Park, Savuti channel, Linyati wetlands, Serondella and Nogatsaa. Each of these areas have different wildlife landscapes and attract different groups of wildlife.
  2. The Savuti channel dried up completely in 1888, and only began to flow 70 years later, in 1957.
  3. Savuti’s terrain can be difficult to travel through by car, since the soil is often soaked in water. You may have to speak to your African safari expert about how you will be getting around on safari.
  4. Chobe  use to be trophy-hunting grounds and a source of teak wood, before it became a national park.
  5. Linyanti and Savuti have limited internet or mobile coverage. This could be your ideal Botswana safari, and the perfect opportunity to take a much needed detox.
  6.  Gobabis Hill, in the heart of Savuti, is home to several, ancient San rock paintings, which are estimated at 4000 years old.
  7. A major tsetse fly infestation hit Chobe National Park in the early 1940’s. This was one of the significant reasons for the park to be declared a National Park.
  8.  Chobe National Park has the largest concentration of elephants in all of Africa. You will find large herds gathering on the river banks, almost daily.
  9. Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burtorn got married for the second time inside the Chobe National Park in 1975.

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