A one of a kind stay on the Chobe River

Posted on 25 April 2019

A stay at Chobe Water Villas offers a wide-ranging experience of taking in the ecosystem of the Chobe River and the Chobe National Park.

The balcony on the villa at Chobe Water Villas. Photograph by Welcome Lishivha.

The Chobe National Park is named after the Chobe River that forms the northern boundary and covers about 11700 square km. The area boasts four different ecosystems, which range from the river, the swamp and seasonal marshland area, the floodplains, and woodlands. The park is known largely for its high population of elephants, buffalo and being home to over 450 bird species. The birdlife includes pelicans, egrets, cranes, bustards, cormorants, the African fish eagle and many more. Chobe is an ideal spot for birdwatching during migration season, as many of the bird species are migratory.

One of the most memorable things about my recent visit to the area, was the manner in which the elephants slap tufts of long grass across the water before they start chewing it. I loved this.  I experienced this on a boat cruise on the Chobe River along the banks of Chobe National Park. The park is sandwiched between Zimbabwe, Zambia and the Namibian borders. Upon arrival in Kasane I was transported to the Chobe Water Villas on a calming boat ride that gave me a glimpse of what to expect.

Chobe Water Villas, lies on the Namibian side of the border overlooking the Chobe River. From the balcony in my villa, I could see elephants, buffalo and various bird species, which were a bit far away to identify, circling in swirling motion above the water.

An elephant spotted at Chobe National Park. Photograph by Welcome Lishivha.

That afternoon we set out on a safari and sunset cruise. Despite the tranquil environment, with the boat floating effortlessly across the water, I felt a jolt of fear shoot through my body as we passed elephants up close and crocodiles only two meters away. The elephant sauntered past nonchalantly – fortunately I had the camera behind which to ‘hide’.

That night as I lay on the comfortable bed in my villa, the sensation of floating on the river remained with me. On that bed, I only hadto tilt my head up and look through the open curtains to enjoy a view of the river. The rooms, although very minimalistic and inspired by nature, are well furnished with a modern touch that’s not typical in my experience of staying in accommodation under a thatched roof.

A view of the villas from the boat cruise. Photograph by Welcome Lishivha.

In the most peaceful state imaginable I closed my eyes and drifted to sleep to the orchestral sound of elephant, buffalo and hippo calling out to one another.

Spotted a giraffe munching on a tree. Photograph by Welcome Lishivha.


Stay here:

Cost: Take advantage of the PAY 2, STAY 3 package special for SADC residents until 30 June 2019. From R16,650 per person sharing and children between 13 and 17 years pay 75% of the adult sharing rate. The rate includes return flights from Jo’burg, transfers, all meals, all day access to the coffee station with a selection of beers, wines, soft drinks, local spirits, as well as two of the following daily activities: a morning boat cruise on the river, a sunset cruise, a cultural tour a game drive through the Chobe National Park. Chobe Water Villas is a year round destination and a great tag on destination to the Okavango Delta and Victoria Falls. Looking for a trip to Botswana? Send us your enquiry here.

A view of the river from the boat cruise. Photograph by Welcome Lishivha.

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