By Gabriella Gentil
On Safari with Wilderness
This spring, I travelled to my favorite camps (and our most luxurious) in Botswana. I started in the Okavango Delta with two nights at our newly-renovated Wilderness Vumbura Plains where, amongst other incredible sightings, I spent hours with a herd of 30+ elephants (three tiny calfs included) and witnessed a female cheetah hunt and kill for her two small cubs. Next, I hopped on a 30-minute bush flight to our iconic Mombo Camp where I followed a pack of thirty-seven wild dogs on a successful hunt. Later, I spent an hour of the sunset enjoying a hyena den full of cubs squealing and playing with their pack. My trip ended at Duma Tau, where I witnessed multiple sightings of elephant crossing the Linyanti River, and spent hours with four lionesses as they patrolled and drank from the river as the sun was rising. The Okavango Delta and Linyanti regions of Botswana are undoubtedly my favorite regions for safari due to the diversity of landscapes and density of predators and other wildlife, and I cannot wait to return!
Trip 1: Best of Botswana: The Okavango Delta and Linyanti
This is the quintessential luxury safari. Mombo Camp, located in the Okavango Delta, long known as “the Place of Plenty,” is our most iconic camp and property known for the concentration of plains game (antelope, zebra, etc.) and the predators that reside there as a result. It is widely known as one of the best game viewing concessions in Africa.
DumaTau Camp is located in the nearby Linyanti concession north of the Okavango Delta. It was re-built in 2021 on a lagoon that is active with wildlife year round. Linyanti offers a unique range of habitats including swamps, woodlands, and floodplains making it a hotspot for zebra, giraffe, and buffalo as well as lion, leopard, cheetah, and wild dog.
Trip 2: Namibian Desert Adventure
This safari begins at the newly-rebuilt Little Kulala to enjoy the landscapes of the famous Sossusvlei Desert. Activities include safari excursions through Sossusvlei, nature walks, and eco-sensitive quad biking. One of the most spectacular experiences is hot air ballooning above the sand dunes- an absolute must.
Next, you will fly to Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp where you will see desert-adapted wildlife (lion, elephant, giraffe). A three-night stay includes a day trip (return by light aircraft) to the The Skeleton Coast, a UNESCO World Heritage site where the desert meets the see.
The last stop is Serra Cafema. Set under trees along the Kunene River, it is the most remote camp in southern Africa. Highlights include respectful interaction with the semi-nomadic Himba community, nature walks, boating (water levels permitting), and low-impact guided quad biking.
Trip 3: Safari and Gorilla Trekking: Iconic Rwanda
After an overnight in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda (an very safe city with an amazing gastronomic and cultural scene), you will take a scenic helicopter ride to Magashi Camp, one of our newest properties located in Akagera National Park. Akagera is known for its high population of lion, which were reintroduced into the park in 2015 after a 20-year absence, as well as black rhino, which were reintroduced in 2017. Besides safari, your can enjoy boating trips and nature walks.
Next, take another helicopter ride to Bisate Lodge, adjacent to Volcanoes National Park, for one of the most iconic African wildlife experiences: gorilla trekking. The villas at ultra-luxurious Bisate Lodge are located on the slopes of eroded volcanic craters overlooking two enormous extinct volcanoes, Bisoki and Karasimbi.
As the world’s leading conservation and hospitality company, we are the proud custodians of our planet’s most significant wild places, each chosen to be part of our Collection for a specific purpose and all linked to protecting the land and life that exists there.
Our destinations are vast, remote and untamed, and represent true wilderness. With access to over 6 million acres of private land, we offer intimate wildlife encounters and experiences that will leave you changed forever.