More Elephants than You Can Shake a Stick At
Historically the elephants’ migration routes took in the Chobe River, Caprivi Strip of Namibia and the Zambezi floodplains in Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Thirty years ago during a liberation war that was under way in the Caprivi Strip, the elephants fell victim to mass poaching from the military of both sides.
Elephants stopped moving across into the Caprivi and instead gathered on the Chobe River which became their dry season feeding grounds due to the permanent water.
With the end of hostilities the elephants are crossing the Chobe River again.
Botswana has a low impact tourism policy, however, Chobe has been allowed to open to high impact tourism due to its location. With a number of large hotels and lodges on the river and with its closeness to Victoria Falls it is an area of heavy traffic but controls have been put in place to limit the impact. And there are more than enough elephants to go around.
The Best Time to Travel
For elephant lovers and safari fanatics, the great elephant concentrations on the Chobe River occur during the winter months of May through to September / October.
However for serious birding enthusiasts the Chobe area is spectacular in the wet summer months when the migrant birds are in full colour, and antelope start dropping their young.
Proclaimed 1968; 11,700km2, situated in the far north-east of Botswana, bordered to the north by the Chobe River. The Chobe's perennial waters rise in the northern Angolan highlands. Four physically and vegetationally distinctive areas - the barely discernible dry Savuti Channel, Linyati, Serondella and Nogatsaa. These include patches of scrub, grassy savannah plains and woodlands, including three forest reserves.
Each area known for concentrations of specific game. Savuti famous for lion and hyaena, Linyati for hippo and crocodile, and Nogatsaa and Serondella for elephant. Savuti's carnivores follow large herds of zebra, wildebeest, buffalo and impala that move through the area. Many types of animals seen including the fairly rare puku and Chobe bushbuck. 460 bird species, including raptors, vultures and inland waterbirds.
Chobe is game-viewing country, particularly in winter (March - July). November - December sees the migration of herbivores between the Chobe River and Savuti Marsh (and back between February and April). Game-viewing and bird-watching cruises on the Chobe River. Horse-riding at Kasane.
Several upmarket camps in Savuti, Linyati, Serondella and Nogatsaa. Camp sites also available. Kasane boasts a couple of top-flight lodges and a popular mid-range motel/lodge - all riverside.