Africa Part II – Chobe National Park

Last year – October 16 to be exact – I (un)officially became the luckiest person I know.

Why, you might ask? This is why:

Capture

 

Yep, I was the lucky winner of the epic #ThisIsChobe live twitter safari campaign for 2014 and scored myself a 7 night luxury safari in Chobe National Park and return flights from Johannesburg to Kasane for two (yes, my husband was excited too!).

 

The campaign, run by the talented Stuart from Capturing Africa Journeys and James from Chobe Game Lodge along with all the very generous participating companies, was an epic event in itself. From dawn until dusk (Botswana time) people around the world were treated to a virtual safari of Chobe while participating in fun Q & A’s throughout the course of the day. I had so much fun participating in the twitter safari that winning the prize was just an added (albeit a life changing one) bonus!

 

The prize itinerary went like this:

2 nights at Chobe Elephant Camp

3 nights at Chobe Game Lodge

A photo safari on the Chobe River with Pangolin Photo Safaris

2 nights at Savute Safari Lodge

 

And more mouth-gaping wildlife encounters than I could have ever hoped for!

 

Each of the lodges was just stunning, and the staff more than welcoming. The knowledge of the safari guides was unbelievable and their passion for Botswana and its wildlife contagious. The Pangolin Photo Safaris tour was an incredible afternoon spent marvelling at, and photographing, wildlife and enjoying the peaceful experience that is floating down the Chobe River.


I cannot even put into words how amazing Chobe is. It truly is a destination you have to visit in person to really understand the magic that emanates from this part of the world. The amount of wildlife – particularly elephants – in and around the park is astounding, though not surprising when you learn how dedicated Botswana is to preserving this unique sanctuary. As if you can’t already tell, I’m besotted.

 

While in Chobe National Park I had more exceptional experiences, and created more surreal memories, than I can count.

 

Here are a few of my absolute favourites from the trip:

 

Favourite animal: Elephant

 Favourite experience: Having morning tea on the banks of Chobe River while watching a herd of elephants bathe and play a few hundred metres away

 Favourite out-of-the-ordinary experience: Clearing the runway of wildebeest for a flight that was about to land in Savute

 Favourite surprise: A private candlelit dinner at Chobe Game Lodge

 Favourite guide: Mike from Chobe Elephant Camp. Seriously, that guy knows everything!

 Favourite photograph from the trip: Really hard choice, but if I have to choose it would be my shot of a lion cub resting in a tree in Savute

 Favourite animal encounter: Watching a pride of lions hunt impala (unsuccessfully….)

 Favourite view: Elephants on the Chobe River from the deck at Chobe Game Lodge

 Favourite staff at the lodges: Bee, our waitress and all around beautiful person, at Chobe Game Lodge

 Favourite smell: The wild sage in Savute

 Favourite activity: My afternoon with Guts at Pangolin Photo Safaris on Chobe River. The photo opportunities on this tour are ridiculous and Guts’ knowledge and advice is second to none

 

Here is a look at my week on safari in Chobe in photographs:


(More on my time in Chobe can be seen in the blog I did for Africa Geographic ‘The magic of Chobe’)

 

 Chobe Elephant Camp

Game Drive with MIke

Morning tea by the river

Ellie swim

Chobe plains

Buffalo

Ellie baby 1

Ellie bums

Giraffe 1

Lone ellie

Lion, young male

Elephant camp fire

Me and Ellies Chobe Deck

Lion 1

Impala watching lions

Lilac Breasted Roler

Half wet ellies

Ellies on Pangolin

Me and Gutz Pangolin

Baboons grooming

Bee eater

Caramel icecream

Chobe river sunset 2

Ellie hug

Ellie drinking on the river

Chobe storm

Ellie family drinking

Ellie mud bath

Flight to Savute

Savute Airport

Savute Safari Lodge Room

Savute watering hole

Ellie sunrise Lion cub in a tree Savute lions through sage Savute sunset Sunset fire

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4 thoughts on “Africa Part II – Chobe National Park

  1. Thanks for sharing your Chobe experience Sarah. You took so many beautiful photos that perfectly capture the essence of Chobe. I am also delighted to read that you had so many wonderful experiences with the people you met along the way. The staff really do make all the difference. Going on safari is about so much more than just the wildlife and based on your comments above, you truly did experience the very best of Chobe.

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