Written by: Nelli Stranden
If we had to sum up Botswana, we would describe it as a land of stirring sunsets and incredible wildlife. Of course, there is so much more to the beautiful country with its strikingly diverse regions that range from the remote and mystical Makgadikgadi Pans to the lush Okavango channels. But toasting the sunset in one of its magical settings while watching in awe as wild animals show off in front of us is the essence of what brings us back to the destination time and time again. That is the Botswana we daydream of.
As sunsets and wildlife are the stuff of dreams, Liquid Giraffe asked two camp managers at two very different safari camps, which are part of their bespoke tours, if they would share their favourite sundowner spots and their wildest wildlife encounters.
Botswana is known for its stunning sunsets. Where is the best spot to watch the sunset near your camp?
Bujos, the camp manager at Ker & Downey Botswana’s Okuti Camp in the Moremi Game Reserve answered:
“Xakanaxa area has amazing spots where you can enjoy the sunset. Paradise pool is one of them. Imagine having a sip of gin and tonic whilst looking at the sun as it disappears through the dry acacia woodland.
Another place that comes to mind is Jessy’s pool, with the beautiful ponds of water in front of you and hippos popping out to show you their beautiful smiles. There is a special place in the middle of the water that makes you believe that you can see the end of the world.”
Cary, the camp manager of Great Plains Conservation Selinda Explorers Camp in Selinda Reserve had this to say:
“Our best sunset viewing spot is undoubtedly our Explorers Hippo Pool, ideally reached by canoe after a gentle meander down the Selinda Spillway from camp. It’s a great little spot, not only for it’s perfect view of the sun setting after a long, hot day out in the bush, but also for the abundance of wildlife that come to drink at the pool.”
Game viewing is a favourite activity for many visitors to the country. Can you describe your most memorable wildlife encounter?
Bujos: “The sighting of the fishing leopard in Savute always sticks out as one of the easier to remember. One afternoon as I was driving on the riverbank of the drying Savute channel my aim was to have a look at whatever came to have the last sip before the sunset. Usually you will find antelopes and elephants coming to the water but on the day our eyes caught something I had never seen in my entire life. A young leopard was learning to fish.
We spent the afternoon there, watching this lovely cat as it was jumping into the water, trying to catch a cat fish with each jump. By the time we left, the leopard was no longer spotted but black because of all the mud.”
Cary: “Sometimes the best action happens right in camp, and this is certainly the case at Explorers. One evening as the sun was setting, the waiter was lighting the candle chandelier hanging from the beautiful old mopane tree by the spillway, and the smell of sweet potato and coconut soup began wafting through camp from our little mobile kitchen. A herd of elephants began trumpeting and furiously splashing around in the water. Bucket showers were put on hold, shoes and clothes thrown on, and excited guests came running out from all four tents to see the commotion.
Our resident ‘Explorers Pack’ of eight wild dogs came tearing through the water after an impala, chirping excitedly and running right through the legs of a rather disgruntled herd of elephants. With lightning speed they killed the impala on a small, grassy island, just metres away from the guests. It was a beautiful sight that I shall certainly never forget.”
And that is why sunsets and wildlife are the magic behind Botswana’s allure.
- Subscribe to our newsletter.