Surreal and sublime, the Okavango Delta paints the Kalahari Desert in blue and green. Herds migrate hundreds of miles to enjoy the bounty, joining an already abundant cast of big cats, frolicking hippos, and unusual species. Come on a safari here and you'll quickly realise why it was handpicked as UNESCO's 1000th World Heritage Site.
Every day is different.
Africa's safari destinations have a habit of leaving us speechless. The Okavango Delta takes this to new levels. One morning you're paddling in a traditional wooden canoe down lush reed-fringed waterways, passing giraffe and kudu drinking from the banks. The next morning you're following a leopard that's been marooned on a palm island. Day after day we've watched lion prides clash with large herds of buffalo. And night after night we've been dining beneath the stars, admiring elephants and hippos silhouetted by the moon.
The best time to visit.
The Okavango Delta is one of Africa's flagship destinations and it would take months to see it all. Water falls in the Angolan Highlands before making a five-month journey into the desert, flooding the plains from June to September. These high-water months coincide with Botswana's dry season and are the favourite time to visit. Just as the desert is shrivelling, the Delta explodes with colour, becoming a haven for massive numbers of migratory animals; just about everything from the dreamy safari tick list can be found on an Okavango safari.
While the flooding is seasonal, many waterways and lagoons are permanent. The resident wildlife is exceptional all year round and we've enjoyed equally stunning safari experiences when visiting out of season, especially in Moremi Game Reserve, the big-game centrepiece of the Delta.
Explore both the wetlands and the drier lands.
To see the best of the Okavango, we usually recommend visiting both a wetland and drier area, combining safari on land with safari on the water. Many camps are set in their own private concession and we've always enjoyed how this provides an exclusivity to a world-famous destination.
The Okavango is the stuff of legend and the experience can't be rushed. Often you can only access your camp by light aircraft and boat. So take your time, explore different parts of the Delta, and lose yourself in the world's greatest oasis.