Flying in a five seater light aircraft over the world famous Okavango Delta in Botswana to Zarafa Camp, a member of the exclusive Relais & Chateaux portfolio, in the Selinda Reserve was a real adventure! It really is no wonder that luggage restrictions apply, as the plane was tiny and with the five of us including the pilot, not a lot of space. It was such a treat to see the Delta from above and to experience its vastness and beauty, as well as spotting animals wandering freely below undisturbed, with no idea that we were watching them. On landing at the strip we were greeted warmly by Isaac our guide armed with some refreshing and welcome cool drinks. Immediately we were given a choice – to head straight for camp or take a game drive and check in later on? With no hesitation we were eager to head off in the safari jeep for our first game drive of the day to see what we could find, never dreaming of what lay ahead so soon after our arrival. We came across a pride of lions with cubs, a pack of wild dogs and lastly a female leopard resting under a tree with her cub playing nearby, while the remains of an impala kill was safely tucked away on some branches above. Wow, what a start to our time here….
We arrived at Zarafa Camp to a beautiful welcome and a lovely afternoon tea spread before us before being escorted to our ‘tent’. We were blown away, never having experienced such a wonderful exotic kaleidoscope of style and comfort in such a remote setting in the middle of the Botswana bush. The air-conditioned canvas rooms were huge and lavish, filled with every conceivable feature to make our stay luxurious. A copper bath, internal shower, open fire, double vanity, lounge area with couch, writing desk and private bar with complimentary drinks, as well as a completely private external shower positioned across the wooden deck under a huge tree – exhilarating! With air conditioning set in the overhead canopy of the bed that cooled the air as we slept, this was a tented experience like no other.
On top of this we had the complimentary use of a pair of Swarovski binoculars and a Canon digital camera to take out on drives during our stay, and the hundreds of photos we then took were downloaded before leaving on to a DVD to take home. What a marvellous bonus, such great service!
The food and service at Zarafa Camp were exceptional, as one would expect in a property of this calibre, but it was the genuine warmth and friendliness from all the staff that blew us away. The game drives were amazing and Isaac’s knowledge, personality and professionalism were fantastic. The Zarafa experience was second to none, and certainly a trip of a lifetime!
Travel before 31st May 2017, and you will receive complimentary flights within Botswana to and from Zarafa Camp.