The paradise of elephants is in Africa … it seems trivial to say, but it is not. It is no longer obvious and certain that this species can be found on the great continent, because for years now it has been at risk due to indiscriminate hunting. In Botswana, and in particular in the Chobe National Park, though it is protected to the point of having grown enormously. Here, in Chobe, live the largest number of elephant families in Africa. Definitely a good reason to choose a safari in this region.
Chobe National Park
A long-time hunting region, in the 19th century Chobe became a property of English colonists who exploited the privilege too much. The extermination of almost all animals led to the decision, in the 20th century, to protect the region by transforming it into a national park. It was 1960 when the first foundations of the project were finally laid and seven years later i became a national park.
At the beginning, the local populations remained on the territory, but were later invited to move to its margins in order to leave free space only to the animals. Since the 1980s, Chobe’s wildlife has increased and especially since 1990, elephant populations have increased too.
The park covers over 10,000 sq km of territory, divided into three specific areas:
- Serondela, an area of forest and grassland that runs along the Chobe River almost to Victoria Falls. Here live mostly elephants and buffaloes;
- Savuti Pond, a remnant lagoon of a prehistoric lake where lions, cheetahs, zebras and again many elephants still live today, together with impalas and warthogs;
- Linyanti, a vast lagoon area where you can admire hippos, crocodiles, antelopes, jackals and birds of all species.
The territory of Chobe also includes a strip of forest called “Hinterland” which connects the two lagoons and is the territory of the beautiful Eland antelopes.
Tourism at Chobe
Chobe National Park is the ultimate safari park. Different types of trips are organised, almost always by land or by boat, to get as close as possible to the animals. The park itself organizes numerous activities and allows visitors to sleep in or on the edge of the protected area, with lodges and campsites perfectly in harmony with nature.
Of course, to get close to the elephants you always need an expert guide, because the large number of animals can also become dangerous. Botswana is a state very attentive to its faunal heritage and demands the utmost respect from tourists, who in turn are certainly guaranteed maximum protection during their trips.
To reach Chobe you land – with international flights – at the airports of Gaborone or Johannesburg. From here, with local flights, you can get to the minor airports of Maun or Kasane. In both towns you can book tours and safaris to the different areas of the park, or ask for information about accommodation within the park itself. Safaris take place by jeep, on foot or aboard canoes or motor boats.