The Safari exceeded Sue’s and my expectations and has been a continuous talking point since our return.
John and Suzanne Taylor
The Linyanti And Selinda Wildlife Areas
To the northeast of the Okavango Delta are the Chobe and Linyanti Game Reserves. These areas are renowned for their predators and large concentrations of game and particularly huge elephant herds. Dereck and Beverly Joubert made the region famous in their National Geographic films. “Eternal enemies” is a classic, and chronicles in detail the interaction between Lion and Hyena.
There are many varied habitats within the Chobe and Linyanti Parks: marshes, waterways, riverine forests, dry woodlands and the world famous Savuti Channel. The Savuti Channel is a “waterway” that connects the Linyanti River from Zibalianja Lagoon, with the interior of the Chobe National Park at the Savuti Marsh. The Savuti has only ever flowed intermittently and dried up for the last time in 1980. Today the Savuti Channel is an open grassland and home to a variety of different animals.
The Linyanti Wildlife Reserve is a 275,000 acre private reserve on Chobe’s Western boundary. This area is very different from the Okavango and should be included in every Botswana itinerary so that travellers have a more varied and balanced experience of the country. This private reserve is an enormous area shared between a few small camps. There are three main features of the Linyanti Wildlife Reserve: the Linyanti River, Savuti Channel and the woodlands of the interior. Two thirds of the famous Savuti Channel is in this private reserve and guests are able to view abundant wildlife privately and exclusively. The last stretches of Africa’s Great Rift Valley divide the forests of the interior with the rivers and floodplains of the Linyanti and it is along this ridge (and along the Savuti Channel) that one sees the best wildlife.
Wildlife includes red lechwe, tsesebe, sable and roan antelope as well as lion cheetah, leopard, hyena and wild dog.
The Linyanti and Selinda area can be combined with the Okavango Delta and Chobe Game Reserve in a superb Safari circuit which can be further enhanced by adding the Kalahari region or Victoria Falls in nearby Zambia.
The best time to visit Linyanti and Selinda is during the dry season between May and October but wildlife sightings are excellent all year round.