w w w . s e l i n d a r e s e r v e . c o m
The Selinda Reserve 320,000 acres of pure wilderness
BOTSWANA Okavango Delta
There are few places on earth where humans have not walked. Yet deep in the forests of Selinda there are such places. Here there are vast areas of woodland, dotted with seasonally filled rainwater pans, places that are for lions and elephants only, or herds of buffalo that are never exposed to the pressures of human society. There are impenetrable woodlands and rolling great plains. “This is a place where wildlife can breathe freely, unmolested, unrestrained.” The Selinda Reserve is a 320,000 acre / 135,000 hectare private wildlife sanctuary straddling the best of both the Okavango and Kwando/Linyanti systems in northern Botswana. Selinda’s vast floodplains and ancient forests offer an authentic and timeless African experience. But what makes this reserve so special is exclusivity. Within this massive wilderness, we only have a total of 18 permanent guest tents on the entire 320,000 acres – a truly exclusive experience. The Selinda Reserve is owned by National Geographic filmmakers and explorers, Dereck and Beverly Joubert, with a small group of good friends who passionately believe in making a meaningful contribution to the Earth’s wellbeing. Ownership is less about laying claim to a vast tract of land like this, than it is about taking care of the reserve and healing the scars when we found it.
When we took over just a few years ago, most of Selinda was for hunting, where people shot ‘trophy’ animals; lions, elephants, leopards. But our ethic is not a hunting or taking one, and on the first day we took over we stopped all the hunting and since then not a shot has been fired in the area. Wildlife has responded in kind and concentrations are increasing. Elephants sense the difference and now calmly drink as you pass by. Once they ran at the first sound of a vehicle. Lion and leopard numbers are getting back to their natural levels and in general
the whole area seems to now breathe a deep sigh of relief. The reserve is one of the best places in all of Africa to view the highly endangered African wild dog, especially while they are less nomadic when they come to Selinda to den and raise their young. Every decision made in Selinda is based on how we can be better, how we can enhance natural habitats and be role models in our society for looking after the environment; how we can develop ‘greener’ ways to conduct our business, respect our communities’ culture and bring subtle, low volume, responsible tourism to the wild places of Africa. We have embarked on a journey that keeps being reinvented as we strive to become as enviro-sensitive as possible. When we started building Zarafa, we believed that a blend of solar with limited generator power would be the best way to create the energy we need to run the camp. However, hearing that generator start up, even for just a few hours a day did not feel right. We have now created a solar farm that will make generators obsolete, while still being able to provide 220V for all our guest and appliance requirements, twenty four hours a day. Once we have perfected the system, the plan is roll this system out to all our camps. To further reduce our carbon emissions, our diesel vehicles operating in each camp are being run on a blend of diesel and recycled cooking oil which further lowers our vehicles’ carbon emissions, therefore significantly reducing our ‘carbon footprint.’ We invite you to join us to experience one of the last great wildernesses on earth. Welcome to Selinda – The Selinda team
Expansive views and prime wildlife experiences
LOCATION: Selinda Camp is built on a wooded island on the banks of the eastern Selinda Spillway with views across the waterways and the palm studded floodplains, characteristic of the area. ACCOMMODATION: Selinda Camp has only 9 large luxury tents. En-suite facilities include a large, stone bath, twin vanity basins, a shower and flush toilet. Hot water is available 24 hours a day from our solar heating system. Each room has large comfortable beds and soft linen. Fans and mosquito nets are standard. A shady veranda offers panoramic views over the wildlife filled floodplains in front of the camp. LIGHTING & Power: We are in the process of converting the entire camp to solar. In the interim, a silent generator runs for a few hours a day and charges batteries that provide 220v all day and night via an inverter system. Hot water is available 24 hours a day from efficient solar geysers. The capacity of the system is limited to low current usage (no hairdryers), but guests may charge electrical equipment like cameras at any time. An adapter is provided in each room that accommodates most international plug systems. Main Area: The camp’s spacious and comfortable main lounge and dining area has raised decks under a thatched roof, offering great views over the floodplains and savannahs. Dining is either under cool thatch or out in the open, under the stars. There is a separate and airy deck where tea and pre-game drive snacks are enjoyed, whilst comfortable couches and armchairs make the lounge inviting. Set apart from the main area is our thatched gallery and quiet reading area, the curio shop and a climate controlled wine cellar. An outdoor campfire rounds off the evenings. Pool: Selinda has a plunge pool with loungers.
meals: All meals are table d’hôte and include a light breakfast at dawn, a hearty brunch on return from the morning activity, afternoon tea and snacks before the afternoon activity, with a three course dinner in the evening. Special meals and dietary requirements can be catered for on request. All local drinks are included in the tariff. Shopping: The boutique curio shop not only stocks locally made goods and quality African artefacts, but also offers a library where fresh coffee is brewed all day long. We accept Visa and Mastercard, cash, and travellers cheques. Laundry: A complimentary same day laundry service is offered. ACTIVITIES: Wildlife viewing by vehicle, boat, canoes and on foot is Selinda’s prime focus. Game drives are conducted in open Toyota Landcruisers with removable canvas canopies, specially adapted for our conditions. There is no set routine at Selinda Camp (nor in any of our camps). We generally explore the reserve in the early morning, late afternoon and at night when the wildlife is most active. The midday siesta can be spent at one of our waterholes. Walks from camp are also encouraged. Short or full morning’s walks are led by licensed guides who are firearm experienced. A private vehicle and guide service is available, but must be booked in advance. ACCESS By Air only – (Seat-in plane or private charters): Coordinates: S18°34.144’; E020°30.543’; elevation 939m. Flying times: from Maun - 45 minutes; Kasane - 50 minutes; Motswiri - 15 minutes to our licensed (Category B) airfield. Transfer times to camp: 40 – 60 minute drive during the dry season; and a 10 minute drive and a 10 minute boat ride during the wet season (water levels dependant).
Zarafa Camp at Zibadianja Lagoon Africa’s ‘greenest’ luxury camp! LOCATION: Zarafa Camp is a breathtaking camp that opened to acclaim in June 2008. The camp overlooks the floodplains of Zibadianja Lagoon in the far eastern sector of the Selinda Reserve, under ancient Jackalberry and Red Ivory forests. The view (possibly the best view from any camp in Botswana), the shady trees and the high wildlife concentrations characterise the camp, as do the elevated vistas across the floodplains of Zibadianja Lagoon. ACCOMMODATION: This “Premier” quality camp has four large, luxuriously appointed tents under flowing canvas, each with their own private pool. The camp accommodates a maximum of eight guests and is perfect for those who are looking for privacy. Groups of six can book off Zarafa for their exclusive use without having to pay for the unused beds. Each tent and veranda is expansive (9m x 17m), is well positioned under shady trees and has a spectacular view from the shady veranda. Each tent comprises a spacious bedroom, an en-suite bathroom with flush facilities, a copper bath and indoor shower as well as outdoor shower. Every guest tent has its own comfortable lounge. Hot water is available 24 hours a day from our solar heating sysyem. LIGHTING & Power: Zarafa is maybe the first premier camp anywhere in Africa that creates all its power from the sun. Zarafa has pioneered a solar farm of 150 solar panels that feed special batteries which creates 220V electricity 24 hours a day throughout the camp. Even our ice machines and cold rooms are run from solar power. However, should an emergency arise, a conventional back up generator ensures uninterrupted power delivery. Meals: As the camp is so small, there are no set meal times. All meals are table d’hôte and include a light breakfast at dawn, a hearty brunch on return from the morning activity, afternoon tea and snacks before the afternoon activity, rounded off with a
three course dinner in the evening. Special meals and dietary requirements can be catered for on request. All local drinks are included in the tariff. Main Area: Continuing the style of the accommodation, the main area is all under canvas with an emphasis on the view and the wildlife sightings out front and is furnished comfortably and elegantly. Lounge and dining facilities may be enjoyed under cover or on the shaded deck under giant broadleaf trees. The camp has its own “jungle” gym for exercise enthusiasts. Shopping: A small boutique curio shop stocks locally made goods and quality African artefacts. Payment can be made by credit card (Visa and MasterCard only), travelers cheque or cash. Laundry: A complimentary same day laundry service is offered. ACTIVITIES: Wildlife drives are the primary activity and are conducted in new, open Toyota Landcruisers with removable canopies, specially adapted for our conditions. There is no set routine at Zarafa. We generally explore the reserve in the early morning, late afternoon and at night when the wildlife is most active. During the midday siesta it is best to be in the camp enjoying the passing wildlife spectacle. Short or full morning’s walks can be arranged and are led by licensed guides who are firearm experienced. A private vehicle and guide is also available if booked in advance. ACcesS: Zarafa is only accessible by air. Our licensed (Category B) airfield is a 40 minute drive from camp. The coordinates are S18°33.95’; E23°30.73’. Seat-in plane air-transfers or private charters are the only means of accessing the Selinda Reserve. Flying times: from Maun - 45 minutes; Kasane - 50 minutes; Motswiri - 15 minutes.
This small camp experiences the Delta’s annual flooding LOCATION: Motswiri Camp is located in the eastern reaches of the Okavango Delta and in the remote western wilderness of the Selinda Reserve. Built along the banks of the Selinda Spillway, the camp experiences the annual flood of the Okavango as its waters snake their way east towards (but seldom meeting) the waters of the Linyanti. Located within a grove of russet bushwillow and leadwood trees, Motswiri is somewhat unique in character - being neither typical ‘Okavango Delta’ nor typical ‘Linyanti’. The camp can only be booked by a small group or a family, a special rate applies.
Pool: There is no pool. During the Okavango floods, guests may cool off in the safe shallow clear waters of the spillway.
ACCOMMODATION: This camp is booked by one group or family at one time for their sole use. Motswiri has five large tents accommodating up to eight guests. With the tents erected at ground level, the camp harks back to the roots of the traditional style of luxury safari camp that Botswana originally became famous for. Each tent is fully ensuite with a shower, vanity basin and flush toilet. Hot water is available 24 hours a day. All tents face onto the spillway where most of the wildlife action is viewed.
Laundry: A complimentary same day laundry service is offered.
LIGHTING & Power: The camp has a generator which runs whilst guests are out of camp on activities that powers a series of batteries that supply 12v lighting to the camp.
WHATS NEW • T he brand new and overhauled camp is now located slightly upstream from the previous location. • T he camp received its new 4x4 Landcruiser during 2008. The Selinda Spillway and Motswiri Camp
Main Area: The ‘mess tent’ reminds one of a by-gone safari era. A comfortable lounge and dining room are under canvas and are complemented by the outdoor fireplace where meals can also be enjoyed. The view of the spillway is the dominant feature of the main area.
meals: All meals are table d’hôte and include a light breakfast at dawn, a hearty brunch on return from the morning activity, afternoon tea and snacks before the afternoon activity, rounded off with a three course dinner in the evening. Special meals and dietary requirements can be catered for on request. All local drinks are included in the tariff.
ACTIVITIES: Although there is no set routine in any of our camps, from experience we recommend that activities are conducted when the wildlife is most active. Generally game viewing is done in the early morning, late afternoon and at night. Apart from wildlife drives, Motswiri also offers canoeing when water levels are high as well as walking trails. Drives are conducted in an open Toyota Landcruiser specifically adapted for our conditions. ACcesS: The only access to Motswiri is by air in a choice of seat-in plane air transfers or by private charter to a new airfield that has been built about 20 minutes from camp with the following co-ordinates S18°46.271’; E020°02.356’; elevation 954m. Flying times: from Maun - 40 minutes; Kasane - 60 minutes; Selinda - 15 minutes.
Selinda Canoe Trail
Africa’s newest and possibly most exhillerating adventure… The high waters flowing through northern Botswana in 2009 will cause the Selinda Spillway to flow like it has not done for nearly thirty years and will enable adventurers the opportunity to experience a rare first. The Selinda Spillway is the setting for Botswana’s newest canoeing and walking safari. The route begins downstream from Motswiri Airfield in the north of the Okavango Delta and follows the Selinda Spillway eastwards for around 70km through the private 300,000 acre Selinda Reserve towards the Kwando River. The Selinda Canoe Trail replicates the safari experiences of old as we navigate along the Selinda Spillway over three nights and four days, camping along the banks of the river wherever we find ourselves at the end of the day. All 3 nights will be spent in fly camps along the way at no particular pre-arranged site. Where we finish at the end of the day’s paddling is where we will camp that night. The area is well known for elephant, buffalo, sable antelope, roan antelope, wild dog and one could very well come across lion, leopard, hyena and a variety of other species. Walking whenever we come across interesting sightings adds variety and exhilaration to the day’s activities. One of the highlights of this canoe safari is that it takes place well away from other people. At the end of the three day canoe trail, guests are transferred to the Selinda Airstrip at around midday for departure or ideally guests may elect to stay on for an additional night at either Zarafa or Selinda camps.
Exceptional game viewing…
Participants and our People: Each “Canadian” canoe accomodates two guests who will paddle their own canoe under the guidance of our trail leader. Even though we will be canoeing much of the way downstream with the gentle current, participants will need to be reasonably fit. Each safari will be hosted by our staff, including a chef, all working under the leadership of our guide. The Camp: We are limited by what we can carry on the canoes, so the camp and equipment is simple but comfortable. Guests sleep in dome tents and cosy bedrolls, pillows with quality linen is supplied. We carry chairs and tables to enjoy the fire at night and for well earned and sumptuous lunches along the way. Our breakfasts and diners are prepared on the fire by our cook, while lunches are enjoyed along the banks of the river enroute. Our ablution facilities are bucket showers with hot water in the evenings and ‘long drop’ loos. DEPARTURES AND timings: The Selinda Canoe Trail operates from June to October each year, with set weekly departures that are guaranteed to run with a minimum of two guests. Alternatively, we can customise a private canoe trail to suit each groups timing and requirements. All safaris start at around 1pm at the Motswiri Airfield in the west of the Selinda Reserve and finish at around 11am at the Selinda Airfield four days later in the east.
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