Officially declared UNESCO’s 1 000th World Heritage Site and one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa, the Okavango Delta is undeniably Botswana’s evergreen crown jewel. The largest inland delta in the world, the broad Okavango River sinks into the dry sands of the Kalahari Desert, creating a lush and waterlogged oasis with crystal clear lagoons and channels, reeded islands and fertile floodplains. Spreading over more than 15,500 km² (almost 6,000 m²), the Okavango Delta is so fragile that, if it were denied water for even a decade, it would revert to a semi-desert.
This remarkable environment constantly adapts and changes with the ebb and flow of the floodwaters that seasonally inundate large portions of the delta. Although dry for two-thirds of the year, during the winter months the rising floodwaters create a maze of marshes, small wooded islands and shallow lagoons. On the edges of the delta, where land blurs with water, breeding herds of elephant splash gently through shallow channels, the long necks of a family of giraffe materialise slowly out of the delta skyline and graceful sitatunga antelope hide in the reeds. It is a place where you can wonder at the antics of wild dog in the morning and cast a line for tiger fish in the afternoon, wake in the dappled shade of a forest and enjoy dinner beneath the boughs of a massive baobab at full moon.
Explore the Okavango Delta by mokoro (dugout canoe) or motorised boat cruises (seasonal), on-foot or on a game drive.