NACJ26 Day 18: Chobe National Park

November 10, 2014 Comments Off on NACJ26 Day 18: Chobe National Park
Andrew Walton
Just a happy guy who loves travelling, loves Africa and feels that travelling changes you forever.

Chobe National Park

We make our way to Kasane where, upon arrival, we are treated to a relaxing sunset river cruise on the Chobe River (situated within the National Park). Here we will be able to spot plenty of beautiful animals on the riverbanks, such as hippo, buffalo and elephants.

The second biggest park in all of Botswana, Chobe National Park spreads over approximately 10,600 square kilometres of northern Botswana. The Park forms part of the medley of lakes, islands and floodplains created from the river systems of the Kwanda, Linyanti and Chobe Rivers. This region is well-known for its enormous buffalo and elephant herds – the population of which is presently around 120,000. The Chobe elephants migrate often and travel up to 200 kilometres from the Chobe and Linyanti rivers where they gather during the dry season.

These giants are specifically Kalahari elephants, identifiable by their frail ivory and short tusks which are possibly due to the lack of calcium in the soils. Because of their high population, much damage to vegetation is caused in certain areas and therefore, culls have been considered but never carried out due to the enormous controversy surrounding the act.

The initial inhabitants of this region were the San people, known in Botswana as the ‘Basarwa’. They were nomadic hunter-gatherers who travelled from place to place searching for the next source of food and water. The San were eventually forced out by groups of the Basubiya people and, in 1911, a congregation of Batawana moved to the area. It was decided in 1931 that a national park would be erected in order to guard the wildlife from extinction as well as to attract tourists. During 1932, an area of approximately 24,000 square kilometres in the Chobe region was declared as a non-hunting zone. Throughout the years, the boundaries of the park have been modified and the people who have settled in the region have been progressively relocated. Chobe National Park was eventually completely rid of human occupation in the year 1975, and in 1980 (and once more in 1986) the boundaries were once again altered, growing the park to its current size.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Two per room: Thebe River Lodge
Facilities: En-suite per room, bar, swimming pool, hot showers
Route: Gweta to Kasane +/-400 kms
Travel Time: +/- 6-8 hours
Activity Package: Sunset boat cruise in Chobe National Park
Optional Activities: Chobe game drive (morning of Day 19)

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