Botswana’s Okavango Delta is undoubtedly one of Africa’s greatest wilderness areas – a vast 18 000 square kilometres of waterways and small islands which makes up the planet’s biggest inland delta. Each year the Okavango River floods, and the waters never make it to the ocean, instead being sucked into the dry salt pans in the centre of Botswana. The water sustains an enormous amount of wildlife in this otherwise dry region of Africa. In the Okavango Delta you’ll find a huge elephant population, as well as leopard, lion, cheetah, giraffe, wild dog, buffalo and over 400 bird species, including the iconic African fish eagle. Moremi Wildlife Reserve conserves 20% of the eastern side of the Delta and is spectacularly diverse in terms of geography, including forests, floodplains and lagoons, while the rest of the Delta is made up of private wildlife concessions. Wherever you choose to go, and whatever time of year you choose to visit the Okavango Delta, you will not be disappointed by one of Africa’s most awe-inspiring landscapes.
How to travel to the Okavango Delta on a budget
The Okavango Delta is generally a pricey destination – development is regulated, so there are not many places to stay, and most camps are exclusive and very expensive. The best way to do Okavango Delta budget travel is on a camping overlanding tour.
We offer a number of budget overland trips where you visit the Okavango Delta, such as an eight-day Chobe and Okavango Delta Budget Safari . It includes a three-day trip to the Delta, where you are transported by mokoro (traditional dug out canoe) through the canals to a remote, wild camp, where you explore the bush on foot with guides. Alternatively if you have more time and looking for an amazing route to the Delta then this 16 day Botswana Overland Safari
Other options for travelling to the Okavango Delta on a budget include doing safaris from Maun (the closest town to the Delta, around five hours’ drive away), or driving in a rented 4×4 to Moremi Game Reserve’s rustic campsites, which offer ablution facilities and running water but not much else – be sure to come prepared!
What to do on an Okavango Delta safari
Going on safari in the Okavango Delta is slightly different to safaris in other game parks in Africa, because of all the water, which means that in addition to traditional game viewing trips by 4×4, you can also go wildlife spotting in mokoros. Mokoros are traditional dug out canoes perfectly suited for gliding across the channels of the Delta. Don’t worry about paddling! On a mokoro safari you’ll be accompanied by an expert poler you will guide you through the waterways. You can also go on guided walking safaris in the Okavango Delta, which are a great way of engaging on a deeper level with the African bush than just being in a game drive vehicle.
When to go to the Okavango Delta
The Okavango Delta is amazing at any time of year, but if you had to pick the very best time of year to visit, it would be in the dry winter season (between June and August), when the flood waters bring more animals to the area. If you’re a keen birdwatcher, the best time for you would be the rainy season (between November and April).