Why you should consider Selinda for your Botswana safari

discoverafrica 25 April 2018
Part of the Botswana Safari Collection
Back to the Our Blog

Selinda Game Reserve in Botswana’s wetlands was once a trophy-hunting mecca. Since the focus became more about protecting the local wildlife rather than hunting it, Selinda was redeveloped into a remarkable and exclusive private reserve, home to some very bold mammals and rare birds. It has now cemented itself as an exclusive reserve that offers luxury accommodation and unique Botswana safari experiences.

Selinda Game Reserve lies between the swamps and wetlands of Linyanti  and the Okavango Delta, in the northern reaches of Botswana. The Selinda Spillway is an expansive flood plain where water flows in from two points; the Linyanti and the Okavango Delta. The Spillway floods sporadically and this is based on rainfall in the area.

Private and isolated from the tourist masses, Selinda Game Reserve is about preserving the best of Botswana’s wildlife and showing traveller’s the true art of an African safari.

Wildlife in Selinda

The vegetation and water in Selinda is the perfect recipe for great wildlife. After the trophy-hunting era, Selinda has slowly but surely recovered its animal numbers and this is considered one of the best areas in Botswana for wildlife viewing.

The endangered African wild dog calls this region home, and often den in the area. Considering that there are only about 3000 dogs left on the continent, of which Botswana is home to 300 of them, Selinda is ideal for those who want to observe these incredible animals.

Selinda is predator country. Large prides of lions, hyena, leopard and cheetah are plentiful here. Guests have observed that they seem almost fearless and very confident and this makes predator-prey interaction that much more interesting. Don’t be surprised to see lions and their cubs swimming to cross a river. Hippos are notoriously cheeky in Selinda and have no problem with bullying lions, going wherever they please and generally making their presence known around the camps and lodges.

You can find the rare roan antelope here, as well as giraffe, more buffalos than you could imagine and the stars of Botswana’s Big Five mammals; the elephant. Crocodiles abound and you’ll get to meet rock monitors too. As far as birding goes, there simply isn’t enough time to list the incredible species to be found at Selinda. Suffice to say that you’ll meet shrike, sandgrouse, cormorants, babblers, coucal, kingfishers, bee-eaters, eagles, lapwings, herons, rollers and ostriches. This is but a sample of wonderful birds in this region.

Selinda is much-loved by photographers and wildlife filmmakers, for very obvious reasons.  

Small but select accommodation

Due to the restrictions on guests entering the reserve, there are only a few, but exceptional camps to stay at. Take a look at what past visitors had to say about each:

Selinda Camp

“Spent three nights here and was told that this would be the most 'informal' of all the camps we stayed at. It was certainly very relaxed but not at all unprofessional. Food and service were excellent. Little gem in the middle of nowhere! The staff were passionate about their camp and the wildlife and it was infectious!

Everyone seemed to know something about the area or the things that lived there and we learned much about the ecology of the place and how everything fit together. Game drives were great with lots to see, but it was the guides and the camp staff that made it special,” Dennis U, Guildford

Zarafa Camp

“Our Guide, Obie, was one of the best trackers that we encountered in our travels to 4 luxury game camps in South Africa and Botswana. He was able to quickly find the animals that we wanted to see, giving us some very incredible sights. More than just finding the animals, he also had a gift of anticipating where they would go next so that we mostly had the animals walking toward us as we waited ahead of their path.

In a special experience, he drove us along with a wild dog hunt, as if we were one of the pack. That was one of the most exciting rides that I had in the bush, and one that I will never forget,” Ono O (California)

Selinda Explorers Camp

“Attention to detail was a fundamental feature of this camp: the tents were spotless and perfectly serviced every single day – better and more consistently than any hotel room I’ve ever been in. In addition to the fantastic guides, the staff were amazing - the service we received for the duration of our stay was consistently of the highest quality; note that this was during the very last days of most of the team’s three-month stint.

And the wildlife? What did we see? Well it’s easier to list what we didn’t see – rhino (there aren’t any in that area) and cheetah. Seriously, that’s it. We can’t think of any mammal we didn’t see,” Maureen (Canada)

It’s always a good idea to review past visitors’ experiences of places. We recommend you visit TripAdvisor to get a general idea about what to expect from Selinda.

Conservation at its heart

At the forefront of this remarkable destination is Great Plains Conservation. Selinda Camp, Zarafa Camp and Selinda Explorers Camp are owned by the group and their emphasis is on creating a safari model that prioritises the environment over profit.

One of their tactics is to reduce the amount of guests allowed into the camps at any given time. In fact, only 18 guests are admitted into the Selinda reserve at any given time.This significantly reduces the human footprint in this wildlife safehaven.

In addition, power is generated by solar panels, the structure of the lodges are made from natural, locally sourced materials wherever possible and biogas facilities for recycling waste have been implemented. Even venison is left off the menu, an example of how Great Plains Conservation is committed to conservation.

These measures have set the standard for how to maintain the raw beauty and natural paradise of this little corner of the world.


Our Recommended Itinerary

Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve

day 1

Unforgettable safari
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve

day 2

Getting to grips with nature

day 3

Luxury meets eco-consciousness
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve
  • Big Five safari combining Moremi Game Reserve and Selinda Reserve

day 4

Lions with attitude

day 5

Canoe the Delta

day 6

We know you'll be back

View Full Itinerary

Some related info

11 Facts about the Chobe National Park to share around the campfire

Impress your friends and family with these interesting facts about one of the most famous national parks in the world. 1. Chobe National Park is divided into four different areas, each with distinctly unique geographical landscapes. They are as follows; the Savuti channel, Linyati wetlands, Serondella and Nogatsaa. 2. In 1888, the Savuti channel dried up completely and only flowed again…

10 reasons why you should visit the Moremi Game Reserve

Rated as one of the most beautiful game reserves in Africa, Botswana's Moremi Game Reserves is ideal for travellers looking to experience an authentic African safari experience.  If you're planning a Botswana Okavango Delta safari adventure, The Moremi Game Reserve boasts spectacular game viewing and bird watching, in fact, it's estimated to be home to close to 400 species of birds, many…

Five lodges to stay during your next Botswana safari

Thinking about going on a Botswana safari? If you are, here are five excellent accommodations which will give you an authentic African safari experience. Chobe Safari Lodge   #lions #chobesafarilodge ! Come and visit and see the #animals #africa A photo posted by www.chobelodgeuganda.com (@chobesafarilodge) on Dec 7, 2015 at 7:39am PST Location Chobe Safari lodge is located…

Our first African safari - Deborah and Steven’s Okavango Delta and Cape Town holiday

Deborah and Steven’s Okavango Delta and Cape Town holiday map Deborah Kiener and her partner Steven, who are both first time African explorers from Zurich (the largest city in Switzerland, started 2015 with a safari to Botswana’s Okavango Delta from Cape Town, South Africa. Deborah and Steven’s 15 day Botswana and South Africa safari started on 2 January 2015 and ended on 16 January…

A short guide to the Central Kalahari Game Reserve

The Central Kalahari Game Reserve (referred to as CKGR) is the second largest reserve in the world and by far the most remote reserve in Southern Africa. The CKGR covers an area of 52000 square kilometres and it is home to rhino, black-maned lion and desert-adapted elephants among other striking game species. As testament to the Central Kalahari’s old age, it is home to the San people,…

Five great walking safaris to go on in Africa

Safaris are a great way in which to get back to nature, tranquillity and adventure. The modern world often denies us the opportunity of being more in tune with these undeniably important aspects of life. People find themselves becoming too involved in work denying themselves opportunities of exploring the abundance of wildlife which is all over Africa.  Yet there are those who spend as…

You Might Also Like

 | Two weeks in Botswana - a luxury safari itinerary

Two weeks in Botswana - a luxury safari itinerary

The ideal safari to capture Botswana's unrivalled beauty and abundance of flora and fauna through the lens...

 | 10-day wild Botswana and Zimbabwe safari

10-day wild Botswana and Zimbabwe safari

Tour the pristine habitats of Botswana and Zimbabwe's finest wildlife-rich assets with the twist of refined luxury...

 | Pangolin photography tour of Botswana

Pangolin photography tour of Botswana

Immerse yourself in the wildlife and stunning natural beauty of the Chobe riverfront and pristine Okavango Delta as you capture nature's most spectacular beauty...