Having been in the safari business for almost 20 years, I’ve come across many amazing safari itineraries, and travelled through many of the best wilderness areas in Southern Africa. It’s not often that I come across a tour that gives me goosebumps and that hits all my requirements for ‘bucket list African trip’.
The Elephant Walking Safari in Botswana is one such safari.
On this incredible trip you spend three days walking with wild bull elephants in the Khwai private concession area, which borders the Khwai River and Moremi Game Reserve to the south, and Chobe National Park to the east. At night you sleep safely on elevated platforms, above ele height, which means a starry African night sky above, and chomping eles (and many other animals) below.
The big old giants that you spend time with, on their own turf, have been walking this migratory route for decades. Breeding herds aren’t found in this area of Botswana because of the long distances between water sources (little elephants can’t do that kind of mileage), so the old guys are very relaxed and calm (none are in musth, which is what can make them aggressive and unpredictable), ambling along their ancient well-trodden paths from water source to water source.
I think one of the most magical parts of this safari is hearing the bulls communicate with each other over kilometres with their distinctive elephant rumbles and murmurs, their ‘elephant song’. Being so close to wild elephants, and being allowed by the bulls to intimately observe their behaviour, and get a glimpse into their lives, is really something special!
Another incredible part of the trip are the guides and trackers that accompany you as you walk. They are some of the best in the business, and I think probably more elephant than human! They know these old men like very good old friends, and make the walk a safe, extremely educational experience.
All in all a unique, amazing way to experience this elephant haven and beautiful part of Botswana.
View the full itinerary over here.