[well]Chobe National Park Quick Facts
- Most biologically diverse park or ecosystem in Botswana
- Features four different and distinct ecosystems
- 50,000 elephant, possibly greatest concentration in Africa
- Third largest national park in Botswana
Chobe National Park
Chobe National Park is the third largest national park or reserve throughout Botswana. It is considered the most biologically diverse ecosystem throughout the country. As one of the country’s best nature attractions, Chobe National Park provides visitors with four different and distinct ecological regions.
Chobe National Park was established in 1967 as part of the country’s commitment to protect the wildlife and natural wonder that the park represents. There are four distinct ecosystems that include the following:
Serondela Area: This is also known as the Chobe riverfront, which includes lush flood plains and dense woodlands comprise much of hardwoods such as mahogany and teak. This area of the park is located near the far northeast region of the park. Highlights of this part of the park include witnessing the wildlife encounter the river (particularly elephants crossing or playing in the river) and the abundance and array of birds that seem like they belong in a pet shop.
Savuti Marsh Area: This account for the largest part of the Chobe park boundaries. This was created from the remnants of a large inland lake. The area features savannas and grasslands that draws an abundance of wildlife, which serves as the highlight for visitors.
Linyant Marsh: This area features riverine woodlands, open woodlands, flood plains and lagoons. Travelers interested in predators will find large concentrations of lion, leopard, and wild dogs. Bird lovers will also be highly engaged with the abundance and array of birds present in the area.
Hinterland: This area is hot and dry and consists mostly of grass woodlands. Very little exploration or travel occurs in this part of the park. A highlight here is an encounter with the eland which is the largest antelope species.
Where is Chobe National Park
Chobe National Park is located in the northern part of Botswana. The park is not far the point where Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe come together. The coordinates for the national park are the following: 18°40′S 24°30′E.
Best Ways to See and Experience Chobe National Park
The best way to see and experience all that Chobe National Park has to offer is through safari. To really experience the park in fullness you will want to plan for 3 to 4 days in the park. A full one day safari that leverages the Chobe River is one of the most special encounters with wildlife one can imagine.
This one day safari usually starts with a morning boat ride that travels the Chobe River experiencing hippopotamuses, crocodiles, elephants and other wildlife that engage the river. The second half of the day features an open air safari drive through the Serondela Area of the park.
The one thing you can expect is a tremendous encounter with elephant. These are a highlight of the park and one of the features leading it to be one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Botswana.
Best Times to Explore Chobe National Park
The majority of visitors travel to Chobe National Park during the dry season which occurs during the months of May through October. The dry season often makes it easier to find and spot wildlife who tend to congregate near and around water sources.
The earlier part of these months (May-July) nights can be rather chilly, but the temperatures during the day warm up quite a bit. August through October the temperatures get rather hot, but the game viewing gets even better as the wildlife further congregates closer to the water supplies.
Chobe National Park Photography Tips
A wide range zoom lens like the Nikon 18 to 200mm is a great lens for photography throughout the park. The majority of wildlife encounters are fairly close encounters making a long range telephoto irrelevant. A versatile zoom range will help you capture most of what Chobe National Park has to offer.
Expect sunny conditions so you should be able to have your aperture with higher numbers. Higher shutter speeds are expected, which will help capture clearer images from the boat as you navigate the Chobe River as part of your safari experience.
Chobe National Park Travel Tips
Many of the visitors who explore Chobe National Park also have plans for seeing Victoria Falls. Victoria Falls is about an hour and half away from Chobe and just across the border where Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe meet together.