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Top 5 honeymoon lodges in Botswana

If you are looking to combine a top safari experience and incredible landscapes with five-star hospitality and unique lodges, then Botswana might just be your ultimate honeymoon destination. Located in the heart of Southern Africa, Botswana is home to Chobe National Park, known for its large elephant population, as well as the Okavango Delta, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of Africa’s most biodiverse areas. With so many options it can be difficult to narrow down the choices, so we have compiled our top five lodges in Botswana for your perfect honeymoon experience. Tau Pan Camp There is no better way to put the desolate and parched landscape of Central Kalahari Game Reserve into perspective than with a highly anticipated flight on a small bush plane from Maun to Tau Pan Camp. Balanced on the edge of an ancient sand dune, you immediately feel a part of something much bigger – a million miles from civilisation and the perfect base for honeymooners to disconnect from the outside world. Don’t waste time unpacking your bags and head straight to the camp’s large viewing veranda and sun-downer deck which is a photographer’s dreamscape. As the sun begins to set, get ready for one of Africa’s best night skies to unfold. Without any light pollution, local guides will help you map out the night’s sky and spectacular lighting displays whilst the rival of the lion’s roar approaches from the distance. ‘Tau’ which means Lion in Setswana, is named after the pride of black-maned Kalahari lions frequently seen by the camp. You will hear them before you see them! You’ll also get to experience an array of desert-adapted wildlife perhaps not as prolific as the predators of the Delta but still fascinating in their own right. Sanctuary Stanley’s Camp Sanctuary Stanley’s Camp offers some of the best game viewing in the Okavango Delta, but what really sets this camp apart is their unique interaction experience with two rescued elephants. Guests are invited to visit Jabu and Morula, living in a reserve close to the camp where you’ll join them on a fascinating educational morning walk for a rare chance to get up close to these incredibly smart creatures. You’ll also be treated to a gourmet bush breakfast whilst the elephants enjoy their own right next to you – you couldn’t ask for better company! After a morning like no other, you can take an afternoon dip in the swimming pool while watching elephant, giraffe and antelope grazing on the trees right in front of you. The new outdoor bar has wrap-around views of the surrounding landscape so you can sip on a chilled Amarula in style. Stanley’s is in a private concession which is an area not open to the public and reserved just for those staying at the camp. It also offers the freedom to go on night drives to spot nocturnal animals rarely seen during the day. If you are lucky enough, you may even get to track a leopard after dark on the hunt which is an exhilarating experience for any honeymoon couple. Chief’s Sanctuary Chief’s Camp Flying over one of the worlds’ greatest waterways intoSanctuary Chief’s Camp already feels like an exclusive experience in itself but wait until your feet touch the ground.  This camp offers the ultimate 5 star luxury honeymoon safari as you are greeted by singing staff and welcoming smiles before promptly being shown to your secluded bush pavilion, fit for royalty with private plunge pool, outdoor shower and four-poster king-size bed! A former royal hunting ground of Chief Moremi, this camp has an extraordinary setting in the heart of the Okavango Delta with elephant, lion, leopard, cheetah and wild dog often spotted nearby. During the flood season between June and October you can explore the maze of water channels by mokoro (dug-out canoe) in search of neighbouring hippos and if the water is high enough you can even glide out on the water directly from the camp. With some of the finest cooking and wines included at Chief’s, as well as a pizza deck and wood fire oven, honeymoon couples can retreat after dinner to the blazing campfire whilst local guides share their dramatic and humorous stories late into the night. Leroo La Tau Leroo La Tau is easily accessible by a short scenic flight from the Central Kalahari Game Reserve and perfectly situated for exploring the jaw-dropping landscapes of the renowned Makgadikgadi National Park. A highlight for honeymoon couples has to be a pre-booked day trip to the isolated wilderness of Makgadikgadi Pans – a salt pan believed to be one of the largest in the world and visible from space! It is a place of disappearing horizons, shimmering salt lakes and otherworldly beauty.  Back at camp, on the banks of Boteti River, it is possible to witness the Summer migration between June and October when the massive herds of wildebeest and zebra pass through the area because of the rivers water source. Look out for predators on the hunt around the lodge in the busy stampede zone! For a culturally immersive experience, why not visit one of the neighbouring villages and schools of Khumaga to see and understand about their rural life in this remote area of Botswana. With so much to do, we recommend at least 3 nights at Leroo La Tau. Bakwena Chobe Botswana Bakwena Chobe Botswana is an eco-conscious luxury camp on the banks of the stunning Chobe River. For honeymooners wanting water-based activities with a sense of exclusivity; close encounters with wildlife on the river are a given. The camp is named after the Bakwena tribe which takes their name from the Setswana word meaning “people of the crocodile”. The river is renowned for its large elephant and buffalo numbers and is also a haven for many other animals including hippo and lions. It’s also one of the best locations for bird watching in Africa. Take your pick between River View Chalets overlooking the Chobe River or the on-trend Treetop Chalets perched on stilts. Enjoy boat trips along the Chobe River watching large herds of elephant coming down for a drink – the sunset cruises are considered to be some of the finest in Botswana. Not far from the mighty Victoria Falls, this camp is a great base for exploring the surrounding areas or just sit back and take in the unspoiled natural setting. Matt Gannan is the CEO and Owner of Tucan Travel. Tucan Travel operate cultural tours in Latin America, Africa and the Middle East, Asia and Europe, as well as tailor-made holidays in Latin America, Africa and Asia. If you would like to be a guest blogger on A Luxury Travel Blog in order to raise your profile, please contact us.

Matt Gannan

Matt Gannan is the CEO and owner of Tucan Travel. Tucan Travel is an adventure travel tour operator that specialises in South America, where they started 32 years ago in Colombia. They run tours in Latin America, Africa and the Middle East, Europe and Southeast Asia, where travellers can choose between over-landing tours, small group tours or tailor-made holidays. Tucan Travel pride themselves in offering authentic adventures where customers can experience once in a lifetime activities. Cruising through the Okavango Delta in Botswana, exploring the lesser known country of Kosovo, conquering the Inca Trail or watching the sunrise over Angkor Wat – the options are endless. Tucan Travel has a strong focus on sustainability and responsible travel and were delighted to win South America’s Leading Green Tour Operator in the 2018 World Travel Awards.

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  1. We’ve got to that stage of life, late 20s and early 30s, were it must be half a dozen of my friends planning to get married over the next 2 years. And maybe there’ll be a few more still to announce that they are tying the knot.

    It seems to me that a safari is one of the in things to do for your honeymoon. It’s certainly on our agenda if the budget allows.

    It’s good to have this post as an introduction to 5 safari lodges which are always going to be contenders for anyone’s honeymoon. It would be hard to choose between them.

    1. Hi Kate,

      Safaris are definitely high on a lot of couples lists for a great honeymoon – I think it combines the right amount of relaxation with incredible wildlife experiences.

      There are so many wonderful lodges in the country, but we hope this small introduction gives a taste of what Botswana can offer.

  2. I know that it annoys photography fanatics who take their photography seriously and like to lug round 20 kilos of equipment but nowadays every one’s got the chance to take really good safari photos.

    It’s all a lot more inclusive if anyone can whip out their camera and get some good photos to take home as memories. All you need is a fairly good phone and then 2 or 3 minutes to do some editing.

    Both taking photos is a nice thing to share on honeymoon rather than taking turns with one (expensive) camera.

  3. It’s ironic, to say the least, that how the concept of honeymoon has drastically changed over the years. Gone are the days, when honeymoon was fantasized to be an entirely lovey-dovey trip characterized with loads of cheesy pics, intimate moments, stays at romantic hotels, visits to scenic beaches, quiet landscapes and candle-lit dinners. The Millennials today have become much more adventurous in that aspect. They crave for thrill regardless of the nature of the trip. From hiking to camping, parachuting, sky-diving, mountain biking and now safari experiences. It’s truly incredible!

    1. I second you George!!! I belong to the 50s generation where honeymoon was considered a true luxury. Those who celebrated it were treated as some sort of heroes who have won a battle. But today when I share my honeymoon tales to my grandchildren, no wonder, why they find it extremely dull, mundane and spiritless!

  4. Regardless of where you are staying, when in Botswana, one must visit the Makgadikgadi Pans- the largest salt pans in the world. The experience is rightly referred to as A Walk Over The Moon.It also boasts the largest Zebra, Flamingo and other Wildlife Migration. Evidence suggests that once a mighty Lake Makgadikgadi flowed (which was actually larger than the size of the present Switzerland). The Lake dried up some thousands of years ago leaving the breath-taking plains behind. Truly mind-boggling how Mother Nature works!
    Tip: To get a taste of a truly magical experience, one must go for an over-night camping over the plains under a star-lit sky. At night, the vast land literally appears as a meeting of two worlds

  5. Beaching, sight-seeing, theme parks and sporting has become quite mainstream and activities that have been done and redone ample of times before. But a safari experience on a family vacation sounds novel. Botswana seems to be an attractive destination. Just concerned with the security level of the country. I mean, is it safe to travel here keeping in mind, my (all girls) family consists of a teenager, an adolescent and a toddler?

  6. I’m surprised that my girlfriend hasn’t mentioned these two fantastic lodges in Botswana to me. I haven’t even proposed to her yet but already she’s got a spreadsheet running on great potential honeymoon destinations!

  7. I’ve never been to an African safari partly because of the horrendous travel time — I love across the world. And I’m at that age where I just want things to be a little bit easier. I can still hike and get into physical activities, but those times are getting few and far between. But what caught my eye here is the amount of leisure time and slow-paced activities I can have. I especially like that these are honeymoon spots, perfect for another trip with my SO on our anniversary. Great post on Bakwena Chobe and the river cruise. Totally my pace.

  8. I’ve learned a bit of a new language with Tau meaning lion! I love the idea of staying somewhere like that Tau Pan Camp, so ‘out there’ in the middle of nowhere yet at the heart of life, away from all the noise of Western 21st century life. I’m happy to go without Wifi and to try to disconnect, but I’m actually quite curious, do these places get mobile reception? Such a lovely idea to do something like this with staying in Botswana, it’s very different from the normal kind of Honeymoon most people would go on and it’s not something I would have necessarily considered until now either.

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