Moremi Game Reserve, a beauty in the Okavango Delta

Overview

The Moremi Game Reserve, covering approximately 4,870 km², is one of the world’s greatest safari destinations, the oldest  and first protected section of the Okavango Delta in Botswana, covering nearly 40% of the Delta. The area, proclaimed a Reserve in 1963, was named after BaTawana tribe members, Chief Moremi III and his wife.

Moremi Game Reserve in the Okavango Delta Tomas Forgac Licence: CC

Scenery

The contrasts in the Moremi Game Reserve are stunning as the area safeguards the arid areas as well as the wet waterways of the Okavango Delta. Often termed the ‘Garden of Eden’, the Moremi Game Reserve offers stunning panoramas of vast dry savannah, thick forests, picturesque floodplains, lagoons and meandering rivers.

A hippo in Moremi Game Reserve Alessandro Licence: CC

Wildlife

Moremi Game Reserve is home to one of the largest populations of wildlife in Botswana including the famous Big Five, completed at the reintroduction of the White Rhino. It also plays host to one of the largest herds of Elephant and the rare African Wild Dog mingling with the Buffalo, the Blue Wildebeest, Hippo, Red Lechwe, Giraffe, Impala, Cheetah and more. The Reserve is also a bird lover’s haven with over 500 bird species in an area of just under 5000 km² . These birds include the Wattled Crane and the Egret.

A Southern Carmine Bee-eater (Merops nubicoides) in Moremi Game Reserve Gregory “Slobirdr” Smith Licence: CC

Getting there

Moremi Game Reserve can be accessed by air with Maun International Airport being the starting point, having daily connections with OR Tambo International Airport and five weekly connections with Cape Town. There are also daily domestic flights from Gabarone to Maun and twice a week flights from Kasane to Maun. From Maun, the Reserve can be reached by air through a short charter flight operated by Mack Air.  The Reserve can also be reached by road using a rental vehicle which must be a four wheel drive.

Paradise Pools, Moremi Game Reserve (Botswana) Michael Jansen Licence: CC

Accommodation

All accommodation options in the Moremi are warm, personal and offer the best environment to truly relax and reconnect with nature. Belmond Khwai River Camp is the ultimate luxurious home-away-from-home, offering scenic views from the comfort of one’s hammock. The Sanctuary Chief’s Camp is famed for having an almost healing effect on its guests with its delicious food and finest wines, amazing game viewing and a striking spa. Little Machaba Camp embodies rustic romanticism with its 1950s style, luxury safari tents and romantic outdoor showers.  If you are a keen bird watcher or game viewer, then Camp Moremi is the place to stay as it is set in an area with great differences in scenery, drawing abundant wildlife and splendid birds. Other beautiful places to stay whilst in the Moremi Reserve include Camp Xakanaxa, a truly classic spot and Khwai Tented offering rustic harmony.

A Leopard in the Moremi Game Reserve (Okavango Delta, Botswana) Michael Jansen Licence: CC

Best Time to Visit

Moremi is great to visit all year round though some might prefer to come in the dry season, from May to November, where the nights are never below freezing temperatures and the days are rarely unbearably hot. Vegetation is also thinner, allowing easier spotting of game. In the wet season, between December and April, vegetation is thicker and green, providing spectacular views.

A pack of African wild dogs resting in Moremi Game Reserve Gregory “Slobirdr” Smith Licence: CC

Weather and Climate

The Moremi winter months of June to August, corresponding to the dry season, have mild days and cold nights, clear skies and no humidity. However, from September to November, temperatures gradually rise along with humidity with the rains starting at the end of November.

Beautiful sunsets in Moremi Game Reserve Gregory “Slobirdr” Smith Licence: CC

Other Safety Considerations

Malaria is prevalent in Botswana, particularly in the Chobe, Moremi and Okavango areas so visitors are recommended to follow precautionary measures to stay safe. These measures include using malaria prophylactics, covering arms, legs and feet at dusk, sleeping under treated nets and using mosquito repellent sprays. Immunization against Hepatitis A and DTP Diphteria, Tetanus and Polio, is a requisite. Oral Rehydration Salts are also recommended in case of Traveller’s Diarrhea induced by the change in weather, food and daily routine. Swimming in stagnant water is advised against as visitors could contract bilharzia in these waters.  To avoid sun stroke, visitors are urged to use sunscreen and lip balm, stay hydrated, wear wide brimmed hats and good sunglasses as well as light clothes whilst out in the African sun.