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Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge. An incredible luxury safari experience with added pampering.

10/05/2024 by .
Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge

Sarah Kingdom reviews the brand new Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge in Botswana’s Okavango Delta.

In the heart of southern Africa, the Kalahari Desert gives way to one of the world’s largest wetlands. The broad Okavango River annually discharges 11 cubic kilometres of water into the dry sands of the Kalahari, creating a maze of waterways, lagoons, shallow channels, reed islands and grassy floodplains.

Spreading over more than 16,000 km², with annual floodwaters seasonally flooding large parts of it, the Okavango Delta is a remarkable environment that constantly adapts and changes. Officially declared UNESCO’s 1,000th World Heritage Site and one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa, the Delta is one of the most biodiverse wetlands in the world, and undeniably Botswana’s emerald crown jewel.

The Okavango Delta is home to vast concentrations of wildlife, with over 1,000 species of plants, more than 480 species of birds, 130 species of mammals, and numerous species of reptiles and fish. Some of the game viewing highlights here include elephants, lions, cheetah, leopards, buffalos, giraffes, hippos, crocodiles, and numerous species of antelope.

Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge

The brand new Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge lies in heart of the game-rich southern reaches of the Okavango Delta, a short helicopter ride from Maun, and is best described as a place where eco-consciousness and indulgence meet. Built along eco-friendly principles, but without losing focus on exclusivity and style, Atzaró Okavango offers a sustainable safari in Botswana without compromising on luxury.

Overlooking a seasonal lagoon from the main areas, with a river along one side, and surrounded by lush palm islands and vibrant delta vegetation, Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge is a stylish camp.  Eight spacious tented rooms are laid out in a well-spaced ‘V’ shape, that leads off the central area and is connected by raised wooden walkways. All rooms have air conditioning and fans, with voluminous, romantic, mosquito nets around the beds.

Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge

Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge

Outside on a private deck, there’s a small, shaded area, with a plunge pool, vital to cooling off in the heat of the day. Bathrooms have both indoor and outdoor showers and baths – where one bathtub is lovely, two is pure decadence. If you’re lucky you might even be able to do some game viewing from your outdoor tub!  Two family villas add to the accommodation options, with their separate rooms being linked by a walkway.

The luxury doesn’t stop with the bedrooms. The main thatched lodge area has vaulted ceilings and a large open lounge, with antiques, leather chesterfield sofas and traditional kuba (mud) cloths, embellished with embroidery, applique and patchwork.

The bar is detailed with woods, velvets, and cut-glass, and there’s a sunken seating area around an outdoor firepit with views overlooking the seasonal lagoon. Take high tea at the observation deck, sip pre-dinner drinks at the bar or sitting on one of the comfortable chairs on the deck, and after dinner settle in by the firepit and watch the stars overhead while you listen to the grunts of hippos or the sound of elephants coming to drink.

Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge

For those looking for something extra, there’s a wine cellar, complete with sommelier.  For meals, an artfully thatched, traditional boma, reminiscent of a bird’s nest, adds a rustic alternative to dinner in the primary dining area. The main lodge also serves as a ‘living museum’ and is filled with a collection of intricate and traditional artworks, collected from all over the continent – should something special catch your eye, similar, exclusively commissioned pieces are available to purchase in the gift shop.

Amongst all this glamour though, it’s worth noting that in line with their sustainable principles, but without losing focus on exclusivity and style, Atzaró Okavango has been built making use of recycled materials and is fully powered by solar.

As you’d expect from a camp of this type, the range of amenities and activities are many and exceptional. If you fancy a workout, head for the gym or the 20m swimming pool, or visit the yoga deck where there’s plenty of space for you to practice. If you’re looking for a bit more pampering, there’s a wellness spa offering a range of treatments.

Atzaro 015

Much of your day, though, will be spent seeking out the wildlife of the Delta – by vehicle, on foot, or on the water. This area of the Okavango has high concentrations of wildlife, which makes for exciting game viewing opportunities. Aside from morning and afternoon game drives, with knowledgeable guides, guests can do walking safaris, with an armed guide, or go birdwatching.

Out on the water, water levels permitting, there are boat trips and sunset cruises, catch-and-release fishing and the opportunity to enjoy the gentle pace of a mokoro (dugout canoe) excursion. Note, all these activities are offered on a private basis, so you can maintain your privacy and not have to share your space with strangers. Do note though that while there is no age restriction at Atzaró, walking safaris and mokoro excursions have a minimum age requirement of 16.

Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge

This most luxurious of Botswanan safari lodges will captivate you with its beautiful views, amazing wildlife experiences. Everywhere you go in this stylish camp, be it sipping a drink from the bar overlooking the lagoon, to relaxing in a bubble bath on your own verandah, there’s a sense of relaxed luxury here, and an elegant fusion of contemporary design and traditional African charm – it’s easy to settle into the ways of Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge.

It’s worth noting that in line with their eco-principles, Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge had been built making use of recycled materials and is fully powered by solar energy.

Tell Me More About Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge

Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge, Okavango Delta, Botswana. (A short helicopter flight from Maun)

A safari to the Okavango is not cheap and the remote reaches of the Delta are largely off limits to budget travellers.

Tented Rooms – low season (March and December) $690, shoulder season (April, May and November) $990, high season (June till Oct) $1,490. Rates are per person, per night, on a fully inclusive basis.

Family Villas – low season (March and December) $3,450, shoulder season (April, May and November) $4,950, high season (June till Oct) $7,450. Rates are per villa, per night, on a fully inclusive basis.

Room rates include accommodation, all meals, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages (except premium imported spirits and champagne), laundry, morning, afternoon & night game drives, walking safaris and mokoro safaris (subject to water levels).

Recommended travel company: Mahlatini

Mahlatini is a Zulu word meaning bushman or ‘lover of the African wilderness’. Who who better then, to plan the logistics of your journey to Atzaró Okavango Safari Lodge than Mahlatini, a bespoke travel company who are experts in creating memorable adventures.


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