6 reasons why the Chobe River is worth visiting

The Zambezi Queen on the Chobe River. Picture: Supplied

The Zambezi Queen on the Chobe River. Picture: Supplied

Published Feb 26, 2024


Astro-tourism, longevity and wellness, shoulder season travel, private group travel and multi-generational “skip gen” trips have emerged as trends set to influence the year of travel in 2024.

Fortunately for travellers, the Chobe River is a great destination that conveniently ticks all these boxes and SADC travellers don’t have to endure long flights to access the rich wildlife of this region.

Kate Powell, the General Manager, Sales and Marketing of Zambezi Queen Collection, underlined this: “The Chobe allows Southern African travellers to indulge their wanderlust and explore the region while reconnecting under starry skies, across generations, at an accessible regional destination focused on guest well-being.

If you’re looking for new experiences and a bargain holiday featuring the above mentioned trends, here are 6 reasons why you should visit the Chobe River region, according to Powell.

Couple enjoys a romantic dinner overlooking the Chobe National Park and sky. Picture: Supplied

Pristine skies for stargazing

The Chobe River is a great astro-tourism destination as the region is far from light pollution, and offers clear skies for stargazing.

“Travellers can easily chart the crystal-clear southern constellations from the luxurious Zambezi Queen’s top deck, or rolled out on Camp Okavango’s sleep-out platform if you’re enjoying a 2-for-1 holiday to the nearby Okavango Delta,” said Powell.

Get back to basics and focus on wellness and longevity

In this technology saturated era, the Chobe whisks travellers back to simpler pleasures that naturally restore laughter, new friends, golden sunsets.

According to Powell, you can disconnect from the digital noise and soak up nature’s remedies including vitamin D, clean air, wholesome food and rest.

The Chobe may not have fancy clinics or vitamin shots but this little slice of heaven has the best remedy of all – just the way nature intended.

Guests enjoy relaxing on the deck on the Chobe Princess. Picture: Supplied

“The Zambezi Queen Collection prides itself on delivering a wholesome journey from start to finish.

“Meals are expertly prepared with the freshest regional cuisine at Ichingo Chobe River Lodge, vegetables and fresh produce are grown in our gardens and with one’s daily schedules governed only by the rhythms of nature and mealtimes, true inner rest comes guaranteed,” said Powell.

Plenty of time to visit with shoulder season specials

According to the general manager, a combination of social and economic conditions, such as the rising cost of living, flexible working, climate change and a desire to travel more sustainably, has led to much debate around seasonality.

“One thing for sure is that shoulder season travel continues to be on the rise globally. On the Chobe, seasonality is also becoming less of a concern. Although some may think the peak, high dry season is the best time to enjoy a Southern African river safari, that’s certainly not the only or best time to visit.

“Year-round, the Chobe promises serene escapes focused on guest well-being,” said Powell.

She further highlighted that the Chobe guaranteed intimate safaris and waterside relaxation, so guests should enquire about the SADC resident rates and special seasonal offers.

Floating villas suitable for private group travel

The post-pandemic desire to share special moments with family and friends shows no sign of abating and according to Powell, what’s needed for group travel, is flexibility and ease.

She said that guests could enjoy a Chobe River safari on their “own” houseboat as there were three Chobe Princess houseboats carrying just eight to ten passengers, in laid-back sophistication available for exclusive use.

Powell added that the Ichingo Chobe River Lodge’s dining and lounge areas easily accommodated larger gatherings, while private tender boats (one per tent) allowed guests to follow personal schedules regardless of what the rest of the travel party was doing.

“The luxury Zambezi Queen floating hotel also welcomes groups, and its 14 suites ensure there’s never a crowd,” said Powell.

A grandfather and child enjoy a camp fire and tell stories of the bush at night time. Picture: Supplied

Peace and quiet

Powell said that in our constantly noisy world, silence and solitude nourished the soul and there was no better place to find that inner quiet than on the calm waters of the Chobe.

“Replace traffic noise with the sound of elephants bathing and splashing water as they swim across the river. Trade your morning alarm for that of nature, birds chirping across the skies.”

The ultimate holiday with Gramps

And finally, with the school holiday calendar in mind, savvy grandparents will be bookmarking the holidays to book a trendy 2024 skip gen holiday with the grandkids.

The Chobe’s gentle activities in secure settings allow kids and adults alike to connect over relaxed days on the water, game watching, birdwatching and more, all from comfortable boats, without any roughing and tumbling it on dusty game vehicles.

“The Chobe offers amazing adventures perfect for multigenerational families travelling together. On the houseboats in particular, animal and bird sightings are seen from all around, all day long - meaning that you’re on a 24/7 game watching safari, in complete ease and comfort.

“The little ones are also unlikely to get bored of the surroundings as the scenery constantly changes as the boats navigate between 25-50km of the river,” said Powell.