Okavango Delta Safari

  • Destinations
  • Botswana
  • Okavango Delta Safari

When to Go

The Delta is a year-round destination

The Okavango Delta is a year-round destination but its seasonal nature greatly affects the visitor experience.

High water season (May to August) coincides with Botswana’s dry winter, creating a happy combination of the best time of year for water activities, the mildest weather, and the lowest malaria risk. Animals are drawn to the rising water as winter wears on, making for very rewarding game viewing in September and October.

Note that many Okavango Delta lodges do not offer water activities except in flood season but these lodges will make up for it with the quality of their land-based game viewing. Conversely, lodges may also be unable to offer game drives in high water season – it pays to find out beforehand.

The arrival of the summer rains in November and December means that many animals move away from the delta but others arrive, including huge numbers of migrant bird species. Large herds of impala give birth in early summer, attracting predators and making an early Green Season to the Okavango Delta an attractive option for second-time around safari visitors.

Jan/ Feb/ Mar/ Apr
Peak rainy season; excellent bird watching
May/ Jun/ Jul/ Aug
Cold & dry winter & high water season – good time for water activities & game viewing
Sep/ Oct
Hot & dry weather, low water levels, great for land-based game viewing
Nov/ Dec
Early rainy season, very low water levels, limited water activities

Top Experiences


1. Sit Back in a Mokoro

Steered by a local guide, your flat-bottomed mokoro (canoe) takes you into the delta’s shallow wetlands – great for birding & photography. Contact us for more info about lodges and high water seasons.

2. Walk the Delta

Guided nature walks on the islands of the Okavango Delta are a highlight for many visitors – you’ll learn about medicinal trees, look for rare birds, identify animal tracks & get to see some animals.

3. Cruise the River

Swop an afternoon game drive for a motor boat safari, a great way to discover the delta. You’ll spot hippos & crocodiles plus dozens of different birds & finish the day at the best sunset spots.

4. Get Romantic

Breathtaking scenery, stunning sunsets plus super-exclusive accommodation: the Okavango Delta is one of the most romantic destinations in Africa. Honeymooners can expect private dining, spa pampering & plenty of romantic surprises.

5. Go Bird Watching

Home to around 500 recorded bird species, the Okavango Delta is a birder’s paradise, especially in the summer when migrant birds arrive. Ask for a specialist bird guide & try for the region’s ‘mega-tick’ – the ever-elusive Pel’s Fishing-Owl.

6. Go on a Game Drive

Led by a professional guide, 4X4 game drives give you the best chances of seeing big game in the drier areas of the delta. Several lodges have a great reputation for vehicle-based game viewing; private reserves offer night drives & off-road driving too – ask us for the best ones.

7. Search for Wild Dogs

The delta’s grassy floodplains are packed with antelope, making them classic hunting territory for the highly endangered wild dog, one of the most sought-after sightings on an African safari. Head for the drier margins of the delta or ask us for recommendations.

8. Drop a Line Overboard

Whether you are a keen angler or just fancy trying your luck, many lodges offer fishing as an activity. It’s mostly catch-&-release but you can fish for your supper too. Serious fishermen will want to experience the delta’s infamous catfish run – get more info.

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