Okavango Delta - tour day 9 - Chobe game drive - Crouching Lions, Hidden Leopard :)

Okavango Delta Travel Blog

 › entry 12 of 25 › view all entries
Cool baboon and baby shot

After being in Africa for a couple of weeks, having done several game drives through Kruger National Park, and still not seen a lion we were having to convince ourselves that we could walk from Africa without seeing a lion and still be happy.....honest we could :)

However, luck was upon on us today as we did a morning game drive in Chobe National Park, Botswana.  For starters it is a much different game park to Kruger down in S.A., it is more like I had pictured game drives, with the ability to see quite far in to the distance, rather than looking between bushes close to the road (as had been the case in Kruger).

The first highlight of the day was that we heard that a car had spotted a leopard and quickly sped over to the spot.

Finally we saw a lion! They do exist!
  This was our first experience of just being overwhelmed with tourist trucks as cars arrived from left, right and centre to see this incredible creature.

You always hear how well camouflaged a leopard is, but you don't quite fathom it until you see it in action.  We saw the leopard get up and walk along through some trees.  Then, as it stopped, you could just no longer see it.  We knew it was there, right where we were looking, but it had disguised itself incredibly well, purely by stopping.  Amazing stuff!!

We were then treated to a family of baboons going past, with the cute little baby hanging underneath, and of course the now standard elephants and giraffe (isn't it great when you can call giraffes 'standard' :) ).

Without doubt the highlight of the day was when we came across three lionesses wandering along the roadside!  They were all fully grown, though two were obviously younger and much more playful than what we presume was their mother.

A mother and two younger (but still big)lions played only metres away
  The lionesses were only a couple of metres away from us, playfully jumping on each other, we were absolutely mesmerised :))

Now we had been told before hand that lions look at the truck as an entity, rather than being able to distinguish that there are individual tasty morsels in there. However, as we looked on from our truck with no sides from a couple of metres away, one of the lions turned and looked directly at Laura. Suffice to say she scooted backwards in her seat at a rapid rate!!!  Nothing came of it, but it was just one of those 'oh sh*t' moments.

We felt much happier after that drive having seen the lion, and Bennie was very happy for us when we got back to camp :) Next stop was the Okavango Delta! 

Today saw us meet our guide Timan, and then a incredibly soothing one and a half hour ride in a 'mokoro' (dugout canoe) to the island where we would spend our next couple of days.

One of the lions eyed Laura off from a couple of metres away!
  I'm not sure I've had many more relaxing experiences than being pushed along at the height of the reeds without any sounds except the swishing of the pole.....ahhhh.....

*******************Tour blurb

Days 9-12 Okavango Delta

The next destination is the gateway to one of the world's most renowned and complex ecosystems, the Okavango Delta. Springing from the Okavango River which begins life in Angola, this is a natural wetland system formed by the river dividing into thousands of channels, creating islands, floodplains and the world's only inland delta. The delta spreds 1,600,000 ha over northern Botswana.
The distance from Kasane to Maun is 600km via Nata.
Spend two nights camping on a remote island in the heart of the wilderness and explore the maze of lagoons, lakes and streams, led by experienced and knowledgeable guides.

Incredible!
We dig a bush toilet and go without a shower but it is all part of the delta experience.Traverse the waterways by mokoro, a traditional dugout canoe navigated by friendly local 'polers', as well as on foot. With luck, we may spot some of the delta's unusual wildlife and prolific birdlife while on these safaris. At night, the sounds of the African bush are the only things you will hear - a true wilderness experience.
For those wanting to see the delta from above there is an opportunity to fly over the delta in a small plane. From up above you get a true sense of the vatness of the delta.

Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Cool baboon and baby shot
Cool baboon and baby shot
Finally we saw a lion! They do exi…
Finally we saw a lion! They do ex…
A mother and two younger (but stil…
A mother and two younger (but sti…
One of the lions eyed Laura off fr…
One of the lions eyed Laura off f…
Incredible!
Incredible!
Hello lion!
Hello lion!
You can never have too many lion s…
You can never have too many lion …
A couple of the 3 lionesses
A couple of the 3 lionesses
Pete and his lion!
Pete and his lion!
The lions frolic!
The lions frolic!
I assure you thats a leopard, the…
I assure you that's a leopard, th…
Leopards tail is the white bit
Leopard's tail is the white bit
Maddie and the lion!
Maddie and the lion!
We were all still amazed at our li…
We were all still amazed at our l…
We hope the lions have moved on...
We hope the lions have moved on...
Our attempt to make shade in the t…
Our attempt to make shade in the …
Roadside huts
Roadside huts
Lounging around in the truck
Lounging around in the truck
Pete and Maddie in their mokoro
Pete and Maddie in their mokoro
Laura in front of me in our mokoro
Laura in front of me in our mokoro
So relaxing...
So relaxing...
Laura has broken out her pretty p…
Laura has broken out her 'pretty …
Just us and the swishing of a pole
Just us and the swishing of a pole
Nice pink flowers next to us
Nice pink flowers next to us
Ahhhh...
Ahhhh...
Laura says hello from our tent, we…
Laura says hello from our tent, w…
Okavango delta camp site
Okavango delta camp site
Pete and Maddie have a try at usin…
Pete and Maddie have a try at usi…
Its me and our tent!
It's me and our tent!
This was the last time they tried …
This was the last time they tried…
An elephant footprint
An elephant footprint
Nice sun shot
Nice sun shot
more nice sun shots
more nice sun shots
And more....
And more....
And last one.....
And last one.....
Clare had to wear a sock over her …
Clare had to wear a sock over her…
Okavango Delta
photo by: Biedjee