Chobe National Park

Chobe National Park is one of Botswana's most popular safari destinations. With some of the biggest herds of elephants in the world, Chobe is famous for having the largest concentration of animals in Africa. The Chobe River supports a multitude of wildlife as hippos and crocodiles laze in the waters, and herds of buffalo and elephant gather to drink in the late afternoon sun. Game drives through the park offer incredible opportunities to see predators such as lions and leopards and many other animals. From cruising in a luxury houseboat down the river to roughing it in the wild at the campsites, there are many wonderful experiences to be had at Chobe National Park.

  • Best Time To Go

    July – October

  • Average Safari Cost

    $200 to $1,500pp/day

  • Highlights

    Legendary and most established safaris in the world, world's largest herds of elephants, most predators, over 440 bird species, Chobe Riverfront, Linyanti Marshes, remote Savuti, luxury camping under the stars.

Pros and Cons

  • Amazing wildlife viewing opportunities
  • The Big Five (excluding rhinos)
  • Variety of activities such as game drives and river cruises to see the wildlife
  • Weather is warm throughout the year
  • Over 450 recorded bird species to see
  • Not as good for self-driving: restricted day hours for self-drive visitors
  • River gets crowded in the afternoon with safari boats

Why Visit Chobe National Park?

Chobe is the oldest and most established park in Botswana. From lush wetlands of the Chobe River to grass and swampland, there is much to explore. Each different geological area is host to an impressive array of wildlife. Thanks to the herds of elephants roaming free, it is known as the Land of the Giants.

Plenty of wildlife can be seen here throughout the whole year, so you will be able to experience a true safari no matter when you visit. There are many options for accommodation in Chobe, from comfortable lodges situated along the Chobe River banks with the most spectacular views of animal habitats, to campsites in real bush-land, where you can be totally immersed in the wild. Chobe National Park is a safari destination that works for everyone.

Best Time To Visit

While Chobe National Park can be visited at any time during the year, but it is best to visit between July and October. These are the dry months when the vegetation is sparse and animals congregate around the river in clear view. Temperatures are mostly pleasant during this time but it can get very hot in October. This is also the peak time to visit, so it can get fairly crowded, especially around the riverfront area, and the rates may be higher, so try booking advance.

Wildlife can still be seen during the rainy months, November to March, but it is more challenging as the animals migrate to different areas within the park. However, newborn animals can be seen around the start of the wet season, which also attracts many predators. Bird watching is better during these months, thanks to migrating visitors.

For more information when to visit see our Botswana Safari - Complete Travel Guide.

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Wildlife And Birds

Chobe has an absolute abundance of animals and birds to see. With four different ecological areas, many different types of birds can be seen thriving in the different habitats. Massive herds of elephants and buffalo roam the open land and can often be spotted in impressive and humbling numbers. Chances to see predators such as lions, leopards and cheetahs are also very good within the park, so you won't be disappointed. With over 450 recorded species to look out for, it is also an excellent place for bird watching.
Rare Animals
  • Cheetah
  • Leopard
  • Leopard
  • Cheetah
  • Wild dog
  • Wildebeest
Frequently Seen Animals
  • Lion
  • Elephant
  • Hippo
  • Buffalo
  • Hyena
  • Giraffe
  • Lion
  • Elephant
  • Giraffe
  • Hippo
  • Buffalo
  • Zebra
  • Hyena

Chobe is an excellent bird watching destination. From water birds in the wetland habitats to the dry-land birds in the desert areas, many different species can be found throughout the park. There are also many migratory species that can be seen here at different times of the year.

Endangered birds:

  • Hooded vulture
  • White-backed vulture
  • Wattled crane
  • Gray-crowned crane

Getting There And Safety


Chobe National Park is most easily accessed from Kasane Airport. From there you can fly to your accommodation on chartered planes, catch your pre-arranged airport transfer car or pick up your own self-drive safari vehicle. Charter flights are often booked as a part of a tour package, so check with your operator.

If you are based in the UK and Europe, check out these flights to Botswana.

If you are based in the USA and Canada, check out these flights to Botswana.


All foreign visitors must have a passport that is valid for at least 6 months after their visit.

Visas are not required by visitors of many nationalities, who will receive a 30-day entry permit upon arrival.

For more information on visas see our Botswana Safari - Complete Country Guide.


The vaccinations recommended for Botswana are hepatitis A, hepatitis B, rabies and typhoid.

Boosters are recommended for measles, tetanus and diphtheria. Chobe is in a high-risk area for malaria, so anti-malarial drugs should be taken.

A yellow fever vaccination is required if travelling from a yellow fever zone.

It’s better to check with your local medical authority which vaccinations are required.

For more information on vaccinations see our Botswana Safari - Complete Country Guide.

Travel Insurance

Going on a safari in Africa comes with obvious risks. We recommend you get travel insurance for all safaris in Botswana. Make sure your insurance has full medical coverage, emergency air evacuation, repatriation and the standard travel insurance for cancellations, delays and luggage cover.

Check the World Nomads’ travel insurance calculator to see the cost of your safari trip cover.

What To Pack

You should pack clothes suitable for both hot and cold weather as days can be very hot followed by very cold nights. Your clothes should be in neutral tones, not bright colours. Other items to pack include: insect repellent, camera, torch, binoculars, sunglasses and sun block.

For more details about what to take with you on a safari see our Safari Packing List.

Electricity in Accommodation
The lodges in Chobe National Park provide electricity.
It depends which season you travel in but temperatures at night can go as low as 45˚F(7˚C) and reach 95˚F(35˚C) during the day.
Credit Card Payments
Credit cards are accepted at some hotels, but lodges and other accommodation may require payment in advance. There are ATMs or you may obtain cash at many of the local banks.