There’s no doubt that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are the couple of the moment. The wedding planning is well underway, and the world’s media can’t get enough of it. But there’s something else about the golden couple that has peaked the public’s interest — their penchant for Botswana. Harry’s first visit came only two months after his mother died, but Meghan only enjoyed her debut trip when Harry whisked her away in August 2016. It was an elaborate third date, but the magical Botswanan backdrop proved itself to be the perfect place for the couple to enjoy five days of glamping under the stars, away from prying eyes. Ever since then, Botswana’s luxury safari camps have found themselves in the spotlight, so we’ve compiled a list of the five most romantic destinations, for those in search of the royal treatment in 2018.
In the heart of the Moremi Game Reserve lies Chief’s Island, a 70 km long stretch of land famous for its high concentration of wildlife. Just a short flight from Maun airport, guests are treated to awe-inspiring views of the delta below before they even arrive at Chief’s Camp, one of four Sanctuary Retreats in Botswana. It re-opened in July 2016, boasting even bigger luxury rooms than before, each featuring private plunge pools and secluded pavilions from where guests can admire visiting wildlife in-between expertly guided game drives. The addition of the lavish Geoffrey Kent Luxury Suite gives those couples who seek total privacy the chance to unwind in a tranquil setting at the far end of the camp. The suite comes complete with a personal chef, waiter, housekeeper and game driver, making for the ultimate VIP experience. The warm, welcoming and genuine atmosphere created by the staff at Chief’s Camp, coupled with the impeccable service, ensures that each guest leaves the island feeling like royalty.
Little Mombo Camp
The completed refurbishment of another of the Okavango Delta’s safari lodges, Mombo Camp, will be revealed to the public at the end of January 2018. Each of the nine tented suites has been expanded to incorporate a new private decking area with plunge pool, overlooking the spectacular floodplains. In addition, every room boasts elegant furnishings that embrace both traditional and modern elements. Expect antique brass detailing, vintage leather and natural oak flooring, which combine to create a stylish and luxurious feel. Described as “the Rolls Royce of the Delta,” Mombo Camp is one of the top destinations in Botswana for those looking for a romantic break in the bush.
Chobe Under Canvas
Chobe National Park, in the north of Botswana, provides travellers with yet another fantastic opportunity to see a broad array of African wildlife. This back-to-basics style camp features safari tents with en-suite bathrooms set right in the heart of the action. Only the tent canvas separates guests from the roaming game animals, some of which stroll through the camp from time to time. This property offers a more rustic set up than some of its luxury counterparts, resulting in a truly authentic safari experience. With easy access to the Chobe River, guests are invited to take a boat safari in order to admire the animals by the water’s edge.
The breathtaking Makgadikgadi Pan is home to one of Botswana’s most romantic safari lodges; Jack’s Camp. The property is located on the edge of the giant salt pan, the only remaining memory of what once was one of the world’s largest super lakes. Now, thousands of years later, the Makgadikgadi Pan presents itself as a top safari destination, thanks to the unique scenery and migratory action during the wet season (November to April). With a cup of tea in one hand, and a scone in the other, guests at Jack’s Camp have the opportunity to admire the wildlife meandering through the plains, from the comfort of the lodge deck. The property only has 10 luxury tents, ensuring that every visitor experiences the privacy and serenity that they’d expect of a truly romantic getaway in the African bush.
Belmond Savute Elephant Camp
Set to reopen in June 2018, the Savute Channel based hotel, Belmond Savute Elephant Camp, describes itself as a “captivating colonial retreat,” complete with four-poster beds in each tent. Guests can spend the days exploring Chobe National Park with an expert guide, before retiring to the hotel deck, where the safari doesn’t stop. While enjoying a refreshing sundowner, guests will be able to spot game meandering through the wilderness, before being called to dinner at the traditional Boma. Every night, the chef serves up sumptuous local dishes for guests as they sit beneath the starry night sky. Alternatively, enjoy a romantic meal on your own private deck, complete with a personal butler.
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