5 Spectacular Campsites for your Botswana Self-Drive Safari Roadtrip
Updated: Jun 29
Sleep under a blanket of stars, hear hippos roar in the distance and have elephants, lions or hyenas visit your camp. Are you ready for a true wilderness adventure?
1. Third Bridge - Moremi Game Reserve
Without a doubt one of the wildest campsites we ever stayed at. This campsite requires a pre-booking, as you cannot enter the national park otherwise. It is rather pricey, but it comes with bathroom amenities and you’ll pay for the experience.
After driving many kilometers on adventurous off-road tracks you‘ll arrive at a campsite in the middle of the Okavango delta. A pool with hippos is only a few hundred meters away. During the day, a group of elephants stood on our site. In the evening, a lion couple and a spotted hyena passed by less than 20 meters away. Upon leaving the camp, you‘ll have to tackle a river crossing and a swaying Mopane tree trunk bridge.
2. Khwai Riverfront
A little-known secret close to the world-famous Okavango Delta, the Khwai riverfront is an equal wildlife paradise. The expensive campsite comes without any amenities (no bathrooms here, bring a shovel), but you‘ll have unforgettable wildlife encounters. The area is a favorite among elephants, African buffalos, hippos, waterbucks, and more. We even spotted a serval cat.
3. Matopi Camp - Kgalagadi National Park
Deep in the southwest of Botswana, Matopi campsite in Kgalagadi National Park is a true wilderness gem without any amenities. The campsite is far off from any civilization in the middle of the national park. In the evening, you‘ll be listening to a melodious concert of barking geckos searching for mates. Fetch yourself some firewood, get cozy and watch a blanket of stars across the dark night sky.
4. Shakawe River Lodge Campsite
Directly on the shore of the Okavango river, Shakawe River Lodge offers a perfect opportunity to calm down after a long drive. The campground comes with bathrooms and showers, and your own fire pit for cooking. Watch the Okavango river gently flow past your tent and listen to the varied bird songs in the morning.
5. Wilderness Camp
In Botswana, you are officially allowed to free camp. As a majority of the country is inhabited, you‘ll find plenty of opportunities to sleep in the wilderness. If you are around villages, it is always best to ask for permission. We found some truly great wilderness campsites in the west of Botswana, far off from any other humans, where we could enjoy the loneliness of this beautiful country together.