The Zambezi River may be the most fierce body of water in Zimbabwe, but not too far across the border into Botswana, the Chobe River proves one of the most scenic. This national park, founded in 1968, includes floodplains, forest, swamps and rivers. Visitors here can embark on a river safari, where large floater boats move quietly among tall grasses, or hire a traditional macoro and paddle up close to hippos and crocodiles. Chobe is home to the largest concentration of elephants in the world. Families can be seen sipping water along the river’s edge, and at times, herds numbering more than 100 make Serondella Road, the main pass of the park, impossible to cross. Chobe is also home to over 460 species of birds, making it an ideal destination for avian enthusiasts.
Sunset river cruises are a great way to see wildlife, meet travelers, and experience the traditional food of Botswana. Linyanti, which has a public campsite, is the best place in the park for game viewing in dry winter months. Visitors traveling in rainy season will have better luck spotting wildlife in the Ngwenzumba Pans, which fill with water and attract animals from across Chobe.