A boat cruise is when a person stays on a boat or any other vessel on water for an estimated period of time while exploring different paces. Botswana is a landlocked country which is found in the southern part of the African continent but you will be shocked with how well the country is drained. It has a lot of water bodies that is Lakes and Rivers where the boat cruises can take place although most boat cruises in Botswana are carried out within close vicinities of the different national parks that are found within the country. There are several boats that are always lined up to take tourists to the various destinations on a boat cruise and these are taken around by experts who have been in the business for long. The boat cruise will take as long as you want and all this depends on the amount of money that you have.
It is good to book in early and find out when the right time for a boat cruise will come up because most of them are taken when the water levels on most of the water bodies is high and you need a well-trained tour guide to take you through the boat cruise safari because they know most of the routes that have all the exciting things to see and don’t forget to ask for a life jacket before getting on that boat.
A boat cruise in the Chobe National park
The Chobe River is located in the northern part of the country within the chobe National park which is one of the largest National Parks in the country. There are many ways as to how one can explore the chobe National park and a boat cruise is one of those many ways. Travelling and exploring the Chobe National Park on water is a good way to see all the good things that Botswana has to offer you that is from animal viewing, birding to visiting all the places in the country. The boat cruises can be carried out using different vessels and these include:
- Using a motor boat
The motor boats allow you to easily access all the areas that cannot easily be accessed while driving and they give you a chance to get a close to the animals that habitate within the water and all those that are always on the banks of the water bodies cooling off.
- Using house boats
The house boats are also used to traverse the Chobe water area and are fast becoming a favorite for the tourists. In a house boat you get to enjoy watching the animals while enjoying your meals in peace and although the house boats are more expensive, they are worth it.
- Using a Mokoro
A Mokoro is a type of canoe that is used mostly in the Okavango delta when the water is shallow to explore the whole delta. It might not be a boat but it helps tourists get close to the wild life that habitates within the delta and tourists get a chance of visiting the places that they can reach while driving through the Okavango delta.
During the boat cruise to the chobe, you will be able to carry out wild life viewing from the water and some of the animals that you will see while on a boat cruise in chobe include the African jackals, Impalas, crocodiles, buffalos, hippos, lions, leopards, zebras, elephants, both the spotted and brown hyenas, and the almost endangered Puku antelope. The birds that habitate around the Chobe River include the African fish skimmer, the African darter, the white backed night heron, squacco heron, the long toed lapwing, the African finfoot, the pennant winged nightjar and many more other species.
There are several places where you can stay after your boat cruise in Chobe and these are the Chobe Marina lodge and the Chobe game lodge. These are located in the central part of the National parks and the good thing about them is that they offer boat cruise rides which makes it easy for you to go for your boat cruise ride and then head back to your accommodation facilities.
The common places in Botswana where boat cruises take place are the Okavango delta and the Chobe National park but there are also other places in the country where boat cruising is done although not on a large scale and these have been listed below.
A boat cruise on the Ngami Lake
Lake Ngami which is located in Botswana is majorly known for the large number of bird species that habitate around its shores during the wet season. This is a seasonal Lake which normally dries up during the dry season and therefore in order for you to go and enjoy a boat cruise here you will have to first wait for the wet season when the Lake fills up. The commonest bird that you will find at the Ngai Lake is the pink lesser flamingo and you will also get a chance to enjoy the sunset with your loved ones while on your boat cruise on the Ngami Lake.
A boat cruise along the Orange River
The Orange River found in Botswana and is known to be the longest River in the Southern Africa and a boat cruise along the river is one that you shouldn’t miss out on while on a safari in Botswana. There are several bird species like the snake banded eagle, the African fish eagle and many more other species that you will get to see on your boat cruise especially during the wet season and you also get to see some wild animals that come to cool off from the River. You can also enjoy fishing and swimming while on a boat cruise on the Orange River.
A boat cruise in the Okavango Delta
The Okavango delta is a top tourist destination in Botswana and it is a home to the Moremi game reserve. A boat cruise in the Okavango delta is mostly carried out during the wet season because this is the time when the Rivers have full water capacity and the larger part of the delta is flooded. A boat cruise around the Okavango delta will take you to many different places and these include:
- A boat cruise along the Okavango Panhandle
The Okavango Panhandle is famously known for her fishing grounds and the famously caught Tiger fish. Its location within the delta has made it an all year round destination the best way to explore the Panhandle is by taking a boat cruise around the area. Some of the activities that you will carry out while on a boat cruise here include birding, fishing and animal viewing.
- A boat cruise to the Victoria Falls
The Victoria Falls are located within a close vicinity of the Chobe National park and there are itineraries that are arranged from the chobe national park to the Victoria Falls. It is an exciting journey although you need to cover up a bit more especially during the rainy season because the water levels on the Falls is too much you might get sprayed and get wet. But despite that little mishap it is a good way for you to see the Victoria Falls at a close range.
- A boat cruise to Moremi Game reserve
The Moremi game reserve which was opened up by the locals in order to protect the endangered black and white rhinos in the country was named after their chief Moremi III is located in the Okavango delta. A boat cruise here will reward you with the sight of many animals that habitate within the game reserve and these include white rhinos, buffalos, the red Lechwe, jackals, giraffes, zebras, lions, hyenas both the brown and spotted ones, the black rhinos, hippos, impalas cheetahs and many more other species.
You can also go for birding while on a boat cruise to the Moremi Game reserve and some of the bird species that habitate within the reserve include the African fish skimmer, the slaty egret, the green winged Pytilia, the African fish eagle, the lesser jacana, the goliath herons, the greater painted snipes, pelicans, the African pygmy geese, the gray herons and marabou storks.
There are so many reasons as to why you should visit Botswana for a boat cruise and some of these include the following:
- A boat cruise will help you will help you get to the different places that you cannot reach while driving through the country.
- It’s extremely easy for you to connect the different parts of Botswana by boat unlike when you are using road transportation when some roads are inaccessible.
Book for your boat cruises to Botswana and get the best of the country with your favorite tour operator so that you get the best deals when it comes to boat cruising. Make sure you research about what you will need on this safari and then head out to have fun.