Zarafa Camp: Plan Your Stay

Located in Selinda Reserve, Botswana

How to Get There

By Air

Flights aboard a lightweight aircraft are offered between the airports at Kasane or Maun in Botswana and the Zarafa airstrip. The airstrip can also accommodate private aircraft. Upon arrival at the airstrip, guests are transferred to the lodge by land vehicle and boat. Transfers take about 45 minutes and are included in the cost of the stay.

What to Expect

Health and Safety

Zarafa Camp is located in a remote area with no immediate access to a pharmacy or hospital. The nearest advanced medical facility is located in Maun. Guests should pack all needed prescriptions and medications. Zarafa requires all guests to carry comprehensive travel and medical insurance for themselves and any dependents with whom they are traveling.

Please note that the lodge is situated in a malarial area, and it is recommended that guests consult their physician or travel clinic regarding the latest, easily administered malaria prophylaxis.

Most guests of Zarafa travel to Botswana on flights from South Africa. Visitors traveling through South Africa are required to have at least two consecutive blank visa pages in their passports. Visitors should also be able to provide immigration officials with outbound travel documentation. Parents traveling with children must carry unabridged birth certificates for all family members under the age of 18. Please consult South Africa’s Department of Home Affairs for more information on traveling in the country with minors.

Immigration Documents

Upon arrival in Botswana, visitors must provide immigration officials with an international certificate documenting their vaccination for yellow fever.

Weather and Seasons

Weather in Botswana is pleasant throughout the year. The summer runs from November through March, bringing hot days and warm nights, along with frequent rain showers. During winter, from May through August, there is little to no rain. Temperatures during this time are typically warm in the afternoon but can sometimes turn very cold overnight. The transitional months of April and October also tend to be dry.

What to Bring

The light airplanes that fly into Zarafa have luggage restrictions. Each person’s luggage may weigh no more than 44 pounds (20 kilograms) and must be packed in soft bags measuring no larger than 10 inches wide by 12 inches high and 25 inches long. Dinners are casual, basic bath amenities are provided, and laundry service is available, so guests are encouraged to pack lightly.

Suggested Packing List

  • Layers, including a mixture of long- and short-sleeved shirts, shorts, and long pants
  • A lightweight jacket and light rain gear for summer
  • A warm jacket, scarf, gloves, and hat for winter nights
  • Comfortable yet sturdy walking shoes
  • Sunglasses, sunscreen, and a wide-brimmed hat or visor
  • Swimsuit (for private plunge pool)
  • Flashlight
  • Insect repellent
  • Adapters for a Type M plug

Traveling with Family

Children ages eight and older are welcome at Zarafa Camp and are invited to participate in many of the lodge experiences, including game drives. The Dhow Suite private villa alone can accommodate children six and older. Child rates apply to guests age 15 and younger. The Young Explorers Program offers complimentary additional excursions for children that combine lessons in wildlife awareness and conservation with unforgettable hands-on experiences in the Botswana wilderness. Take a look at some of these activities below (note that age restrictions apply to some activities).

  • Survival-skills training, including animal tracking
  • Night walks
  • Creating plaster casts of animal tracks
  • Crafting a traditional bow and arrow
  • Cooking in the bush over an open fire
  • Lessons on conservation and poaching
  • Making jewelry using locally sourced beads
  • Gathering natural supplies from the environment for arts-and-crafts projects
  • Fishing
  • Learning to use binoculars for wildlife viewing
  • Membership in National Geographic’s Cause an Uproar campaign, which facilitates a dialogue on conservation among kids around the world

Go with Nat Geo

  • Customize a Trip

    Want to plan the trip of your dreams? Create a custom trip around this lodge.

  • Private Expeditions

    See a specially crafted National Geographic itinerary featuring this lodge.