Jao Camp

Accommodation in Okavango Delta

Jao, a sophisticated Okavango Delta retreat in the most remote, scenically splendid setting, is the epitome of safari luxury.

Shaded by lush riverine forests and set in an area where islands fringed with riverine forests meet vast productive floodplains, luxurious Jao Camp provides the ultimate Okavango Delta water experience. The nine beautifully designed, totally private thatched tents are situated under a canopy of shady trees. A private sala on the deck of each spacious tent is the perfect place for an afternoon siesta, with astounding views of the delta. Each luxurious guest tent includes a spacious bedroom, lounge, deck with sala and en-suite facilities with indoor and outdoor showers, double vanities and a bathtub.

In addition to the main lounge and dining area, there are two sparkling plunge pools and a traditional boma for dining under the stars, complemented by wines from an excellent wine cellar. Old Africa hands will appreciate Jao’s gym, where the more active can get their exercise fix while soaking up the remarkable views over the water. The Jao Spa – tucked under magnificent African ebony trees overlooking lush waterways – offers a full menu of restorative therapies, from facials and pedicures to a range of massages.

The camp itself perfectly mirrors the beauty of the Delta and allows an effortless entry into the wonders of this pristine wetland paradise. Frequently visited by wildlife, including a gregarious family of mongoose, Jao offers superb game viewing. Huge herds of red lechwe are followed by their primary predator – prides of lion. Other resident game includes elephant, Cape buffalo, leopard, tsessebe, zebra, hippo and crocodile, as well as the less frequently seen sitatunga and spotted-necked otter. The rich birdlife includes resident species such as Meyer’s parrot, African harrier hawk, black heron, coppery-tailed coucal and black crake.

Jao’s position – in a private concession bordering Moremi Game Reserve, among waterways and lagoons yet close to dry Kalahari woodland – means you can enjoy both water and land wildlife experiences, depending on the time of year. As well as guided morning and afternoon game drives in open 4×4 LandRovers, you can spot nocturnal animals during exciting night drives with spotlights. A 45-minute boat ride takes you to wildlife-rich Hunda Island, where you can spend a day with the prolific wildlife of Hunda Island, or you can head to the hide for an afternoon of birdwatching. Of course, water-based game-viewing activities are first prize in the Okavango Delta. There is no better way of viewing the delta and its wildlife than by traditional mokoro (dugout canoe). Jao also has two glass-bottomed mokoro for an entirely exceptional, immersive Delta experience.Game-viewing excursions in the eight-seater boats in the waterways to the east of camp allow for good game viewing in the channels further from camp.

Adventurous souls should not miss the chance to spend a night under a canopy of stars. In a raised hide about 20 minutes from camp, the Jao Star Bed – equipped with a queen-sized bed and a large mosquito net – offers a wilderness experience you will never forget.

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