Selinda Concession, Linyanti, Botswana
At a Glance
An owner-run independent safari camp with real attention to detail and genuine hosting
Excellent horse riding safaris for experienced riders in a big game area
Walking safaris (a relative rareity in Botswana) with expert guides
Superb wildlife including good lion sightings, resident wild dog, large elephant and buffalo herds and great birding
Fly-camping possible for stays of four nights or longer
Great family tents linking two ensuite tents on one platform
Best time to Visit
Good time to visit
Average time to visit
Botswana’s winter is May to October when the weather is hot during the day (not stiflingly hot) and cold at night. Botswana's summer months (November to April) can be hot and humid and there is a chance of rain. Botswana has one rainy season which runs between mid-December and runs through to mid-March.
At Motswiri Camp the floodwaters arrive at the end of April and are there until the end of October - a slightly earlier season than some of the more southerly camps in the Delta.
Call us on to start planning your holiday to RAW Botswana or take a look at our itineraries to Linyanti
A fantastic independent safari camp in a prime game area, RAW Botswana offers exceptional riding safaris, walking safaris, game drives and mokoro, canoe and boat explorations in the western Selinda reserve, north of the Okavango Delta.
RAW Botswana operates from Motswiri Camp built in a stunning location on the banks of the Selinda Spillway. The intimate camp has just five tents, the last of which is a family unit consisting of two adjoining tents and a shared balcony
The location is wild and beautiful, with rewarding wildlife including large herds of elephant and buffalo, sable and roan antelope, lion, wild dog and cheetah. Activities are varied and include horse riding safaris for experienced riders, walking safaris with knowledgeable guides, game drives and the chance to explore the waterways seasonally by boat, canoe or mokoro.
There are three classic Meru tents raised on platforms to enjoy the views, each with a comfortable double bed, deck and chairs to the front and an en-suite bathroom with flush loo and hot water shower at the back. Families are accommodated in the two bedroom family tents set on a shared platform. These have two bedrooms, one double and one twin, each with an en-suite bathroom, and linked by a central door. There is also a honeymoon tent at the edge of the camp which has a larger deck at the front for private romantic dinners, and an outdoor shower in the bathroom.
Riding safaris here are a real highlight - picture yourself cantering through the water, alongside a herd of zebra - it's an unforgettable feeling. There are 20 horses and you'll be riding in a big game area, so it's essential to be an experienced rider. There's plenty here for non-riders, too. Walking safaris are a wonderful way to explore the smaller details of the ecosystem, looking for wildlife tracks and taking a slower approach to your safari. Game-drives allow you to explore and see some of the bigger game, and combine nicely with the walks or rides. When there's water here (typically between the end of April and the end of October), water-based safaris are another option, including boat safaris, canoeing and mokoro rides. As well as the big game, the area offers rewarding birding, too, with seasonal specialities including carmine bee-eaters and migrating raptors.
Whilst not overtly luxurious, the camp is really comfortable and well run, with fantastic hosting, a great location and excellent safari activities. If you're looking for an authentic safari experience, it's a great choice.
Three double tents with en-suite bathroom and balcony to the front, one honeymoon tent with larger balcony and an outdoor shower, and two family units which are linked on the same wooden platform with a connecting door. Both bedrooms in the two-bed family unit have their own bathroom, so this option also works for two couples travelling together, or for two single travellers, too.
There's a central mess area, set on a wooden deck with a roof and open sides to take in the view and make the most of the cool breeze on warm days. You'll find plenty of comfortable armchairs here to relax in with a good book, and meals are served here, too. To the back of the main area is the swimming pool, providing welcome relief during the hotter months.
Horse-riding safaris, walking safaris, game drives, boat safaris, mokoro rides and canoeing. There is also a fly-camp which is located around 5 kilometres downstream, ideal for a night of back-to-basics adventure. The fly-camp has five dome tents, each with a small chemical loo at the back, and a separate private bathroom tent with bucket shower, too. Fly-camping needs to be pre-booked, and at an additional supplement - there are a minimum of four people needed to operate the fly-camp, and you'd need to be staying a minimum of four nights at Motswiri (eg. 2 nights main camp, 1 night fly-camp, 1 night main camp) for logistics purposes.
Anna Hearn (Staff)
Motswiri is the classic riding camp set in an area of the Selinda concession with very little predator action, its the perfect spot from which to explore on horseback. Ably run by the characterful Johnno and his sidekick Carmen, the rides head out in the early morning and late afternoon and guests will often find themselves cantering through the waters of the concession. But Motswiri is also excellent for non-riders who fancy getting out of the game drive vehicle and exploring on foot. Their resident walking guide is exceptional, and the walk we took early in the morning was a real feast for the senses. We tracked two bull elephants through the bush as they meandered along, stopping the feed on a tree here and there, and finally were able to get within about 15 metres of them as they munched away. The mokoro trips are lovely too generally combined with an island walk, drifting through the serene waters is a wonderful way to start the early morning.
Katie Fewkes (Staff)
I've always dreamed of going on a proper riding safari, and where better than Botswana where you can canter through the waterways? So when the chance came to stay for a couple of nights at Ride and Walk Motswiri camp, I leapt at it.
The camp itself is really charming - a lovely v-shaped mess tent with a sandy fire pit area all overlooking a wide bend in the river. At night there's a telescope for stargazing, and the sound of the frogs each evening I'd have loved to bottle and take home.
Carmen the horse manager is a huge asset to the camp - she takes such great care of the horses here, ensuring they are all excellently cared for, each has enough rest between rides and plenty of time out grazing. The temperament of the horses is superb, testament to her careful selection of them. John, the riding guide, is highly knowledgeable about the area, and the best spots for a nice long canter, and always taking care to ensure you're safe and keeping a lookout for wildlife. The riding here isn't for the faint of heart - you'll ride about 2 - 3 hrs each evening, and between 3 1/2 and 5 hours in the morning, so your fitness levels, knees and stamina all need to be up to scratch, and you need to be confident in your riding ability. That said, for intermediate or competent riders, this is such a fantastic experience and an entirely unique way to explore the northern part of Botswana in the Selinda Concession. I loved every minute of it!
I also found time for a relaxing evening mokoro ride through the reeds and waterways, topped off with a G&T at sunset, and an invigorating boat trip and walking safari where we were lucky enough to see a buffalo kill, and a sable antelope crossing the waterways.
My tent was well designed and really comfortable - decent mattresses, proper pillows, good reading lights, hot, powerful showers and a lovely deck out front.
This is a great camp with really superb riding and plenty of other good quality safari activities. It is not overtly luxurious and service is understated and laid-back rather than slick and polished, but this is part of the laid-back charm of Motswiri.
Boat safari in the Okavango Delta
Travel through the waterways of the Okavango Delta on a boat safari, exploring the papyrus reeds and hippo habitats with your guide. The smooth ride offers a soothing alternative to time spent in a vehicle. Always subject to water levels.
Fishing in the Okavango
Fishing trips offer visitors to Botswana an opportunity to enjoy a different safari experience. In many areas the fishing is fantastic, you'll also enjoy fantastic wildlife and birdlife over your time on the water. NB not available within national parks.
Game Drives in Botswana
Viewing wildlife from a vehicle is the best way to get up close to big game. Allow your professional safari guide to cover ground to guarantee you some unforgettable sightings in Africa's premier safari destination.
Game drives in the Okavango
One of the best ways to see the big game of Botswana's Okavango Delta is on a game drive with a knowledgeable guide. Explore in open-sided vehicles to maximise your viewing opportunities, this is a truly wildlife rich environment.
Horse riding at Motswiri
Experience the thrill of game viewing from horseback. Motswiri is one of the best places to do this in Botswana and they have horses to suit every riding ability from total beginners to experienced riders.
Mokoro trips in Botswana
Botswana's northern safari areas are full of water channels just waiting to be explored. Larger boats can be used to explore the wider channels but for the aficionado, mokoro trips into the smaller channels are a real treat. Always subject to waterlevels
Walking Safaris and Nature Walks
Walking in the African bush with a professional safari guide is a fantastic experience. Enjoy a completely different perspective on foot than from a vehicle.
Location & directions
Selinda Concession, Linyanti, Botswana
Located in the north west of the Okavango, on the western side of the Selinda reserve near the Selinda spillway.
How to get there
International flight into Maun (typically via Johannesburg) and a 40-minute light aircraft flight onward to the Motswiri airstrip. Alternatively it is approximately a 1 1/2 - hour drive from Kasane, for guests travelling to/from Chobe National Park, or the Victoria Falls.