Zarafa Dhow Suites
Selinda Concession, Linyanti, Botswana
At a Glance
The ultimate family safari experience in Botswana
Enjoy total privacy and exclusivity on your safari in the beautiful Selinda concession
Private safari guide and vehicle offering total flexibility
Arguably one of the most luxurious safari properties in Africa
Stunning views over the Zibalianja lagoon
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.
Call us on to start planning your vacation to Zarafa Dhow Suites or take a look at our itineraries to Linyanti
The Zarafa Dhow Suites is a luxurious two bedroom private safari camp located in northern Botswana's Selinda Concession. Offering total privacy and exclusivity, it is one of Africa's most luxurious safari camps.
The Zarafa Dhow Suites is the ultra luxurious private camp neighboring its sister camp, Zarafa, Botswana's first and only Relais & Chateaux property. Overlooking the beautiful Zibadianja lagoon in the Selinda Concession, it is a superb base for exploring this wildlife-rich region. The camp has just two bedrooms and is fully staffed including a private safari guide and vehicle, offering families or groups an ultimate exclusive safari experience.
Built on one enormous wooden deck, made from old railway sleepers, the Dhow Suites villa is all under canvas and comprises a large central lounge and dining room and two vast bedroom suites. Bespoke furniture, hand-crafted and designed specifically for the suites is found everywhere you look, along with photographic books, unique pieces of African artwork, and stunning Lamu doors. The bedrooms each have an open plan bathroom with copper bathtub, copper outdoor shower, indoor shower and an open fireplace with copper flue to ward off the cool evenings during the winter. To the front of the suites is a large deck with swimming pool, exercise bike, fire pit and uninterrupted views of the lagoon. There's a Swarovski telescope, too, for a spot of stargazing after dinner! Wifi is available, too.
As well as offering a beautifully luxurious camp, the real beauty in your safari at the Zarafa Dhow Suites is the total flexibility you can enjoy. You have your own private guide and vehicle, and you can choose each day what you'd like to do, and how long for. Traditional morning and afternoon game-drives are available, and it's possible to do walking safaris, too. But if you want to sleep in one morning, or have a late brunch and just pop out for sundowners, it's up to you. Or, if you're keen to squeeze every last minute out of your game-viewing experience, you can opt for full day game-drives with a picnic brunch! There's also the option of a trip on the pontoon boat which is equipped with sofas, a dining area and bar, ideal for a floating brunch or sundowner drinks up close to the hippos.
The minimum age for children at the Zarafa Dhow Suites is 8 years, but for children this age or older, there is a superb program of activities to learn more about the wildlife and ecosystem here. Please note there is a minimum age of 12 years for walking safaris for safety reasons.
Game-drives in the morning and afternoon, full-day drives, walking safaris, brunch or sundowners on the pontoon boat and fishing are all available to choose from each day. Yoga mats and bands are provided in each suite, and there is an exercise bike. Massages can be arranged in the comfort of your suite.
Sian Frost (Staff)
Zarafa Dhow is incredibly special, just entering the large gates you know you are in for a treat. It is beautifully finished with the most luxurious antique touches and some modern treats such as a fire pit right by your exquisite copper roll top bath. The view from Zarafa Dhow is the best in the Linyanti - it looks out over the Zibadianja Lagoon with elephants crossing right in front of your deck. They have thought about everything even down to the black bottom in the swimming pool which really heats the water to a lovely temperature. This sits just behind your private boma on your expansive, tiered deck.
Katie Fewkes (Staff)
One of Botswana's, and arguably Africa's, finest and most luxurious safari camps, the Zarafa Dhow Suites truly is something to aspire to. No detail has been left aside in designing this beautiful private camp, and the standards of service are second-to-none. If you are looking for something truly private, truly flexible, and a real push the boat out experience for your safari, look no further, you won't be disappointed by the Dhow Suites. It exceeded all of my very high expectations and then some.
The only downside? What on earth you will do after this that will come anywhere close! You certainly may struggle to find such a special and exclusive safari camp elsewhere in Africa.
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.
Cruise on the Zibadianja Lagoon
A beautiful way to spend a leisurely afternoon instead of a game-drive or walk, head out on the HMS Zib, Zarafa's floating pontoon which explores the Zibadianja Lagoon. Complete with bar and sofas to lounge on, it's better than your average boat safari!
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.
Photographic game-drive from Zarafa
Set off on safari in search of the Selinda Reserve's fascinating wildlife with your expert Zarafa guide. All of the guides here have been trained by professional photographers the Jouberts to understand and anticipate a photographer's needs on safari.
Private safari guide and vehicle - Zarafa Dhow Suite
At the Zarafa Dhow Suites you have a private safari guide and vehicle at your disposal for the entirety of your safari, giving you the ultimate flexibility and ensuring your days are tailored to your interests and at the pace you choose.
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
The Zarafa Dhow Suite is located near the Zibadianja Lagoon, the source of the Savute Channel in the Selinda Reserve in Northern Botswana.
How to get there
Fly into Johannesburg, followed by a 2-hour international flight to Maun. The Zarafa Dhow Suite is only accessible to guests by seat-in plane air transfers or private charters (45-minute flight). On arrival at the airfield, it is a 45-minute to one-hour game drive transfer to the Zarafa Dhow Suite, including time for brief game viewing stops en route.