Zarafa Dhow Suites

Selinda Concession, Linyanti, Botswana

At a Glance

  • From your extensive deck you have sweeping views over the Zibalianja Lagoon where you will have lot of wildlife ambling through during the heat of the day.

  • Some of the most luxurious accommodation in Botswana. The floors are made with old railway sleepers covered with Persian rugs, polished brass accents reflect the morning and evening light beautifully. 

  • With your own safari guide you can tailor your safari to perfectly fit your own pace.

  • Enjoy total privacy and exclusivity on your safari in the beautiful Selinda concession

  • Spend your time on the lagoon in their luxury boat watching the sunset as you look for wildlife

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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.

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Insider's View

Quite possibly the best view in the Linyanti. Relax on your expansive deck with private boma and watch elephants, hippos and incredible bird life across the river channel

Come back from your afternoon activity to a bath in your copper roll top, romantically lit with hurricane lanterns and a bottle of champagne chilling on ice.

Make the most of the Canon cameras and binoculars supplied in your room. Your guide will help you take fantastic photos and edit them when you get back to camp for you to take away as an ibook or memory stick.

Call us on 858 345 1761 to start planning your vacation to Zarafa Dhow Suites or take a look at our itineraries to Botswana


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.

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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.


Floorplan - Zarafa Dhow Suites

Floorplan - Zarafa Dhow Suites



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.


Great Plains, Botswana - Stay 4, Pay 3

Enjoy an extra evening with Great Plains in Botswana when you stay for four nights and only pay for three during selected dates in 2020 and 2021.
Terms and conditions apply. Subject to availability. Please speak to one of our Africa specialists for more information.
Book from 10 January 2020 to 31 May 2021
Travel from 10 January 2021 to 31 May 2021
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  • 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.

Speak to our specialists 858 523 9000

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Call us on 858 345 1761 to start planning your vacation to Zarafa Dhow Suites or take a look at our itineraries to Botswana

Start planning now Speak to our specialists on 858 345 1761 or start planning now Plan your trip