Hugh's honeymoon Safari
Often, your Honeymoon is expected to be THE Holiday-of-a-Lifetime, and I wanted to ensure that we had just that. My wife is a great fan of elephants and big cats, whilst I am one for the spectacular sights. I felt that a safari holiday to Victoria Falls and Chobe, Botswana (home of the biggest population of elephant in the world!) ticked the right boxes.
I opted to go for the Zimbabwe side of Victoria Falls as it had the more iconic colonial Victoria Falls Hotel and the views are reputed to be better. Some people might worry at the thought of Zimbabwe and its recent history, but Victoria Falls is their jewel in the crown and the authorities try their very hardest to keep the area tourist friendly. The Falls themselves are classified as the largest waterfalls in the world, and are simply breathtaking and words almost fail me. You will get very very wet, but it is so worth it for the experience.
Other activities include River Cruise, elephant interaction with orphaned elephants (with bonus tame Sylvester the Cheetah), and Lion Encounter where Cubs born to captive-bred parents are hand raised and taken on human-led walks into their natural environment. These walks enable the cubs to develop their natural instincts with a view to ultimately releasing them into the wild.
An overland (70 mile) connection to Kasane in Botswana and to stay at the only Safari Lodge within the Chobe National Park. The sheer concentration of wild animals was astounding, including (but not limited to) Lion, Leopard, hundreds of Elephant, Giraffe, Crocodile, Hippo, Zebra, Wild Dog, Jackal, numerous species of antelope, Wildebeest, Cape Buffalo, Baboon, Guinea Fowl, Python, Mongoose, Iguana, Monitor Lizard, African Fish Eagle, Warthog, Hyena… the list goes on! Safari can be done by Land Rover and by boat on the river. Perhaps it has given us a slightly false view of the definition of “safari” as we may be disappointed in future if we do not see such a high density on a Safari in another location.
You will tend to find that Botswanans are very cheerful and helpful, and a lot of the Safari Guides are local women – equality being quite important in Botswana.
Evening entertainment is often consigned to the Lodges as it is too dangerous to leave the compounds at night - risks of encountering hungry lions!
Our Honeymoon was capped off with some proper R&R in Mauritius, but for High Class Safari, Chobe is unbeatable, whilst Victoria Falls is a sight you must see before you die.