Nxamaseri Island Lodge, set on an island in the Okavango’s Panhandle, prides itself on providing a personal touch.
This is a small Lodge, with just seven double en-suite chalets and a tree house. Each of the secluded chalets is surrounded by forest and boasts a private deck overlooking the water. The chalets are linked by teak walkways to the main lodge area.
This section of the river is known for its large volume of Tigerfish, one of the world’s most dramatic freshwater game fish, and Nxamaseri is well known for the fly- and lure-fishing for not just Tigerfish, but Bream (Tilapia) and Barbel. Bream fishing is generally at its best during the winter months (April to August), and the best time for Tiger Fish is during the annual catfish runs (“barbel runs”), which is normally from late August to early November.
Nxamaseri Island Lodge offers a number of specialist fly-fishing guides and fully equipped boats; and although the Lodge offers standard lure and basic fly fishing equipment, it is suggested that avid fly-fishermen bring their own equipment.
The Lodge also offers the wonderful contrast of trips to the unique and fascinating Tsodilo Hills; this is an area which is festooned with San Bushmen Rock Art. A national treasure and the highest point in Botswana, the Tsodilo Hills rise 1,400 metres from the flat desert landscape. Sacred to the San people of Northern Botswana, the Hills were designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2001.
Nxamaseri is also home to an excellent selection of birdlife. There is an abundance of Fish Eagles and regular sightings of many rare birds, including Pel’s Fishing Owl, African Skimmer, Slaty Egret, Wattled Crane, White-backed Night Heron, Lesser Jacana and Western Banded Snake Eagle. There are also a number of species that have their southernmost range in the Okavango, including the Coppery-tailed Coucal, Brown Firefinch, Hartlaub’s Babbler, Swamp Boubou, Long-toed Plover and Swamp Warbler. Birding, although excellent year-round, is particularly good from September to February, when there are a number of migratory species.
Keen birders (or anyone keen on wildlife) can enjoy finding species on foot, by boat, from the unique perspective of a Mokoro (traditional dug-out canoe), or from the comfort of the lodge. A popular excursion is a night boating trip, during which rare and shy birds can be easily seen.
For those who wish to take in the area, there is perhaps no better way to experience the stillness and beauty of the Okavango Delta by mokoro, which allows easy access of the Okavango Delta flood plains, and gets you up close and personal with the small treasures of the Okavango. As the Mokoro glides along, you can experience an authentic Delta soundtrack: the haunting cry of the Fish Eagle, the melodic tinkling of the tiny reed frogs, and, of course, the gentle ‘Nxamaseri’ – the sound the wind makes when it blows through the reeds…