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Jao Camp

Okavango Delta, Jao Private Concession


From US$1,285

Lodge Description

Jao is located on a remote island in one of the most picturesque concessions in the Delta. From waterways and lagoons to dry Kalahari grasslands, Jao can offer both land and water experiences, depending on water levels. Mokoro, boating and fishing take place seasonally, with day and night game drives usually all year round.

Situated in the very heart of the wetlands of the Okavango Delta, the 60 000-hectare (150 000-acre) Jao Concession embodies all the magic and mystique of Botswana with vegetation that varies from permanent swamps to dry land. In the east, the Jao Flats boast water channels that cut their way through the papyrus and reed beds, providing the perfect environment for wildlife. Beautiful lush palm islands dot the water. Around the Jao Flats spectacular herds of red lechwe are followed by the primary predators – lion and leopard.
Other game includes tsessebe, elephant, hippo and crocodile. Sitatunga are seen occasionally, and sightings of spotted-necked otter are regular. Birding is exceptional in the Jao Concession, with Vulnerable wattled crane, slaty egret, rosy-throated longclaw, Pel’s fishing-owl, and lesser jacana to be seen in the wetter areas. Other exciting species include swamp nightjar and brown firefinch.

The game viewing at Jao is superb. Huge herds of red lechwe can be seen, followed by their primary predator – prides of lion. Other game typical of the area includes elephant, buffalo, leopard, tsessebe, zebra, hippo and crocodile as well as the uncommon Sitatunga and spotted-necked otter. Many bird species are resident such as Meyer's parrot, African harrier hawk, black heron, Coppery-tailed Coucal, and black crake as well as the unique and rare Pel’s owl, slaty egret and wattled crane, being some of the avian treasures
found at Jao.

Day and night drives in 04 x 06-seater open 4x4 Land Rovers - hot water bottles are provided on early morning game drives.
Private activities available on request (additional cost applicable).
Water-based activities in 10 x 2-seater mekoro and 02 x 10-seater boat used in the waterways to the east of camp.
The camp has a supply of bean bags for guests to use to steady their camera while on game drive.
Full day game drives and picnics on Hunda Island – a 45min boat ride away from Jao Camp – mainly during times of high water levels or an approximate 1 hour drive during dry season.
Fishing on a catch and release basis year round except January and February when fishing is barred by law for breeding.
Guided nature walks (seasonal and subject to the availability of a qualified walking guide, therefore pre-booking is essential).
Birding (internationally recognised IBA – Important Bird Area).
Stargazing with a spotting scope.
Wine and Gin tasting in the wine cellar.
The Jao Star Bed is approximately 20 minutes’ drive from camp

Jao has five luxurious suites and two ultra-luxe family/double villas, each individually handcrafted and with an open-plan design, elegant-hand crafted style fittings and an expansive deck and plunge pool for afternoon relaxing or siestas. An elaborate main area also includes a large rim flow pool, library, curio shop, museum, gym and boma for dining under the stars, complemented by an excellent wine cellar. The spa has a wide range of massage therapies.


Wilderness Safaris

Lodge Details

Property Type

Semi-Permanent Tented Camp






Max. clients in vehicle


Private Airstrip

Private Vehicle


Activities Included

Day & Night Game Drives, Mokoro, Walking

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