Partly owned by renowned film-makers Dereck and Beverly Joubert, the Selinda Reserve has been made famous in their films for National Geographic. Wide, dry grasslands, dotted with waterholes and interspersed with palm-fringed ‘islands’ and stands of leadwood trees, cover the area as far as the eye can see. It’s a picturesque, open environment and guests can spot game a long way off. It’s perfect for following predators like wild dogs on hunting sorties.
Selinda Camp shares the reserve with its sister camps, the relatively simple Selinda Explorers, and the opulent Zarafa Camp. It overlooks the Selinda – or Magwegqana – Spillway, a vital ancient watercourse linking the Okavango Delta to the Kwando–Linyanti River drainage system. Although dry for decades, the spillway has flowed annually since a particularly good rainy season in 2006.
The main area at Selinda Camp is spread across one vast, open-plan central area with panoramic views across the surrounding channels and floodplains. Constructed of wood and thatch, it has a lovely viewing deck and relaxing lounge area, with plenty of comfy sofas. The décor and design are influenced by a variety of African cultures, combining West African carvings, a heavy Zanzibar-style door frame and objects made from old mekoro. Many of these objects feature paintings by the late Keith Joubert – artist and brother to Dereck.
The furniture comprises a mixture of dark leather sofas and stained teak tables and chairs. Unusual semi-circular tables in the dining area are pushed together in the evenings to form a large circular dining table, which we think is a very sociable way to dine.
Another sociable spot is Selinda’s firepit area, where breakfast is served around the fire before your early-morning game drive. The camp also has a lovely pool, built on a deck leading off the main area and overlooking the spillway. There are comfortable sunloungers surrounding the pool for relaxing in between activities.
A short, sandy path from the main area leads to a large and well-stocked curio shop, and beneath is a galleryshowcasing Beverly Joubert’s impressive photographic work. Should guests wish to buy copies, the camp can organise for these to be shipped anywhere in the world. Also in the gallery you’ll find a coffee machine, a small library of reference books and a computer to download photos, or possibly watch one of the Jouberts’ films.
Sought after during the heat of the day is the camp’s submerged wine cellar, where a large stock of everything from house wines to premium champagnes are kept cool. Guests are encouraged to select wines they would prefer with dinner and Selinda also occasionally holds wine tastings.
Reached along a sandy and well-lit path, Selinda Camp’s nine tented chalets are constructed of dark wood, with canvas walls under canvas-and-thatch roofs. Steps lead up to a deck with two chairs and a table, and picturesque views over the floodplain.
Camp is only accessible to guests by scheduled air transfers or private air charters. On arrival at the airfield, the road transfer to camp is approximately 45 minutes, allowing time for game viewing en route. During flood season, when water levels rise, we often use a boat for these transfers. This transfer is a combination of a 15-minute drive to the boat dock and then a 15-minute boat ride to camp. We prefer to use the boat for transfers whenever logistically feasible.
Flying time in a Cessna Caravan from Maun to Selinda Airfield is 45 minutes and from Kasane it is 50 minutes.