Xaro Lodge, a 24-bed Luxury Meru-Tented Lodge is located a few miles outside of Shakawe Village, in north-western Botswana - on the tranquil banks of the Okavango River. Nestling amongst giant Mangosteen trees and accessible by boat only, the lodge is home to a myriad of birds. The distinctive cry of the African Fish Eagle, White Backed Night Heron and the illusive Pel’s Fishing Owl make this tropical paradise a must for bird lovers. This area is a great way to experience the cultural side of Botswana, most notably the Tsodilo Hills, also known as the “Mountain of Gods”. Steeped in cultural offerings and experience Tsodilo brings you closer to the history of Botswana from thousands of years ago.
Xaro Lodge Accommodation
Xaro Lodge offers three different room types. The camp can accommodate 20 PAX, plus 02 guide/pilot/tour leaders sharing.
11 units in total comprising:
Luxury Honeymoon Suite 01 x king-bedded Luxury Honeymoon Suite, with en-suite luxury bathroom, private garden and balcony surrounding the suite, as well as a private lounge area and mini bar.
Standard Luxury Meru Tent 09 x twin-bedded Standard Luxury Meru Tents, each with en-suite private bathroom, private balcony and all rooms have equal river viewing opportunities.
Family Unit 01 x Family Unit, which consists of 02 x Standard Luxury Meru Tents located on one deck with sharing bathroom.
Guide/Pilot/Tour Leader Room 01 x twin-bedded tent with en-suite private bathroom and private balcony.
Activities at Xaro Lodge
Water Based Activities
Birdlife The Okavango Panhandle is home to more than 350 species of birds and Xaro Lodge is situated in this focal point of avifaunal diversity. Many special Okavango birds can quite easily be seen here. African Skimmers arrive in late winter when the sandbanks in the river start appearing and almost every exposed sandbank will have a nesting pair during spring. At this time the water level is at its lowest and large numbers of water birds congregate along the main river channel and its surrounding floodplains. These floodplains are then frequented by almost every species of southern African heron and egret. The papyrus swamps are home to the Greater Swamp Warbler and the Coppery-Tailed Coucal.
The quiet backwaters of the Ngarange channel, just downstream of Xaro, is another extraordinary birding area not to be missed. The backwaters in the channel are covered with water-lilies and attracts a multitude of water birds which includes large numbers of African Jacana and the occasional Lesser Jacana, the beautiful Pygmy Geese are also plenty to be found in these habitats. The secretive Allen’s Gallinule is also regularly seen here.
Numerous species of Bee-eaters and kingfishers occur in the area. Colonies of Carmine Bee-Eaters are present in spring, both upstream and downstream of Xaro Lodge while the White-Fronted and Little Bee-Eaters are common residents throughout the year. Kingfishers are plentiful, but the best time to observe them is in spring when most have nests in the steep embankments along the edge of the river.
The remaining specials are to be found mainly in the riparian forest. The lodge grounds and its immediate surrounds are the best place to start looking and to explore the surrounding forest and woodland on foot as part of a guided walk. You won’t have to go far to see Swamp Boubou, Hartlaub’s Babbler and even Brown Firefinch. With a bit more effort you may well find Narina Trogon, Western Banded Snake-Eagle, and even a Bathawk during dusk as they hunt bats that fly out over the river. Xaro Lodge is truly a bird watching and bird photographer’s haven where special sightings and unique photographic opportunities are certainly the order of the day.
Land Based Activities
Flora, Fauna and Land animals Whilst at the lodge you have the option to book a guided bush walk with one of our very experienced local guides, he will take you on a 1h30 min walk around the 45-hectare property. Xaro Lodge is arguably one of the best places to see Pel’s Fishing Owls and sightings can almost be guaranteed; a guided walk in the right area of undisturbed riparian forest will invariably flush one of these majestic owls from its shady diurnal roost.
The Island Walks are a favorite amongst our guests as our guides are informative and have a passion for the property and the flora and fauna it has to offer. On the walk you will realize that Xaro Lodge is a perfect blend of tropical paradise and the harsh African bushveld. Apart from the plethora of birding activities, there is a very good chance of sightings of Sitatunga, Bushbuck, Elephant, Hippo, Crocodile and many more options.
Tsodilo Day Trips
Xaro Lodge now offers luxury guided trips to Tsodilo Hills. Each trip will include a professionally guided tour of the Hill’s, after you have completed the tour you can enjoy a delicious packed lunch under the trees in designated pick-nick areas. Enjoy a cold beverage and reminisce on the tour you just experienced and be a part of the unique few that have the pleasure of experiencing this amazing world heritage site.
Cultural Village Experience While at the Lodge you may find yourself on a village tour of the local village closest to the lodge – Samochima Village, this village exists primarily as a fishing village and the residents of the village are mostly employed by the lodges surrounding the area. However, there are a few village entrepreneurs weaving baskets for the traveler passing through. On the village tour you will interact with the Basket weavers and take a trip to the local preschool to interact and see how the school is run. This may be an opportunity for a guest to sponsor a child.
Xaro Lodge offers an incredible Spa experience, whereby you can book a treatment from a number of different options and have your massage on the banks of the Okavango River with the sounds of the birds and water surrounding you. Food Focus At Xaro Lodge our food-focus is on being as self-sustainable as possible. With the means to satisfy every palate, our well-trained chefs source the freshest produce daily. Salads, home-style cooked meals and freshly baked bread, chutneys and jams are our signature. The restaurant offers you a communal dining experience, allowing you to dine with your group, your family or to make new friends and interact with other guests. Private dining is by appointment only and made prior to your arrival at Xaro Lodge. You can expect to be seated in an area of natural bush under the Botswana sky! A selection of South African wines are on offer to compliment your meal and a full bar facility is available to suit your taste.
Xaro Lodge offers you an amazing culinary experience, from locally caught fish of the day to homemade delicacies… all in the remote Delta wilderness. The Xaro Lodge menu enjoys a high percentage of positive guest feedback however, we continue to strive to improve our daily cuisine and so your comments are greatly appreciated. Sustainability Xaro Lodge is 100% self-sufficient with a state-of-the-art solar system, which is part of our green initiative.
Rates per person per night, accommodation only: on request
Accommodation: "Luxury" Meru Tents overlooking the river
Boats (all boats go out with driver/guide, fuel is extra)
|18Ft (4 people) | 20Ft (8 people)
|Lawrence Of the Okavango (12 People)
Meals should be booked in advance!
DRONESBERG AERIAL PHOTO/VIDEO: https://www.facebook.com/dronesberg
Contact & reservations:
|Accommodation in the area
|Activities in the area
|Camping & others
|Mahangu Safari Lodge (Namibia)
|Monkey Island Lodge
|Nunda Safari Lodge (Namibia)
|Divava (Suclabo) Okavango Lodge (Namibia)
|Rainbow River Lodge (Namibia)
|Camping sites in Botswana's national parks
|Popa Falls Resort (Namibia)
|Ndhovu Safari Lodge (Namibia)
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