Jacana Camp

traditional Camp | Okavango Delta, Botswana

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A full-fledged Okavango Delta water camp, Jacana Camp is an island wonderland teeming with prolific wildlife and a plethora of birds. Excursions by mokoro —traditional poled canoe—through the papyrus-fringed channels of the delta provide guests with a unique connection to this rich ecosystem and the traditions of its people. A safari among the plentiful wildlife at Jacana Camp, in such a unique setting, holds memories for a lifetime!

Photo of Wendy Klausner

Our Expert Says

This is one of the smaller and cozier camps in the delta, which means you get highly personalized attention. The staff immediately figured out the things that were most important to me and then spent the next two days trying to make sure it happened. They knew I liked vodka tonic and had one waiting for me at the start of dinner, without asking—now that's service! I loved sitting on the deck and gazing at wildlife out over the water. You really feel like you are in the heart of it all.

– Wendy Klausner

Jacana Camp, safari camp located on an island surrounded by floodplain, beautiful views of Okavango Delta, papyrus swamps, Botswana, Africa safari

The Camp

Location: Okavango Delta, Botswana
Number of Tents: 5

Located on an island surrounded by a seasonally inundated floodplain and papyrus swamps, Jacana Camp consists of five Meru-style tents built on raised wooden decks, with panoramic views of the Okavango Delta. Each tent has an enclosed en suite bathroom featuring a roofless shower, which is lit by dappled sunlight or by the stars at night. Multiple windows ensure excellent wildlife viewing from the cozy seating area or from the double beds. The main dining area sits on an elevated platform between two magnificent sycamore fig trees and is surrounded by wild date palms. Jacana Camp also features a relaxing bar and lounge with an area for open fires under the stars. A plunge pool offers a chance to cool off in the midday sun.

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Jacana Camp, outdoor bathroom with soaking tub open to nature, secluded wooden deck with views of savanna, fenced in area, quiet solitude

Facilities & Amenities

  • En suite bathroom with shower
  • Family Accommodation: 1 family unit, 2 bedrooms with private entrances connected by 1 shared bathroom and deck
  • Shampoo, conditioner, soap, lotion and insect repellent
  • Room fan
  • Tea/coffee in room
  • 220v charging outlets in room
  • Wi-Fi available
  • In-room safe
  • Central plunge pool
  • Laundry included
  • Local drinks included (house alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks)
  • Credit cards accepted (Visa and MasterCard)
  • No air conditioning, hair dryer, telephone or cellular coverage

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Photo: Wildlife Viewing & Activities

Wildlife Viewing & Activities

Lying in the very heart of the Okavango Delta, the Jao Concession embodies all the natural treasures of the region. Thriving populations of large animals are found here including elephant, buffalo, hippo and crocodile. In the dry season wildebeest and zebra abound, attracting predators like lion, leopard and cheetah. Birdlife is abundant along the winding waterways, including Pel's fishing owl, African and lesser jacanas, slaty egret, African pygmy-goose and western banded snake-eagle. Jacana Camp is set in one of the most densely populated wetland areas for sitatunga and red lechwe. Activities at Jacana Camp include mokoro trips through the green reed-lined channels as well as wildlife drives from October through April when floodwaters have receded (can change month-to-month subject to water levels). Lush palm islands, like the one on which Jacana Camp is built, dot the water, inviting exploration. Two platform hides are available nearby for close-up wildlife viewing.

The Okavango Delta is a year-round wildlife viewing destination, with the peak mammal viewing in the dry winter between June and October and fantastic birding all year. The below chart shows major wildlife sightings. Other typical sightings may include small mammals, such as jackals, foxes, caracal and serval, and a wide variety of birds and reptiles. Exact sightings will depend on weather and wildlife movements and can vary from camp to camp, since many camps are located on islands.

Country Park/Reserve
Greater Kudu
Sable Antelope
Wild Dog
Botswana Okavango Delta

Usually viewed
Frequently viewed
Occasionally viewed
Sporadically viewed
Rarely to never viewed

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Month Max Min Rainfall
January 90° F 64° F 4.21 in
32° C 17° C 107 mm
February 88° F 63° F 3.11 in
31° C 17° C 79 mm
March 86° F 61° F 2.8 in
30° C 16° C 71 mm
April 84° F 54° F 0.71 in
28° C 12° C 18 mm
May 79° F 45° F 0.2 in
26° C 7° C 5 mm
June 73° F 43° F 0.12 in
22° C 6° C 3 mm
July 75° F 46° F 0.0 in
23° C 7° C 0 mm
August 81° F 48° F 0.0 in
27° C 8° C 0 mm
September 91° F 57° F 0.0 in
32° C 13° C 0 mm
October 95° F 59° F 0.91 in
35° C 15° C 23 mm
November 91° F 66° F 2.2 in
32° C 18° C 56 mm
December 91° F 66° F 3.39 in
32° C 18° C 86 mm

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Jacana Camp, Jesus Bird hopping across lilypads in search for food, beautifully colored African bird, Okavango Delta, Africa, Botswana safari


Jacana Camp is intimately involved in the Jao Lion Monitoring Project which was started shortly after the inception of the Jao Concession. Every effort is made to monitor the movement, social behavior and condition of individual lions. Guests will be surprised to learn some of the unusual developments and intriguing behavior which has been documented among the lion prides here. In November and December every year, Jacana Camp runs up to six Children in the Wilderness programs, hosting approximately 100 children from neighboring areas and towns.

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Reviews for Jacana Camp


Review Jacana Camp
Month of travel: July
"This was our first safari to Africa and Jacana camp was our first experience in the great outdoors in Botswana. Our first night was spent with an elephant sleeping against our tent. What a wonderful night, even if we were a little scared! Taking our showers the next evening, the elephants were back to spend quality time with us. An experience we will never forget - sharing an outdoor shower while an elephant watched - within a few yards. We also enjoyed our time spent in the mokoro. We couldn't have envisioned a better camp to start our trip. The hosts and staff were all very helpful and kind. We plan to return to Botswana and Jacana camp! "
- K. Schankie
Month of travel: June
"Very nice camp on an island. Rooms large (mine had Hippo leaving beneath it) and comfortable. Very peaceful and the stars at night were magic. Although you had to travel a good distance for any game viewing, it was pleasant floating thru the canals and seeing the various and lovely bird species. "
- P. Gitman
Month of travel: August
"Jacana was a childhood dream come true for me. A camp on an island with the common area built amongst the trees. The sights and sounds of the delta were amazing but also brought us peace and relaxation. Wildlife abound in and around the camp. You never knew when a friendly elephant or two might join us. Jo, her husband and the staff were gracious hosts and treated us like family. The food was excellent and there was an abundance of it. Traveling throughout the Okavango Delta in the mokoros gave us many opportunities to view birds, frogs and even an elusive snake up close and personal. The local guides taught us much about their history and the traditions that have been carried on throughout many generations. And David Luck, as always, was there to provide insight and knowledge of the area, provide photography guidance and protect us each and every day. "
- L. Cudworth
Month of travel: August
"I loved Jacana Camp! I loved being on the water, listening to the hippos as I went to sleep. I loved taking a bath outside my tent, in the copper-clad-tub, under the full moon. I loved doing yoga on the deck in front of the bar area. I loved being on the water, taking the makoro trip, fishing, etc. Michelle and staff were delightful. Eating a traditional meal around the fire, no utensils, singing and dancing.... beyond description. I could have stayed longer."
- R. Dennis
Month of travel: June
"Access by water only, seclusion and unique opportunities Rooms facing out onto the water providing a clear view of water birds, etc. Great managers, encouraged interesting campfire conversations. Interesting guests in the bar as the monkeys investigated the 'goings on'. The canoe ride was great fun "
- T. Rutkowski
Month of travel: June
"So interesting, the boat travel and the amazing sunsets The mangers were very kind and engaging. Such a unique experience with the water only access. This made the camp a very special destination"
- T. Yeager
Month of travel: May
"Jacana was a very different experience because of the water location. I especially enjoyed the mokoro experience and had an expert paddler. The sundowner and time on the other island(including Pel's Fishing Owl viewing) were especially pleasant. If you are interested in water birds and water lilies--this is the place for you! Jacana was pleasant and the accomodations were very nice. I understand that this camp is in line for a "refreshing" and this should be an improvement in the overall experience. I did have a minor problem with staff which I have not experienced at any other camp in which I have stayed. While I cannot give this my highest rating, if you are looking for a water camp experience, you would enjoy this one."
- B. Nilsson
Month of travel: August
"Jacana is a special sort of place. I have been twice and it is a welcome switch from the land camps. The dining room is basically a tree house and the deck and bar are like a dock right to the water's edge. We have had wonderful encounters with elephants here and the birding has been very good. "
- L. Russell
Month of travel: July
"Jacana camp is a small intimate camp. The camp is totally surrounded by water. we were there when the water was still pretty high and we used boats and mokoro's for all travel. The staff was totally wonderful and accommodating, one afternoon while returning for lunch we pulled the boat in to the island, and much to our surprise the staff had hauled the whole lunch buffet out to the island and we ate in the middle of the wilderness. One of the couples we were traveling with had an anniversary while we were there and our safari coordinator Deb and the camp staff planned a surprise party, it was totally amazing, they decorated the dinning area and set a special table for the couple, it was perfect. The Morkoro evening ride was great fun and then trying to learn how to pole the mokoro's on our own was alot of fun, at least no one hit the water while trying it on there own. The weather was great severe clear blue sky and sunshine brisk in the morning and warm and pleasent in the afternoon. The tents were immaculate and very spacious and laid out well, all in all it was a great stay."
- N. DeMarco
Month of travel: September
"This camp reminds me of Tarzan's Tree house. Take the plunge and try piloting your own mokoro...it's great fun and a bit humbling. Be sure to shower outdoors and watch the sunset. We could have stayed here happily for days "
- K. Harner
Month of travel: July
"So wonderful to arrive and depart by mokoro through the beds of papryus and water lilies, welcomed by tiny frogs and kingfishers. I especially enjoyed the basket weaving demonstration and the artistry and skill of the weavers. "
- S. Kemper
Month of travel: June
"This intimate little camp surrounded by water was spectacular. I felt like I was in another world, having just left the drier Linyanti area. The setting was fantastic, the wildlife superb and food & accommodations outstanding. The service was not great, but the camp managers were temporary, so we were assured post-trip that this is not the norm. The highlight was enjoying dinner (and drinks) by a roaring fire set on a sandy bank of the Delta. The crackling fire and night sounds of Africa are forever etched in my memory. "
- S. Hane
Month of travel: June
"We were here during a time when the water in the Delta was very high so 2 nights was perfect as the drives were a bit limited. I loved the mokoro rides and wouldn't substitute anything for that experience! The camp staff was super friendly."
- B. Tremblay

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