June marks the reopening of not one, but two andBeyond luxury safari camps: the intimate, six-suite andBeyond Phinda Rock Lodge overlooking Leopard Rock in South Africa; and the rustic yet elegant nine-tent andBeyond Nxabega Okavango Tented Camp in Botswana’s wildlife-rich grasslands.
Twenty years after it originally debuted, the intimate, six-suite andBeyond Phinda Rock Lodge lies deep in the heart of Zululand, with adobe-style accommodations enhanced by warm earth tones and rustic interiors that bring the natural beauty of the lodge’s surroundings to each space. Guest areas now feature woven linen, hand-embroidered cotton, and Persian carpets against a backdrop of oatmeal hues and stone. French doors open to extended verandas, and all outdoor decks have been optimized for al fresco dining under the shade of stretched canvas. A new rooftop terrace is perfect for post-safari stargazing and moonlit meals.
Phinda’s earthy-chic aesthetic is mirrored at andBeyond Nxabega Okavango Tented Camp, where Botswana’s Okavango Delta takes center stage. Prime vistas of the surrounding savannah—and the elephants, lions, and zebras that call it home—can be found at the camp’s swimming pool, lined with salas and padded loungers for prime game viewing. In the newly renovated guest rooms, natural materials like local timber, reed, and thatch juxtapose plush furnishings and leather accents. Meanwhile, a new open-air boma on the Delta’s edge—partially covered by the large, looming ebonies above—is the perfect way to end a long day of exploration in the bush.
The spirit of &Beyond Nxabega Okavango Tented Camp
&Beyond Nxabega Okavango Tented Camp combines more than just two worlds – the remote and wild game viewing experience of Botswana’s lush grasslands offsets the intricate detail of the hidden world of the Delta’s waterways, while the simplicity of canvas merges with the elegance of an exclusive club.
A beautiful view of reed-filled waterways and a sparkling lagoon in front of the camp, entice guests to discover the many wonders of this incredible location. &Beyond Nxabega Okavango Tented Camp is known for its elegant tented accommodation and array of safari adventures.
Why we love it
- Experience a water and wildlife adventure between the lagoons and channels of the Delta and the Okavango floodplains.
- Explore the Nxabega wilderness on day and night safaris, bush walks, mokoro (dugout canoe) and powerboat cruises.
- Perfect for adventure enthusiasts, couples, families, celebrations, small groups, first time travellers to Botswana and travellers with limited time to experience both water and land activities.
- Permanent Delta setting allows for mokoro and boat activities year-round.
Tucked under a canopy of massive ebony trees, &Beyond Nxabega Okavango Tented Camp reveals the splendour and variety of the Okavango in all its glory. Sheltered by dense forest thickets, yet opening up onto wide, expansive views over lagoons and channels, the camp showcases the best of what the Delta has to offer.
Nine tented suites create an experience that is rugged yet luxurious, blending the remoteness of the breathtaking setting with utter comfort and style.
The heart of Nxabega lies in its handsome living and dining areas, where burnished teak floors and a steeply pitched thatch roof frame a lofty and comfortable space. Made from local timber, reed and thatch, the guest areas include indoor and outdoor dining areas, a Safari Shop and a swimming pool with an expansive viewing deck. From this springboard of comfort, guests are able to appreciate the exquisite beauty of the Okavango Delta.
Private bush dinners, breakfasts in bed, lamplit cocktails on a river island or a walking safari with al fresco picnic are all provided with pleasure by Nxabega’s warm and friendly staff.
The spirit of &Beyond Phinda Rock Lodge
Dramatically set into a cliff face overlooking spectacular Leopard Rock, &Beyond Phinda Rock Lodge is an architectural delight, combining Malian influences with pueblo panache. Its six suites are seemingly suspended over the deep valley below, providing breath-taking views. Each romantic suite, constructed from contoured stone and adobe, boasts an earthy, soft grey palette and solid wooden shutters and doors, which open onto a private plunge pool and viewing deck. Featuring spacious ensuite bathrooms, the suites also offer outdoor showers, providing some of the most scenic al fresco bathing on the African continent.
Decorated in hues of oatmeal, grey and stone, the lodge’s intimate and glamorous guest areas offer the perfect vantage point for viewing the reserve’s abundant birdlife in the surrounding trees, and the wildlife roaming the bush below. Immense French doors open onto an extended outdoor veranda, the perfect setting for al fresco meals, while a rooftop terrace provides a romantic venue for dining beneath the stars. Striking, fiery sunsets set the scene for bush banquets in bush clearings. Here, guests are treated like treasured family members and time is shared with fellow safari adventurers, who soon become friends.
Why we love it
- Day and night game drives and specialist walking safaris
- Perched high on a rocky cliffside with panoramic views over Leopard Rock
- Phinda Adventures include Zulu village tours, Maputaland beach adventures, night turtle drives (seasonal), scuba safaris, an ocean safari, and black rhino tracking on foot
- Specialist Safaris – birding, photographic, rhino capture and research, tracking, walking, and private safaris
- Perfect for Honeymooners, couples, romantic or private getaways
Experience the awe of the spectacular views from your suite’s private viewing deck or feel as though you’re floating on air with a dip in your personal plunge pool on the very edge of the breathtaking precipice. When the sense of freedom has you feeling giddy, retreat to the natural sanctuary of your bedroom or private sitting area, the roughly hewn walls and chunky textures giving you the feeling that you are sheltering within the mountain itself.
Freshening up after your morning game drive becomes an experience all in itself, with deep bathtubs encased in wide windows that open up onto a spectacular view of the valley. Three suites offer al fresco showers so deeply sheltered in the leafy growth that you’ll feel you’re bathing in your own private waterfall. The white face of Leopard Rock lies directly across from the lodge, while a watering hole draws wildlife from the deep hollows of the valley below.
As your sense of adventure reawakens, one quick leap through an open wooden shutter takes you to a rustic ladder leading to the roof, soon to be stopped in your tracks as you gaze on the unrivalled panorama before you. When night draws in, retreat to the warm refuge of an intimate gathering around a roaring fire in the guest area. Savour a meal served among friends, both old and new, in the cosy dining room or the haven of your own suite.