Serious safari panache in an unfiltered African wilderness
For more than 30 years, Jack’s Camp has been an icon of African safaris, pioneering under-canvas luxury on the fringes of Botswana’s ethereal Makgadikgadi Pans. This year the adventurous spirit of Jack Bousfield ventures into new territory, with the early June opening of Duke’s Camp in the magical wilderness of the northern Okavango Delta.
While Jack’s has long taken its cue from the desert, Duke’s Camp draws its inspiration from the crystal-clear channels of the Okavango Delta, which wind sinuously around this permanent camp.
This landmark new camp is named in honour of Sarefo ‘Duke’ Sarefo, the custodian of this bountiful piece of wilderness. Duke was born 80 years ago on the very island that the camp now occupies, and his ancestral roots run deep into these sandy soils.
Pitched on raised wooden decks beneath a canopy of ebony and leadwood trees, the luxurious safari tents offer an unforgettable under-canvas adventure in the midst of this remarkable World Heritage Site. With expert guides honed in the bushcraft and lore of the Delta, there are few better ways to discover this wild landscape.
Duke’s Camp is a striking new safari destination set on a vast concession rich in game and natural beauty, and it lies waiting to be discovered.
Why You’ll Love Duke’s Camp:
- Pitched in a remote wilderness area set on a channel of the northern Okavango Delta, this is unfiltered African wilderness combined with an inimitable safari style.
- Dreamed up, and brought to life, by Ralph Bousfield and the creators of Jack’s Camp, an icon of the Kalahari. Enjoy the same yesteryear charm and understated luxury in the wilderness.
- Wilderness on the doorstep. This unfenced camp offers front-row seats to the Okavango Delta. With glorious views over a flood plain and seasonal lagoon, enjoy game viewing from the comfort of your under-canvas suite.
- Located in one of Africa’s most game-rich and beautiful concessions, you’ll enjoy one-of-a-kind wildlife encounters that will be etched in your memory for years to come.
- Immerse yourself in the wilderness with game drives, mokoro (dugout canoe) excursions, bush walks, fishing, and sunset boat trips. Hot-air ballooning, scenic helicopter flights and rock art visits are also available, at additional cost.
- It boasts some of the best safari guides in the business; trained by the safari legend Ralph Bousfield.
Duke’s Camp offers twelve canvas safari suites, each one carefully positioned to offer unforgettable views of the Okavango Delta. The tents are on raised wooden decks and sit elegantly amongst leadwood and ebony trees.
Taking their cue from the style and panache of the original Jack’s Camp, the guest tents at Duke’s Camp revel in the much-loved vintage safari aesthetic of plush fabrics, Persian rugs and hand-carved four-poster beds. Think mahogany sideboards filled with African memorabilia; richly-patterned kilims atop wooden floors and a butler tray decked with a steaming pot of filter coffee come morning. It’s a seamless blend of yesteryear charm, safari savoir-faire and deep respect for the surrounding natural ecosystems.
Each tent offers a spacious en-suite bathroom, bedecked with brass fittings and bespoke amenities, as well as a private viewing deck. Here leather campaign chairs offer a space for quiet reflection on your time in the wilderness, and the opportunity for spontaneous game sightings. Herds of elephant and red lechwe are common here, and moments spent in quiet observation rarely go unrewarded.
The main mess area at Duke’s Camp is a delight with its old world glamour and elegant Persian tea-tent. Grab a drink from the well-stocked drinks cabinet and settle into the small lounge furnished with intricately carved tables, antique oriental rugs and campaign furniture.
Meals are enjoyed under the shade of the giant leadwood trees or in the communal dining tent, where the long vintage dining table dominates the space. Guests gather to trade tales of their days in the wilderness or admire the cabinets of curiosities filled with Africana and collectables gathered by the Bousfield family through generations of African travel.
Meals are a lavish affair of crystal glasses and antique silverware, with three-course dinners that celebrate the rich Jack’s Camp tradition of honouring guests with fine food and wine in the African bush. Beside the flickering lanterns you’ll find, of course, pots of the Bousfield’s legendary hot chilli relish. At day’s end, gather by the firepit to watch the mopane wood smoke curl up into the southern skies, hinting at tomorrow’s promise of yet more African adventure.