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Moremi Game Reserve
Moremi Game Reserve Border, Moremi Game Reserve Botswana
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A sophisticated and hidden Okavango Delta retreat.Located on a large island in the heart of the Okavango, Jao Camp’s individually handcrafted and luxurious tents look out onto the essence of the Delta – swathes of water, swaying reeds, leaping lechwe and dancing cranes. The main area is an elaborate two-storey wooden structure with lounge and dining area, two plunge pools, a library, curio shop and boma for dining under the stars, complemented by an excellent wine cellar. An award-winning spa and gym epitomise luxury in the most remote, scenically splendid setting.HighlightsJao’s position – amongst waterways and lagoons, yet close to dry Kalahari woodland – means you can enjoy both land and water experiences, depending on the time of year and the level of the waters that move ceaselessly through the area. Here, spectacular herds of red lechwe are followed by lion and leopard, while other game includes tsessebe, giraffe, elephant, hippo and crocodile, occasional sitatunga and regular spotted-necked otter. Experiences: Mokoro • Boating (seasonal) • Seasonal catch-and-release fishing • Day and night game drives • Seasonal hide for sleep-outs or game viewing
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Property amenities
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room
Bar / lounge
Airport transportation
Non-smoking hotel
Laundry service
Outdoor pool
Breakfast available
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Room types
Non-smoking rooms
Family rooms
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Moremi Game Reserve Border, Moremi Game Reserve Botswana
Getting there
Maun Airport64 miSee all flights
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136Reviews4Q+A28Room tips
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Popular mentions
Having spent 3 nights at Kings Pool prior to our time at Jao, it was difficult to imagine that our experience at Kings Pool could be bettered. Jao, the lodge is simply breathtaking. The scale of the rooms and public areas are unbelievable, with the decor and furnishings adding to the luxury of the lodge. Make sure you make time to enjoy the facilities as one can easily spend more time in a game viewing vehicle than in your room! The menu offerings were varied and of a good standard - we marvelled at what can be produced from a kitchen that is just about in the middle of nowhere. The wine list was also impressive with a variety of good South African wines available. Every conceivable drink can be ordered from the magnificent bar. Johny, our guide was an absolute star. He worked tirelessly to track leopard for us, was able to show us virtually every major species of animal found in the Delta, and his knowledge of birds was incredible. All this in a period of one of the worst droughts the region has experienced. Finally, the staff are what make or break a visit. Every member of staff we encountered was cheerful, greeted you by name and couldn’t do enough for us. We look forward to seeing them all again in the next couple of years.
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Response from Wilderness_Safaris, Public Relations Manager at Jao Camp
Responded Oct 7, 2019
Dear 564MarkS, Thank you for the fabulous review, we are delihted to see how much you enjoyed your stay with us as well as your time spent exploring the area with Johny. Our kitchen team is truly inspiring and we are glad you enjoyed the wines on offer. We look forward to welcoming you back soon. Kind regards Wilderness Safaris
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If you are looking for a camp to relax and be treated like a king Jao is the camp for you. The design of this camp is something special that you don't want to go on game drives but rather spend the time in your suite at your very own plunge pool sipping on a glass of wine while watching the game. The management and staff are fantastic,always service with a smile and very helpful just adding to your stay. Meshack our guide was fantastic,very knowledgeable and always went out of his way to make sure your game drive was an experience not to forget. You must not spend les than 3 nights at Jao you will be sorry you did. To all the staff well done keep up the good service and we will be back.
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Response from Wilderness_Safaris, Public Relations Manager at Jao Camp
Responded Oct 7, 2019
Dear Kevin, Thank you for your marvelous review, we are delighted to see how much you enjoyed your time with us and that you were able to find some quality time to relax too. We will be sure to pass along your high praises to Meshack and all the great staff in camp. Bush regards Wilderness Safaris
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THE FANTASTIC: 1) The Design: The band newly remodeled Jao Camp is nothing less than spectacular. The accommodations are really gorgeous --the architect and interior designer deserve an A++! The suites (for two) are approximately 800 sq. ft, 1-½ baths, air conditioning, plunge pools and all amenities. Finally, the breathtaking design blends perfectly with the environment and with the culture of the Delta. 2) The Staff: Really great staff -- extremely attentive. Ready to answer any question and attend to any need. Our guide, Jonny, was wonderful - a very special person, knowledgeable about the ecosystem, and who knew exactly where to find the animals in a tragically dry environment. 3) Jonny, our Guide, and the animals: Jonny is a real pro -- he has been with Wilderness for 20 years, and knows all the ins and outs of the ecosystem. One day, we were so lucky to happen onto a water hole about an hour from the Jao Camp --Jonny heard elephants in the distance and knew they would be coming to the water hole soon. When we drove around we were able to have a once-in-a-lifetime experience at the water hole: first the elephants, one family and then another -- about 20 elephants in all -- mothers with nursing babies, youngsters and adults. Then the zebras came, then the impalas and the giraffes, and then the warthogs. It was truly breathtaking to see all the animals sharing the community water hole - and their behavior with one another and with other species. This was one of the best sightings we have had in our two trips to Botswana, thanks to Jonny.. THE OK: The food didn't compare to some of the gourmet prepared meals we had at other high end camps, which offered individual menus based on food preferences, tablecloths and candles at dinner, as well as the best wines from South Africa. I mention this only because Jao is one of the very expensive 5 star camps that is on the circuit for tourists from all countries. In all honesty, I found the food to be just ok. Ambience is casual and make no mistake, the chef tried to please -- however it was pretty much the same menu every day for lunch and dinner, and preparation just didn't have that special thing that pushes it from good to wonderful/superb. THE DIFFICULT AND THE VERY DISAPPOINTING: To my comment about the tragically dry environment: We were at Jao Camp in September which is the beginning of Spring, just out of Winter -- my expectation was a water experience. In fact, we were told by our guide that during the wet season, the entire area is underwater. Unfortunately, with the exception of a few water holes, the entire area was very very dry - even drier than usual due to global warming and climate change. The lodge has the last remnant of the river running through it but for the most part, the area was dry for as far as the eye can see. Our guide did provide an abbreviated water experience, however, he and my husband had to drive 45 minutes to get to the water. Then, they were in the boat for a very short period of time. Also -- be aware that in the dry season, it is very very hot and the land is essentially sand -- all the "roads" are sand tracks that were made by other vehicles. Sand is extremely difficult to drive on -- more difficult than the most difficult roads you will experience in South Africa. The sand is soft and the vehicle bounces almost violently for long periods on end -- this is not the fault of the driver -- but it is a function of the land and the roads. If you don't tolerate feeling like your insides are a milkshake, the dry season is not the time for your visit. Bottom line is that this is definitely a camp to visit if you want a 5 star lodge experience, but you need to be very careful about timing when you visit this camp. It is important to understand the seasons in the Delta and the type of environments that you would experience during these seasons. We hope to visit again, but it will be during a period when the landscape will be mostly underwater for a real water experience. Hopefully, global warming won't destroy that experience altogether. I gave this 4 stars instead of 5 because of the quality of the food, and because it was so very hot and dry that while we did see lots of animals, it was not a water experience for us. We were grateful that the room had air conditioning and otherwise, all the comforts you would expect from a very high end hotel.
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Response from Wilderness_Safaris, Public Relations Manager at Jao Camp
Responded Sep 26, 2019
Dear NEWLYRETIRED100, Thank you for the wonderful review, we are glad to see that your stay was for the most part a memorable one and we will be sure to pass along your praises to Jonny and all the great staff in camp. We will definitley share your comments regarding the menu and dinning options. As your guide explained he have had very unusual weather lately which resulted in little to no water in the Delta, we hope this will change soon and would love to welcome you back to see how the area transforms. Before your next trip you can also have a look at the Wilderness Safaris website where we detail the different seasons throughout all the regions that we operate in. Thank you again Wilderness Safaris
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Jao Camp has recently been rebuilt and has very spacious and luxurious rooms, wonderfully designed.My wife being a designer herself went "gaga" over the extraordinary appealing design.As for myself,I have never seen such spacious rooms.I could do my morning walk in the room itself!The Camp is very ably managed with a personal touch by Mike & Larney. We had many interesting discussions with both of them about their experiences in South Africa and stand indebted for the advice on safaris at Sabi Sands. Larney explained to us in detail how to use the mosquito repellant and to wear "double socks" and also all about "Mayflies" - which was very instructive and useful as camps very often forget these small but relevant details. As a wildlife photographer who treasures good guiding, I would rate Meshack,our guide at Jao Camp, as one of the best that I have encountered in my travels in Africa! Meshack was a level-3 guide(highest level) with knowledge and passion for guiding.His passion was obvious to me when he took me on the Mokoro thrice to try and find the exclusive Sitatunga antelope.He realised that I was a serious photographer very keen to photograph the reclusive and shy Sitatunga.Without any instructions from me, he rolled up his trousers and entered the shallow waters and started pushing(not using the pole) my Mokoro from behind.He explained to me that this was the only way to get near the shy Sitatunga without noise.So here he was pushing/ stopping repeatedly the Mokoro as we silently approached the Sitatunga. Meshack arranged on his own initiative one of my three Mokoro rides at the Wilderness Safaris, Pelu Camp,after obtaining due permission.Needless to say, I obtained some excellent photographs of the Sitatunga and also the Long-reed frog all because of the painstaking efforts of Meshack. Meshack displayed his intuitive and sensitivity again at the air strip.He realised that my wife was allergic to the dust being kicked up by the approaching aircraft on the air strip and quickly turned the vehicle away to minimise the dust...again, without any instructions from me. This was my third Wilderness Safaris Camp in Botswana, after Mombo & Vumbura Plains in April,2019.They deserve full credit for encouraging and having some of the best guides that I have had the privilege of meeting and inter-acting with. Manju & Ashok Mahindra
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Response from Wilderness_Safaris, Public Relations Manager at Jao Camp
Responded Sep 2, 2019
Dear Manju & Ashok, Thank you for your amazing review, we were thrilled to read about your adventures with Meshack and trying to track down the fabulous Sitatunga. We would love to see these great photos you were able to take. the Annual Wilderness Safaris Photographic Competition is now open until the end of September 2019 and we would love to have you take part. Please take a look at our website for more information. Bush regards Wilderness Safaris
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Jao was amazing. Visited there in 2016 and it was 5 star all the way. Food, wine, service were all amazing. Our guide TJ was awesome. David set us up a dinner out in the delta and it was spectacular. Listening to lions roar a few hundred yards away while having a candle lite dinner was something my kids will never forget. Simply amazing.
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Response from Wilderness_Safaris, Public Relations Manager at Jao Camp
Responded Jul 9, 2019
Dear Keith1208, Thank you for your wonderful review, we are glad to see that even after all this time you have such great memories of your journey with us. We have just completed a full rebuild and hope you will come visit us soon. Kind regards Wilderness Safaris
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jao camp hotel okavango delta
BotswanaNorth-West DistrictOkavango DeltaMoremi Game Reserve
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Frequently Asked Questions about Jao Camp
What are some of the property amenities at Jao Camp?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include a pool, an on-site restaurant, and a lounge.
What food & drink options are available at Jao Camp?
Guests can enjoy an on-site restaurant, a lounge, and breakfast during their stay.
Are there opportunities to exercise at Jao Camp?
Yes, guests have access to a pool and a fitness center during their stay.
Does Jao Camp have an airport shuttle?
Yes, Jao Camp offers an airport shuttle for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.