Island Safari Lodge has been part of the landscape of Maun, Botswana since 1973, when it was founded by the legendary Tony Graham. My first visit to the place was in 1986. I immediately fell in love with it.
Island Safari Lodge overlooks the Thamalakane River. The view from the lodge is without equal in Maun. Since my first visit it is hard to contemplate staying at any other lodge. In addition, huge, shady trees are in abundance on the grounds and beyond, so birdwatchers can be sure of spotting a wide variety of bird species.
The look and feel of the lodge is basic. The staff do their best, but the policy of the lodge is to train and employ locals rather than importing strangers. The meals are therefore basic and by no means culinary masterpieces. However, I always enjoy the informal menu and in particular the buffet evenings.
Island Safari Lodge is situated about 10 km from the Airport. From Maun, take the main road that runs north-east towards the Moremi. Just before you cross the river, turn left and follow the dirt road for 3 km. This road is accessible to most vehicles, but the sand might sometimes be a bit loose. Small or very low vehicles might experience a bit of difficulty.
Despite being over 30 years old, Island Safari Lodge is still offers comfortable, basic and spacious rooms. Guests are accommodated in 12 thatched chalets or in six standard rooms. All accommodation is en-suite (with double-headed shower) and equipped with air-conditioning and DSTV. The rooms are simply decorated with furniture made from wood sourced in the area surrounding Maun.
The en-suite standard rooms are adjoining and are therefore very popular with families exploring the Okavango Delta and other regions of Botswana. All rooms and chalets provide free wifi, providing that the service provider does not let you down. People can tend to forget how isolated the lodge is even though this is the very thing that brings them to Botswana in the first place. Please bear with us if something like this goes wrong.
Island Safari Lodge also offers shady campsites, with shared ablution facilities, a braai (barbeque) area as well as power points. Campsites are not grassed, but regular travelers to Botswana will know that few, if any, campsites in Botswana are grass covered. First time visitors in Maun might be disappointed with the campsites at all the lodges, but regular travelers soon discover that this is the norm in Botswana.
The campsite offers a very large swimming pool where everybody who prefers a more social environment can relax and play while the nature lovers can enjoy a more restful experience at the pool near the bar. In other words, sit back, relax and enjoy a sundowner on the patio while the children get rid of all their pent-up energy in the one of the two swimming pools. If they are teenagers they would most likely prefer the bigger pool where there is a livelier crowd.
You will feel at home at Island Safari Lodge if your priority is affordable prices and the beauty of nature. If you prefer a more luxurious experience, Temba will gladly arrange this for you.
However my choice of accommodation remains without any doubt, Island Safari Lodge with their natural touch and basic accommodation.
Temba Travel MD