Savuti Public Camp Site

Chobe National Park, Botswana

Savuti Campsite is a wonderful place to camp. It's speciality has always been spotted hyenas and, of course, elephants. Like the area's private camps, it has nightly visits from spotted hyenas which, can carry away a full rucksack at high speed, despite being pursued. They will steal and eat anything from a camera lens to a bar of soap, so leave nothing outside.

The camping pitches (eight at last count) are separated and marked. Many sit under old camelthorn trees. The size of the site, and the distance between the pitches, is such that some campers even drive to the ablution block after dark. Visibility is good, with not too much undergrowth around.

Sit back after dinner. Turn off your lights, and shield your eyes from the fire. Now, when your vision has adjusted to the dark, shine around a powerful torch. With a little patience you should be able to pick out the ghostly green eyes of hyena, just beyond your firelight. (Torches are useful for this, but beware of shining one accidentally at a passing elephant. They don't like this at all!) If you do have any hyena problems, remember that they will push their luck, but are essentially cowardly animals. Chase them and they will always run, sometimes dropping their spoils. Just be very careful of what else you might run into during the chase.