Zambezi Queen Houseboat
Cruise along the banks of the Chobe River enjoying a truly unique and adventurous river safari
Moving along the banks of the great Chobe River, Zambezi Queen is a 5-star, 42-metre long luxury houseboat offering unparalleled sophistication in one of the most remote locations on the planet. Best of all, as a guest on the vessel, you can enjoy a truly unique and adventurous river safari holiday while still being surrounded by complete comfort and elegance.
Each of the 14 suites on Zambezi Queen features air-conditioning and your own private balcony, where you can enjoy unobstructed views of the Chobe River and African landscape beyond. Wake up to the sight of an elephant drinking from the river, or watch a fish eagle take flight – all from the comfort of your own luxurious bed.
Unlike a land-based lodge, Zambezi Queen navigates roughly 25km of the Chobe River, allowing you to explore different vantage points and enjoy unparalleled game viewing. In fact, the banks of the Chobe National Park boast one of the densest populations of elephant on the African continent – estimated at approximately 120 000. The Park is also home to a large number of buffalo, leopard and lion, along with a variety of antelope and abundant birdlife.
Celebrated South African fashion designer Jenni Button created the luxury houseboat’s classic yet contemporary interior, using understated tones that make the wildlife on the banks of the river the star of the show. And, just like at any contemporary hotel, you can expect first class service at every turn. Whether you’re enjoying a gin and tonic on the upper deck at dusk or attempting to land your very first tiger fish, our highly experienced team will be on hand to meet your every need.
From the moment you step on-board the Zambezi Queen, it becomes apparent that no expense was spared in creating one of the world’s most unique river safari experiences.
Zambezi Queen offers luxury houseboat accommodation in the form of 14 tasteful and luxurious suites – ten standard suites and four master suites, all with outer decks so you can soak up the revitalising Chobe River breeze and appreciate uninterrupted views of the unique African landscape beyond. While both types of suites let you relax in a luxurious setting, our master suites are slightly bigger, and have larger balconies that house two deckchairs and a table. Our master suites also feature both side and front sliding doors for a truly panoramic view of your surroundings.
With stylish interiors created by celebrated South African designer Jenni Button, each suite was designed with the warm climate in mind: clever use of shutters, air-conditioning and a fan ensure you keep cool, even during times of the year when temperatures soar.
All suites come with en-suite bathrooms (shower only) and full length sliding shutters for both privacy and protection from the sun. Hairdryers, toiletries, gowns and slippers are provided for your comfort, while electronic safes in each room are ideal for storing your valuables. All suites accommodate two adults, and two of the larger standard suites can take a maximum of three adults. Suites can be configured with either one double or two single beds.
From a creamy bowl of warming porridge in the morning to a helping of decadent white chocolate parfait at night, dining on Zambezi Queen is an indulgent treat, all on its own. Using seasonal ingredients sourced from local markets, meals on board our luxury houseboat consist of a full English breakfast, a buffet lunch and a choice of two plated menu options for dinner. Every mouthwatering dish is prepared by our locally trained Namibian kitchen staff, who combine authentic local flavours with their passion for creating sophisticated meals suited to discerning palates.
THE DINING ROOM
Take a seat at your own private table and enjoy panoramic views of the wildlife during breakfast and lunch. Come evening time, settle in and enjoy an African themed dinner on one night of your stay, trying out traditional local food such as moroho and pap. Special dietary requirements can be catered for, but we ask that you specify this when you book – our remote location means that we need a bit of time to source ingredients that may be out of the ordinary. Unfortunately this also means that we’re not able to cater for Halaal and Kosher guests.
The bar on the upper deck is open until 10pm and stocks a selection of local and imported spirits, wine and beers. Included in your accommodation rates are all locally sourced wines, beers, soft drinks and water, while spirits, sparkling wine and dessert wine are for your own account.
On the upper deck of Zambezi Queen you’ll find our dining room, bar and a comfortable lounge with unobstructed views of the unique African landscape that surrounds you. Beat the heat on the forward deck with a dip in the plunge pool, and then relax on inviting sun loungers while you dry off, or kick back on the sumptuous couches. Amid the muted African colour tones, you can’t help but relax as you gaze upon elephants, antelope and other wild animals strolling along the banks of the Chobe.
Zambezi Queen Houseboat
A stay on-board Zambezi Queen is a different kind of safari. It’s the kind where you get to decide if you want to be up with the birds, or prefer to laze all morning watching game from the comfort of your bed. Our itinerary is flexible so while we have a range of activities on offer, you can choose just how much you want to pack into your holiday or how relaxed you want to be.
Don’t think of your time on Zambezi Queen as a river cruise. Instead, think of it as a floating boutique hotel that departs and returns to the same point, navigating roughly 25km of the Chobe River weather permitting. You’ll first arrive at the Zambezi Queen via a short tender boat ride from the Kasane Immigration Office. We offer staggered transfer times on the hour between 13:00 and 16:00, so you can arrive at your own pace and don’t have to worry about missing the boat.
THE 2 NIGHT STAY
Please note this important travel information:
- Make sure that you get your passport stamped at the airport when you enter Botswana
- You’ll then be met by a representative at the airport who will help with your luggage and transfer you to the Kasane Immigration Office (KIO) in an air-conditioned vehicle
- Once you arrive at KIO, a Zambezi Queen Collection staff member will meet you and help with formalities at passport control as you exit Botswana
- You’ll then be transferred by a smaller tender boat with a Zambezi Queen Collection staff member to the Namibian Immigration Office
- You then need to get your passport stamped at the Namibian Immigration Office. Please wear comfortable shoes, as there is a short walk to the immigration office
If you arrive with the 13:00 and 14:00 transfers, you’ll be served lunch, while if you’re transferred at 15:00 or 16:00 you’ll be served a snack before the sunset cruise by tender boat starts. Once all our guests have boarded in the late afternoon, and if the weather permits, we’ll go in search of some big game by tender boat. This is the perfect time of day to make the most of that golden glow of the African sunset by getting some iconic shots of the animals as they gravitate towards the river before night falls.
Return back to the Zambezi Queen and freshen up before meeting your Captain on the upper deck with a welcome cocktail. After a safety briefing, you’ll make your way to the dining room where you’ll be served a delectable three-course dinner along with an excellent choice of paired wines. Finish off with an espresso or nightcap at the bar before retiring to the night sounds of Africa in the distance.
We know that some guests like to watch the sunrise as they sip on their coffee while others like to take a more leisurely approach. That’s why we let you choose your morning activities, depending on the type of holiday you’re searching for. Perhaps you want to enjoy a water-based safari or a village tour on the Namibian side of the river? Or perhaps you’d prefer a spot of bird watching or fishing instead? You may even decide to simply remain on board as the luxurious Zambezi Queen glides its way along the banks of the Chobe River.
After your morning activities, enjoy lunch on board while using your unique vantage point to spot wild animals and drink in the expansive views. Join our guide in the afternoon for a water-based safari on a tender boat where you can get up close to an array of wildlife, including some of the 120 000 elephants for which the Chobe is well known. After a delicious dinner, settle down for a restful and tranquil night in your luxurious suite.
Enjoy a morning cruise during breakfast as you do your last bit of animal spotting and take some memorable pictures. Bid our crew a reluctant farewell and then make your way via tender boat to the Namibian Immigration Office. Once you’ve had your documents stamped you’ll be transferred via tender boat to the Kasane Immigration Office, where you’ll have your documents stamped once again before entering Botswana.
THE 3 NIGHT STAY
Days 1 & 2
The same as above.
You’ve made a wise choice – you have a whole extra day to enjoy the delights of Zambezi Queen.
After a hearty breakfast, head off to experience those activities you didn’t manage to fit in yesterday: enjoy a water-based river safari by tender boat, go bird watching or go fishing for tiger or bream. Return for lunch on board and some relaxation time before the afternoon activities start. Again, you have the choice between tiger or bream fishing, game viewing by tender boat or bird watching. In the evening, you’re in for a treat. Enjoy our traditional African dinner, served with festive African singing and dancing. You can even join in the festivities if you feel like it!
Enjoy a morning cruise during breakfast as you do your last bit of animal spotting and take some memorable pictures. Bid our crew a reluctant farewell and then make your way via boat to the Namibian Immigration Office. Once you’ve had your documents stamped you’ll be transferred via boat to the Kasane Immigration Office where you’ll have your documents stamped once again before entering Botswana.
Zambezi Queen Houseboat
Zambezi Queen Houseboat