South African-based safari operator ReturnAfrica will be opening a lodge in 2020 within the Bwabwata National Park on the Kwando River in Namibia's Caprivi Strip.
The announcement follows the signing of a 25-year concession with the Kwando Conservancy for ReturnAfrica to develop and operate a lodge at the Old Susuwe site on the Kwando River.
The area is known for its pristine river system consisting of wide floodplains, backwaters, oxbow lagoons and riverine forests. The region is also home to large herds of elephants, buffaloes, zebras, lechwes and impalas. Other species of note include lions, leopards, hippos, crocodiles, sables, roans, tsesebes and sitatungas. It is also an excellent birding destination.
The lodge will be served by its own airstrip and will be easily accessible from a main tarred road. Planned activities include game drives, walking trails, boat excursions, fishing and visits to a nearby living museum.
The location will make the lodge an ideal stop for travelers en route to the Chobe River, Savuti, Okavango Delta and Victoria Falls. The lodge will also serve as a gateway for adventurers wanting to explore the Luengue Luiana National Park (Angola) and Sioma Ngwezi National Park (Zambia) via a proposed three-way, one-stop tourism border post at KAZA (the Kavango Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area), a region of southern Africa where the international borders of five countries -- Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe -- converge.
As part of ReturnAfrica's ongoing sustainable ethos, various social investments and empowerment initiatives are planned. These include concession fees, a 20% ownership stake in the business by the Kwando Conservancy, preferential employment of community members, procurement of local goods and services, support to human wildlife conflict mitigation and more.