Nights on safari are astonishingly silent—until they aren’t. When the still of the savanna is shattered by a shriek, a grumble, or a roar, it can startle even the most seasoned explorer from slumber. What a relief it is, then, to find yourself at such moments in an outsized bed draped with mosquito netting and tucked away in a suite with a formal dining room, a wine fridge, and two private pools to buffer you from whatever beasts might be lingering outside.
Comforting as they may be, such extravagances on safari should never come at the expense of a true wilderness experience. The finest African lodges manage to indulge their guests’ every whim while embracing the unpredictability of their surroundings. Three new lodges in southern Africa—from Botswana’s predator-rich Okavango Delta to Zambia’s remote Liuwa Plain—are striking that balance in myriad ways. Distinct in setting and style, they make for a delightfully diverse itinerary—and an eye-opening adventure in the wild.