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As the heat of the day disipates and the dust of the plains settles, a beautiful peace descends on the Zibadianja Lagoon, source of the Savute Channel. A Pel’s fishing owl softly purrs in the canopy of a giant ebony tree and the hippos’ mocking laughter echoes across the water…
In 1826 the Viceroy of Egypt presented to Charles X of France a giraffe that had been discovered in Nubia. This giraffe was floated down the Nile in a dhow to Alexandria before being shipped to Marseille and then walked to Paris. Everyone who saw the giraffe fell in love with her and asked what she was called. The Nubians, having no name for the animal, called her simply “Zarafa,” which is Arabic for “the beloved one” and which the French then pronounced “giraffe”. The camp was originally called Zibadianja when it opened in 2008, but its beautiful design, “green” construction and amazing position overlooking the lagoon quickly made it the beloved of all who laid eyes on it. So it became Zarafa, in name and in spirit.
Construction took eco-friendly principles to new levels of excellence and focussed on recycling, with repurposed teak railroad sleepers for flooring and furniture made from mahogany washed up in the 2005 tsunami, commissioned in an effort to give Indonesians affected by the disaster much-needed work. The result is a safari camp like no other, and one that you will quickly fall in love with and want to return to, time and again.