The excellent Northern Tuli Game Reserve occupies the little corner of Botswana which juts out between South Africa and Zimbabwe, far to the east of most of the country. It nestles into the confluence between the Limpopo and Shashe Rivers and includes some of the rockiest parts of the country. It is not all rocky, however, as its name Tuli - 'dust' in Setswana - implies.
ABOVE & RIGHT: The two ends of Solomon's Wall.
LEFT: The same river at sunset.
We visited Tuli twice, both times in February/March. In 2006 we found a mass of flowers and fresh green growth (BELOW) after the rains had finally come. The second time it was distressingly dry, as the grass behind the jackal (ABOVE) shows. The slight rainbow in the photo above did not, unfortunately, bring the longed-for rain.
On our first visit the elephants didn't object (much) to our presence in their midst, despite having youngsters all around - note the young male's unsuccessful efforts to get an early start in life! The baby following Mum, also on our first visit, was probably less than a month old. On our second visit we did get fairly close, but were at constant risk of adults charging us. Note the breasts on the adult female. Elephants are one of the few animals, other than primates, to have actual breasts.
RIGHT: Some of the many ways in which these elephants let us know that we weren't welcome.
TOP LEFT: The Limpopo River.
ABOVE: As a private game reserve, guided walks are provided.
ABOVE MIDDLE: Tuli Lodge has a self-catering tented camp, Nokolodi, where you get a proper bed, en suite and a professional guide at a fraction of the cost of most lodges.