Living With Elephants

Living With Elephants Foundation is devoted to providing rescued African elephants with a second chance and a safe home in the wilderness of Botswana’s Okavango Delta. Currently under care are Jabu and Morula, two rescued elephants saved from culling operations in which their families were destroyed. Jabu and Morula cannot be released fully to the wild due to their traumatic starts in life and chronic injuries.

Doug and Sandi Groves have dedicated nearly 30 years to providing world-class care and refuge to these orphans. The elephants thrive in a loving and supportive environment and are provided with specialized care. Jabu and Morula live their lives in an expansive natural elephant habitat, which offers freedom for exploration, natural behaviour and wildlife interactions.

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Morula has a troubled past, and when Doug and Sandi met her at age 17 she was destined to be shot. Female elephants generally stay in the herds they are born into and their relationships with other females are life long. Since the only way to be part of a breeding herd, or elephant family, is to be born into one, Morula cannot be released to the wild. With consistent care and supervision provided by the Groves, Morula now thrives in her unique interspecies herd. She is a sweet elephant who easily captures the hearts of all who meet her.

Jabu, an orphaned bull elephant, was attacked and injured by a wild bull elephant in a conflict for status. Due to his resulting joint injuries, Jabu requires individualized and innovative veterinary care and therapies. Currently, top international vets are working on stem cell therapy and other cutting-edge options for Jabu to help with his osteo-arthritis and the angulation in his wrist. Jabu’s need for supervision to avoid further injury precludes him from surviving alone in the wild. Jabu is an impressive bull and his story has caught the world’s attention, as seen on Animal Planet’s “Dodo Heroes”.

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Elephant immersion Itineraries

Heart of the Delta - 5 nights

The Okavango Delta, the largest inland delta in the world is a miraculously fertile flood plain with crystal-clear lagoons and reed-fringed channels supports a rich and colourful wildlife just waiting to be explored.

Heart of the Elephant - 5 nights

Always dreamed of getting up close to elephants? Now you can with this safari that combines an incredible elephant immersion adventure in the Okavango Delta with Chobe, home to the largest concentration of elephants in Africa.

Day 3

Low volumes of Sanctuary Retreats’ guests are given the rare opportunity to visit Jabu and Morula in the heart of the Okavango Delta. During their walk with Jabu and Morula, guests witness private elephant moments as they forage, mud wallow and amble through the bush. This is an intimate and highly educational bush walk where you will learn about the status of the African Elephant, their role in the ecosystem and conservation in general. Doug and Sandi are renowned specialists in elephant biology, ecosystems and natural history. Having lived intimately with their herd in Botswana for three decades, they are your perfect guides for a “day in the life of the African Elephant” and to help you connect to elephants and their environment.

As shown worldwide on Animal Planet’s “Dodo Heroes” Jabu, Morula and the Groves have formed a very unique family. Visit us and join Living With Elephants Foundation in protecting the world’s gentle giants – the African Elephant. Your visit helps support the wellbeing of rescued elephants and conservation overall.

Living with Elephants is exclusive to Sanctuary Baines' Camp and Sanctuary Stanley's Camp in the Okavango Delta, Botswana.

  • To avoid disappointment, pre-booking is recommended.
  • The activity is available to a minimum of two guests and a maximum of ten.
  • Children over nine years are allowed to enjoy the activity with their parents.
  • Please note the elephants are on annual leave from 15 January to 15 February each year.
Enquire now