THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO BOTSWANA
A life changing experience Renowned for being one of the most expensive safari destinations on the African continent, when it comes to wildlife, Botswana is under pressure to deliver. And it does. Consisting principally of private concessions, Botswana offers a truly unique and exclusive experience with luxurious lodging, expert guides and world class game viewing. Throughout this guide, we have outlined some of Botswana’s wildlife highlights, where you can see it and the best places to stay to maximise your experience. The wildlife events below provide just a few tasters for why a visit to Botswana is one of the highlights for any Africa enthusiast.
About Botswana Botswana sets itself aside from other safari destinations, it considers itself as low volume, high spend, and that is exactly what it is. Botswana markets itself as the most expensive safari destination on the African continent. It does not want to be accessible to every person out there, but aims to offer a unique and exclusive experience where everything you encounter is of the highest quality, from the lodges to the wildlife. The way Botswana goes about ensuring that you ‘get what you pay for’, is by implementing private concessions. These private concessions – often hundreds of thousands of hectares per concession - permit only a limited number of properties which, in turn, also limits the number of clients and therefore the number of vehicles. The end result of all this, is a much more exclusive experience with fantastic game sightings (clients are generally outnumbered by the game rather than the other way round!), often with only up to two vehicles per sighting, and possibly only four vehicles in the entire concession! This is what you pay the money for. Rather than waiting in a line of vehicles to catch a glimpse of a lion or cheetah which often can happen in the busy months in the Masai Mara, Botswana’s private concessions offer you the best of the best with luxurious lodging, expert guiding, and incredible game viewing. Aside from the private concessions you also have a number of national parks in Botswana. Whilst these do still have excellent resident game and are always worth visiting - especially the renowned Chobe National Park do be aware that these are the exact opposite of the private concessions. National parks are open to the public, including self-drive vehicles. Whilst this is not the end of the world, it means more vehicles in the park, more vehicles on sightings and less high quality game viewings.
ÂŠ Duba Plains
Botswana Experience: Wild Dogs Denning
About the denning Before going into the detail of the sightings and locations, we should probably explain a little bit more about wild dogs themselves and why they are so unique. Mating generally occurs between the months of March and June with the gestation period being as short as 60-80 days. On average, wild dog litters consist of about ten pups - which is the largest average litter size of any dog, however numbers of up to nineteen have been recorded. During denning, the pack community really comes to the fore as the pack provides for the newly born pups and any adults that remain back at the den. With an 80-90% hunting success rate, the pack will hunt the smaller antelope species, make a kill, feed on it and then return to the den to regurgitate the freshly eaten food for any pups or individuals that did not join in with the hunt.
When to go The alpha-female usually dens around May and the pups are often born in the den around June / July; they begin to run with the pack around four to six weeks later. This means that the principal months for locating wild dog packs and their newly weaned offspring is between the months of June and August when you know exactly where the den is located, and focus in on a specific area.
Best place to see it Traditionally, the private concessions of Kwando and Selinda have provided some of the most reliable wild dog sightings throughout the country, if not the continent. As the most endangered mammal throughout East and Southern Africa (populations of only 2,500 – 3,500), this does mean Selinda and Kwando are the wild dog ‘jewels in the crown’. There is no doubt that Kwando and Selinda are still the best places to see these resident wild dogs. Kwando Lagoon Camp, based in the Kwando Reserve, has had its resident wild dog pack denning alongside camp for the last 12 seasons with only one year being missed. The Selinda Reserve (and the aptly named Selinda Camp), now has some of the largest numbers of wild dogs with what seems to be 3 separate wild dogs packs (named Selinda, Mopane and Makoba) within the surrounding concession.
© Richard Denyer
Where to stay Kwando Lagoon Camp This is one of our personal favourites. Located directly on the lagoon, the camp has access to some world class game viewing; including huge herds of elephants during the dry season, some local cheetah boys and of course the renowned wild dogs. The Kwando Concession and Kwando Lagoon Camp also boast some of the best guides and drivers, with spotters located on the front of your game drive vehicle to maximise your chances of seeing as much as possible. Due to its location in a private concession, this also means that when you spot something, you are off. Whether it is through the bush or not, you set off in hot pursuit experiencing the real Africa up close and very personal.
Selinda Camp Selinda Camp is a real gem. Located in what we consider to be one of the most beautiful concessions in Botswana, Selinda Camp is the â€˜younger sisterâ€™ to the sumptuous Zarafa Camp. This is not to say Selinda is not as good, it is fantastic! With views out over the waterway and the surrounding plains, Selinda plays host to its own resident wild dogs, lion prides and some great resident leopard. Wildlife aside, the creature comforts of Selinda include raised tented platforms with views over the plains, claw footed bath tubs (yes these are not basic tents!) and its own wine cellar to enjoy to while away the evening hours.
Botswana Experience: Lion vs Buffalo at Duba Plains
About the action Possibly one of the most dramatic encounters on the African continent, Duba Plains is home to the famous monster lions that specialise in taking down buffalo. The Tsaro pride (named after the palms they like to take shade under), are unlike normal lion prides. Most prides rest during the day and then take up flight during night; the Tsaro pride, however, make their move towards midday just as the sun is reaching its zenith. The herd of buffalo live on a marshy island in the heart of the Okavango Delta and are accessed from the boutique Duba Plains Camp. The Cape buffalo herd stands at more than a thousand strong and they lose on average 22 of their number each month to their forever pursuing hunters. Even though the buffalo lose a fair few of their number each month, it does not always go the lions way; the buffalo have learnt to defend their herd and often fight back as a cohesive unit, sometimes fatally injuring the pursuing lions. Strangely however, even though during the dry season there are periods when the buffalo could leave this supposed death trap; they stay, preferring to stay locked in a never-ending battle with their relentless enemies.
When to go The action here could take place at any time of year, although we recommend travelling between April and November (specifically May to September) during Botswana’s winter. It is still hot during the day, but the evenings are cooler.
Best place to see it and where to stay Duba Plains is the perfect (and only!) place to stay to catch a glimpse of this incredible lion vs buffalo interaction. The rustic luxury of Duba provides the perfect place to relax following an action packed day. With accommodation for only 12 guests, Duba Plains is located in a 77,000 hectare private concession. Spend three to four nights here to ensure you maximise your chances of catching some of the action, spot the other wildlife and explore the rest of the concession. If you are keen on booking Duba Plains and seeing some of the action then the perfect film to get you in the mood is the National Geographic film Relentless Enemies by Dereck and Beverly Joubert. Please note that as of 2014 there has been a substantial change to the wildlife dynamics of this area. Due to the arrival of a dominant male, the main pride has now split making for smaller pride numbers as lionesses move to the outer skirts of the area so their young are not killed by the arrival of the new male. As pride numbers are therefore smaller, it does mean that the lion vs buffalo interaction has decreased in recent months. Bear in mind that lion taking down buffalo is a very unique and rare experience in itself. Duba still has plentiful game and if you aren’t lucky enough to see the lion vs buffalo action, you won’t be disappointed.
ÂŠ Richard Denyer
Botswana Experience: Huge elephant herds at Chobe
About Chobe National Park Chobe National Park is exactly that, a national park. The difference between this and other swathes of land in Botswana is that Chobe, as a national park, is open to the public, self-drive vehicles and pretty much anyone who wants to explore it. Botswana prides itself on its exclusive game viewing experience in private reserves and concessions, but Chobe offers so much more than your average national park that it needs a mention. Despite not offering the exclusivity of the private reserves, Chobe National Park is excellent. What Chobe does have apart from its fantastic resident game, is huge herds of elephant. The population is estimated at up to 70,000 which equates to the highest concentration of elephants anywhere in the African continent. Throughout the park you will see evidence of these friendly pachyderms as uprooted trees, stripped branches and piles of dung litter the way. Without doubt one of the highlights of your stay is an evening cruise; if you are in luck, one of the herds will decide to cross the river, an unforgettable sight as you sit back, relax and enjoy your sundowner.
Best time to go Generally the best times for sightings of the larger herds occurs during the drier months from July to November. Due to the scarcity of water throughout the rest of the park as the summer sun beats down, the herds congregate around the river for quick and easy access to the never-ending water supply. The rains return in December and the herds begin to move southwards, being less concerned about water sources as they search for fresh nourishment.
Where to stay Chobe Game Lodge is the only permanent accommodation located within Chobe National Park. Not the most luxurious property, however this typically 60â€™s style lodge offers good food and accommodation and is located directly on the banks of the Chobe River so you have every possibility of seeing as much wildlife as possible. Our favourite property with access to Chobe is probably Muchenje Lodge. Muchenje is located to the west of Chobe National Park, distancing itself from the busy town of Kasane and a majority of the other lodges in the area. Beautifully located atop an escarpment, Muchenje affords lovely views of the Chobe River and even the floodplains of the Caprivi Strip reaching into Namibia. Whilst Muchenje is not located in Chobe National Park itself, it is located in the Chobe Forest Reserve meaning guests can also enjoy game walks and night drivesâ€Śand when you are on game drives within Chobe National Park, it is often under much more relaxed conditions as you access areas away from the hub bub of the Kasane side.
ÂŠ Richard Denyer
Botswana Experience: Elephant-back safaris
The Elephants of Abu Camp The Abu Herd itself consists of 6 individuals led by the impressive matriarch, Cathy, who was born in Uganda in 1960. The individuals themselves come from all walks of life; one saved from an elephant cull in Kruger National Park, some born at Abu itself. One wild elephant was found taking refuge in a camp generator shed after being attacked by hyenas and deserted by the rest of the herd. Whilst this seems to be a small herd with only six individuals, one of Abu Camps great success stories is its original vision of releasing previously captive elephants back into the wild. Over the years there have been various success stories with approximately 9 individuals being released back into the wild to do what they do best, roam the plains of Africa. The Abu philosophy is that of elephant conservation and whilst we are privileged to be able to visit and spend time with the Abu herd, elephant conservation is what must remain at the forefront of our minds.
The Elephant Experience Staying at this stunning camp provides a once in a lifetime experience to see and understand Africa from an entirely different perspective, that of an elephant. During your time at camp you are invited to immerse yourself with the herd, from the playful youngsters and cheeky teenagers to affectionate mothers. From the moment of arrival, you meet with the herd and then throughout your time at the camp you have the opportunity to enjoy a variety of ‘herd-like’ activities including; walking and interacting with the herd, observing (or participating) in mud baths, learning about required veterinary procedures, enjoying elephant back safaris, discussing conservation practices and gaining an educated insight into everyday elephant behaviour. To explore the elephant’s natural environment from this perspective is a real privilege.
Staying at Abu Camp If you wish to stay with the Abu herd then the one and only place to stay is Abu Camp itself. Whilst not the cheapest camp in Botswana - in fact it is one of the most expensive at USD$2,654 per person per night - it is definitely one of the most unique. There are six elegant en-suite guest rooms with indoor and outdoor showers, large decked areas, stylish furnishings and magnificent panoramic views across the Okavango Delta. The communal areas are adorned in an African style furnishings, with a well-stocked library, subtle pool to cool off in and relaxing massages providing the perfect backdrop to wind down after a day out with the herd.
© Abu Camp
Botswana Experience: Elephant Interaction at the Grey
© Baines’ Camp
y Matters Project
About The Grey Matters Project Set up by the elephant expert Doug Groves, the Grey Matters Project is based in the heart of the Okavango Delta. Doug was originally part of the same set up as Randall Moore (of Abu Camp fame), however Randall went his separate way in 1994 and The Grey Matters Project was born. Doug and Sandi Groves founded the not for profit organisation ‘Living with Elephants’ in 1999 and this organisation aims to secure the future of their trio of elephants (Jabu, Thembi and Morula), working towards a harmonious future for elephant and human populations. A variety of projects are underway to encourage this, including one outreach programme where children from local villages and Maun spend two days at the Grey Matters Project. During their two days they learn how to interact with the elephants and are educated on the plight of the elephant populations and the threats that face them in today’s world.
The Elephant Experience A typical elephant experience consists of a 4 hour morning where you enjoy a leisurely walk foraging with the project’s three elephants as you are encouraged to touch them, interact with them and learn more about their behaviour. The morning finishes with a fantastic lunch in the middle of the bush in the company of the elephants themselves. One thing that each visitor must be aware of is that this project is very different to the set up at Abu Camp and no riding of the elephants is permitted at all.
Where to stay The Grey Matters Project is closely aligned with Stanley’s and Baines’ Camps. These are the only camps from where it is possible to access the project making for a truly unique experience for visiting clients. The rustic luxury of Stanley’s Camp is set amidst ebony and sausage trees, located in a 260,000 private concession bordering the renowned Moremi Game Reserve. With just eight tents, the camp affords great views over the surrounding floodplains and even has a small pool to cool off in during the heat of the day. Aside from interaction with the elephants of the Grey Matters Project, other activities include walking safaris, mokoro rides and 4x4 game drives. If Stanley’s Camp is not what you are looking for then Baines’ Camp is the other choice. A unique boutique property with only five luxurious suites, each with star baths and sky beds on your private deck. Baines provides a truly original set up and is ideal for honeymooners. Activities on offer include game drives, walking safaris, mokoro and boat excursions and access to the Grey Matters Project.
Botswana Experience: Meerkats of Makgadikgadi
© Jack’s Camp
Makgadikgadi Pan Botswana is home to Africa’s biggest game and some of the most intimidating predators, but we can’t overlook the smaller wildlife. In the middle of the vast sand sheet known as the Kalahari Desert, where at first glance you would think nothing could survive, lies a huge complex of flat salt pans. These pans are relics of Africa’s super-lake, cracked land littered with fossils and surrounded by scrubland. This unique landscape is one of the best places to view one of Africa’s most beloved critters, the meerkats.
The Meerkats Researchers at the renowned Jack’s Camp have spent a huge amount of time sitting by the burrows in attempt to habituate these endearing animals to the presence of humans. Their work and time has paid off as guests can visit the burrows and watch as the meerkats get on with their daily life. In fact, they are so comfortable with human presence that they have often been seen using the heads of guests as lookout posts. Keep very still and make sure everyone has a camera at the ready! At the present time there are four meerkat clans in the area that are habituated.
The Experience Arrive at the burrows early morning to watch the first meerkat poke its head out and greet the day. The group emerges, warms up under the sun, plays, stretches and grooms. After an hour or so they will probably go forraging and it may be possible for you to join them.
When to go The meerkats live in the pans year round. In the wet season they get up early to avoid the heat as much as possible whilst they forage for grubs and insects. They’ll then usually have a lunch-time nap before feasting again before sunset. There can be long grasses at this time under which they will seek shade. In the dry months, they stay out all day on the hunt for food. Food at this time is more scarce and they work much harder fo their meals. Breeding season is from October to April and at this time chances are quite good for seeing pups, or even tiny babies poking their heads out for the very first time!
Where to stay We recommend the incredible Jack’s Camp, a classical, desolate safari camp with just ten spacious Meru-style tents. The camp captures the true romance of African safaris with a beautiful construction, outstanding views of the pans and some wonderful activities. The camp is legendary and as well as spotting the meerkats, in the dry season you can venture across the pans via quad bikes. In the wet season the glistening pans attract thousands of pink flamingos and huge herds of zebra and wildebeest.
Botswana Experience: Black-maned lions of the Kalah
About the Lions Throughout the barren desert landscapes of the Kalahari Desert, lions are a dominant predator. The hardy lions of the Kalahari live in much smaller prides of up to 6 individuals due to the lack of prey. Cub mortality rate is high due to the long distances travelled between feeds, and the typical body weight is much lower than that of a lion in less extreme conditions. These foreboding and unpredictable lions are not used to the presence of humans or safari vehicles, shying away from attention, making them all the more intriguing, yet difficult to spot. The males have flowing, dense black manes, the reasoning behind which is still unclear. Some think the majestic manes are used to help regulate the animalâ€™s temperature, keeping them warmer in the bitterly cold nights. Others say they are related to the, now extinct, Cape lion. Other distinguishing features include a lower body weight than lions found elsewhere in Botswana and spots on their lower legs. These resilient creatures have found a way to live in some of the harshest conditions in Africa, actually seeing them in their natural habitat is a real priviledge, not afforded to every visitor.
Where to stay Tau Pan Camp is located in the Central Kalahari, a soul-stirringly remote area that is not often visited by safari-goers. Perfectly located to witness the vast amount of predators that call the area home, the camp is built with the environment in mind. Blending with its surroundings, there are just eight tents, each set under thatch and powered by the sun. this is the best place from which you can head out in search of the infamous Kalahari blackmaned lions.
When to go The first few months of the year are when we consider the Central Kalahari Game Reserve to be at its most inriguing and enticing. Vegetation is lush, drawing in huge amounts of wildlife, including springbok, gemsbok, giraffe and ostrich. This is also an excellent time to spot the intimidating predators of the area, including cheetah and leopard, although the latter are harder to spot. This is the best time to see the infamous black-maned lions. They arenâ€™t used to the presense of humans and can often be put off by our presence, the long grasses help us to be more discreet, allowing us a closer view at these dominating animals.
Botswana Experience: The Longest Mammal Migration
About the migration In the first few months of the year, whilst the Kalahari is at its most lush and green, the Makgadikgadi Pans host the second biggest migration of zebra and wildebeest; the only one of its kind in southern Africa. This fascinating migration, the highlight of which is several thousand plains (or Burchellâ€™s) zebra, is actually the longest mammal migration ever documented in Africa and was discovered by accident. The 300 mile round trip between Namibia and Botswana stays within the largest transboundary conservation area in the world known as the Kavango Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area (KAZA) and was only noticed when some GPS collared zebra were seen to be traveling the huge distance between countries. It was a massive surprise to find that these instantly recognisable animals were migrating in huge numbers across incredible distances, totally unnoticed. Research is still being carried out into this amazing find and studies are being done to assist with conservation, ensuring that their route goes without disruption and their numbers can be preserved.
When and where to go As previously mentioned, the start of the year is the best time to see the migration and watch on as thousands of zebra graze on the sweet grasses of the Makgadikgadi Pans. This also combines with seeing the other wonderful wildlife of the area, including the black-maned lions, as well as cheetah, ostrich and giraffe. At the moment, the migration is a pretty wellkept secret, so there are usually very few other visitors.
Where to stay Within Makgadikgadi Pans, we suggest you stay at Jacks Camp, a legendary camp within Botswana that gives a really authentic, luxurious safari experience. You can also get great zebra sightings at Tau Pan Camp. If youâ€™re travelling all the way to Botswana, why not plan to visit bothâ€Ś
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© Jack’s Camp
Botswana Accommodation Chobe National Park 1 Chobe Game Lodge We like: only permanent lodge based within the national park. Top wildlife: elephants & buffalo Rooms: 42 rooms, 4 suites & 1 family unit.
2 Muchenje Safari Lodge We like: away from the busy side for less vehicles & more activities. Top wildlife: elephants & leopards. Rooms: 11 thatched bungalows.
Kwando-Linyanti Area 3 Kwando Lagoon Camp We like: amazing activities, best guides and a spotter on safari. Top wildlife: elephants & wild dog. Rooms: 8 en-suite tents.
4 Selinda Camp We like: very luxurious. Top wildlife: wild dogs. Rooms: 9 thatched tents.
5 Zarafa Camp We like: intimate/personally run. Top wildlife: elephant, leopard & wild dogs. Rooms: 4 canvas suites.
Kalahari Desert 6 Jack’s Camp ARCTIC CIRCLE
Location: Makgadikgadi Pans. We like: classical and remote. Top wildlife: meerkats, hyenas. Rooms: 10 spacious tents.
7 Tau Pan Camp Location: Central Kalahari. We like: luxurious, eco-aware. Top wildlife: black maned lions & the zebra & wildebeest migration. Rooms: 8 beautiful tents.
Okavango Delta 8 Abu Camp Location: Abu Concession. We like: intimate & tranquil. Top wildlife: elephants & game. Rooms: 6 tented suites.
9 Baines’ Camp Location: Baines’ & Stanley’s Concession. We like: eco-aware & modern Top wildlife: elephants, lions & hyena.
10 Duba Plains Location: Kwedi Reserve. We like: most remote camp in the Okavango Delta. Top wildlife: lion vs buffalo. Rooms: 6 tented rooms.
11 Khwai Tented Camp Location: Khwai Community Reserve. We like: most remote camp in the Okavango Delta. Top wildlife: elephant, buffalo & cheetah. Rooms: 6 tents & 1 family cottage.
12 Little Vumbura Location: Vumbura Reserve. We like: intimate, beautiful & quiet. Top wildlife: leopard, lion & hippo. Rooms: 6 safari tents.
13 Shinde Camp Location: Shinde Concession. We like: intimate & tranquil. Top wildlife: elephants & game. Rooms: 8 tented chalets.
14 Stanley’s Camp Location: Baines’ & Stanley’s Concession. We like: Rustic ‘bush’ feel. Top wildlife: elephants & wild dog. Rooms: 8 raised tents.
Our favourite Botswana accommodation
KEY Ave. rainfall Ave. high day temperature Ave. low night temperature
Best time to go to Botswana JAN
When to go The best time to go to Botswana is subjective, it depends on what you want to see and do. The weather and climate play a huge part in your safari experience and despite the weather in Africa becoming increasingly unpredictable, we have outlined some of the main seasons below as a guide.
December to March This is when Botswana receives most of its rain. You will have some bright sunny days, some huge thunderstorms and dark clouds, and the grasses are green, often water-logged. At this time, as the wildlife doesn’t have to gather at water-holes and the grasses are long, animals can be harder to spot. But the activities are more water-based, with lodges offering more mokoro trips and boat excursions.
April to May The nights are cooler and less humid, whereas the days lovely and warm. The grasses are green throughout the Okavango and the skies are generally clear. This is a great time to go.
June to August In the dry areas, such as the Kalahari, night temperatures can fall to freezing at this time, yet the days are still warm. The green plains are giving way to drier ground and wildlife is gathering around water-holes, making it much easier to spot. We consider this a peak time for Botswana. The wildlife viewing is incredible, yet it won’t be busy due to the infrastructure.
September to November It’s getting hot and dry, October sometimes a little too hot. However, this is a great time to search for big game. November is a little more unpredictable; the rains can often start to cool the plains, or the heat from October can be carried through. An adventure either way! © Will Bolsover
Frequently Asked Questions ÂŠ Duba Plains
We are the tour operator of choice for top wildlife photographers.
Botswana is one of Africaâ€™s most popular safari destinations, with wildly diverse landscapes, some of the most exclusive safari accommodation and abundant wildlife, ranging from huge elephant and buffalo herds, to endearing meerkats, stealthy leopards and healthy lion packs. Find out answers below to some of the most frequently asked questions about Botswana, and, of course, please email us or call for any more information. Can I drink the tap water? In short, no. We strongly advise you drink bottled water at all times. During your safari, bottled water is readily available. Do I need vaccinations or malarial tablets in Botswana? We always recommend you speak to your doctor or a health professional about vaccinations and malaria tablets well in advance
of your safari. There are specialist travel clinics for travellers heading to Africa, and they can keep you up to date with the current advice as it often changes. At present, certain areas of Botswana are affected by malaria. What language is spoken? The official language of Botswana is English, yet most of the population also speak Setswana as well. Conversing with the locals is easily and happily done in English. Your game drives and other activities will be conducted in the English language. If you need your guide to speak a language other than English, it is worth contacting us to see what we can do to help. How do I get around? The majority of travel in Botswana is done by private charter flights; in fact this is the only way to reach a majority of the camps in areas such as Chobe, Okavango Delta, Central Kalahari and the Moremi Reserve. Many accommodations have private landing strips, or are just a short game drive away. Scheduled light aircraft depart
from Maun and Kasane, handling all inter-camp transfers as well. These flights give you an incredible perspective on Botswanaâ€™s beautifully diverse landscapes, and being in such a small plane can be quite a thrill. It also saves a lot of time compared to driving these distances, meaning more time on the ground to explore the many attractions of this fantastic destination. Is Botswana a good family destination? Botswana can be a fantastic family safari destination, offering the landscapes and wildlife one hopes for during an African safari. A safari here can be educational, inspiring and just amazing fun for all the family; however there are things to consider. Botswana is a truly wild destination, so many camps are unfenced. Children need to be of an age where they can be trusted not to run around outside alone, or at night. Our recommended age for children on safari in Botswana is 12, however there are lodges
that specifically cater for families under this age - these lodges can provide you with a private vehicle, usually at extra cost. Where is the best place to go? The Okavango Delta is undoubtedly the best known of Botswanaâ€™s parks and attractions. A bizarre natural wonder set within the famous Kalahari Basin; here you can spot some of the most truly inspiring wildlife and incredible vistas. The Okavango encapsulates the heart of wild Africa and a journey here guarantees jaw-dropping natural beauty and excellent game spotting. Yet the Okavango is just one of many places that we think makes the perfect Botswana safari, we think it works best when combined with a few nights in some of the other, equally aweinspiring areas of this stunning destination. You can combine it with some of the best parks and reserves including, Chobe National Park, famous for its huge elephant
herds, or Savuti, amazing for spotting big populations of lion. For something completely different, you can head to the Kalahari for some desert adapted animals, such as the endearing meerkats and sneering hyena of the salt pans. You can also head to Linyanti for walking safaris, or even Nxai Pan for some very eccentric lodgings! Is Botswana a good honeymoon destination? Botswana is one of our favourite destinations for honeymooners and couples. Lodgings are luxurious, often affording you with the utmost in privacy. You can enjoy African sunsets, cocktail in hand after a day out on the plains or take a dip in your very own plunge pool (accommodation dependent obviously). For any couple looking for a bit of adventure and stories to tell, Botswana is perfect. There are great connections with Zambia so you can combine your safari with a sumptuous stay in at Victoria Falls, or you can easily combine it with Mozambique for some beach relaxation after your adventure.
You arrive in the Moremi area of the
Heading futher north into Chobe National Park, arrive in the stunning Savuti area. On your way you pass through excellent lion and cheetah territory!
Okavango Delta and, if time permits, may enjoy your first game drive before relaxing
CLASSIC CAMPING SAFARI From £2,710 per person, excluding international flights and including all meals.
at your mobile home for the next 10 days, Letaka Tented Camp.
Days 2-3 Moremi Reserve Explore the Moremi Reserve via game drives. Watch out for herds of buffalo, a vast array of antelope and numerous predators, including wild dogs.
Day 4 Moremi Reserve-Khwai
The camp moves with you as
You will be driven 3-4 hours to the Khwai area, following the watercourse of the Khwai River, passing the Dombo Hippo Pools. Leopard, cheetah, serval and wild
you explore Botswana and will
dogs also occupy this area.
• Stay at Letaka Tented Camp.
be set up for you at each stop. • Watch for wild dogs and other predators. • Possibility of some elephant vs lion interaction at Savute. • Find the largest heronry in Southern Africa on the beautiful Khwai River.
Days 5-6 Khwai Spend two days exploring the different habitats of the Khwai area, from dry-land and savannah, to riversides and marshy back-waters. The area is incredible for predators and birds. Game drives, walking safaris and night drives are all on the agenda.
Days 8-9 Savuti (Chobe) Enjoy this amazing area for the next two days. Explore via game drives and Bushmen painting walks. Savuti is well known for its lion vs elephant action and is inhabited by a large resident pride, numbering about 30 members, each of which seems to have perfected the art of elephant hunting. Keep your eyes peeled for cheetah and, in the wetter months, wild dog as well.
Day 10 Savuti-Chobe River You depart early this morning from Savuti to travel along the Chobe River arriving into Kasane. From here we enjoy an afternoon boat cruise to see what riverine fauna and flora you can spot, and if you are in luck, even see some elephants crossing the mighty Chobe River.
Day 1 Arrive-Shinde Concession © Will Bolsover
Today you transfer from Maun to Shinde Camp. A variety of activities are on offer including game drives by 4x4 (mating lions were a highlight on our last visit!), guided
WILDLIFE, WETLANDS & Days 2-3 WATERFALLS
nature walks, night drives, mokoro trips, boat excursions and fishing.
Shinde Concession Two full days to relax and explore the waterways of Shinde. The huge array of activities and wonderful wildlife make this
From £5,500 per person, excluding international flights and including all meals. • A luxurious Botswana safari with amazing accommodation. • Head to some of the best places in Botswana, if not the world, for incredible wildlife sightings. • Enjoy a huge range of activities, from game drives and walking safaris to helicopter rides over Victoria Falls. • Relax right in the middle of the magnificent Zambezi River.
the perfect place for any safari-goer to enjoy and start their Botswana adventure.
Day 4 Shinde-Kwando Concession Fly north to the private Kwando Concession, one of our favourite areas and best wildlife spots in Botswana. Head out on your first game drive in Kwando in the afternoon.
boat excursions and night drives. On game drives each vehicle has a driver/guide and a tracker which means you can drive off road to track the wildlife.
Day 7 Kwando-Zambezi River Enjoy a final game drive before flying to Kasane where you will transfer across the border to the lovely Islands of Siankaba. Located right in the middle of the Zambezi River, this is the perfect place to relax after your safari.
Days 8-9 Zambezi River Your lodge is linked to the mainland via a suspension bridge, giving you a unique perspective of the area. Take two days to reflect on your adventures and enjoy this tranquil lodge. Activities include tours of Victoria Falls, sunset cruises, nature trails and mokoro trips. You can also take a cultural tour of Siankaba Village and Mandia School. If you feel like really going for it, you may be
able to embark of helicopter trips, white-
Take two full days to explore the private Kwando Concession. The area is renowned for large herds of buffalo and elephant. You may also be able to enjoy walking safaris,
water rafting and micro-flights.
Zambezi River-Depart Today you leave your wonderful lodge and transfer to Livingstone for your flight home.
© Richard Denyer
You will be met in Maun and transferred to Mombo Camp on Chief’s Island. Making up a large section of Moremi Reserve, Chief’s is
BEAUTY OF BOTSWANA SAFARI From £9,665 per person, excluding international flights and including all meals.
located in the centre of the Okavango Delta and is praised for its big cat populations. Relax and enjoy your surroundings over a sumptuous lunch or a dip in the pool. Later
renowned accommodation in
Chief’s Island Spend two days exploring this wildlife
documented “The Eye of the Leopard”,
resident leopard. This is one of few areas in Botswana where it is possible to see the big five on safari so your days will consist of game drives, lazy midday’s back at
Camp and Zafara Camp.
camp, and evening sundowners. Mombo
of Africa’ at Chief’s Island. • Enjoy a range of activities, from day and night drives and walking safaris to mokoro rides.
Today you fly to the luxurious Zarafa Camp within the Selinda Concession.
filmmakers Beverley and Derek Joubert
rich area. Chief’s Island was where the
Botswana, including Mombo • Explore the ‘Predator Capital
you will set off on your first game drive.
an insightful look into the daily life of a
• Stay at some of the most
Enjoy a full day exploring Vumbura. A rich variety of wildlife inhabits this area, including lion, wild dog, cheetah, zebra, elephant and buffalo. A variety of activities are possible including day and night game drives, mokoro trips, walks and boat excursions.
is the ultimate in Botswana luxury.
Day 4 Chief’s-Vumbura Concession Catch your internal flight to Vumbura Plains. On arrival you will have time to settle and then set off on your first game drive. Vumbura will not disappoint.
On your final day you can enjoy game drives and walking safaris where you can get up close and personal to the African Bush. Zarafa is a hotspot for leopard and lion, and there is also a healthy pack of wild dogs. Our favourite is the herds of elephants that you stumble across; settling down for your sundowner as you gaze at the herds trundling through the dust to the cooling waters of Zibadianja Lagoon is a highlight of anyone’s stay.
Day 8 Selinda Concession-Maun Fly back to Maun for your flight home.
© Richard Denyer
BOTSWANA HONEYMOON SAFARI From £8,750 per person, excluding international flights and including all meals.
Arrive - Livingstone
Arrive into Livingstone and transfer to the
Embark on a morning game drive in Savuti
sumptuous Tongabezi Lodge. The rest
before transferring to Little Vumbura in the
of the day, and tomorrow, are yours to
Vumbura Concession. The rest of the day
take advantage of the amazing activities in
and tomorrow are yours to explore via day
and around Victoria Falls, from rafting and
and night drives, deep water boat safaris,
helicopter rides, to bungee jumping.
mokoro rides and walking safaris. The area is
Days 3-4 Livingstone-Chobe
great for leopard, lion and elephant.
Head south across the border to Chobe
National Park and relax at your lodge
Today you fly to Chief’s Island, right in the
before your first game drive. You have
centre of the Okavango Delta. The island is
the whole of day 4 to explore this area.
home to impressive big cat populations and
Enjoy game drives and even river safaris,
much more wildlife. Lap up the luxury at the
which allow you to get close to crocodiles,
sumptuous Chief’s Camp as you finish your
elephants crossing the river and more.
safari in one of the most beautiful, wildlife-rich areas of Botswana.
adventurous couple looking to
capture the traditional romance
of a safari in Africa.
Transfer via Kasane to Savuti renowned for
its elephant and lion population, and even
Enjoy a final morning of game viewing
servils. On arrival you will be able to head out
before your flight to Maun where you can
on your first game drive to see what fauna
connect to your onward travel connection.
• Enjoy romantic sundowners.
and flora you can spot. Night drives are a
We recommend combining this safari with
• A huge range of activities in
highlight of your stay at Savuti as this is when
the pristine beaches and incredible diving of
the predators start to hunt. You have the
Mozambique for an ultimate, unforgettable
whole of day 6 to enjoy the amazing activities
honeymoon safari experience.
• The perfect honeymoon for any
• Luxurious lodgings in the best areas for wildlife.
private concessions and in Victoria Falls. • Combines with Mozambique for the ultimate honeymoon!
on offer, including visiting a number of wildlife hides where you can sit back and marvel as life in the bush unfolds before your eyes.
© Vamizi Island, Mozambique
Beyond Botswana If you are travelling to Botswana, you are one of the lucky few who get to experience some of the best wildlife and activities, as well as the most luxurious accommodation that Africa has to offer. But you are in the heart of Africa, surrounded by incredible destinations and amazing new places to discover. The following are some of our favourite destinations that combine seamlessly with a Botswana safari.
Mozambique continues your five star experience with sumptuous accommodation and extraordinary areas to explore. Here you can relax on the beach or enjoy some amazing water-sports and diving. Romantic dinners on the beach by candle-light make this a fabulous option for couples. Top it off with total privacy and your own butler and you have yourself the perfect combination of Africa and the Indian Ocean: Flight time: less than 4 hours. Time difference: There is no time difference between Botswana and Mozambique.
Mauritius is another beach destination that offers a 5 star resort experience. Wonderful for diving, water-sports or relaxing on the beach with a cocktail, it is the perfect way to end your safari. Mark Twain once said of this astoundingly idyllic island: “you gather the idea that Mauritius was made first and then heaven – and that heaven was copied after Mauritius”. Flight time: you will need to fly to Johannesburg, then spend a night before flying to Mauritius.. Time difference: Mauritius is 2 hours ahead of Botswana.
A quick hop over the border and you get to Livingstone, home to the stunning Victoria Falls. An adventure capital, here you can experience adrenaline fuelled activities, or enjoy relaxing sundowners in front of the falls. Road transfer: 2 hours 30 mins Time difference: none.
Namibia A totally different experience, in Namibia you can embark on a selfdrive safari through the desertous lands, meet desert-adapted wildlife and stay in quirky lodges. Flight time: 1 hour 15 mins Time difference: none.
The next step Contact our team of Botswana safari specialists and design your very own journey into the extraordinary. Call from UK +44(0)1273 691 642 Toll Free from US 1866 357 6569 Toll Free from Australia 1800 66 8890 Email email@example.com
The Natural World Safaris guide to Botswana safaris and widllife. Discover some of the best experiences, when to go and where to stay in thi...
Published on Sep 30, 2014
The Natural World Safaris guide to Botswana safaris and widllife. Discover some of the best experiences, when to go and where to stay in thi...