9 days from £1500pp plus international flights.
This small group camping safari is an exciting journey through Botswana, aimed at the budget-conscious traveller.
It takes you to the highlights of Botswana - Chobe National Park, Savuti, the Okavango Delta, Moremi Game Reserve, and the Makgadikgadi Pans.
We've suggested you arrive in Kasane the day before the mobile safari begins, and we've included a river cruise on the Chobe River before you meet the group - it would be a shame to miss this since you're here. Meeting at midday, you head off on your first safari in Chobe after lunch.
Your safari will be taking you to diverse areas of the country, so you'll have wonderful chances to see Botswana's excellent wildlife over the next few days. On a day trip from Maun, you'll even experience floating along in a dugout canoe (mokoro) along one of the myriad of waterways in the Okavango Delta. In complete contrast, you'll love the flat desert-like scenery around Makgadikgadi Salt Pans.
There is quite a bit of driving on this journey, but you 're in a specially-designed safari vehicle limited to 9 people. It will depart with a minimum of 2 people. The vehicle is open, though there are sides and a roof which can be added in inclement weather, so you don't have to sit there and get soggy! Please note, though, that being a driving itinerary, schedules can be affected by local conditions (weather and roads), so please take this itinerary as a suggestion, but be prepared to be flexible too.
Minimum age for this trip is 10 years. Most children from about this age will love the adventure of this experience, and kids from 10-17yrs travelling with their parents get a discount.
Another plus is that the first 3 people travelling singly on each trip pay no single supplement.
You have an excellent driver/guide, and you'll be pleased to hear that there is a cook with you too. This is, however, a full participation safari so you will need to help with camp chores. This will mean putting up and dismantling your own tent, helping with the cooking and washing up, packing and unpacking the equipment and so on. It's not too arduous though, and everyone helps everyone else.
You sleep in 2.5m bow tents with a mattress (included). There is a shared drop loo and bucket shower, though water for showers can't be guaranteed every day. You will need to bring a sleeping bag (or hire one for $30), pillow and towel.
If you are a keen photographer, don't worry, you can charge your camera (and other) equipment in the vehicle.
This budget camping safari in Botswana is perfect if you want to see a lot, have some great wildlife and wilderness experiences, and good fun.
Today you'll arrive in Kasane next to chobe in northern Botswana. You'll be picked up at the airport and transferred the short distance into town to your simple guest house. Relax after the flight, ready for your adventure starting tomorrow. The group trip doesn't begin until tomorrow lunchtime. Dinner.
This morning you'll be taken for a cruise on the Chobe River before meeting up with the group trip. This is not included on the mobile safari, but really can't be missed, so it's worth an early morning to include this. The group mobile safari starts in Kasane at 12.30. You'll have lunch and spend the afternoon game driving in Chobe National Park, which is world-renowned for its large herds of elephants. Tonight you'll have your first night of camping. Breakfast, lunch, dinner
You will be driven from Chobe to Savute. It is about a 4-6 hour drive, so you should arrive in time for lunch. You'll take a late afternoon game drive in Savute, trying to find some of the leopards among the hills for which this area is known perhaps, but certainly enjoying the scenery and all the other wildlife in this area. Full board
You'll leave for Moremi early this morning. The journey takes between 4-5 hours, depending on game drives en-route and you should arrive about lunchtime. In the late afternoon you'll take a game drive in the varied landscapes of Moremi Game Reserve. This is some of Botswana's prime wildlife viewing. You'll spend the night in either the Khwai, Xakanaxa, Third Bridge or South Gate area. Full board
This morning we have an early game drive, then pack up camp and drive to Maun, about 4-5 hours. You'll have a tasty picnic lunch on the way and should arrive mid to late afternoon. Full board
Today we have a morning trip out from Maun. We'll drive into the Okavango Delta where we pick up mekoros (dugout canoes), and we're gently poled along the waterways and lagoons, keeping a lookout for wildlife. The delta is a huge inland water system dotted with thousands of islands that are a haven for a diverse range of wildlife. This is a unique environment where dry land and water collide.
Optional activities this afternoon from Maun include a scenic aeroplane or helicopter flight over the Okavango Delta - highly recommended, and horse riding. This can be booked and paid for locally. You spend the night in Maun again. Full board
From Maun you'll travel to the Makgadikgadi Pans, about 4-6 hours' drive. The pans are vast salt flats on the edge of the Kalahari basin. The highlights of our time at the Pans depends on the season and local conditions. You may stop for lunch at Chapman's Baobabs - huge ancient trees, which explorers of old would have known, we might go in search of the zebra migration along the Boteti River or explore Nxai Pan. You'll spend this last night of your camping trip sleeping out under a blanket of stars (seasonally dependant). Full board
Today you'll drive from the pans to Kasane (4-6 hours) passing through the village of Nata, then through the only crop-producing area in Botswana. Look out for elephants and sable antelope on this drive. You should reach the Zimbabwe border near Kasane at about 1pm. Here you say goodbye to your fellow safari-goers, and we'll transfer you across the Zimbabwe border to Victoria Falls (about 1½ hours drive). Check in to your hotel (about 5kms out of town) and relax. You could even go for a sunset river cruise if you wanted (optional). Breakfast, lunch, dinner.
We recommend an early morning this morning so that you can go and visit the iconic and spectacular Victoria Falls before you head for home. Ask the hotel to organise a taxi for you. The Falls are an amazing sight and definitely not to be missed! (Fees not included, nor is a guide, but you don't really need one). On your return to the hotel, we'll pick you up to transfer you to the airport for your flight home. The end of a wonderful adventure. Breakfast.
Guide price from (pp sharing): £1500 (ex. international flights)
Price notes: 2019 guide price is pp based on 2 sharing: £1500
6 nights full participation camping, (plus 1 night guest house pre-safari and 1 night hotel in Victoria Falls after the safari); services of a guide/driver and cook and local polers in the Okavango Delta; meals as indicated; game drives and transfers as indicated; park fees (subject to increase without prior notice); entrance and camping fees in the national parks and game reserves.
International flights; visas; all drinks including water (which can be bought in Kasane before departure); sleeping bag (can be hired for $30), pillow and towel; tips; travel insurance, optional scenic flight over the Delta.
The trip starts and finishes in Kasane, not far from Victoria Falls. Livingstone airport in Zambia is the closest airport, but there are other alternatives. Return flights from the UK will cost from roughly £800 - £1400 per person depending on the season. We usually book these for you. We are ATOL-bonded.
Departure dates: The group mobile safari departs Kasane every Thursday, but we've organised a night in Kasane for you prior to this. So, it's available from March to mid-December starting every Wednesday.
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Time: GMT +2hrs
Flight time: Overnight flights to Johannesburg then connections to Maun, total flying time about 13 hours.
Language: The official language is English. Tswana is spoken widely.
Visas: Not required for British travellers (up to 90 days). EC nationals can ask us for further advice.
Health: There are no compulsory vaccinations, except yellow fever if you are coming from an infected area. Malaria prophylactics are recommended in the north.