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Botswana Safari



June 18-30, 2017

13 Days 12 Nights


ITINERARY
Delta Camp & Walking Safari, Okavango Delta / Moremi Game Reserve, Botswana Days 1-4

Arrive Maun airport in Botswana by midday, where you will be met for your connecting charter flight to your camp in the heart of the Okavango Delta - located in the forest of a large, beautiful and palm-studded island on the south western edge of Chiefʼs Island, bordering the Moremi Game Reserve.

The Okavango Delta, located in the midst of the Kalahari sands, is Africa`s largest and most awe-inspiring oasis. The Okavango River rises in the highlands of Angola and never reaches the sea; instead its immense waters empty over the sands of the Kalahari. Here the great desert thirst is quenched in a wilderness of fresh water lagoons, channels and islands. The area is teeming with wildlife big and small. Explore this area drifting along in a dug-out canoe and take guided bush walks on the islands dotted along the waters.

Moremi Game Reserve is situated at the heart of the Okavango Delta and was the first wildlife area to be set aside by tribal people rather than colonial powers. The reserve itself is unfenced, allowing free movement of animals within the Delta according to seasonal migrations. Moremi extends east and northwards as far as Chobe National Park, ensuring a continuous area of protected land all the way to Kasane. Chiefʼs Island is the largest island; 100km long by 15km wide, it was most likely created by tectonic movements.

This safari offers a unique, and most rewarding, wildlife experience. Delta Camp is your base camp from which you will undertake an exciting 2-night walking safari on Chief’s Island.

Day 1 and Day 4 - Delta Camp, Okavango Delta

Delta Camp accommodates just 16 guests in spacious lethaka (reed) chalets, built of natural materials and elevated off the forest floor. Each chalet has an en-suite bathroom with hot and cold running water, a shower with a view, and solar-powered electric lighting. The camp has a reputation for excellent cuisine, with fresh vegetables, imported cheeses, excellent meats and fine wines flown in daily. Meals are taken in the elegant dining room overlooking the sweep of the Delta, viewing the surrounding floodplains and the wildlife that abounds.

Here you enjoy the luxury of your own private guide for the duration of your stay - a man of the swamp, born and raised in the area, and you will spend your days in his mokoro, gliding through the floodplains and channels, and walking under his guidance on some of the many islands in the area, taking in the magnificent scenery, as well as abundant game and bird-life. Guests are actively encouraged to visit the local village, home to the guides, which affords you the opportunity to interact with the locals and learn more about their lives in this unique environment.

Delta Camp offers the purest traditional safari experience – local guides, hand-made wooden dug-out mekoro, no motorized activities, and no generators in camp – here you can revel in the tranquility of the African bush.

Days 2-3 - Walking Safari, Chief’s Island, Moremi Game Reserve

After spending the first night at Delta Camp, acclimatizing, you will set off to Chief’s Island in a dug-out canoe, accompanied by your guide. As you thread your way through floodplains fringed with islands, ancient trees will mark your passage, as will tiny reed-frogs, imperious fish eagles, and a host of other living creatures, large and small. Bee-eaters hawk from the reed-beds, red lechwe will pause in their grazing to observe you, hippo will grunt in the lagoons, and the crocodiles you don’t see will see you.

On Chief’s Island the camp will be set up while you take to the bush on your first walk, viewing birds, game, and the spectacular scenery for which this area is renowned. Spend the next two days exploring the island on foot in the company your guide, who will share his intimate knowledge and experience of the area with you.

Each day is customised to suit your preference. Typically you will rise early, enjoy light refreshments before heading out, and return to camp for a late breakfast and siesta. Alternatively you may opt to take a packed lunch on a full day excursion. Meals are prepared by your chef over the open coals, from your morning coffee, scrumptious breakfast, picnic lunch or dinner under the star-studded African sky.

Accommodation is in dome shaped 3x3m tents, fully equipped with twin beds, linen, side tables, lamps and basic en suite facilities (bucket shower and toilet). No participation is required of guests to set up camp or prepare meals – it is all taken care of by the experienced staff.

On day 4 you will return to Delta Camp for a one night stay, and again to acclimatize. This time, however, your frame of mind will be very different indeed, and rather than becoming used to the idea of a wild adventure, it is the challenges of civilisation that you will need to learn to face again.

Overnight first night Delta Camp, two nights Mobile Camp on Chiefs Island, last night Delta Camp, BLD

Days 5-8 - Deception Valley Lodge, Central Kalahari Game Reserve

Game drive to the airstrip and transfer by small aircraft flight to the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. Deception Valley Lodge is located in one of Africa’s most remote areas, about 120km due south of Maun, adjoining the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. A unique African encounter awaits in this vast flatland of spectacular thunder-storms, old-fashioned villages, and friendly folk and when the rain comes, blizzards of butterflies.

Experience the Kalahari from the Bushmen’s perspective, with the rare opportunity to meet and explore this remarkable environment with bushman guides of the San peoples, one of the oldest cultures in Africa. Explore the bush on foot in the company of a bushman guide, learning of their hunting and survival skills, and the culture and crafts of the San people, who over the centuries have adapted their lives to survive in the most inhospitable environment of them all.

The lodge main areas are comprised of a curio shop, small library, dining room as well as lounge and bar area, decorated in warm Kalahari colours making use of Bushmen and other African artefacts, and the deck offers the opportunity to view the activities at the nearby water hole. The swimming pool is situated close to the main complex and dinners are taken in the boma. Each of the eight private units at Deception Valley Lodge has a lounge, bedroom, Victorian style bathroom with an outside shower and deck with beautiful views over the vast stretching miles of the Kalahari bush. Six units have twin beds and one chalet has two inter-leading rooms suitable for families.

Enjoy day and night drives (on the concession) in an open four-wheel-drive vehicle, walking safaris, and take to the bush on foot with experienced San Bushmen guides who share their knowledge of game in the region – an experience you will never forget.

Overnight Deception Valley Lodge, BLD

Days 9-12 - Leroo La Tau, Makgadikgadi Pans National Park

The Makgadikgadi Pans National Park, populated by up to 30,000 zebra and wildebeest closely accompanied by predators, provides the opportunity to experience the exhilaration of seeing large concentrations of game and the resultant predator interaction. Makgadikgadi stretches away from the banks of the Boteti River, through its interior of scrubland and grasslands. The western boundary provides for mineral rich grass lands and the Boteti River supplies the much needed sustenance for the herds which inhabit the park. The Boteti river is the main outflow of the Okavango Delta, collecting the water that flows past Maun, and stretches about 250 km southeast finally ending at Lake Xau on the extreme south western edge of the great Makgadikgadi salt pans. After the start of the rainy season, this desert area teems with wildlife as herds of zebra and wildebeest graze to their heart’s content on the wide open green grassland plains of the Makgadikgadi. The park also boasts plenty lion, leopard, cheetah, brown and spotted hyena, Chobe bushbuck, impala, kudu, jackal, porcupine, genet and caracal, to name but a few. In addition, there is also the possibility of seeing the rare white rhinoceros. The lodge offers both scheduled guided day and night game drives. Depending on water levels of the Boteti River, boat activities are also on offer. Optional cultural excursions can also be arranged to visit Khumaga Village. Guided bush walks in the area surrounding the lodge can also be arranged.

Makgadikgadi is one of the largest salt flats in the world, although it is technically not a single pan but many pans with sandy desert in between - the largest being the Sua (Sowa), Nwetwe and Nxai Pans. A 3-night stay is required to visit the Nxai Pans on a full day excursion. This activity is subject to vehicle availability.

Maun, and the river’s eastern bank forms the boundary of the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park. The lodge offers a raised hide above the river from where you can enjoy spectacular wildlife sightings. The lodge has 12 thatched chalets, each with en-suite bathrooms, a dining room, reading room and bar in the main lodge, expansive wooden decks and a plunge pool. After a day of exploration on guided day and night game drives, you can retire after dinner to a splendid fireplace overlooking the river.

Overnight Leroo La Tau, BLD

Day 13- Homeward Bound

After breakfast, you will be returned to the airstrip for your charter flight to Maun and connecting flight homeward.

PRICING
  • 8 Guests - $10,055
  • 10 Guests - $9,919
  • Single Supplement - $1,554

The above costs are based on a group of eight or ten people travelling, accompanied by Jody Cole throughout.
The above costs are in US Dollar, based on two people sharing.
A deposit of 20% is payable to secure this program.
The single supplement is applicable for anyone occupying a room alone. A higher single supplement will apply in June should there be more than two single rooms per group.
The above costs are estimated 2017 rates.

RATE INCLUDES

  • accompanied by Jody Cole throughout
  • all accommodations
  • all meals as indicated after each itinerary day (B&B = bed & breakfast, B = breakfast, L = lunch, D = dinner)
  • all local branded beverages and laundry (laundry not done on Chief’s Island)
  • all charter flights inclusive of airport departure taxes as noted
  • Maun to Delta, Delta to Deception Valley and Deception Valley to Maun
  • all game viewing activities and sight-seeing as noted
  • all park fees
  • all land transportation including all airport and boat transfers

RATE EXCLUDES
  • additional/extra activities
  • international flights to Africa
  • regional flight to arrive and depart from Maun
  • drinks and meals not specified above & after each itinerary day
  • additional hotel nights that may be necessitated by airline schedule changes or other factors
  • cost of medical immunizations (if any)
  • travel insurance
  • visas (US citizens do not pay for visas for Botswana)
  • optional tipping or gratuities and other expenses of a personal nature (liquor, etc. not included above)

IMPORTANT NOTES
  • Passports MUST be valid for at least six months from your return home date. We recommend a validity of nine months to prevent any problems in this regard.
  • There must be at least THREE blank VISA pages in the passport (not endorsement pages).
  • Personally we recommend that you have the Yellow Fever certificate to avoid any complications but it is not compulsory. Cholera, Hepatitis A&B is also a good idea. Malaria prophylactics are essential. We recommend you contact your pharmacist/ Travel Advisory Clinic for advice as to which prophylactic is recommended. The drugs of choice currently seem to be Larium or Malarone.
  • Luggage restrictions – strictly 20kg per person including hand luggage and camera equipment in soft, duffel-style bags that need to fit into the belly-pod of the small aircraft.

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