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Botswana Safari

Botswana - Wildside Safari

Small group participation camping safari - 13 nights / 14 days

Return to Budget Safari Packages         Images for Wildside Safari
Mekoro safari in the Okavango Elephant in Moremi Game Reserve, Botswana Lion in Chobe National Park The Victoria Falls
Tour code: BT14 / BP13 / BP10

Botswana is considered Southern Africa’s premier game viewing destination. The remote wilderness, limited access for visitors and abundant game make for an exceptional wildlife safari.

Departs: Johannesburg, South Africa on Sunday at 6:30am.      
Ends: Livingstone, Zambia on Saturday at 8:00am.
Group size: Guaranteed from 4 guests; 12 guests maximum.

Summary
• A true African experience - wild and free.
• All inclusive trip with cultural experience, adventure and wildlife.
• • Victoria Falls, Moremi Game Reserve, Savuti & Chobe National Park, Okavango Delta, Kalahari desert and Makgadikgadi Pans.

Highlights
• Khama Rhino Sanctuary – game drive
• Okavango Delta – mokoro excursion
• Moremi Game Reserve – game drives
• Savuti – game drives
• Chobe National Park – game drive and river cruise
• Victoria Falls – adventure activities

Alternate Starts
• Johannesburg start saves you the cost of flights to Maun and includes an opportunity to see rhino.
• Maun start clients join the group in Maun on day 2 and eliminate the drive from Johannesburg to Maun or on day 5 to create a shorter 10-day safari (skipping the Okavango Delta portion).

Overnights
Camping - for 6 nights on safari we stay at designated campsites in national parks, on private land and in towns. Campsite facilities are generally very good but in places can be basic. There are hot and cold showers, restaurants, washing facilities and telephones available at most of the campsites. Some camps in Botswana have simple reed enclosures for showers but do have flush toilets! Sunway supplies all the camping equipment with the exception of your sleeping bag and pillow. The dome tents we use are 2.2 x 2.2 x 1.8 meters and putting them up or down takes only 5 minutes. Tents have built-in insect nets. We supply mattresses, which are about 5 cm thick, warm and comfortable. The camp chairs have a backrest.
Wild camping - for 7 nights while in the Okavango Delta, Moremi, and Chobe we camp wild. Wild camps have no facilities; we will need to take our own water and all equipment. Wild camping can be very enjoyable but please remember that we leave no trace of our stay and take all rubbish away with us. Toilets will be of the “dig and bury” variety and a simple bucket bush shower will be provided.

Meals
13 breakfasts, 11 lunches and 8 dinners will be provided by the safari crew, prepared at the vehicle and eaten around the camp fire.

2017
14-DAY (departs from Johannesburg, South Africa)
SAFARI COST: $1,985 per person sharing, plus local payment of US$300 (in cash).
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: $85

13-DAY (departs from Maun, Botswana)
SAFARI COST: $1,810 per person sharing, plus local payment of US$300 (in cash).
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: $80
TRANSPORTATION COST TO MAUN IS NOT INCLUDED.

10-DAY CLASSIC BOTSWANA (departs from Maun, Botswana)
SAFARI COST: $1,525 per person sharing, plus local payment of US$300 (in cash).
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: $60
TRANSPORTATION COST TO MAUN IS NOT INCLUDED.

If you are a single traveler, you will be assigned to room with another same gender single traveler and there is no supplemental payment required.  If you request to room alone, then a price supplement will be charged.

CLICK TO SEE DEPARTURE DATES


Botswana - Wildside Safari map


DAY 1; (1 Night)
JOHANNESBURG to KHAMA RHINO SANCTUARY, Botswana  [camping -LD]

Rhino at Khama SanctuaryDeparting Johannesburg at 06:30am we head north into Botswana. We pass Serowe, birthplace of Botswana’s first president, Sir Seretse Khama, on our way to the Khama Rhino Sanctuary. This 4300 hectare reserve situated on the Kalahari sandveld, has several natural waterholes and provides prime habitat for white rhino, zebra and wildebeest. We take our first game drive around the open grassland of Malema and Serwe Pans.


Includes:
Entrance to Khama Rhino Sanctuary. Day 1: Breakfast is not included. Day 1: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 1: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group.
Overnight: Campsite - good ablution facilities with hot showers.
Distance / Time: 630km, ± 7½ hours, excluding border formalities & stops for sightseeing & lunch.


DAY 2; (1 Night)
MAUN,
Botswana  [camping BL-]

Scenic flight over the Okavango DeltaWe drive through the Kalahari to Maun, the gateway to the Okavango Delta. Situated on the banks of the Thamalakane River, Maun is a bustling frontier town where we prepare for the delta excursion. After setting up camp we have a relaxing afternoon at the swimming pool.

13-DAY OPTION: It is possible to start this safari in Maun on day 2 (Monday) and create a 12-night / 13-day Maun to Livingstone safari.  This itinerary skips the Khama Rhino Sanctuary and begins in Maun on Day 2. See pricing above. The cost of air or other transportation to get to Maun is not included and must be booked separately.


Includes: Day 2: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 2: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 2: Dinner will be an own expense meal at a local restaurant.
Overnight:
Campsite - good ablution facilities with hot showers, swimming pool, restaurant & bar.
Distance / Time: 450km, ± 6½ hours, excluding stops for sightseeing.

DAYS 3 - 5; (3 Nights)
OKAVANGO DELTA,
Botswana  [camping Bx3, Lx3, Dx2]

Lioness and cub in the OkavangoOur local guides will take us deep into the heart of the Okavango Delta on mekoro (dugout canoes). The delta forms as water flows from the Angolan highlands out over the Botswanan flat Kalahari Desert sands creating a delicate, green oasis for birds & wildlife. We will camp wild on remote islands in this amazingly dynamic environment & enjoy bush walks, bird watching & swimming in the clear water. Camping with our local guides we learn more about their lifestyle & culture. We return to Maun in the late afternoon of day 5 and have time for an optional (own expense) game flight over the Okavango, which will reveal a different aspect of the Delta.

10-DAY OPTION: It is possible to start this safari in Maun on day 5 (Thursday) and create a 9-night / 10-day Maun to Livingstone safari.  This itinerary skips the Khama Rhino Sanctuary and Okavango camping and begins in Maun on Day 5. See pricing above. The cost of air or other transportation to get to Maun is not included and must be booked separately.


Includes: Entrance to Okavango Delta, mokoro excursion, morning and afternoon game walks with local guides. Day 3, 4: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 3, 4: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 3, 4: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 5: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 5: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 5: Dinner will be an own expense meal at a local restaurant.
Overnight: Day 3 & 4: Wild camping – basic facilities with bucket shower. Day 5 Maun: Campsite - good ablution facilities with hot showers, swimming pool, restaurant & bar.
Distance / Time: 2-hour 4WD transfer into the Delta, each way.
Optional Activities: Scenic flight over the Okavango Delta (+/-USD95-120) pp depending on number of people in each aircraft).


DAYS 6 - 9; (4 Nights)
MOREMI & SAVUTI,
Botswana  [camping BLD]

Buffalo in MoremiWe have 4 nights in these conservation areas with time to explore the various habitats. We spend our time on game drives watching the plentiful wildlife including wild dog, elephant, hippo, buffalo, lion & other game.

Moremi Game Reserve rates as one of the leading wildlife areas of the world and we take our open 4WD vehicle into Moremi for fantastic game viewing! Grasslands, floodplains, forests, lily lagoons and winding water channels combine to form a variety of game viewing habitats.

Moving north over the sand ridge and into the Mababe depression we arrive at the Savuti Marsh. This open grassland area attracts herds of zebra and wildebeest, which in turn draw the large lion prides for which Savuti is famous. We camp wild in the central Chobe National Park at either Savuti or Zwei-Zwei.


Includes: Entrance fees, morning and afternoon game drives in open 4WD game viewing vehicle. Day 6, 7, 8, 9: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 6, 7, 8, 9: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 6, 7, 8, 9: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group.
Overnight: Wild camping – basic ablutions with bucket shower.
Distance / Time: 350kms ± 8½ hours, excludes game drives & stops for wildlife viewing (Maun – Savuti).

DAYS 10 - 11; (2 Nights)
CHOBE NATIONAL PARK,
Botswana  [camping Bx2 Lx2 Dx1]

Elephants at a Savuti water holeThe Chobe River flows lazily along the northern boundary of the Chobe National Park attracting some of the largest herds of elephant in Africa. In the early morning we search for game on the flood plains of the Chobe River. The late afternoon game viewing “sundowner” cruise is a highlight as we see the mighty elephant herds returning to the Chobe River to quench their thirst. We camp at Kasane on the Chobe River for night 11.


Includes: Entrance fees, morning and afternoon game drives in open 4WD game viewing vehicle & sunset cruise on Chobe River. Day 10: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 10: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 10: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 11: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 11: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 11: Dinner will be an own expense meal at a local restaurant.
Overnight: Day 10 wild camping – basic ablutions with bucket shower. Day 11 campsite - good ablution facilities, hot showers, swimming pool, bar & restaurant.
Distance / Time: 150kms ± 5½ hours, excludes game drives & stops for wildlife viewing (Savuti – Chobe)

DAYS 12 - 13; (2 Nights)
VICTORIA FALLS / LIVINGSTONE,
Zambia  [camping Bx2 - -]

ZebrasWe camp for 2 nights in Zambia near Livingstone town on the banks of the Zambezi River. Enjoy a spectacular walk through tropical vegetation to the very edge of the “Mosi oa Tunya” or “the smoke that thunders” - Victoria Falls. Opportunities to white water raft on the mighty Zambezi River, bungi jump, or take a “flight of angels” (own expense).


Includes: Entrance Fees to see the Victoria Falls. Day 12, 13: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 12, 13: Lunch will be an own expense meal. Day 12, 13: Dinner will be an own expense meal at a local restaurant.
Overnight: Campsite - good ablution facilities, hot showers, swimming pool, bar & restaurant.
Distance / Time: 85kms – 1 hour, excluding border formalities (which can take 2 to 4+ hours).
Optional Activities: White water rafting, sunset cruises, scenic flights & many more.

DAY 14;
LIVINGSTONE, Zambia  [Tour ends]

The Victoria FallsTour ends at 08:00 after breakfast. Transfers to local airports are available.


Includes:
Day 14: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 14: Lunch not included Day 14: Dinner not included.
Overnight: N/A.
Distance / Time: N/A.

Note: The distance and travel times quoted above are an estimate only, and subject to local road conditions and animal sightings.
Note: In the unlikely event that road conditions in the parks prevent us visiting Savuti, then the alternative route will be run via Nxai pan (It is possible that this may happen between January – April, but it is subject to rainfall, so only in special circumstances).

Sustainable Tourism: The Khama Rhino Sanctuary Trust is a community based wildlife project established in 1992 to assist in saving the vanishing rhino, restore an area formerly teeming with wildlife to its previous natural state and provide economic benefits to the local Motswana community through tourism and the sustainable use of natural resources.

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CLICK TO SEE DEPARTURE DATES


Transport
For the majority of this safari you travel in a custom-built 4WD Land Cruiser with 12 forward facing seats (of which 8 are “window” seats). Roll up canvas sides allow you to feel part of the bush. For the first two days from Johannesburg to Maun we use custom-built safari trucks with 12 forward facing seats; or (on 5% of tours) Mercedes Sprinter minibuses with 12 forward facing seats and air conditioning.

Local Payment
• A local payment is required on this safari and this will be collected by your tour leader on departure. The local payment forms part of your overall tour cost, and must be taken into consideration when booking your safari. It will be used by your tour leaders to pay for some of the operational costs incurred on safari.
• We prepay by bank transfer, as many of the tour costs as possible. However, in many cases, a cash payment is the only option: certain of the destinations that we visit, only accept cash. For example entry fees to most national parks, some of the campsites and also local food markets (and even some shops) are only payable in cash. In addition, each safari vehicle has a garage card but these are only accepted in South Africa and parts of Namibia, therefore in all other countries, fuel must be paid for in cash. Due to the remoteness of some departure points, having a local payment system enables us to manage tour funds effectively. The efficiency of this system helps keep the overall tour prices down.
• It also ensures that a portion of the tour costs goes directly into the country you are visiting, thereby benefiting local communities and contributing to the conservation of the areas we visit. This is all part of the ongoing effort to operate sustainable safaris that make a real difference.

Participation
An essential part of your safari is some participation. From putting up your tent to packing the truck in the morning – it’s all part of your adventure and when everyone puts in a little effort the trip will run smoothly. Your tour leaders will do all the meal preparation but we do ask the clients to help (on rotation) with the washing up. If there are 9 or more clients on the tour, then a supply vehicle and camp assistant travel with the group through the national parks (days 6-11). The camp assistant will help with meal preparation and washing up, and make your life a little easier.

Shopping
Craft shopping for carvings, batiks, paintings and clothing is best in Victoria Falls which has a wide variety of curios. Botswana has beautiful grass weavings but these are available mostly at curio shops as there are hardly any craft markets in Botswana.

Food
We pride ourselves on giving very good healthy meals to our clients and will provide three meals per day, except 5 dinners and 2 lunches in Maun, Kasane & Victoria Falls where we try out local restaurants.
• The tour leaders do the shopping and meal planning for each group. He/she will always try to obtain fresh produce wherever possible. A rough idea of what these will consist of is: Breakfast - cereals or coffee and toast or the occasional fried breakfast, Lunch - cheese, cold meats, salads on bread or rolls, Dinner - braais (local barbecue), potjies (stews), stir fries etc. We use regular plates, cups and cutlery. All cooking and eating utensils will also be provided.
• We do cater for special dietary requirements (e.g. vegetarian or allergies.)
• We will supply fruit squash served with breakfast and tea or coffee served with breakfast and dinner. All other beverages will be for your own expense. We will not supply bottled drinking water although it is available at many shops on tour.

Difficulty
• Anyone who is generally active and in good health should enjoy this trip. Simple campsites and basic wild camps are enjoyed by the outdoor enthusiast, you will get dusty on occasion; but this is Africa!
• Full itinerary with a couple of long driving days. The road conditions through the wilderness areas a very poor and our progress can at times be slow and dusty. Remember to hold on at all times and enjoy the ride!
• Everyone is asked to help out with the running of camp on tour. In other words if everyone spends a little time setting up camp, preparing meals and cleaning up then the tour will run smoothly and everyone will have a good time. Participation is the name of the game.

Things you should know
• Includes park entrances, game drives and the Okavango Delta excursion. • As this tour spends most of the time in wilderness areas it is essential that clients adhere to the tour leaders (and local guides) instructions regarding interaction with wildlife, camp safety and game walk/drive rules.
• Your client will need a valid passport and visas for entry into Zambia, and Botswana and re-entering South Africa.
• Luggage, please pack to a limit of 12kgs in a soft sports tog bag. Also bring daypack for walks and keeping in the vehicle.
• We recommend that you bring Euro, US$ or South African Rand for personal expenses on this trip but please note that foreign currency will need to changed into Botswana Pula as shops, restaurants and market vendors only accept BWP. Zambia requires that all services are paid in local currency (Zambian Kwacha), however major credit cards (Mastercard / Visa) can also be used for optional activities in Livingstone and elsewhere on tour. See the Sunway tour dossier for approximate costs of drinks and meals etc.

Common questions about this trip
What do I need to bring? Comfortable clothes for warm days and cool evenings, walking shoes, a raincoat, hat and sunglasses, swimsuit, and a water bottle. A small pair of binoculars also comes in very handy and most importantly - a sense of adventure!
Is it safe? Botswana is relatively safe and your guide knows the countries intimately and will endeavor to show you the best parts while looking after you. In the wild areas your guide will brief you on the necessary precautions, follow this advice and you will be fine. Be aware of your personal belongings and you will have a great trip!
Do I need malaria tablets?  Yes, the trip passes through malaria areas and prophylactics are recommended.
Solo Traveler? Going it alone won’t make your holiday more expensive; our reservations staff will match you up with another same-gender traveler to keep your holiday affordable. If however you request a single room or tent these are available, with a price supplement.

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SCHEDULED SAFARI DATES

Please contact us for 2017 dates.


The Trade Route Safari to Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique can be combined with this Botswana Wildside departure to create an ultimate tour of Southern Africa.
The Desert & Delta Safari to Namibia and Botswana can be combined with this Botswana Wildside departure to create an awesome safari that visits the highlights of Botswana & Namibia.

 

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