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Zimbabwe Safari    Botswana Safari

Zimbabwe & Botswana - Game Trail Safari

Small group participation camping safari - 15 nights / 16 days

Return to Budget Safari Packages         Images for Game Trail Safari
Elephant in Moremi Game Reserve, BotswanaMekoro safari in the Okavango Sunset river cruise in Chobe The Victoria Falls
Tour code: ZB16 / ZV10

Zimbabwe’s popularity as a travel destination has bounced back in the last 5 years and the country offers, in combination with Kruger and Botswana, a fantastic 2 weeks of camping travel in Southern Africa.

Departs: Johannesburg, South Africa on Saturday at 6:30am.      
Ends: Johannesburg, South Africa on Sunday at +/- 6:00pm.
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.
• Kruger National Park, Great Zimbabwe Ruins, Matobos National Park, Hwange National Park, Victoria Falls, Chobe National Park & the Okavango Delta.

Highlights
• Kruger National Park – game drives
• Zimbabwe Ruins – guided tour
• Matobos – game drive
• Hwange – game drives in open vehicle
• Victoria Falls – adventure activities
• Chobe National Park – sunset river cruise
• Okavango Delta - mokoro excursion 

Alternate Routes
• Johannesburg to Johannesburg circular route has the advantage of simple international flight plans, and a chance to see rhinos.
• Johannesburg to Maun offers you the option to fly out Maun on day 15 and avoid the long drive back to Jo’burg.

Overnights
• 13 nights on safari we stay at designated campsites, in or bordering national parks and towns. Formal campsites have hot and cold showers, laundry facilities & telephones.
• 2 nights “camping wild” without fences in the Okavango. On these nights the crew will erect a bucket shower (with hot water off the fire) and a pit latrine (with seat!).

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

2017
16-DAY (Johannesburg to Johannesburg)
SAFARI COST: $1,940 per person sharing, plus local payment of US$300 (in cash).
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT:
Single supplement US$95.

10-DAY (Johannesburg to Victoria Falls)
SAFARI COST: $1,425 per person sharing, plus local payment of US$200 (in cash).
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT:
Single supplement US$60.

Single tent supplement is applicable to the camping nights only. On accommodated nights clients will share with a same gender client.

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 the price supplement will be charged.

CLICK TO SEE DEPARTURE DATES


Game Trail Safari map


DAYS 1 - 2; (2 Nights)
KRUGER NATIONAL PARK, South Africa  [camping Bx1, Lx2, Dx2]

Lions in Kruger National ParkDeparting Johannesburg at 06:30am we head north-east into the world famous Kruger National Park. We visit the remote and seldom visited northern part of the park from Letaba to Pafuri. We enjoy morning and afternoon game drives in our safari vehicle and hope to spot lion, elephant, rhino and other animals in this icon of wildlife conservation.


Includes:
Entrance to Kruger National Park and morning & afternoon game drives. Day 1: Breakfast is not included. Day 1: Lunch provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 1: Dinner provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 2: Breakfast provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 2: Lunch provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 2: Dinner provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group.
Overnight: Campsite – good ablution facilities, hot showers, swimming pool, restaurant & shop.
Distance / Time: 550km, ± 7 hours, excluding stops for sightseeing & lunch.

Optional Activities: Night game drive in National Park in open game viewing vehicle.


DAY 3; (1 Night)
GREAT ZIMBABWE, Zimbabwe
  [camping BLD]

Great Zimbabwe ruinsEntering Zimbabwe at the Beit Bridge border post, we travel to the town of Masvingo and the Great Zimbabwe Monuments. The well preserved ruins are some of the oldest and largest stone structures in Southern Africa and were built during the 11th to 14th Centuries. We explore on foot and wonder at the mysteries of these ancient stone structures and the civilization that built them.


Overnight: Entrance and guided tour of the Zimbabwe Ruins. Day 3: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 3: Lunch provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 3: Dinner provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group.
Overnight: Campsite – basic ablution facilities with showers, restaurant & bar.
Distance / Time: 480km, ± 6½ hours, excluding stops for border crossing (which can take 2 to 4+ hours) sightseeing and lunch.

DAYS 4 - 5; (2 Nights)
MATOBOS NATIONAL PARK, Zimbabwe
  [camping BLD]

Lioness and cub in the OkavangoMoving on to Bulawayo, we arrive in the late afternoon and set up our camp on the outskirts of the park, before enjoying a sundowner and an evening around the campfire. The following morning we head into the Matobos National Park with a local guide to visit the core of the Matopos Hills, an area of granite koppies and wooded valleys. On our open vehicle game drive we visit World's View and the historical site of Cecil John Rhodes' grave and discover the unusual rock formations characteristic of this area. As part of our visit we take a guided walk to track and hopefully find endangered white rhino, as well as other wildlife, and view bushman rock paintings.


Includes: Entrance to Matobo National Park and game walks. Day 4, 5: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 4, 5: Lunch provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 4, 5: Dinner provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group.
Overnight: Campsite – good ablution facilities, hot showers.
Distance / Time: 340kms, ± 5 hours, excluding stops for sightseeing, shopping & lunch.

DAYS 6 - 7; (2 Nights)
HWANGE NATIONAL PARK, Zimbabwe
  [camping BLD]

Buffalo in MoremiNamed after a local Nhanzwa chief, Hwange National Park is the largest Park in Zimbabwe occupying roughly 14 650 square kilometers and is located in the north-west corner of the country. It is famed for its large elephant population. Our camp is in the game management area that borders the park, and we explore the park with our local guide, on a full day game drive in an open 4WD game viewing vehicle.


Includes: Entrance fees, full day game drive in open 4WD game viewing vehicle. Day 6, 7: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 6, 7: Lunch provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 6, 7: Dinner provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group.
Overnight: Campsite – good ablutions, hot showers & swimming pool.
Distance / Time: 335kms ± 5 hours, excludes stops for sightseeing, game viewing & lunch.

DAYS 8 - 9; (2 Nights)
VICTORIA FALLS, Zimbabwe
  [camping B--]

Victoria FallsWe camp for 2 nights in the town of Victoria Falls. We enjoy a spectacular walk through tropical vegetation to the very edge of the “Mosi oa Tunya” or “the smoke that thunders” - Victoria Falls. There are 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 8, 9: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 8, 9: Lunch will be an own expense meal. Day 8, 9: Dinner own expense.
Overnight: Campsite – good ablution facilities, hot showers, swimming pool, bar & restaurant.
Distance / Time: 200kms ± 3 hours, excludes stops for sightseeing & curio shopping.
Optional Activities: White water rafting, sunset cruises, scenic flights & many more.

DAY 10; (1 Night)
CHOBE NATIONAL PARK,
Botswana  [camping BLD]

ZebrasEntering Botswana, our camp is situated in the town of Kasane on the banks of the Chobe River. The river flows lazily along the northern boundary of the Chobe National Park attracting some of the largest herds of elephant in Africa. A highlight of any trip to the Chobe is the afternoon game viewing “sundowner” cruise where we hope to see a large number of elephants and other wildlife as they quench their thirst at the end of the day.

10-Day Johannesburg to Victoria Falls option
The optional 10-day version of this safari ends here in Victoria Falls at 08:00am the morning of day 10.  See Pricing above.


Includes: Chobe N.P entrance fees & sunset cruise on Chobe River. Day 10: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 10: Lunch provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 10: Dinner provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group.
Overnight: Campsite - good ablution facilities, hot showers, swimming pool, bar & restaurant.
Distance / Time: 85kms ± 1 hour, excluding border formalities.
Optional Activities: Morning game drive on day 10.

DAY 11; (1 Night)
GWETA, Botswana
  [camping BL-]

Lion in ChobeThis morning there is time for an optional (own expense) game drive in the Chobe National Park. Heading south through the Kasane Forest Reserve we make our way to Gweta for our overnight stop. Here we sleep with our tents nestled at the base of ancient baobab trees.


Includes:
Day 11: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 11: Lunch provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 11: Dinner will be an own expense meal.
Overnight: Campsite - good ablution facilities, hot showers, swimming pool, bar & restaurant.
Distance / Time: 415kms ± 5½ hours, excluding stops for sightseeing & lunch.
Optional Activities: Game drive, bush walk & senic flight.

DAYS 12 - 14; (2 Night)
OKAVANGO DELTA, Botswana
  [camping Bx3 Lx3 Dx2]

Leopard in Moremi Game ReserveAfter an early start we depart for Maun where we will then transfer into the delta by open 4WD game viewing vehicle. Our local guides will take us deep into the heart of the Okavango Delta on mekoro (dugout canoes). Being gently poled through the network of channels is an experience not to be missed. The delta forms as rain water from the Angolan highlands flows out over the flat Kalahari Desert sands, forming a delicate, green oasis for birds and wildlife. We will camp wild on remote islands in this amazingly dynamic environment and enjoy bush walks, bird watching & swimming in the clear waters. Camping with our local guides we learn more about their lifestyle and culture.

We return to Maun in the late afternoon of day 14 and have time for an optional (own expense) game flight over the Okavango, which will reveal a different aspect of the Delta.


Includes:
Entrance to Okavango Delta, Mokoro excursion, morning and afternoon game walks with local guides. Day 12, 13: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 12, 13: Lunch provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 12, 13: Dinner provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 12, 14: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 12, 14: Lunch provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 12, 14: Dinner will be an own expense meal.
Overnight 2 x Wild camping: basic ablution facilities with bucket showers.
Overnight 1 x campsite: good ablution facilities with hot showers, swimming pool, restaurant & bar.
Distance / Time: 200km, ± 4 hours + 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).


DAY 15; (1 Night)
KHAMA RHINO SANCTUARY, Botswana
  [camping BLD]

Rhino at Khama Rhino SanctuaryHeading south from Maun, we drive through the wide open spaces of the Kalahari Desert on our way to the Khama Rhino Sanctuary. This 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 to provide economic benefits to the local Batswana community through tourism and the sustainable use of natural resources. We hope to spot some of the elusive rhino on an afternoon game drive.

Note: Clients can end this tour on day 15 at 08:00am after breakfast to catch flights from Maun to Johannesburg. Ask us for pricing.


Includes:
Entrance fees and afternoon game drive. Day 15: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 15: Lunch provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 15: Dinner provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group.
Overnight: Campsite - good ablution facilities with hot showers.
Distance / Time: 450kms – 6½ hours, excluding stops for sightseeing.
Optional Activities: Night game drive in open game viewing vehicle.

DAY 16
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa
  [Tour ends]

Crossing back into South Africa, we make our way to Johannesburg where the tour ends in the late afternoon.


Includes:
Day 16: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group. Day 16: Lunch own expense.
Overnight: N/A
Distance / Time: 630kms – 7½ hours, excluding border formalities & stops for sightseeing & lunch.

Note: We do a free drop off at Johannesburg airport on day 16 at +/-17:00pm so you can book your flight out for the last day of tour.
Note: The distance and travel times quoted above are an estimate only, and subject to local road conditions and animal sightings!

Special Interest: The Painted Dog Conservation Centre, outside Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe, works to rehabilitate and release injured and orphaned wild dogs. A fascinating, beautiful and social species which is critically endangered. www.painteddog.org.

Sustainable Tourism: Zimbabwe has for many years been off the tourist chart. Conservation has been a challenge for many Zimbabweans working in the national parks and on private land. In Matobos and Hwange national parks we use locally owned camps, operators and guides. Bringing tourist revenue back to the people on the ground will help support the protection of these beautiful wildlife regions.

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CLICK TO SEE DEPARTURE DATES


Transport
We use custom-built safari trucks with 12 forward facing seats; or (on 10% of tours) Mercedes Sprinter minibuses with 12 forward facing seats and air conditioning. For the game drives in Matobos, Hwange, Chobe and the transfer into the Okavango we use open 4WD vehicles with local guides.

Accommodation
Camping - for 13 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 Zimbabwe & Botswana have simple reed enclosures for showers but do have flush toilets! We supply 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 2 nights while in the Okavango Delta 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.

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 participation. From putting up your tent to packing the truck in the morning – it’s all part of your adventure. Your tour leaders will do all the meal preparation but we do ask the clients to help (on rotation) with the washing up. Please note that although we will have all the correct paperwork the Beitbridge border crossing into Zimbabwe can take a long time, which can make for a particularly long day.

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 a large amount of time in wildlife 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 will need a valid passport and visas for entry into Zimbabwe, 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. Expenses in Victoria Falls can be paid in US$ or South African Rand and major credit cards can also be used for optional activities. Traveler’s cheques can be changed in Victoria Falls, Kasane and Maun (although in Zimbabwe travellers cheques attract a very high commission).

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? Zimbabwe has been involved in a political power struggle over the past few years, and this has deterred tourists from travelling to the country. Having said this, the Zimbabwe people are always friendly and helpful to visitors to their country and tourists are welcome with open arms. Botswana is safe and your guide knows both 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.

 

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