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Botswana - this wild and untouched country is a must for all Africa lovers. Huge herds of zebra, wildebeest, buffalo and elephants are found in the famous national parks and wildlife sanctuaries such as Chobe, Savute and Khwai. The incomparable tranquillity of a mokoro trip in the Okavango Delta will fascinate you as much as the endless night sky above the Nxai Pan National Park. One of the highlights of this trip is - without a doubt - the sleep out under the open sky in the Makgadikgadi Salt Pan (May to October only).
14 nights in selected lodges and tented accommodation
4 - 6 participants
Tour starts and ends in Johannesburg - South Africa
Best time to travel arch - October
Makgadikgadi Sleep Out only from June - October
Day 1 - 2
We will meet you at Johannesburg airport in the morning to board our flight to Kasane in Botswana. Upon arrival in Kasane, a member of the Chobe Savanna Lodge will pick us up to drive us to the nearby Kasane Immigration Office. Since Chobe Savanna Lodge is situated on the northern bank of the Chobe River in the Zambezi Province of Namibia, we will have to cross the border into Namibia, before we can get onto a boat that will bring us to the lodge. Chobe Savanna Lodge overlooks the vast floodplains of the Chobe National Park’s Puku Flats and the Chobe River. Both are home to large herds of Elephant, Buffalo, and Hippo, as well as dense concentrations of other wildlife – including the rare Puku antelope – which come down to the river’s edge to drink and graze. The focal point of the lodge is a thatched, open-sided main building that features a 270-degree view over the Chobe River and beyond to the Chobe National Park. We will spend two nights at this water-based lodge and enjoy all the activities they have on offer, e.g. river excursions in small, easily maneuverable boats, which are ideal for close encounters with the wild visitors to the river’s edge.
Day 3 - 4
After breakfast, we get back onto the boat and cross the border into Kasane/Botswana, where we will meet our host for the oncoming days - Chase Africa Safari. Their mobile safari team will take us through Botswana’s diverse and beautiful landscapes in an open safari vehicle. They will also set up a warm and welcoming home camp consisting of cosy tents with traditional stretcher beds, bedside tables with solar lamps, en-suite toilets and bucket showers that we can enjoy after an eventful day in the bush. Our first destination is Savuti - tucked away within the spectacular Chobe National Park and stretched all along the northern boundaries of the park to the Linyanti River. Savuti’s spectacular landscapes are covered with lush vegetation and marshlands with an abundance of wildlife: large herds of elephant, wildebeests, warthogs, kudus, impalas, crocodile and hippopotamus as well as migrating zebras and the predators following them i.e. lions, hyenas, and cheetahs. Also, birdlife is amazing in the Savuti Marsh, especially during the summer migration. We will stay 2 nights with the camp in Savuti to explore this amazing area in depth.
Day 5 - 6
Today our camp will be moved to the Khwai Concession in the north-eastern border of the Moremi Game Reserve and we will follow suit. The Khwai Concession is a community-run reserve located on the banks of the Khwai River, spread across 180,000 hectares of land. With the river being the only source of water for miles, it acts as a magnet for wildlife, all of which are drawn to drink from its source, making terrific game viewing. Since Khwai is not separated by fences from the neighbouring game reserves, almost all the wildlife that Northern Botswana has to offer can be observed here. That is why this jewel is one of the best areas for spotting leopard. You can also see buffalo, zebra, cheetah, giraffe, hyena, hippo, and even wild dogs are known to den and breed in this area. The next 2 days are filled with morning- and afternoon Game Drives in the open safari vehicle.
After breakfast, we will board a small aircraft and take a scenic flight over to the Okavango Delta to Maun. Maun is the third-largest town and the tourism capital of Botswana. You can find shopping malls, banks, restaurants, a few hotels, and some bars. Depending on availability we will stay one night at the Crocodile Camp or at Maun Waterfront Guesthouse.
Day 8 - 10
We will be picked up at our accommodation in the morning by Chase Africa Safaris to drive to the Nxai Pan Region in their open safari vehicle. Nxai Pan is an extensive grass plain that was formed more than five million years ago. In the south of Nxai Pan, Baines' Baobabs comprise a clump of large baobab trees, rendered immortal in 1862 by painter Thomas Baines, a member of Livingstone's expedition. The focal point of Nxai Pan is the water hole, situated only two kilometers from the entrance gate. Here, and within the mopane woodland, lion, giraffe, kudu, impala, ostrich, fascinating birdlife, and large numbers of springbok, together with a good population of jackal, bat-eared fox, and numerous smaller creatures, are permanent residents. We will either spend 3 nights in our meanwhile well-known tents in Nxai Pan or we do a sleep out in bedrolls under the open sky in the Makgadikgadi Pans – one of the largest salt pans in the world - on the 3rd night (only available from May to October).
Day 11 - 12
Back to Maun we will have to say goodbye to the team from Chase Africa Safaris and change vehicles. Our destination for the next 2 nights is Guma Lagoon Camp – situated along the banks of the Guma Lagoon on the north-western side of the Okavango Delta. With its abundance of fish and bird species, this camp is truly a fisherman's paradise and bird watchers' haven. We can enjoy this paradise either during a mokoro (traditional dugout canoe) trip through the narrow meandering channels of the Okavango Delta, from a cosy couch on the communal deck or from the private deck in front of our en-suite canvas chalets.
After an early breakfast, we will leave Guma Lagoon Camp and head back to Maun. It is time to bid farewell to Botswana and get onto our flight to Johannesburg for your connecting flight back home. We hope you will take many unforgettable memories home with you. A part of Africa will travel with you in your heart.