Landlocked Botswana has, for some time now, been regarded as one of the most authentic safari experiences in Africa and rightly so. The abundance of game and fantastic camps, many set in vast private concession so as to limit the number of people in particular areas meaning visitors enjoy extraordinary game viewing without the crowds that one finds in other areas. However, this exclusivity comes at a price, which can often be prohibitive when travelling in peak season (May to October) when the water levels in the Okavango Delta make this one of the most game-rich areas anywhere in Africa.
This is why there has been a shift in recent years to people looking to travel in Botswana’s traditional Green Season (November to March). There is no need to be put off by stories of persistent rains in this period, of course it can be wet, but this is often limited to heavy but brief showers in the late afternoon. Indeed, this is the best time to visit the Central Kalahari Game Reserve, as the rains mean wonderfully lush grasses and the chance to see the Zebra migration as it moves through the reserve. With this in mind we have designed and our Highlights Of Botswana Itinerary, allowing you to visit 3 very different, but equally beautiful parts of Africa’s most sought after safari destination.
So, it was with high hopes that I set off in February and, within 24 hours of being on the packed Piccadilly Line, I was enjoying a Gin and Tonic as the sun set over the endless plains of the Central Kalahari. The journey is overnight to Johannesburg and then on to Maun, where you will be greeted by staff from Wilderness Safaris who will show you to the light aircraft for your flight to the Kalahari for a 3 night stay at Kalahari Plains Camp. This area is renowned as one of the best Summer game viewing destinations in Africa and rightly so, as the herds of plains game sweep across the plains, being pursued by the predators, including the legendary black-maned Kalahari lion. In addition to your game drives you will be able to enjoy guided walks, birding trips and the chance to interact with the indigenous San Bushmen. The tented suites here are insulated, making them nice and warm in winter and lovely and cool in winter – which can be a real blessing. There is also a lovely pool to cool off in and while an afternoon away.
From here you will fly via Maun to the Jao Concession of the Okavango Delta, where you will spend 3 night at the lovely Tubu Tree Camp. The concession is home to large herds of Red Lechwe and you will be able to enjoy game drives watching these majestic Antelope as well as the Lion and Leopard who follow the across the plains. It is also a superb location for birding enthusiasts, with a range diverse species thriving in the concession. Back at the camp you will be able to enjoy meals in the main dining, lounge and bar area, which are set beneath the boughs of a Maurla Tree. There is also a lovely pool deck with majestic views out over the surrounding floodplains. The tented suites here are very comfortable and spacious, with their own private decking areas where you can relax and enjoy some privacy during the day.
From here you will fly on again, heading to the Linyanti Bush Camp on the border of the Chobe National Park. The advantage of staying in the concession is that you will be able to enjoy the fabulous game viewing associated with Chobe, but without the large crowds of vehicles that you can find in some parts of the reserve. The Savute Channel provides a year round water supply to the area, so encourages large herds of elephant all year round, as well as a strong population of Lion and Leopard. A real bonus here are the Cheetah and Wild Dog populations – both rare and hard to spot in Botswana. Camp Savuti, is an ideal place to base yourself here and again, we recommend 3 nights. The canvas and thatch rooms are very large, with views directly out on to the Savute Channel and provide an ideal spot to relax in the afternoons. There is a small swimming pool at the main part of the lodge, as well as a dining and lounge area where delicious meals will be served before and after your game drives.
From Savuti, you will head back to Maun for your flight back to Johannesburg and then on to London Heathrow. This is a wonderful flavour of what Botswana has to offer and will provide you with some wonderful game viewing and cherished memories of Africa’s prime game viewing destination.
If you would like to book your safari in Botswana, get in touch with our Africa Travel specialists by calling us on 020 7843 3500.
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