Botswana Wildlife Destinations

Sun May 20, 2012 10:17 pm

Has anyone else been to Botswana ?
I have been into Moremi,by boat and bakkie. Moremi is beautiful, and has spectacular birdlife. The swamps are a must by boat to do birdwatching.
Chobe, has seen me briefly, and I must apologise to the bull elephants, as I could not always slow down in the sand to give them enough space.

Alongside the northern Central Kalahari Game Reserve is special place called Dinaka Safari Lodge.
Have seen many cats large and small at Dinaka.Dinaka gives you a chance to relax and wind down with no human interruptions.I am friends with the owner so may be biased, but will post a few photos of trips to Dinaka.My avatar, is of me in a spot where I have subsequently seen leopard thrice and lion once !

Botswana will see me again !

Re: Botswana Wildlife Destinations

Sun May 20, 2012 10:18 pm

Yes - been to Moremi, Chobi, Savuti and Makgadikgadi plus a few other wild areas - and I agree Botswana will definitely see me again.
It was in Moremi we watched a python take down an impala - crush and swallow it - not pleasant to watch but certainly part of nature.
This was a disaster trip when we stopped counting at our 13th puncture and on the Caprivi strip our wheel literally 'fell' off - we had a 'stranger' with us - who is now a very good friend and she reckons it was the best trip she has ever been on - no accounting for somepeople
We spent some time with one of the marshals at the Toyota Desert race and stayed on the side of the road in the middle of no-where - had lions, jackal and a lot of cattle visiting our camp site.

:D

Re: Botswana Wildlife Destinations

Sun May 20, 2012 10:18 pm

Mon Nov 28, 2011

Botswana sounds interesting but I don't have a clue on the how's, where's and when's.

From what I gather meticulous planning is essential in terms of food, water, wood and fuel?

I have seen travel itineraries that suggest like two or three or even more parks within 2 weeks.
Surely that must be too much?

Then: Is there any way of self-driving AND avoiding camping ( :oops: ). I'm not for luxury,
but basic accomm with my own bathroom is essential to me. Is that possible at all?

I'm just at the start of the thinking process and am therefore not able to put my
questions more specificly. I wouldn't even know which park to choose for a first time trip. :roll:

Re: Botswana Wildlife Destinations

Sun May 20, 2012 10:20 pm

Botswana is a beautiful country but unfortunately I cannot help you regarding accommodation as we always camp. They know how to charge - even for camping. Most of the parks have gone the "concession" route and are darn expensive.
Hopefully someone else will be able to give you some more useful information.
The other problem with booking in Botswana there is no central reservations. you have to phone each park and book directly with them - which can cause problems if you are planning a certain route and one camp does not have accommodation which could result in you having to phone and try and change bookings you have mad.
having said all this -Ii believe Botswana is a must for all nature lovers - the unfenced camps just add to the experience of living the dream.
Botswana is a small country and the travelling between camps is an education in itself. :D
If you get more of an idea of what you are 'looking" for i have got a family member who knows Botswana like the back of their hand and they can give more information than I can.

Re: Botswana Wildlife Destinations

Sun May 20, 2012 10:20 pm

Mon Nov 28, 2011

Botswana is an awesome country. Over the years I've spent a lot of time up there. For something very different you have the Central Kalahari G.R, Khutse G.R. and Makgadigadi and then places like Okavango, Moremi, Savuti, Chobe. The Panhandle is also great.
Mel, for you to see the Okavango for example you could fly into Maun from Joburg, then catch a small plane into the many lodges found in the delta where you can have all the luxury you want, these lodges also have mokoro trips for just the day out into the waterways. As FG says the birdlife is brilliant as well as animals. You might find Savuti and Moremi a little rustic but you could certainly see Chobe by booking at one of the many lodges in Kasane and then doing day drives by Safari Vehicles into Chobe. Whilst you're there you can even take in Victoria Falls in Zim, it's only about 80 k's from Kasane and there are a few day tour operators to Vic Falls and back. For example check out Chobe Safari Lodge http://www.chobesafarilodge.com/
So a trip could be something like fly to Johannesburg, link with Air Botswana to Maun, a flight into the Delta to one of the many lodges. Flight back to Maun and Air Botswana up to Kasane. Visit Chobe GR for as many days as you need, a day run to Vic Falls. Air Bots back to Joburg and home. A trip well worthwhile \O

Re: Botswana Wildlife Destinations

Sun May 20, 2012 10:21 pm

Tue Nov 29, 2011

Thank you, moggiedog and iNdlovu! You replies do help a bit to get a better idea. \O
Although I have to dig deeper into the topic if we really want to go...

What about CKGR instead of Chobe? Or to put it differently:
Why Chobe for the first visit? Would you say it is the best to start
with for a first timer?

And is a no luxury version possible if you don't want to camp?

Lismod, I found Bots very expensive as well, but I just have to
double check as it seems well worth it from what I have read so
far (also on other forums :twisted: )

Re: Botswana Wildlife Destinations

Sun May 20, 2012 10:22 pm

Tue Nov 29, 2011

Mel CKGR is lovely, but it is pretty well all rustic camping and you will need your own vehicle which has to be a good solid 4X4. Chobe allows you to stay in luxury lodges in Kasane and travel (either in your own vehicle also a 4X4 preferably because of deep sand) or on a safari vehicle into Chobe every day. There are no fences between kasane & Chobe and often elephant can be seen strolling down the main streets of Kasane. So Kasane & Chobe are pretty well one and the same, the entrance is about 2 k's out of town.
I have lead groups of 4X4's up through Moremi & Savuti to Chobe ,Kasane and beyond, but like the people say, not everyone gets on with everyone else and guaranteed you'll find a big pain in the rear end amongst them. Even good buddies become enemies on group trips sometimes.
The group I took up to the Okavango last year were all friends from the same town in Holland and now and then there was the odd spark of irritation amongst them. In cases like this the group/tour leader has to become fairly dictatorial which is not always pleasant for him/her.

Re: Botswana Wildlife Destinations

Sun May 20, 2012 10:23 pm

Tue Nov 29, 2011

More good info, thanks iNdlovu! :D
I don't mind an occasional game drive together
with foreigners but I'd certainly opt for self-driving. \O

Luxury lodges... hmmm, I'll have a look on the net of how
luxury they get. I did something similar in Greater Kruger
once and it just wasn't my taste. :oops:

Re: Botswana Wildlife Destinations

Sun May 20, 2012 10:24 pm

There is a new campsite with overnight huts that has been built bordering Matswere gate, Central Kalahari Game Reserve.
I am trying to find out what the rates will be, as this would be a great place for mites wanting to overnight before entering CKGR.

Re: Botswana Wildlife Destinations

Sun May 20, 2012 10:24 pm

Molapo Safaris

We have built a new camp outside the Matswere entrance gate to the Central Kalahari Game Reserve which is complete, just awaiting the Tourism License. It consists of 2 sets of 3 chalets with en suite bathrooms and own lapa, plus 4 campsites, each with an ablution block, and cleared areas. It is ideally situated for those wishing to go into the CKGR and arriving too late for the gate, or to be used as a base to travel in and out of the area.

I spoke to the owner via satelite 'skype' ,said it would soon be a very affordable option.
I have to wait for rates though.
Asked for them to get back with latest entry fees into adjoining CKGR too.
I will try get there later this winter, and will see what it is like there.