16 days – Botswana Camping tour

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16 days
Camping Group Tour
Johannesburg - Johannesburg
South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe
Min Age : 12
Max People : 17
Tour Details

This camping overland adventure tour starts in Johannesburg and finishes in Johannesburg (with the possibility to just travel until Vic Falls). Our tour will take us through the vast Kalahari where we will walk with the local Bushmen people, then to the north – into the magnificent Okavango Delta where we will travel by boat and in dugout canoes (mekoro) with local Bayei tribes people to our private camp in the heart of this unique natural wonderland – home also to a multitude of Africa’s Fauna and Flora. We then explore the renowned National Parks in fully equipped open 4×4 vehicles and more!

Highlights

Kalahari – Bushmen walk; Okavango Delta private camp; Okavango Boat trip and Mekoro; Game Walks: Moremi Game Reserve; Savuti; Open-vehicle Game Drives in National Parks; Serviced Camping in National Parks; Makgadikgadi Salt Pans – Night under the Stars; Chobe River Boat Cruise; Victoria Falls National Park

Accommodation

2 Nights Lodge, 5 Nights Canvas, 8 Nights Camping
MEALS: As indicated (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner).

Restrictions

Minimum age is 12, max 65. Older travellers are welcome if they can send us a medical certificate stating they don’t mind climbing daily in and out of the overland truck and that they are in good health.

Extras/Upgrades

Optional Activities can be booked on arrival. No bookings are made in advance. Rates are subject to change without notice Activities are subject to availability Activities are weather dependent. Contact us for more details.  Tour is also available as  13-day, 12-day or 9-day tour. Contact us for further information.

Hotel Pickup

Tour starts at 06:30 hrs on day one of the tour from Signature Lux hotel. Pre- and post tour accommodation bookable via us and airport transfers.

Departure & Return Location

Johannesburg – Johannesburg

Departure Time

Early morning on day of departure

Price Includes

  • Included highlights as per itinerary
  • Transport
  • accommodation
  • Meals as indicated
  • Max. 12 passengers
  • English speaking guide & driver
  • Flexible payment options in multiple currencies
  • No booking or credit card fees
  • Coverage by Guarantee Fund

Price Excludes

  • Visas
  • Travel Insurance
  • Flights
  • Departure Taxes
  • Airport transfers
  • Tips
  • Optional activities
  • Items of a personal nature
Itinerary

DAY 1JOHANNESBURG – KHAMA RHINO SANCTUARY

Our adventure starts on departure from Johannesburg at 06h30. Making our way through the dry thornveld of South Africa’s North West Province, we aim to cross the Botswana border at Martins Drift. On completion of customs and immigration formalities, we enter the vast Kalahari plains that stretch as far as the eye can see.

We will cover quite some distance today before arriving at our accommodation, Khama Rhino Sanctuary. The Khama Rhino Sanctuary (KRS) is a community- based wildlife project, established in 1992 to assist in saving the vanishing rhinoceros, restore an area formerly teeming with wildlife to its previous natural state and provide economic benefits to the local Botswana community through tourism and the sustainable use of natural resources. Covering approximately 8 585 hectares of Kalahari Sandveld, the sanctuary provides prime habitat for white and black rhino as well as over 30 other animal species and more than 230 species of birds.

Tonight we enjoy a catered meal while our guide explains the procedure for the days to come.

MEALS
Dinner (Lunch Own Expense)

ACCOMMODATION
Khama Rhino Sanctuary – Camping
(2 person dome tents)

HIGHLIGHTS
Scenic drive through North-West South Africa
Kalahari Desert

DAY 2 MAUN

Awaking early, we set off on the first of many open vehicle game drives. We will explore the Khama Sanctuary in search of rhino and the many other species that inhabit this unique environment before returning to the camp for brunch.

We then continue our journey northward into the true wilderness and we pass through numerous remote villages whilst skirting the immense Salt Pans – Makgadikadi. The last part of our journey takes us along the Boteti River and to our stop for the night, the DRIFTERS MAUN LODGE. The Lodge offers comfortable twin bedded units, all with wonderful views over the wide Boteti River – the bird watching is exceptional. Fall asleep tonight to the deep grunts of hippo.

MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

ACCOMMODATION
Camping (2 person dome tents)

DAY 3, 4OKAVANGO DELTA

After an early start, we leave the lodge and head back towards Maun before turning left and heading into the famous Okavango Delta.

The Okavango River, emanating from the highlands of central Angola far to the northwest, flows south- and eastwards, before slowing and spreading into one of the world’s only true inland deltas, creating as it does so a unique ecosystem that supports a huge variety of animal and plant life. The sight of a Jacana striding delicately amongst the flowering lilies, the Bee Eater diving to prey on an unsuspecting insect, and of course the familiar cry of the African Fish Eagle – all combine to create the canvas of one of nature’s unique masterpieces. The river, eventually spilling its contents into the vast plains of the Makgadikgadi sands, disappears.

Our comfortable and well appointed camp on the edge of one of the largest lagoons serves as a base from which we explore. We will glide through narrow reed-lined channels by mokoro, walk on uninhabited islands, and picnic in the wilderness, while learning about the animals and plants of the Delta from local guides who have grown up in the area. Through informal interaction with the guides, we will have the opportunity to learn about the local people and their way of life in this isolated wilderness. We will also have time to simply relax and enjoy the views over a glistening lagoon from a beautiful wooden deck, cold drink in hand, go for a walk with our guide, or take a refreshing dip in the pool. One afternoon we enjoy a relaxing sunset cruise on a boat.

MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (x2)

ACCOMMODATION
Twin Bedded Tented Units (No linen)

DAY 5OKAVANGO – MAUN

Starting early, we transfer back to Maun. On arrival in Maun don’t miss out on the opportunity to take an own expense scenic flight over the Delta. Be sure to take in the breathtaking sights of the vast expanse of the Delta, and also keep an eye out for the wildlife that inhabits it. We arrive at the Drifters Maun Lodge late in the afternoon in time to take a refreshing dip in the pool and take in the awesome sunset. Retire for the night dreaming of the excitement of the coming days. But not before packing your bag and charging your batteries for your 4 night wild camping experience in the parks.

MEALS
Breakfast & Dinner (Lunch is own expense)

ACCOMMODATION
Camping (2 person dome tents)

DAY 6 – 9FLEXIBLE GAME RESERVE SCHEDULE

Awaking early with excitement, after a hearty breakfast we change our mode of transport and climb aboard our game viewing vehicles and be transported in open vehicle game viewers to our campsite on the banks of the Khwai river. This wild experience is undoubtedly one of the highlights of the tour.

For the next 4 days, we game-drive extensively during the day to stop at hides and water holes at leisure, and to make the most of our time here. We travel in well-equipped, open 4×4 Land Cruisers, with our local Motswana guides, exploring the Khwai concession and the famous reserves of Moremi and Savuti. Our route is flexible and depends on the season.

The vegetation is constantly changing – from open plains with palm trees, to marshland, to dense Mopane woodlands or Acacia scrub. This variety of habitats makes for excellent game viewing. The 4x4s aren’t just for show, as the national parks are truly wild places, the roads are just tracks in the sand. We carry only our cameras and day packs, a picnic lunch and drinks for the road.

Towards sunset we arrive back at our camp in the bush, where the ground staff have lit a warm fire to welcome us. After a hearty meal it is time to retire. Drifting off to sleep to the howl of the distant hyena or the earthy roar of a lion and even the deep grunt of a half-submerged hippo. We use an exclusive campsite on the banks of the Khwai river, completely secluded and undeveloped – it is as if we are the first people here, and are alone in the world. We bring everything we will need with us, and leave nothing behind when we depart.

Depending on the ever- changing conditions in the National Parks we might also venture into the vast Central Kalahari Game Reserve or the unique Makgadikgadi Pans National Park.

MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (x4)

ACCOMMODATION
Camping (2 person dome tents)

HIGHTLIGHTS
4×4 open vehicle game drives
Private non-fenced campsites
Extensive first-hand game viewing experience
Explore the heart of National Geographic’s photography region

DAY 12VICTORIA FALLS

Awaking in the adventure capital of Africa, it is with new excitement that we explore the amazing Victoria Falls. “Mosi-oa-Tunya”, meaning “The smoke that Thunders”. This is the place where, according to ancient traditions, the “Big Snake” or “Nyami Nyami” is in hiding. Your entry fee to the Falls is included in the tour price, and you are free to spend as much time as you like viewing the Falls and exploring the surrounding rainforest. Various other attractions can be visited and activities enjoyed including the tribal village or curio market. Victoria Falls is also home to a multitude of adventure activities, such as an aircraft flip over the falls, a boat trip on the Zambezi River, white water rafting or bungee jumping, but allowance must be made for the extra expense of these optional, but worthwhile, activities.

We spend two nights here, thus allowing you some time to explore the town and all it has to offer, with the freedom to choose the sights and activities that interest you. Tonight we will eat out at a local restaurant (own expense). Relax to the sound of the African night and the distant roar of the Falls and drink a farewell toast to your adventure.

MEALS
Breakfast (Lunch & Dinner is own expense in town)

ACCOMMODATION
Lodge

HIGHLIGHTS
Victoria Falls National Park
Entry Fee for viewing the Falls

Optional Activities:

Scenic helicopter flight
White water rafting
Bungee jump
Gorge swing
Many more available

DAY 13HWANGE

After breakfast we travel the short distance to the renowned Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe’s premier game reserve. Famous for its massive herds of elephant and buffalo, the park is host to over 100 species of mammal and 400 species of bird, with lion, leopard and wild dog regularly sighted. This afternoon we will do an open vehicle game drive with local guides providing intimate knowledge of the area.

We spend two nights here, thus allowing clients some time to explore the town and all it has to offer by themselves. Tonight we will eat out in a local restaurant (own expense). Relax to the sound of the African night and the distant roar of the falls and drink the farewell toasts to your adventure.

MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

ACCOMMODATION
Camping (2 person dome tents)

HIGHLIGHTS
Hwange
Game drive within the park

DAY 14BULAWAYO - MATOBO

Today we travel south to Bulawayo, Zimbabwe’s second largest city, with its uniquely wide streets. We continue to the Matobo area where, in the afternoon, we enjoy an open vehicle drive into the Matobo National Park. Here, we will leave the vehicle to track rhino through the bush on foot. For most people, seeing these massive beasts on their own terms is a thrilling and moving experience.

Tonight our accommodation is situated high on a granite dome amongst the balancing boulders of the Matobo Hills, with commanding views over the park.

MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

ACCOMMODATION
Big Cave – Camping (2 person dome tents)

HIGHLIGHTS
Matobo National Park
Rhino tracking on foot

DAY 15LIMPOPO

Our last night will be spent in Botswana, on a private game reserve along the banks of the Limpopo River. We will take our final walk together along the river, to savour the sights and smells of the African bush and catch our last glimpse of animals living free and wild. We end the day with dinner in the bush around a flickering fire.

MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

ACCOMMODATION
Stevensford Game Reserve – Camping (2 person dome tents)

HIGHLIGHTS
Scenic drive
Short walk

DAY 16JOHANNESBURG - END OF ITINERARY

This morning, after crossing the border into South Africa, we follow a scenic route through the Waterberg Mountains, before entering the bustle of Africa’s economic heart and the Golden City of Johannesburg. The tour ends on arrival in the late afternoon in Johannesburg.

At time of going to print the above itinerary was correct, but Drifters continually strives to offer our clients the best available tour options, and, as such, we reserve the right to change aspects of the itinerary at our discretion. During the validity period of the published itinerary, conditions may change, roads may be improved or deteriorate, contracted camps and accommodation facilities may change standards, optional activities might become available or be discontinued, new border posts open or existing ones become congested, etc. Drifters are continuously monitoring all of the factors that contribute to a successful tour, and will make amendments to the published itinerary if circumstances so demand, or if we believe that the change will enhance the tour.

Map

Photos
FAQ

I'm a solo traveller, is there a single supplement?

On request we can book you a single room. Otherwise, you will be sharing a room with somone else from the same sexe if you are a single traveler.

Which currency is most widely accepted on this tour?

You can use ZAR and your Bank card should be accepted in most supermarkets, lodges and bars

Should I book pre/post tour accommodation?

We recommend you arrive the night before. We can book an extra night in the lodge from where the tour starts.

3 Reviews
Sort By:RatingDate

Lisa

Couple Traveller

I really liked the tour and Steven was a great guide who helped us out on everything. Without him the tour would have been completely different. Big thanks & appreciation to him

November 30, -0001

Jackie

Solo Traveller

Amazing! Thank you! We appreciate accommodation for vegetarians.

November 30, -0001

Dana

Couple Traveller

Both of our guides were prepared excellently for the tour. They are professional and I recommend them to my friends who would like to travel to the destinations offered by Drifters.

November 30, -0001