16 days – Zimbabwe & Botswana Game Trail

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

This small group camping tour starts and ends in Johannesburg (South-Africa). Safari through Zimbabwe & Botswana exploring the amazing culture and natural beauty of both of these countries. Marvel at the Zimbabwe Ruins, and the wonderful view of Victoria Falls. Experience the Okavango Delta by traditional dug-outs and huge elephant herds of Chobe National Park by boat. This safari covers it all – wildlife history & culture!

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Highlights

Kruger National Park – game drives; Zimbabwe Ruins – guided tour; Matobos – game drive; Hwange National Park – game drives in open vehicle; Victoria Falls– a natural wonder & adventure activities; Chobe National Parksunset river cruise; Okavango Delta – Mokoro excursion & bush walks.

Accommodation

Overnight: 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 crew, prepared at the vehicle and eaten around the camp fire or in the boma. 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. Limited 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 have all the correct paperwork the Beitbridge border crossing into Zimbabwe can take a long time, which can make for a particularly long day.

Restrictions

We accept children 12-18 with accompanying adults on scheduled tours (for private groups we can accept younger children). If the clients are older than 65 years, then we require a medical certificate too (stating client is fit and healthy to embark on a multi-day tour covering long distances etc) Average age of our clients on this tour is 46 years old.

Extras/Upgrades

Single supplement: €115. Only if you do not want to share with another traveler and insist of having your own tent.

Hotel Pickup

The tour starts at 06:30 a.m. on day one of the tour from Rivonia Road Lodge Johannesburg. Due to the early departure time of this safari we recommend that you stay in Johannesburg the night before safari. Please indicate if you require assistance with airport transfers and hotel reservations in the notes section of the booking process!

Departure & Return Location

Johannesburg – Johannesburg

Departure Time

Early morning on day of departure

Price Includes

  • Max 12 people
  • Professional Safari Guides
  • Transport in minibus / safari truck & 4WD
  • 15 Breakfasts, 13 Lunches & 11 Dinners
  • Entrance Fees
  • 15 nights camping
  • Use of camping equipment (except sleeping bags)
  • Okavango Delta excursion
  • Flexible payment options in multiple currencies
  • No booking or credit card fees
  • Coverage by Guarantee Fund

Price Excludes

  • Local Tour Payment: US$300. The local payment is a separate payment from the initial price you pay before you leave. If a local payment is required it will be shown with the trip price. This second payment is made in Africa at the start of your trip. It is payable in USD. The local payment provides us with the means for expenses that need to be paid in cash to local businesses en route to be arranged in the most cost effective manner possible, a saving we can then pass on to you. It also means we can operate in a way that directly supports local businesses and wildlife authorities as we travel. Local Payment will not be changed once you have booked your travel arrangements. We also offer tours without Local Payments. One fixed price for the tour and activities which you pay all at once to us. Contact us to point them out to you on our website!
  • Visas
  • Travel Insurance
  • Flights
  • Departure Taxes
  • Airport transfers
  • Tips
  • Optional activities
  • Items of a personal nature
Itinerary

Day 1 - 2 KRUGER NATIONAL PARK [camping Bx1, Lx2, Dx2]

(B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
Departing Johannesburg at 06:30am we head north-east into the world famous Kruger National Park. We visit the remote and seldom visited the 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.

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

Includes: Entrance to Kruger National Park and morning & afternoon game drives.
Distance/time: Day 1 ±550km, 8h00 actual driving time. It’s a long day to start the trip, but we want to get into Kruger for an afternoon game drive, so with stops and lunch we expect a total travel day of ±10h30.
Day 2 ±305km, 8h00 actual driving time which is a full day game drive through Kruger so with a restful lunch break midday it’s a total travel day of ±10h00 (subject to gate closing times).
Optional Activities: Night game drive in National Parks open game viewing vehicle.
Overnight: Campsite – good ablution facilities, hot showers, swimming pool, restaurant & shop.

Day 3 GREAT ZIMBABWE [camping BLD]

Entering 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.

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

Includes: Entrance and guided tour of the Zimbabwe Ruins.
Distance/time: ±480km, 6h30 actual driving time. We need to get to Beitbridge borderpost as early as possible and depending on the border crossing today (which can be slow) it should be less than a ±9h30 travel day.
Overnight: Campsite – basic ablution facilities with showers, restaurant & bar.

Day 4 - 5 MATOBOS NATIONAL PARK [camping BLD]

Moving 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.

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

Includes: Entrance to Matobos National Park and game walks.
Distance/time: ±340km, 5h00 actual driving time. Rolling hills, a few roadblocks and a lunch stop should mean a travel day of ±6h30.
Overnight: Campsite – good ablution facilities, hot showers.

Day 6 -7 HWANGE NATIONAL PARK [camping BLD]

Named after a local Nhanzwa chief, Hwange National Park is the largest Park in Zimbabwe occupying roughly 14 650 square kilometres 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.

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

Includes: Entrance fees, full day game drive in open 4WD game viewing vehicle.
Distance/time: ±335km, 5h00 actual driving time, with an early start and tarmac roads we aim to arrive for lunchtime with a total travel day of ±5h30.
Overnight: Campsite – good ablution facilities, hot showers & swimming pool.

Day 8 - 9 VICTORIA FALLS [camping B--]

We 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).

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 will be own expense at a local restaurant

Includes: Entrance Fees to see the Victoria Falls.
Distance/time: ±200km, 3h00 actual driving time, with a visit to the Painted Dog Sanctuary, we expect to be in Vic Falls for lunch, a total travel day of ±4h00.
Optional Activities: White water rafting, sunset cruises, scenic flights & many more.
Overnight: Campsite – good ablution facilities, hot showers, swimming pool, restaurant & shop.

Day 10 CHOBE NATIONAL PARK [camping BLD]

Entering 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.

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

Includes: Chobe N.P entrance fees & sunset cruise on Chobe River.
Distance/time: ±85km, 1h00 actual driving time, the border crossing is relatively fast and we aim to be in Botswana before midday for a less than ±3h00 travel day.
Optional Activities: Morning game drive on day 10.
Overnight: Campsite – good ablution facilities, hot showers, swimming pool, bar & restaurant.

Day 11 GWETA [camping BL-]

This 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.

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 own expense at a local restaurant

Includes: N/A
Distance/time: ±300km, 4h00 actual driving time. Departing after a morning game drive, with lunch en route it’s an easy travel day of ±4h30.
Optional Activities: Game drive, bush walk & scenic flight.
Overnight: Campsite – good ablution facilities, hot showers, swimming pool, bar & restaurant.

Day 12 – 14 OKAVANGO DELTA [camping Bx3 Lx3 Dx2]

After 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 rainwater 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.

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 14: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 14: Lunch provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 14: Dinner will be own expense at a local restaurant

Includes: Entrance to Okavango Delta, Mokoro excursion, morning and afternoon game walks with local guides.
Distance/time: Day 12 ±300km, 4h00 actual driving time, followed by a 4×4 transfer and then a mekoro trip for a total travel day of ±7h00.
Day 14 ±50km, 2h00 actual driving time from mekoro station to Maun. Depending location of delta camp the travel day is approximately ±3h30 including mekoro.
Optional Activities: Scenic flight over the Okavango Delta (+/-USD95-120) pp depending on the number of people in each aircraft).
Overnight: 2 x Wild camping – basic facilities with bucket shower. You will need to bring your own towel.
1 x campsite – good ablution facilities with hot showers, swimming pool, restaurant & bar.

Day 15 KHAMA RHINO SANCTUARY [camping BLD]

Heading 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.

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

Includes: Entrance fees and afternoon game drive.
Distance/time: ±520km, 6h30 actual driving time. Botswana is flat, and today we can prove that – total travel day of ±7h00.
Optional Activities: Night game drive in open game viewing vehicle.
Overnight: Campsite – good ablution facilities with hot showers.

Day 16 JOHANNESBURG – TOUR ENDS [- B--]

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

Day 16: Breakfast provide by the tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 16: Lunch own expense
Day 16: N/A

Includes: N/A
Distance/time: ±630km, 7h30 actual driving time, so an early start with a border crossing and lunch stop, we expect a total travel day of ±9h30.
Overnight: N/A

Please 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 the tour.

Please 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.

Map

Photos
FAQ

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

On request we can book you a single tent at additional costs. 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 USD and your creditcard should be accepted in most 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

Nicole

Solo Traveller

Amazing, we did so much for such a reasonable price. A great bucket list trip. Thanks! We would recommend this trip to previous. Previous to the trip friends didn’t believe we could do all the items for the price, the trip was much more than expected. Thanks to Wayne Grace and Stephan, I was most impressed with their knowledge of Africa, the bush and animals, plants and history. I learned much more than I thought I would.

May 23, 2019

Claus

Solo Traveller

From 8 safari tours in Africa that was the best one. Well done.

July 21, 2016

Anomymous

Solo Traveller

“Good organisation, nice route, professional guides”
“Thank you for this amazing experience/trip”

November 30, -0001