Elephants on a riverbank Chobe, N.P., Botswana

Wildlife & Wilderness of Botswana

14 days
from
$3,179 USD
incl. taxes
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Traveller ratings
4.6 / 5 from 60 reviews >
Trip code: 
WZT
Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Tailor Made Adventures
Activity:
Wildlife Holidays
Group size:
4–12
Min age:
16

Delta, Falls, salt-pans and bush are the backdrop to the fantastic wildlife and wilderness of Botswana

Take a journey into the wilds of Botswana. Glide along the Okavango Delta in traditional makoros and admire a billion stars from the otherworldly and eerily silent Makgadikgadi Pans. Search for Africa’s emblematic wildlife on the Savuti Marsh and the Moremi reserve and take to the Chobe River, known for having the highest concentration of elephants anywhere. Finally discover why David Livingstone, upon seeing Victoria Falls, declared ‘scenes so lovely must have been gazed upon by angels in their flight.’

Highlights

  • Gliding along the Okavango Delta waterways in Mokoro canoes and wild camping in the wetlands
  • The other-worldly silent beauty of the Makgadikgadi Pan
  • Good chances of seeing both Africa’s emblematic wildlife as well as some of its lesser species
  • Game viewing by foot, by safari vehicle and by boat
  • The mighty Victoria Falls

Key information

  • 11 nights full-service camping (in two-person tents with camp beds and mattresses provided) 2 nights in hotel, lodge or chalet.
  • Travel by Toyota Land Cruiser
  • Some long and bumpy roads
  • Staying in some remote locations
  • Countries visited: Botswana, Zimbabwe

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 11 lunches, 8 dinners
  • All accommodation (see below)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
1 844 227 9087
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Responsible Travel

Tourism can be a real help to local communities, providing income, positive cultural exchanges and a financial incentive to protect their natural environment. Ours is a 'total approach' to responsible tourism, covering everything from the way we plan and operate our trips to the practices of Exodus as a company. 

On this trip, we will spend most nights full-service camping and 2 nights in chalets or lodges. We predominantly use small businesses for accommodation in order to keep investment local and benefit the communities we visit directly. Campsites used are either locally owned, or a percentage of their income goes towards, schooling, nature conservation or community projects. We strive to always leave a campsite in a better condition than when we arrived and to use gas whilst cooking instead of using limited firewood resources. Almost all meals are provided and our tour leaders ensure that we use fresh local produce wherever possible.

Our local partner supports the Save our Sausage Trees initiative in Botswana, which aims to address the issue of depleting forests in the area. The Mokoro is a traditional mean of transport for the people of the Okavango Delta which is crafted out from a single mature Kigelia Africana tree (or sausage tree). Although increased tourism brings some obvious benefits to the area, it has also caused a higher demand for Mokoro boats. A normal wooden Mokoro only lasts for about 5 years hence, hundreds of sausage trees are used per year to meet the increasing demand. Realising that wooden mokoros are not sustainable in the long run, our local operator consulted the Okavango community and have agreed to fund half the cost of a fiberglass mokoro whenever a poler decides to purchase it in order to minimise the number of trees used.

In March 2019, Exodus Travels launched the Exodus Travels Foundation where we support initiatives all around the world. But it cannot exist without travellers who care. Get involved or learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus here

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Maun.

    Those on the group flight arrive in Maun and transfer (30 mins) to our campsite located on the banks of the Thamalakane River. The campsite has hot showers, bar, swimming pool, and the restaurant is known for its good food and ambience. Those not on the group flight can arrive any time.
    Audi Camp or similar

  • Day 2

    To Okavango Delta.

    We pack minimal gear for 2 nights into a smaller bag (bag provided), before a 4x4 transfer into the Okavango Delta. At the 'polers' station' we meet a new team of local staff from a nearby village who will look after us during our stay in the delta. With them we travel in mokoros deep into the Okavango Delta. We have lunch at our campsite on the banks of the river, and in the late afternoon we head out on our first game walk. We return to camp before sunset and enjoy our first meal in the African bush.
    Okavango Delta Wild Camp

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 3

    Morning game walk; sunset dug-out canoe trip on the Okavango Delta.

    We get up early this morning for a game walk with a guide from the poling team. There are never any guarantees whith wildlife, but there is the chance of seeing elephant, buffalo, and other smaller game. We return to camp for a well deserved brunch and some time to relax. In the afternoon we take a short mokoro trip on the river to view the sunset before returning to camp.
    Okavango Delta Wild Camp

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Return to Maun; free afternoon.

    This morning we board our mokoros for the trip back to the polers' station. We meet our vehicle and transfer back into Maun for the night where we will purchase supplies for the days ahead. The afternoon is free to relax by the pool or take an optional scenic flight over the Delta.
    Audi Camp or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 5

    Visit Makgadikgadi Salt Pan.

    After a relaxed breakfast we head east to the vast Makgadikgadi Salt Pan. Depending on the season or if the pans are wet, we will camp wild on the pan or one of the campsites nearby. The Makgadikgadi Salt Pan covers an area over 16,000 square kilometres and forms the bed of an ancient lake - now dried up. The sunsets on the pan are truly spectacular.
    Makgadikgadi Pan wild camp or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 6

    To Zimbabwe and Victoria Falls.

    A long drive north before crossing into Zimbabwe to the town of Victoria Falls situated minutes from the waterfalls of the same name. At the Kasangula border we complete the border formalities and continue to our accommodation for the next two nights. The falls themselves are over 1,700m wide and 100m tall making them the largest waterfalls in the world and are one of Africa’s most famous highlights. We will have the opportunity to find out more about the various activities on offer available for tomorrow.
    Mopani Lodge or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 7

    Free day for optional activities at Victoria Falls.

    Today is a free day to partake in one of the many optional activities on offer ranging from white water rafting to flights over the falls and various others.
    Mopani Lodge or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 8

    Free morning to visit Victoria Falls; afternoon to Chobe; optional boat trip.

    This morning there is an opportunity to view Victoria Falls themselves (park entry fee not included) from the Zimbabwean side. From here we drive back to Botswana. A short drive from the border to the town of Kasane where we camp on the banks of the Thebe River, a tributary of the mighty Zambezi. The afternoon is free, with an option to view game on the famous Chobe Waterfront by taking an exciting river cruise on the Chobe River. This is widely regarded as one of the best game cruises in Africa with a very good chance of seeing the elephant herds coming down to the river to drink before the sun sets.
    Thebe River Camp or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 9

    Discover Chobe N.P; visit Savuti.

    We take an early morning game drive back to the Chobe Waterfront area. Chobe is famous for its large population of elephants, but is also home to plenty of other exciting game including lion and wild dog. After exploring the Northern end of this huge park, we head south into remote and rugged terrain, passing in and out of the national park, before finally reaching the Savuti area at the southern edge of Chobe National Park.

    The Savuti Marsh, often dry, is fed by the Savuti river channel which alternately flows and then dries up for years at a time. Recent flooding has given this area new life. This area is also home to plenty of game, but is especially well known for its lions, and the large numbers of elephant that walk enormous distances to find fodder.
    Zwei-Zwei or Savuti Wild Camp

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 10

    Full day game drive on the Savuti Marsh.

    We take morning and afternoon game drives on the Savuti Marsh. There is a good chance to see lion, cheetah and hyena that follow the seasonal zebra migration through this area. Large secretary birds and kori bustards are often seen strutting around the Savuti marsh and small red-billed francolins provide a noisy morning wake up call.
    Zwei-Zwei or Savuti Wild Camp

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 11

    Game drive on the way to Moremi.

    After breaking camp we drive all the way to Moremi Game Reserve. We pass through a variety of habitats including the Mbabe depression, Mopani forest and past great Acacia trees before arriving at Khwai village and the North Gate entrance of Moremi Game Reserve. Moremi National Park is the jewel in Botswana's wildlife crown. Protecting much of the northern part of the Okavango Delta, it is made up of waterways, marshes, islands and open grasslands.
    Moremi Wild Camp

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 12

    Full day safari in Moremi Game Reserve.

    We'll go on morning and afternoon game drives through this beautiful protected area, trying to find the large variety of animals that live here. Despite its wet reputation, there is plenty of dry land in Moremi, which allows our game drives to cover significant distances while spotting game in the sometimes dense vegetation. As well as elephant and lion, Moremi is a good place to spot leopard and cheetah, and the red lechwe, a water dwelling antelope, often seen grazing amongst the lilies.
    Moremi Wild Camp

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 13

    Morning game drive in Moremi; to Maun.

    We go on a final game drive through the park this morning before travelling back to Maun, and back to our riverside campsite. We can enjoy the swimming pool before our last dinner at the campsite restaurant.
    Audi Camp or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 14

    End Maun.

    Those on the group flights will be taken to the airport in time for their flight home. The trip officially ends after breakfast for those not on the group flights.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Botswana

Currently British and Commonwealth and European passport holders do not require visas for Botswana.

If you are transiting through South Africa and are a non UK passport holder you may require a transit visa. Please check before travelling.

Please be aware that children under the age of 18 must provide a full birth certificate (a short one won’t be accepted) as well as a valid passport. If the child is travelling with only one parent or with another adult, the missing parent (or parents) will have to provide an affidavit giving their consent for the child to travel. If flying via S. Africa you may have to pass immigration between flights and the same regulation is needed for entry into S. Africa.

 

Zimbabwe

Most nationalities, including British require a visa to visit Zimbabwe.  This can be obtained from the Zimbabwean Embassy in London but it is a lot easier to get it on arrival in Zimbabwe.  The current charge for a single entry visit visa issued on arrival in Zimbabwe is £35.00 or US$55.00, although this could change. If you have not obtained a visa before travelling, you should bring enough cash with you to pay for your visa on arrival. You should ensure you have small notes as immigration officers may not be able to provide change.

If you plan on visiting Zambia as well then there is the UNIVISA (a shared visa for Zimbabwe and Zambia) that will allow you multiple entries into Zimbabwe.

Please note that if flying via South Africa you will probably have to pass immigration there. New regulations, as of the 1 Oct 2014, mean that children under 18 will have to have an unabridged birth certificate showing the names of both parents. If the child is travelling with only one parent they will need to have an affidavit from the other parent, of no more than 3 months, confirming the child can travel with the other parent; a court order granting full legal guardianship of the child; or a death certificate of the deceased parent.

Vaccinations

Botswana

Vaccination against Yellow Fever is necessary if you are coming from a country with Yellow Fever, and you must bring a valid certificate of vaccination. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. Malaria prophylaxis is essential and we suggest that you seek advice from your GP or travel health clinic about which malaria tablets to take.

Zimbabwe

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. Malaria prophylaxis is essential and we suggest that you seek advice from your GP or travel health clinic about which malaria tablets to take.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 11 lunches and 8 dinners included.

Breakfast - cereals, coffee and toast and the occasional fried breakfast / brunch.
Lunch - cheese, cold meats, salads, bread or rolls.
Dinner - potjies (stew), braais (barbecue), stir-fries, etc.
Please be aware that we need at least two weeks notice to deal with special dietary requirements (e.g. vegetarian or allergies.) For this reason if you did not indicate these on your booking form please advise the Exodus office as soon as possible.
The trip leaders do all the shopping and meal planning for each group. He/she will always try to obtain fresh produce wherever possible. Each tour has 1 cool box for the meats and the fresh produce only and 1 cool box for cold drinks.
We will supply the following drinks: squash, tea or coffee served with meals. All other beverages will be at your own expense.
We supply drinking water which is perfectly safe to drink. This is not bottled water, however, and whilst we encourage you to drink this water rather than buy plastic bottles, some people do not like the taste of the local water. If you decide that you would rather buy bottles of water rather than drink the water provided, we encourage you to buy large 5L bottles and refill your drinking bottle.
Please note that on some days where early morning game drives are included lunch may be substituted for a large brunch on return from the game drive - this is customary. We will always ensure that the number of meals detailed in the trip notes are provided.

The water provided on this trip is safe and clean drinking water, normally coming from bore-holes. It is not bottled water, however. If you would rather have bottled water then this will be at your expense, though we would encourage you to make use of the safe drinking water provided as this helps diminish plastic consumption.

Weather

Maun

Maun

Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls

Is this trip for you?

Expect some long and hot drives as we travel between game parks in this large country. On some days we travel on tarmac roads, but a lot of distance is covered on dirt and sand roads. Depending on water levels, driving in the delta can also be challenging. As a full-service camping safari, we have a separate supply vehicle with a camp crew who set up camp for us. The camp crew will also cook the food, wash the dishes and attend to all camp chores so that you can sit back and enjoy the wilderness experience. We normally use Botswana Tourism (HATAB) sites, which are only available for private groups. There are no facilities so we use bush toilets and a bush shower. These sites are not fenced and have no running water. We carry a water supply on our vehicles and fill up daily from public sites. There is plenty of water to wash with but we must be sparing; this all adds to the remote wilderness experience! Other nights will be spent in developed camp grounds with facilities usually including toilet blocks, a bar and, sometimes, a swimming pool. October and November are the hottest months, but are also good for game viewing, please see the weather section for more information. Legal Note: all group members joining this tour will be asked to sign an indemnity form at the start of the holiday. This indemnity form is a requirement of the South African Tourism Service Association which our local supplier is a member of. As a client of Exodus Travels Ltd, your rights under the Package Travel Regulations (1992) are unaffected, and Exodus remains liable for the actions of our sub-contractors.

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Call for general departures:
1 844 227 9087
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Camping

You will spend 11 nights full-service camping and 2 nights normally in chalets or lodges at the Victoria Falls.

This is a full service camping safari. This means that your tents will be erected for you. Most of the nights will be spent wild camping and a few nights will be spent in public campsites. We supply all the camping equipment with the exception of your sleeping bag and pillow. The tents are spacious and comfortable (2.4 x 2.4 x 1.8 meter). We supply camp beds with mattresses, which are about 5cm thick, warm and comfortable. The camp chairs have a backrest and we use standard plates, cups and cutlery. Most of the public campsites have swimming pools. Please note that the HATAB campsites in Chobe Game Reserve are located throughout the Savuti area and may include the Zwei Zwei pan. As this trip mostly involves wild camping, wifi is rarely available.

Single supplement available. Please note that on the nights in the Victoria Falls you might share a chalet/cabin with another member of the group. However, you will still have a single room to yourself.

 

Call for general departures:
1 844 227 9087
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Experts

Contact a member of staff who has done this trip

Call for general departures:
1 844 227 9087
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

Paul Goldstein is one of very few people that has spent time with all five of the BBC's ‘Dynasty’ luminaries.

  • Reviewed September 2019
    Gordon Towner

    AMAZING

    Wow what a way to see botswana on Brians fun bus,from start to finish our every need was met by Brian and his crew,having never camped before we were worried about bush toilets and open fire cooking and wild animals wondering about in the camp,but all of these things are part of what makes this adventure special the bush toilet was fine and discreet the open fire cooking was unbelievable best lasagne fish and chips and beef fillet potatoes and green beens i have ever tasted thanks to Abis the cook ,there are long dusty journeys but is a good time to get to know the other travellers in your group and nature seems to provide all the way to your next destination,the camp beds were comfortable and the kettle always boiling,sitting around the camp fire at night listening to all the sounds and looking up at the night sky really is awe inspiring,the game drives were amazing and Brians knowledge of every animal bird tree plant insect and animal poo was incredible there was nothing we asked that he didnt give a full explanation about, And we saw every animal except cheetahs and Rhinos ,

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    To many,wild camping mokoro rides herds of Elephants on walking safari,bull Elephant not wanting to let us pass in mokoro,wild dogs with pups ,leopard, hyenna family playing with pups ,lions vic falls white water rafting inthe Zambizi,night sky at salt pan Abis cooking and Brians infectious laugh always happy

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Brian makes this adventure special,always happy helpfull and cant believe his knowledge and love of his country,Top class guide

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Just do it,you wont regret it ,amazing experience
  • Reviewed September 2019
    Rachel Cox

    Trip of a lifetime

    I always wanted to go on safari, but had never been camping before, so I was a little apprehensive about that. But camping was all part of the adventure and it was lovely gathering around the campfire in the evenings. It also makes you feel very immersed in the wildlife, e.g. hearing lions roar as you're going to sleep and wondering how far away they are! So if you're worried about camping, just do it, you won't regret it.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were countless amazing moments on the trip! Being right next to a leopard that used our vehicle to hide behind to stalk an impala. Finding two cheetahs. Seeing two female lions sneak up on a giraffe while it was drinking water! Hippos crashing out of the bushes and through a herd of elephants, to get to the water to mate. A hippo blocking the path of our mokoro in the delta (scary, but exciting!). Numerous sightings of lions, including lion cubs playing and suckling from their mother. Being so close to a male lion he was sniffing the air around our vehicle! And absolutely countless sightings of elephants, hippos and 148 different species of bird.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Brian was amazing. He is very experienced and so knowledgeable about how to find the animals and about the animals themselves. All of the other guides know him too, which obviously helps to exchange information about recent animal sightings. He went above and beyond to give us great experiences and we got so close to a lot of animals!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Ladies, bring a buff/headscarf to control your hair while in the vehicle. A fleece is a must, as it gets very windy in the vehicle. I had a shewee and an empty plastic bottle for emergencies and I did use them one night when there were too many eyes staring back at me to use the bush toilet! Babywipes are useful to wipe away the sand before bed. Toilet paper is provided, but make sure to bring plenty of kleenex for the stops by the side of the road (I also used lots of tissue blowing the sand out of my nose!). I brought a diary, which was a nice way to document the trip and keep myself busy during downtime. Bring flipflops and a travel towel for the shower. It's possible to get laundry done in Victoria Falls (In-Da-Belly, down the road from the lodge, only charges 5dollars/bag), but it's not feasible in Maun due to time constraints, so just plan ahead for that. Make sure you have US dollars for Zimbabwe (visa and spending money). Oh and maybe don't opt for the scenic flight if you're in any way prone to motion sickness... I vomited and most of the others felt unwell too (although maybe it was a particularly windy/turbulent day when we did it).

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    If anyone is curious about the facilities (because I was), the "bush toilet" is a hole dug in the ground, with a metal frame and toilet seat over it. This is surrounded by a large metal frame with canvas material attached for privacy. There is also a shovel and a pile of sand to cover your business after each use. The "bush shower" is a canvas bag of hot water suspended from a tree and a mechanism so you can control the flow of water. This is surrounded by a metal frame with canvas material attached (similar to the toilet). They get the job done anyway and it's all worth it for the wildlife experiences!
  • Reviewed August 2019
    Helen Brown

    Safari of a lifetime

    An amazing trip that got better and better each day. The wildlife exceeded all of our wildest dreams made possible by our guide, Brian and 'Top Gun' our specialist local guide in the okavango delta. The food cooked by our chef on a log fire was incredible.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Almost missing a leopard as it was so close to the track. Having an angry hippo charging through the water towards us whilst in a makoros canoe. Getting up in the night for the bush toilet and looking for red and/or green eyes!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Brian was an excellent. extremely knowledgeable guide. His team of a chef and two others were great too. Brian always went that extra mile to find the wildlife. Lions eating a kill, lion cubs suckling, hippos mating in the water, cheetahs hunting impala, a herd of cape buffalo being hunted by lions and so much more. My husband ticked off 148 different birds! Brian could identify the birds from a brief description or a wing pattern.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for very early starts. Packing up camp in the cold and dark with no washing facilities on some days when wild camping was hard but made up by the incredible wildlife. When we were in the vehicle it was as if we were wearing invisibility cloaks! Definitely pack warm windproof clothes for the early mornings and take a head scarf/buff for when travelling in the open sided truck. be prepared to get very dusty/sandy!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    It was my most grueling Exodus trip to date but also one of the most incredible. i couldn't believe how close we were to the animals when in the vehicle, in the boats and on foot.
  • Beyond wonderful

    I had visited eleven game parks on two continents, and spent twenty-six years trying to see a leopard. We saw four different individuals, close enough to get some excellent photographs. We also saw countless lions, two cheetahs and a serval, as well as lots of other game. The food that was cooked on an open fire was terrific, and it was a lovely group of like-minded people.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were so many it's hard to choose one. Seeing two cheetahs giving each other a very affectionate wash and brush up. The stand-off at the OK Waterhole - when five lions approached the two elephants occupying it, the elephants weren't having it. The lions called for reinforcements, and another five turned up. So the elephants also called for reinforcements, and a third elephant arrived. We then watched them squirting the lions with water, and chasing them off now and again. The lions had to make do with a puddle at the far end of the waterhole. Seeing an adult male lion sniff out a tiny three week old cub. We watched with our hearts in our mouths, but he was a new dad and had been left to babysit. The cub wanted to cross the road, and dad tried to stop it without much success. He was very gentle, and it was a delight to watch. Seeing a serval, which our guide said was most unusual. And last but by no means least - a mother leopard taking a surprising lunch back to her half-grown cub - an African wildcat.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Anton was very knowledgable, and extremely clever at driving round the back of the other vehicles to get a better view from the other side. He also knew when to wait - if nothing exciting seemed to be happening and he was in no hurry to move on, there was always a reason.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take a small camping light for the tent, and lots of wet wipes. Also take a power bank if you have one, and as many spare batteries as you can afford. I have a camera trap, and I set that up on several nights so that I could see what was sniffing round the tents - turned out to be a honey badger and a hyena. If you need to go to loo several times in the night remember that it's not a good idea to leave the tent. I took a litre-sized plastic jar with a lid, and was very glad I did.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This was the fourth safari I have done in Africa, and the best by far. Magic.
  • Reviewed April 2019
    Stephen Newey

    An amazing adventure in Botswana

    Our adventure in Botswana was the most incredible experience we have ever encountered. The guides were amazing. Their knowledge of all things growing or living in this beautiful country was boundless. They were all extremely helpful and nothing was too much trouble, always going the extra mile to ensure that we got the most out of our trip. Our cook produced the most delicious recipes and all on an open fire with a few pots and pans. Wild camping definitely gave us a flavour of actually being amongst the wildlife. We saw all the species of animals and birdlife that anyone could wish for. A trip across the border to Zimbabwe took us to the breath-taking Victoria Falls. So majestic yet so powerful. It would be remiss of me not to mention our two main guides, Ngande and Mello. They were incredibly caring and thoughtful towards our needs, always ensuring that our safari experience was the best that it could possibly be. Finally, we are so grateful to Exodus for arranging what proved to be the adventure of a lifetime and one which we will never forget.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The entire experience was inspirational but the most emotional moment for me happened on a morning game drive, when we came across a beautiful male leopard sitting majestically on top of a grassy mound. Needless to say that my camera was red hot that day. The previous morning drive was a lovely misty morning when we encountered a small pride of lions. One of the shots I took was perfect. I called it "Lions in the Mist"

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader was an amazing man called Ngande Mosepele. His knowledge of wildlife and birdlife was boundless. He was so caring and kind to everyone, always making sure that each of our group, regardless of our individual interests, got the most out of our trip. He also had a great sense of humour. We all agreed that we couldn't have had a better leader.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If anyone is undecided over whether or not this type trip is for you. Don't think twice. Just do it. I promise you won't be disappointed. If like us, you have never been on safari before, choose "Wildlife and Wilderness of Botswana" It will be an adventure you will never forget!!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I don't think there is anything I can add that I haven't already said. This fulfilled our every wish and much much more. I have purposely not used the word holiday in any part of this review. This was not a holiday, it was an incredible adventure, and one which my wife and I will never forget.
  • Reviewed April 2019
    Alison Brown

    Incredible adventure

    Absolutely fantastic trip, amazing chances to see wildlife close up and lie awake at night trying to identify the animal noises and how close by they could be!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It was all incredible. The Mokoro rides were so serene and otherworldly. Watching hippo from them was something I will never forget. The safari walks were expertly guided by a man with just a stick and it was an absolute privilege to be able to walk and see zebra, buffalo, giraffes, elephants and so much more in their natural environment. In the 4x4s we were able to get up close to animals and spent 2 hours watching 2 cheetah brothers chilling out under a tree. We were also blessed to see a young leopard and spend time watching her eat and sleep. Parking close to lions eating a wildebeest was incredible, though those of us on the nearer side of the truck had years scared off our lives when another closer male lion went a bit vocal with his lioness which none of us were expecting! Seeing baby elephants, elephants playing in the water and spraying dust everywhere was just incredible. Giraffes fighting, hippos "smiling" and laughing, ostriches running, jackals stretching, zebras dazzling and eagles soaring were just some highlights. But, really, every day was a highlight bringing new fabulous sights and experiences and the whole trip was truly inspirational

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Kenny - chilled and laid back. A good sense of humour and fantastic knowledge of birds and animals. He has a real passion for his job and the wildlife he sees

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring sandals for mokoro (in case you have to get out) and 4x4 (cooler) wear neutral coloured long sleeves and trousers for walks to protect from thorns Up before the sun and in bed by sunset. Only the very bravest will want to visit the bushy bushy at night (women bring she-wee and bottle if you need to) Once you are in your tent at night you are advised not to use your head torch so be tidy and prepare things when it's light to avoid scrambling in the dark Bring cards and gamble freely with seed pods and sticks! Dobble also good fun Bring imperial mints, werthers originals and foxes mints to share in truck. Jelly babies will not survive the heat, neither will minstrels sadly!! Write down what you see every day as the days are so packed that it's hard to remember everything by the end of the trip Buy a good camera with a good zoom (it's so worth it!!). Then make friends with person on trip who can show you how to use it! There are no doors on the truck, you will have to be able to climb up the sides and swing your legs over to get in and out - be prepared to scramble This is a camping trip - it is basic and you have to make the best of what there is on site. Do not expect to be able to walk outside the camp when wild camping. Opportunities to stretch your legs are limited to getting on and off the truck. Listen to your guides. This is a wildlife trip and there will be wild animals poking about the camp site at night (honey badgers, hyena, elephants) and possibly during the day (elephants!!). Be sensible and try to appreciate the experience once the abject terror of having been woken by a noise settles down!!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Keep an open mind. Be prepared for anything and enjoy!
  • Reviewed December 2018
    Georgina Mackintosh

    Fantastic experience

    This trip exceeded my expectations. It was exceptional in pretty much every aspect. The variety and quantity of animals we saw were exceptional - thanks to our brilliant guide, the locations we camped in and the high quality of local guides and trackers. The back up team made wild camping an amazingly comfortable experience - putting up and dismantling our tents, transporting all our luggage and producing the most delicious and satisfying meals from an open fire and the ' magic' kitchen in the back up vehicle. The long distance travel in the open sided safari truck was a bit of a trial at times but all part of the the Botswana experience and outweighed by the arrival at a beautiful location to camp.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were so many, but the Okavango Delta and Moremi stand out in terms of places and animals but the simplicity of the whole wild camping experience, with no wi-fi, no 'modern' amenities and rising at sunrise and going to bed after sunset was the most wonderful antidote to the mania of our lives. Truly magical.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ngande's experience, knowledge and organisation were exceptional - and he is a really nice guy too! He was good humoured, sensitive to individuals needs and made us feel very safe - especially when up close to the animals!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you want an adventure that removes you totally from the stresses of modern life this is an ideal trip.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The only criticism I have is that I really didn't like the hard sales talk we had on activities available on arrival at Victoria Falls. After a very long day's travelling it was the last thing we wanted! !
  • Reviewed November 2018
    Ann Stobbs

    Wildlife & wilderness of Botswana

    It was such a memorable adventure - seeing cheetahs, leopards and wild dogs, not forgetting elephants who seemed to like wandering around our camp at night ! The wild camping made it possible to be part of their world which was a real privilege. The camp staff were excellent and I just loved Botswana. All together one of the best holidays I have been on .

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing cheetahs ,leopards, wild dogs, and all the other animals- Having elephants wandering around our camp... The okovango- Beating a hasty retreat from a rather cross elephant - Discovering I like birds - Space light & warmth of Botswana

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take a scarf - the long drives got a bit windy - def take binoculars- It says there are ATM s at Victoria Falls which is correct but not one had any money in them so take small dollar notes (Not a big deal but don't rely on them) Otherwise the trip notes are comprehensive ..

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Just a minor thing about being met on the group flight. We were not clear whether we were being met at JBURG as well as Maun- just needs making it a bit clearer that you won't be met at the transit but at Maun.
  • Reviewed November 2018
    wendy pomfrett

    what an adventure

    I am absolutely not a camping person so this holiday was a challenge for me but the lack of luxury was well worth the up close and personal experience with the wild life. Our leader, Anton, and his amazingly efficient and friendly crew worked miracles under difficult conditions to make our lives as comfortable as possible. The food was varied and plentiful - quite remarkable given that most of it was cooked on an open fire. If you want to really see Africa, forego the comfort of the lodges and do it this way!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The moment when a pride of lions appeared from the bush and marched single file past our vehicle. The whole delta experience in the first few days.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very professional and knowledgeable. He had excellent leadership skills which meant that the whole team worked efficiently and were at all times upbeat and happy.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This is wild Africa - do not expect comfort so every little thing - a bush shower, a cold drink - will be a bonus. There is necessarily quite a lot of free time in the baking middle of the day so take a pack of cards or a travel game......and LOTS of wet wipes The vehicle is perfect for watching wild life but, if you are in any way incapacitated, it is not easy to get into it. Also be prepared for a long and very windy drive one day for which the vehicle is not best suited so take a scarf or buff to cover your mouth.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This holiday is a real adventure. It is not easy to sleep at night as the bush is noisy and very hot but all this is worth it for the amazing wild life on your doorstep -and sometimes in your camp!
  • Reviewed October 2018
    Adrian Fingleton

    Wonderful trip but not for the faint-hearted

    My wife and I did the trip in the latter part of September 2018, and Anthony was our guide. We had a great group of 12 - we all gelled well and sort of 'looked out' for one another. Which is important when you are spending all day every day with each other. Our crew (Anthony + 3 companions) were very engaging, kind, helpful (re 'what was that bird' and more) and generally kept the show on the road. We saw amazing wildlife pretty much everywhere we went. The food was really excellent - and surprisingly varied. Having said that - the 'warning' - you spend 13 days on the road. Many of them are true wild camping. No running water, hole-in-the-ground toilets. It's hot and dusty. Sometimes at night animals wander thru the camp. You think twice before going to the loo (but you do, eventually and inevitably, go)... And it's enormous fun - great experiences, great company, great photo opportunities, and nature in the raw. But you will come back tired. It's part of the deal...

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Several highlights - the mokoro trip into the Okavango delta, swimming in the river, the game walks on foot there, the flight (optional) we took over the delta. And then, beyond that, the opportunities to see Leopard, Wild Dogs (several times) and the Chobe wetlands by (optional) boat tour.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    He (Anthony) was great. Patient, effective, great at spotting animals, looked after everyone, kept the crew moving and generally nothing he could not fix. Excellent group leader.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Just bring the stuff you are told to - like a head torch (essential), power banks, spare camera batteries, old clothes, shampoo, etc - you will be roughing it, so anything that makes your life a bit easier is worth having. Flip flops are good too. There are just a few days with very long drives, so you just grit your teeth and bear it. Other days are not too challenging. Bring some added salts like Dioralyte - you will sweat a lot so you need to keep replenishing fluid levels.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    One thing that we found a bit difficult was getting in and out of the 12 man open sided truck that was our home for 13 days. There are footholds for getting in and out, but it can be tricky. And if you have long legs, the front row is a bit problematic because you cant slide your legs under the seat in front. But it is a great platform for viewing game and everyone manages to get a photo in the end :-)

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