Delta, Chobe & Victoria Falls
This safari showcases some of Botswana’s prime wildlife areas. You’ll take leisurely mokoro rides and go for guide-led island walks in the Okavango Delta, see vast herds of elephant in Chobe and witness nocturnal creatures on a night drive. Add Vic Falls and this is a heady mix, too. Each day will be filled with activity, excitement and gasps of wonder. The accommodation is pretty special, too, so you’ll feel well and truly spoilt on your African odyssey.
Day 1 On arrival at the Victoria Falls airport you will be met by a local representative and transferred the short distance to The Elephant Camp. The camp overlooks the impressive Batoka Gorges and you’ll have a free afternoon to rest after your flight, chatting to other guests in the lounge and getting some ideas for possible activities tomorrow.
Day 2 You can spend all day at Vic Falls where there’ll be plenty of activities to keep you busy, whether you want adventure in the form of white water rafting and bungee jumping, or plump for a more relaxed walking tour and boat cruise. You’ll be able to relive the day’s highlights over dinner tonight.
Day 3 After an early breakfast you’ll be driven to the Botswanan border and, formalities completed, on to Chobe Game Lodge, the only permanent lodge within Chobe National Park. You’ll arrive in time for lunch and time to enjoy the views or go for a swim. Later, as the heat abates, you’ll set off for your first game drive, spotting elephant, zebra and buffalo among others. You’ll be back in camp for a delicious dinner.
Day 4 Today will be dedicated to game viewing activities. You’ll have a choice of game drives, guided bush walks, river cruises and bird watching. Whichever combination you select this will be a day to remember as you witness the flora and fauna of Chobe with your expert guide. You’ll return in time to shower and sip a sundowner as you swap stories with other guests before dinner.
Day 5 After breakfast and a morning activity (time permitting) you’ll board a flight to the Okavango Delta, where you’ll meet your guide for the transfer to Kanana. Lunch will be served followed by time to rest before the afternoon game drive in the private concession. Sit back and take in the beautiful scenery with its lagoons, water channels and palm-dotted islands, and, of course keep your eyes open for wildlife!
Day 7 After your morning game drive and breakfast you’ll have a light aircraft transfer to your next camp. Shinde is on an island in the northern Okavango Delta. This area can be explored by water and on land and this afternoon your guide will lead you on your choice of game viewing activity. Later you’ll have time to meet other guests as you gather round the fire for drinks before sitting down to dinner in the elegant dining room.
Day 8 This is your final full day of wildlife viewing. Game drives here often include sightings of lion and leopard, tranquil mokoro rides offer close up views of birds, and walks give you the chance to immerse yourself in the environment. In each case you’ll have the benefit of your guide’s knowledge and infectious enthusiasm. By now you’ll be well on your way to becoming a safari expert! Enjoy dinner and a nightcap, toasting your holiday, before retiring to bed for a good night’s sleep.
Day 9 It’s time to head for home. After breakfast and a morning activity (time permitting) you’ll bid the staff at Shinde farewell and fly to Maun to connect to your onward travel arrangements.
This trip starts in Victoria Falls and ends in Maun. From the UK, we recommend getting a flight with a combination of British Airways, Air Botswana and/or South African Airways via Johannnesburg. A rough price guide for flights is £1200 per person (possibly as low as £900 in low season but as high as £1400 in high season economy).
This is a private tailor made fly-in safari which we can arrange for you at any time you like subject to availability.
Kanana and Shinde close between 5 Jan and the end of February. We can choose a different camp at these times.
Tailor make your safari:
We can change this trip in any way, from duration to places and accommodation. This will of course affect the price. This trip can be done in the reverse order.
April – June 2019
July – October 2019
Accommodation on a full board basis, local drinks, road and light aircraft transfers, daily activities as listed, park and concession fees.
Visas, international flights, vaccinations, premium drinks, optional activities, travel insurance, items of a personal nature.
When to go
Rollover the months for more details >
|JanuaryPeak of the wet season, though it still doesn’t rain every day. Warm days (average 30°c but can be as hot as 40°c) and nights (20°c). Lush green foliage and flowers and birds in song. Peak breeding time for many migrant birds. Great month for photography, with gorgeous colours and dramatic skies. Predators have an easy time preying on the young plains game. The Kalahari and Salt Pans are now flush with fresh grass attracting lots of wildlife. In the Pans, thousands of zebras and wildebeest have come to graze here from the west. Lions and other predators benefit from this surfeit of game.|
|FebruaryPeak of the wet season, though it still doesn’t rain every day. Still very hot. It can reach up to 40° during the day but the average is still about 30°c. Waterlilies are at their best, as are many of the smaller creatures such as birds, frogs and butterflies. The Kalahari and the Pans are still at their best for wildlife. It’s still a great month for photography.|
|MarchStill hot days and warm nights, but cooling a little, and the rain is dwindling. The Kalahari and the Pans are still generally good for wildlife. Birding is still very good. Nearby Victoria Falls is in full flood. Marula trees are in fruit and elephants go a long way to find these tasty treats.|
|AprilThe rain has stopped. Nights begin to cool off, though days can still be very hot. The impala rutting season is well under way, with males in peak health displaying to females and trying to ward off rivals. In the Salt Pans the herds can begin to move from between about now and May over to the permanent water source of the Boteti River. The aptly named sausage trees are now bearing their pendulous fruit. In Nxai Pan the waterhole is the focus as general groundwater has mostly dried up now. Large numbers of mammals, and especially elephants hog the waterhole for as long as they can.|
|MayTemperatures begin to drop more noticeably, with nights averaging about 15°c and daytime temperatures still around 30° but rarely getting above 35°c. Floodwaters begin to reach the top of the Okavango Delta. Migratory birds begin to depart for winter. The land begins to dry out and animals start moving towards permanent water sources.|
|JuneIt’s getting colder. You’ll need warm clothes for the cold nights, evenings (down to around 5°c, less in the desert) and mornings, but these give way to sunny warm days in the mid-20s. Wild dogs begin to den. For the next 3-4 months the dogs are generally easier to find as they are never too far from the den. All but the largest seasonal waterholes have dried up by now, so the main rivers and lagoons are the focus for wildlife. It’s getting dusty, grasses are dying back and trees are shedding leaves. It’s all turning brown.|
|July This is winter and it can be very cold in mornings and evenings. By now, most areas of the Delta have felt the arrival of the floods. It’s a godsend for an increasingly parched landscape and its inhabitants. Mokoro and boat trips trips are available in many Delta camps near the water now. Game viewing is excellent.|
|August This is winter and it can be very cold in mornings and evenings. Thousands of breeding birds such as storks and herons begin to congregate to nest in heronries such as the one at Godikwe near Kwara in the Delta. It’s dry and dusty away from the water sources, and wildlife is finding itself in smaller areas close to water which can sometimes cause tensions and drama. It’s a good time for bush walks now that the high grasses have died down.|
|September It starts to get hot now and the heat builds up quickly over this month and the next. Temperatures of mid-30s are common and night temperatures are back to around 15°c. The floodwaters start to slowly drop from now on. Carmine bee-eaters and other migratory birds begin to arrive back in good numbers. The Godikwe heronry is jam-packed now. September and October are the peak months for elephants and buffalos by the Delta and rivers such as the Chobe, Linyanti and Kwando. This is a time of plenty for predators as the dry season inevitably takes its toll on some of the plains game. In the Kalahari, solitary black-maned lions begin to call the females to them once more – it’s a great sight (and sounds), but be warned that it is seriously hot.|
|October This is the hottest month in Botswana with daytime temperatures often well over 40°c. If you can stand the heat, this is one of the very best months for game viewing, but you (and the wildlife) definitely need to avoid the midday heat. September and October are the peak months for elephants and buffalos by the Delta and rivers such as the Chobe, Linyanti and Kwando. This is a time of plenty for predators as the dry season inevitably takes its toll on some of the plains game. The heronries are now absolutely full of birds – an awesome sight. The Kalahari is off-limits for most visitors due to the heat often reaching the high 40s.|
|November It’s stiflingly hot until the rains arrive. The first rains come about mid-late November and everyone and everything breathes a sigh of relief. With the rains come the newborns – first the tsessabe, then the impala, red lechwe and more. It is feast time for the predators once more. Herds once again begin to move away from permanent rivers to seasonal grasslands. Life seems to begin again and colour and freshness returns to the landscape. Migrant birds start to arrive later in the month.|
|December Antelope youngsters grow quickly, and the wildebeest begin calving. The first rains hit the desert regions and very quickly the temperature drops and the arid plains become bright green grasslands which attract herds of antelopes and more. The pans such as Nxai and Makgadikgadi once again fill with zebra and wildebeest and other wildlife, to the joy of attendant predators. Thunderstorms come every few days and this is again a dramatic time for photographers. Most of the migrant birds have returned by now.|