Northern Highlights

Calling all nature and wildlife lovers! This high quality group safari takes in 3 renowned wilderness areas. You’ll explore by 4x4, boat and on foot for an excellent all-round experience. You can’t get closer to nature than camping, eating out in the open, enjoying drinks round the fire and falling asleep to the sounds of wild Africa. You simply won’t want this adventure to end.

Price from: £2,215 pp

plus flights from £1100

Summary - 9 nights

Moremi Game Reserve – 3 nights
Khwai area of Okavango Delta – 3 nights
Savuti and Chobe – 3 nights

Day 1 victoria-falls You’ll be met on landing in Maun and shown to your flight to the Xakanaxa airstrip in Moremi (30 minutes)*.  Here you meet your guide who will drive you to the camp. Staff will have prepared the camp, so settle in then join fellow travellers for a chilled drink. You’ve arrived in Africa! *If travelling in January to March or December you’ll be transferred by vehicle from Maun to your camp in Moremi, a drive of about 4½ hours.

 

 

 

 

Day 2 The safari adventure begins today. The Xakanaxa region of Moremi Game Reserve has varied terrain that is attractive to a wide range of wildlife, and with your guide’s expert help, you should have many memorable sightings today. You’ll set out in the early morning, returning to camp to sit out the midday heat, and again in the afternoon, for exciting 4×4 game drives.

Day 3 Chobe-elephant-game-drive Another exciting day’s game viewing dawns. Elephant, buffalo and dainty lechwe are usually seen in large numbers on the plains, while hippos frequent the water. Your guide will also point out smaller creatures and identify the many birds. If you’re lucky you may encounter wild dog, for many a real safari highlight. Back in camp tonight you’ll enjoy dinner and a nightcap by the fire.

Day 4 Today you have an early breakfast followed by a game drive heading northeast to the Khwai Community Area (about 3-4 hours depending on sightings). The area is well known for hippos and some impressive old bull elephants, and you can also hope to spot giraffe, zebra and antelope plus lion, cheetah and leopard. Later, having reached your new camp, you’ll have the chance to go for a night drive, seeking out shy, nocturnal creatures.

Day 5 okavango-flight As well as game drives you could set out on foot with your armed guide, allowing you to get truly close to nature. This is an absorbing and enlightening experience as you learn about the intricacies of the ecosystem and get to view small animals, insects, birds and plants in detail. You’ll be left with a much enhanced understanding of the regions flora and fauna.

Day 6 mokoro-thumbnail This morning you might opt for leisurely mokoro ride (water levels permitting). Relax as your poler-guide directs the canoe through narrow channels, giving you time to appreciate the beauty of the scenery and look out for birds and tiny, delicately patterned reed frogs. Having rested and lunched in camp, take a game drive a little further from the camp to spot big game.

Day 7 okavango-male-lion It’s time for a change of scene as you head for Chobe National Park. The drive will take about 4-5 hours, including crossing the Magikwe sand ridge. This is an area rich in bird life. Your journey continues through varied habitats so you’ll have chances to see diverse wildlife. Keep your eyes peeled for lion and cheetah. You’ll reach your camp in the Savuti region in time for a shower and drink before dinner.

Day 8 You’re in for a treat with varied topography and wildlife today. The landscape here features large rocky outcrops and hills that are home to many small animals, birds and plants not seen on the plains. Savuti Marsh, meanwhile, is known for concentrations of elephant and lion and you may witness some exciting hunting action.  Cheetah, hyena and wild dog are among other predators you may see here.

Day 9 sunset-thumbnail This morning you might like to visit some local San Bushman paintings found in the hills. As you view the depictions of familiar-looking animals and human figures it’s amazing to think that these were created over 3,000 years ago. This afternoon there’s another Savuti safari. No two drives are the same and you won’t be disappointed! Tonight you’ll have your final dinner in camp, as you look back over the many highlights of the last few days.

Day 10 Leaving camp after breakfast you’ll head through Chobe Forest Reserve and along the Chobe River, game viewing en-route. You’ll reach Chobe Safari Lodge in time for a tasty lunch. Later you’ll be treated to a boat ride along the river, a wonderful way to end your Botswana safari.

 

 

Getting there:

This trip operates in two directions, from Maun to Kasane and vice versa.  You will need flights into or out of Maun and Kasane (or Livingstone in Zambia, which is close to Kasane). 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 £1100 per person.

Departure dates 2016:

January completed
February completed
March completed
April 1, 5, 16
May 6, 10, 13, 20, 21*, 24*
June 1, 11, 12*, 15, 18, 25, 30
July 6, 16, 17*, 20*, 27*, 30, 31*
August 3, 10, 13, 17, 21*, 28
September 1, 5, 8, 12, 19*, 22, 29
October 2, 6, 10*, 13, 16, 23, 24*, 27
November 3, 6, 7*, 10, 17, 21*, 24
December 1, 12*

*These departures run in the reverse direction, ie starting in Kasane and ending in Maun. There are also some special photographic workshop departures. Please ask us for details.

Updated 11th April 2016

£2,295

Jan-March, December)

£3,585

April, May, June, November

£4,095

July-October

Per person prices based on two people sharing. Please ask for single supplements. Plus international flights from roughly £1100 pp.

 

 

Includes:

Comfortable tented accommodation including camp beds and linen with private bathroom en-suite ablutions, private campsites within national parks and reserves, professional guide, safari chef and camp assistants, game drives in a safari vehicle, all meals and drinks (water, soft drinks, beer, wine and G&Ts) whilst in the tented camps

Excludes:

International flights and taxes, visas, vaccinations, travel insurance, drinks at accommodation other than the tented camps, toiletries, personal expenses, tips.

letaka-tent-outside This group safari is run by Letaka Safaris. It operates group mobile camping trips in Botswana to a very high standard. Yes, this is a camping trip, but you will be fed very well, and accommodated in comfort.

You have a large walk-in bow tent with sturdy solid camp beds (with good mattress and all linen and towels included) and a small ‘verandah’ with camping chairs to the front and a small en-suite bathroom area through a zip door at the back. Water is heated as needed on camp fires and there is a portable toilet.

While you are out on games drive your highly skilled camp staff prepare excellent meals, including baking bread. Dine under the stars at proper tables with good South African wines to wash down a sumptuous three course dinner then sit round the camp fire with a nightcap. Mess tent shelters are erected in camps for shade and weather protection.

letaka-tent-insideletaka-shower

When to go

Rollover the months for more details >

January NPeak 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.
February NPeak 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.
March NNStill 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.
April NNThe 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.
May NNNTemperatures 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.
June NNNIt’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 NNNThis 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 NNNThis 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 NNNIt 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 NNNThis 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 NNIt’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 NNAntelope 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.