Six Night Okavango Exploration
The 2 million-hectare Okavango Delta is known as the ‘jewel’ of the Kalahari.
It’s one of Africa’s last remaining true wilderness areas and provides a refuge for huge concentrations of wildlife. It is undoubtedly one of Africa’s most extraordinary places and a number for the bucket list.
On arrival at Maun Airport you are picked up by your Guide and driven to the Khwai area of the Okavango Delta. Khwai is famous for its abundance of big game on the north east corner of the Okavango Delta. A packed lunch is taken on the way. We arrive in our mobile camp before dark after a game drive. An orientation and safety talk is given while entrees are served! A three course dinner is then served before fireside tales and a warm bed for the night.
We wake you up early in order to give us the best chance of seeing nocturnal animals such as lions and leopard. After a light breakfast ‘on the run’ we depart camp and explore the Khwai area of the Okavango Delta. Late morning we will return to camp and have a hearty lunch consisting of an English breakfast and baked delights. In the heat of the day we siesta, read and generally do what the animals do…avoid the sun! Following high tea we head out again tracking Africa’s most elusive animals. After a traditional sundowner we night drive back to camp using a spot light to illuminate the eyes of nocturnal animals. This is a perfect way to see otherwise elusive species such as hyena, genets, bushbabies and maybe even a leopard! Back at camp we enjoy another fire and excellent dinner before bedtime.
Today we experience the Okavango on foot and by Mokoro (traditional dug-out canoe). You will by now be comfortable with the morning routine of early wakeup and light breakfast. We take a short drive to the Mokoro station on the Khwai River. Here you will be met by your ‘polar’ who will slowly take you through the shallow floodplains of the Delta. We avoid deeper waters that are frequented by hippos and crocodiles. Your mokoro trip last for roughly two hours and is a great chance to relax, experience the crystal clear water and enjoy some bird and game watching. You then game drive back to camp for brunch! After another afternoon siesta and high tea we head out for a game walk around the Khwai concession. Walking in the bush is a great opportunity to look at the smaller things that are not noticed from the vehicle. Animal tracking, wild flowers and botany are amongst the highlights. On discovering a large animal we approach using wind direction and careful observation of the landscape to ensure we pass unnoticed. Last night of camp cuisine, stars and fire!
Moving day! As we bid farewell to the seasonal swamps of the Khwai concession we turn west to Moremi Game Reserve. The team packs up the whole mobile camp and moves ahead of us while we enjoy a slow leisurely drive through big cat country. Regular stops allow for a relaxed day trip and we stop for a delicious bush lunch along the way in the wilderness. On arrival we find the same camp and team in an entirely new location! This is the true essence of a mobile safari. Following the game from park to park. After a long day the fire side will be even more welcoming than usual and our super team miraculously prepare us a traditional ‘braai’. The anticipation of game driving a new area in the morning if the last thing that goes through our minds as we go to sleep!
First thing in the morning we listen out for noises of the night. If we hear lion or hyena we head out in that direction. A full mornings game drive and a morning tea break in a picturesque location always makes for an exciting morning in the bush! After a much needed siesta in the afternoon we will head out for sundowners in the floodplains of Moremi!
The Moremi camp is quite a contrast to Khwai. The swamp is more permanent here and consequently more aquatic animals prevail in larger numbers. The trees change from dry woodland species to wet island ones such as figs and mangos. Red Lechwe and breeding herds of elephants with youngsters are a common site and there is always the constant anticipation of finding the predators. This will be our main focus while always enjoying nature as a whole including Botswana’s 500 plus bird species. As it is our final full day we will be trying to find any animals that have so far eluded us! Otherwise you will just have to come again!
Sadly it is our last morning – but there is still time for one more game drive on the way to the airstrip. We bid farewell to the team and head out into the bush for the last time. As we say our goodbyes after a hopefully fruitful game drive we reflect on everything we have seen and the lifetime photographs and memories we have created. A light aircraft lands in the bush to collect you and take you on to your next destination!