Botswana’s Okavango Delta is a true marvel, a massive labyrinth of channels and lagoons fanning out into the vast sands of the Kalahari. The clear water and lush vegetation attract masses of wildlife and indeed, Botswana has some of the best wildlife viewing to be had on the continent. Needless to say, the Okavango is also rich in birdlife, including specials such as the sought-after Pel’s Fishing Owl, Slaty Egret, the exquisite African Pygmy Goose, African Skimmer, Coppery-tailed Coucal, Western Banded Snake Eagle, Lesser Jacana, Chirping Cisticola and others. The surrounding woodland savanna regions, which become progressively drier as one moves away from the Delta, also have their appeal, holding birds such as Dickinson’s Kestrel, Red-necked Falcon, Souza’s Shrike, Yellow-throated Sandgrouse, Hartlaub’s Babbler and an array of large raptors. Our 13 day tour of the region kicks off in Maun, the gateway to the Okavango Delta. We then make our way around the western side of the delta to Shakawe. To fully appreciate the river delta environment one needs to get onto the water, and on this tour we’ve included time on a fully-equipped house boat in this region of the ‘panhandle’, as it’s known. The boat accommodates up to 8 people on a sharing basis, and comes with a full staff, including a chef to prepare our meals. By day we’ll be out and about on the smaller tender boat, birding and viewing wildlife as we explore the maze of channels and lagoons, perhaps stopping for a coffee stop and leg stretch on an island dominated by impressive Mahogany, Jackalberry and other trees, while at night enjoying almost total isolation moored somewhere in a quiet backwater. After our time on the water we head north into Namibia’s Caprivi Strip, staying at a lodge on the mighty Zambezi River, before going eastwards into the famous Chobe National Park. Here an afternoon boat ride on the Chobe River should be enthralling, to say the least, with great photographic opportunities to be expected. From Kasane in Botswana we make a final journey to Victoria Falls, with some time spent appreciating one of the world’s great waterfalls. The tour will come to an official end the next morning in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, but participants may want to spend more time in the area before flying to onward destinations.
23 September – 5 October & 2 – 14 November 2020 (12 nights / 13 days)
23 September – 5 October & 8 – 20 November 2021
Starts in Maun, Botswana, on the first day of the tour. The first night is spent in Maun so participants can arrive that day. Tour ends in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, on the last day (in time for same day return flights to Johannesburg).
2020: US$ 6 350 per person sharing, US$ 630 single supplement
2021: US$ 6 745 per person sharing, US$ 740 single supplement
Price may be subject to change based on factors beyond our control.
• All meals
• Ground transport
• Bottled water in vehicle whilst travelling
• Entrance fees
• Personalised checklists
• Specialist guide fees
• All airfares
• Travel and medical insurance
• All drinks
• Optional excursions where applicable
• Items of a personal nature
• This itinerary is subject to change due to weather conditions at the time and other factors beyond our control.
• Birds and mammals mentioned on this itinerary do not represent all that can be seen. A full list of possibles appears on your checklist.
*Visit three countries: Botswana, Namibia and Zimbabwe.
*Stay for 2 nights on a houseboat on the Okavango River.
*Stay in exquisite river-front camps.
*Go on birding boat trips on the Okavango, Chobe and Zambezi Rivers.
*See Elephants, Buffalo, Lion and other game from a boat.
*See Victoria Falls, one of the Seven Wonders of the Natural World.
Group Size: maximum of 6 participants
Areas visited: Maun, Shakawe, Mahango Game Reserve, Eastern Caprivi, Chobe River, Victoria Falls.
Birding in brief: excellent all round. Good savanna birding, waterbirds and Kalahari species.
Top birds: Pel’s Fishing Owl, Slaty Egret, Coppery-tailed Coucal, White-backed Night Heron, Hartlaub’s Babbler, Western Banded Snake Eagle, Lesser Jacana, Rock Pratincole, Chirping Cisticola, African Skimmer, African Pygmy Goose, Arnot’s Chat, Yellow-throated Sandgrouse, African Finfoot, Rosy-throated Longclaw.
Mammal viewing: good game viewing in most areas with chances for big game such as Elephant, African Buffalo, Hippopotamus, and maybe some big cats. Some specials such as Sitatunga and Red Lechwe.