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Botswana ‘The Real Deal’

  • Khwai Private Reserve, Okavango Delta, Makgadikgadi Pans National Park
Botswana ‘The Real Deal’ Botswana ‘The Real Deal’
£ 5160

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Explore Botswana’s premier wildlife destinations, from the glistening waterways of the Okavango to the extraordinary Makgadikgadi Pans, on this intrepid safari featuring small, high-quality bush camps.

You begin in the predator-rich Khwai Private Reserve before journeying to the northern fringes of the celebrated Okavango Delta. A beautiful area of meandering floodplains and glassy lagoons, you’ll be able to enjoy a mix of land and water-based activities including enchanting excursions in traditional mokoro canoes. 

Next, you’ll fly into the arid Kalahari Desert, staying at a classic tented camp on the edge of the Makgadikgadi Pans where you’ll discover a surprising diversity of desert-adapted wildlife – some found nowhere else in Botswana.

9 days from
per person

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    Detailed Itinerary
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    Day 1-4 Maun – Khwai Private Reserve
    Maun – Khwai Private Reserve

    Upon arrival in Maun, you’ll board a light aircraft to your tented camp overlooking a hippo-filled lagoon in the Khwai Private Reserve. Adjoining the world-famous Okavango Delta ecosystem, the game viewing here is outstanding, with lion, leopard, zebra, cheetah, wild dog, elephant and buffalo moving freely from the neighbouring Moremi Game Reserve. The reserve’s birdlife is equally rich, with giant eagle owls, lilac-breasted rollers and more to tick off your list. 

    As well as game drives in open land cruisers and mokoro (dugout canoe) excursions along tranquil winding waterways, you’ll get to wander along the banks of Khwai River on foot in the company of expert guides. Cultural visits to a nearby village can also be arranged for those looking to get an insight into local traditions.

    Stay: Four nights in a luxury tent at Sable Alley – full board 

    Day 5-7 Okavango Delta
    Okavango Delta

    Today you’ll travel by light aircraft from the Khwai Private Reserve to Xaraxai. You’ll then transfer to your safari lodge set on a large tree island in a blissfully uncrowded corner of the northern Okavango Delta.   

    The game-rich surrounding concession is one of the most scenic in the country, made up of more than 200,000 acres of glassy lagoons, riverine forests and seasonal floodplains. Collectively, these habitats support everything from the rare sitatunga antelope to large herds of buffalo, plus numerous big cats, wild dogs, crocodiles and unique birds such as the endangered wattled crane and African paradise flycatcher. Enjoy guided walks and paddling along the secluded channels in boats and mokoro canoes. Helicopter flights, hot air balloon rides and seasonal fishing can also be arranged. 

    Stay: Three nights in a luxury room at Mapula Lodge – full board 

    Day 8-9 Makgadikgadi Pans National Park
    Makgadikgadi Pans National Park

    Your Botswana adventure now brings you to the western boundary of the Makgadikgadi Pans, the remnants of an ancient super lake that once covered Africa. You’ll be staying in a secluded camp overlooking the permanent Boteti River – a magnet for a wide array of resident and migratory wildlife. 

    You can observe the region’s desert-adapted animals from the comfort of your veranda, or venture further afield on guided drives, insightful walks with San bushmen and boat rides along the Boteti. Day trips into the Makgadikgadi Pans will reveal a striking lunar-like landscape of crusted salt flats studded with baobabs. During the rainy season, the pans flood and attract a migration of 30,000 zebra and wildebeest following ancient migration routes – a truly fascinating event. 

    Stay: Two nights in a luxury tent at Meno a Kwena – full board

    Return to Maun.

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    • We have travelled with TUTC six times, the most recent was to New Zealand last year. The trip was very well organised as usual, with excellent accommodation and a wide variety of experiences. We had booked to go to Australia with them this year but due to Covid this was cancelled, Ultimate handled the situation very professionally and promptly refunded the whole of our deposit without any quibble.

      DN, August 2020