9 Nights / 10 Days
Maun to Kasane or Kasane to Maun
Chobe National Park (Savuti & Chobe River Front)
US$4250.00 per person (9 seat vehicle)
US$3505.00 per person (12 seat vehicle)
DETAILED ITINERARY (Maun
Day 1 Maun
to Xakanaxa. Travel Day. 30minute charter flight
arrive from Johannesburg at approximately midday into Maun Airport where you
will be met by Mack Air and be flown by charter plane into the Xakanaxa airstrip
in Moremi Game Reserve where you will be met by your guide.Spending our first
three nights camping in the Xakanaxa region, we explore the surrounding
wilderness on game drives during the day. Wildlife: From the air only the larger
animals are seen easily. These include large breeding herds of African elephant
that live in the mopane scrub. On the open plains large herds of buffalo and
lechwe can be seen and in the waterways rafts of hippopotami are a common sight.
Once you land in Xakanaxa the smaller game can be found.
good day for raptors with African Hawk-Eagle, Gabar Goshawk, Shikra, Little
Sparrowhawk, Dark Chanting Goshawk, Tawny Eagle, Lesser Spotted Eagle and Steppe
Eagle all inhabiting the mopane and adjacent woodlands. Other birds common along
this route includes most of Botswana's hornbills including Red-billed, Southern
Yellow-billed, African Grey, Bradfield's and the Southern Ground Hornbills. A
large number of brood-parasites may also be seen. Diederick Cuckoo, Levaillant's
Cuckoo, Jacobin Cuckoo, Great-spotted Cuckoo, African Cuckoo, Common Cuckoo,
Shaft-tailed Whydah, Pin-tailed Whydah, Eastern Paradise Whydah, Greater
Honeyguide, and Lesser Honeyguide.
Days 2 & 3
Xakanaxa Exploration Days Moremi Game Reserve
Moremi lies on the eastern extremity of the Okavango Delta. Habitats here range
from wide-open floodplains, marshes, lagoons, papyrus fringed channels, vast
reed-beds of Miscanthus and Phragmites, woodland and savannah. As a result of
the extremely variable habitat the diversity of both wildlife and birdlife is
Moremi is amongst the best game reserves in Africa for viewing the endangered
African wild dog. Xakanaxa is home to a resident herd of several hundred buffalo
whose range covers the territories of at least 4 prides of lion which may often
be seen flanking the ever moving herd. Breeding herds of elephant move between
their browsing areas in the mopane forests and the fresh water of the Okavango.
Red lechwe are one of the more unusual antelope species and commonly found here,
while the rare sitatunga antelope may be spotted from motor boat along the
Birding: The swampy areas of Xakanaxa are home to African Rail, Coppery-tailed
Coucal, Black Coucal, Red-chested Flufftail, African Crake, Black Crake,
Chirping Cisticola, Luapula Cisticola, Purple Swamphen, Allen's Gallinule to
name but a few. The open waters attract African Skimmer, Saddle-billed Stork,
Yellow-billed Stork, Intermediate Egret, Goliath Heron, African Fish Eagle as
well as the globally threatened Slaty Egret and Wattled Crane.
Game Drives and Boating
Day 4 Xakanaxa to Khwai. Travel Day. 60km. 3-4 hours
early morning breakfast you take a slow drive through Moremi Game Reserve
North-East towards the Khwai Community Area.
Manuchira Channel is known as the Khwai River at it's eastern most extremity.
The days journey follows this water course, with the track weaving from the
riverside and floodplains into the mopane veld and the woodlands that make Khwai
one of the most scenic areas of the Okavango. We pass the magnificent Dombo
Hippo Pools in the morning stopping to enjoy the scenery and the antics of the
western mopane veld is home to mostly breeding herds of elephant whilst the
eastern reaches of Khwai is home to some impressive old bulls. The mature bulls
revel in the cool waters of the Khwai and are far more approachable while
drinking and bathing than the breeding herds. The river has an unusually high
density of hippo as well as some huge crocodile. Leopard, cheetah, serval and
lion are common predators along this route and both Xakanaxa as well as Khwai
are included in the home ranges of 2 different packs of wild dog. General game
includes southern giraffe, Burchell's zebra, tessebe and red lechwe with roan
and sable antelope being less common residents.
the mopane woodlands African Hawk-Eagle, Tawny Eagle, Gabar Goshawk, Little
Sparrowhawk, African Harrier Hawk and Shikra are common raptors. Mixed bird
parties move through the canopy and include Red-headed Weaver, Stierling's
Wren-Warbler, Scarlet-chested Sunbird, Neddicky, Yellow-breasted Apalis,
Chin-spot Batis, Diederik Cuckoo to name but a few. The verges of the swamp form
breeding grounds for the Rosy-Longclaw, Black Coucal, Long-legged Bustard and
the African Crake.
Day 5&6 Khwai Exploration Day.
River forms a boundary between the reserve and the community area. We spend the
following two nights camping at an exclusive campsite in the community area,
exploring the Khwai floodplains on game drives both during the day and at night.
Exploring after dark with spotlights offers you an opportunity to experience
some of the nocturnal animals that are rarely encountered during the day. We
will also have the opportunity to explore the surrounding wilderness on foot and
enjoy an up close and personal encounter with Botswana's flora and fauna. It is
important to note that night drives and guided walks are not permitted within
the national parks and reserves. These activities are conducted outside the
boundaries of the Moremi Game Reserve in the Khwai community area.
Habitat: We spend our time between the dry-land habitats of the lead-wood and
camel-thorn woodlands and savannahs and the riverside and marshy back-waters of
the Khwai. Time permitting we may visit the lagoons and waterways of Xakanaxa
where the largest heronry in southern Africa exists.
Khwai region boasts excellent populations of both bull elephant as well as
breeding herds. Lion, leopard, serval and African wildcat are common predators
of the region with wild dog and cheetah being less common. Buffalo use this area
seasonally with large herds moving in during the summer rains. The swampy areas
in the west are home to red lechwe. Other ungulates include tsesebe, blue
wildebeest, giraffe, kudu, sable antelope, roan antelope and impala.
Birding: Truly one of Botswana birding Mecca's. The western reaches are prime
habitat for the uncommon Rosy-throated Longclaw. The entire length of the river
is hunting domain for the Bat-Hawk. Other interesting raptors here are Cuckoo
Hawk (rare), Long-crested Eagle and Black Sparrowhawk. More commonly Tawny
Eagle, Steppe Eagle, Lesser-spotted Eagle, Martial Eagle, Bateleur and African
Hawk-Eagle. The waterways host Africa Rail, African Crake, Greater Painted
Snipe, Allen's Gallinule, Lesser Jacana and Lesser Moorhen.
Game Drive, Walking Safaris and Night Drive
Day 7 Khwai
to Savuti. Travel Day. 100km. 4-5 hours
further north en-route to Chobe National Park, were we spend the following three
nights camping in an exclusive wilderness campsite in the Savuti region,
exploring the dessert-like landscape of game drives.
fascinating days drive looking at some of the evidence of the Paleo-Lake
Makgadikgadi that dried up some ten thousand years ago. The most challenging
part of the trip is crossing the Magwikwe Sand-ridge that formed the shoreline
for this massive inland sea. The winding track through this deep sand makes for
interesting travel in the early summer! The old lake bed is now the Mababe
Depression. The dense clay floor of the depression result in high protein feed
for wildlife and the area teams with game after the rains. During the rain
season the depression is impassable due to the ‚€œcotton soil‚€Ě and alternative
routes must be used.
Wildlife: A day when anything could happen. The range of habitat that is covered
encompasses most of the habitat types of northern Botswana. We pass through
excellent lion country and some of the best cheetah country that our safari will
cover. Elephant occur throughout the drive but are more common at the start and
end of the drive where permanent surface water can be found.
Birding: The Mababe Depression is a birder's paradise. The nutritious grasses
that grow on the rich soils provide excellent seed for an impressive array of
estrillids and viduids. Among these are the magnificently coloured Violet-eared
Waxbill, Black-cheeked Waxbill, Village Indigobird, Shaft-tailed Whydah and
Paradise Whydah. These in turn provide a good food source for small raptors such
as the Little Sparrowhawk, Shikra, Gabar Goshawk, Red-necked Falcon and Lanner
Falcon. It is not only the small birds that feed on the grass seeds, but rodents
too. There are annual outbreaks of huge numbers of rats and mice. As a result
huge numbers of Secretary Bird, Tawny Eagle, Black-shouldered Kite, Steppe
Eagle, Lesser-spotted Eagle, Wahlberg's Eagle and Steppe Buzzard can be found.
Activities: Game Drive
Savuti (Chobe National Park) Exploration Days.
Unlike the vast majority of the country, Savuti is not flat landscape. Large
outcrops of volcanic rock reach up out of the Kalahari sands, towering over the
endless savannah. These hills provide habitat for a completely different array
of small wildlife, birds and plants. The Savuti Marsh has been the stage for
many of the most dramatic wildlife documentaries in Africa. The wide open
country, good ungulate populations and particularly strong prides of lion and
hyaena clans make for dramatic wildlife interaction and excellent viewing
opportunities. The now dry Savuti Channel runs through this landscape linking
the dry sand-veld, the waterholes, the hills and the grassland that was the
Undoubtedly it is the interaction between lion and elephant that is the most
interesting aspect of Savuti. The area is inhabited by a huge pride of lions
with numbers fluctuating from 20-30 members. These remarkable lion have learned
over the years how to hunt these massive pachyderms that are supposedly above
predation. Launching their attack under darkness and using their numbers, they
manage to kill adolescent and even young adult elephant.
The marsh is prime cheetah country and in the wet season it is not unusual to
have the wild dog hunting here in Savuti.
Birding: The surface water that is pumped by the Government here provides a
major attraction for birdlife. In the dry season thousands of dove and
sandgrouse come down to drink in the mornings and are under constant
surveillance by Yellow-billed Kite, Tawny Eagle and African Hawk-Eagle.
Red-crested Korhaan are common in the Kalahari Apple-leaf (Lonchocarpus nelsii)
veld. The marsh is the summer home for good numbers of Caspian Plover and
Montague's Harrier as well as Chestnut-backed Sparrowlark, Grey-backed
Sparrowlark, Northern Black Korhaan, Rufous-naped Lark, African Pipit and Desert
Cisticola. Dickenson's Kestrel, Amur Falcon and Red-necked Falcon are found
along the perimeter of the marsh.
Letaka Tented Camp
Game Drive and Bushman Painting Walks
Savuti to Chobe River. Travel Day 170km (5 hours)
On your final
day on safari you will leave Savuti to travel along the Chobe River arriving at
Chobe Safari Lodge where you will stop for lunch before taking a leisurely
afternoon boat cruise to end your safari with us.
either spending a night or two in Kasane at Chobe Safari Lodge or two nights in
Livingstone at Taita Falcon Lodge.
For those transferring across to Zambia it is recommended that your transfer be
organized to meet you at Chobe Safari Lodge at 16h00.
habitat on today's drive takes us through the stunted mopane scrub of the Goha
clay basin, across the sand-ridge and through the wonderful Zambezi teak
woodlands of the Chobe Forest Reserve and along the Chobe River itself. The
Chobe floodplain is tens of kilometers wide and in years of exceptional rains
the water stretches as far as the eye can see.
Wildlife: While there are community areas that we pass through that are settled
by local tribes, for the vast majority of the days drive we pass through wild
country where wildlife moves un-inhibited by fences or man. Roan and sable
antelope thrive in the teak woodlands where the low density of predators and
lack of competition for food by other ungulates makes this prime habitat for
these large ungulates. Leopard occur in these woodlands in low numbers but they
are highly secretive and seldom seen. The Goha region has natural waterholes
that hold water well into the dry season and herds of buffalo, Burchell's zebra,
greater kudu and elephant come down to drink.
most unusual species are to be found in the teak (Baikea plurijuga) woodlands.
This broad-leafed woodland, or miombo as it is locally known, provides good
pickings for insectivorous birds that favour canopy habitat. Grey
Tit-Flycatcher, Ashy Flycatcher, Paradise Flycatcher, Pallid Flycatcher,
Scarlet-chested Sunbird, Amethyst Sunbird, Yellow-throated Petronia, Red-headed
Weaver and Violet-backed Starling are only some of the species that move around
in the ‚€œbird parties‚€Ě in the canopy. Dickenson's Kestrel, Red-necked Falcon,
Peregrine Falcon and Lizard Buzzard are some of the raptors to keep an eye out
for, while the diminutive White-faced Owl can often be seen roosting in the
road-side vegetation. Flappet Lark, Fawn-coloured Lark, Dusky Lark, Olive-Tree
Warbler and Neddicky are species more likely to be enjoyed by the birding
enthusiast.Activities: Game Drive, Boat Trip