Photo safari with Gesa & Frank

Botswana

Maun - Moremi- Khwai - Savuti - Chobe - Kasane


 USD 7200 per Person

Minimum 4 / Maximum 7 People

Dates: 16-27 August / 16-27 September 2018


ITINERARY IN BRIEF

Day 1 : Arrive in Maun around midday, meet Gesa and Frank, set-off to the bush!

Day 2 : Game viewing drives in the Moremi Game reserve.

Day 3 : Extended drive towards the Khwai Concession for 3 nights stay.

Day 4 & 5 : Game viewing drives in the Khwai Concession.

Day 6 : Extended drive towards the Savuti region of Chobe National Park for 3 nights stay.

Day 7 & 8 : Game viewing drives in the Savuti region.

Day 9 ; Extended drive towards the Ihaha region of Chobe National Park for 2 nights stay.

Day 10 ; Game viewing activates along the Chobe River Front.

Day 11 : Morning drive along Chobe river, afternoon boat cruise along river.

Day 12 : Transfer to Kasane Airport.

Highlights

  • Travel with Frank and Gesa to their favourite spots in their favourite safari destination.
  • Get personal tips and training from Gesa and Frank on their own photography techniques.
  • Accommodation in a luxury, top end mobile safari.
  • Boat cruise on the Chobe River, a must for photographers!
  • Travel around in the Photographic specific game viewing vehicle – the Frankmobil.
  • Explore the famous areas that are Moremi, Savuti, the Chobe River and Khwai.
  • Sleep in luxury tents in the true wilderness areas of Botswana.

 


Where does this safari take me?

    Botswana is our favourite destination for safaris in Southern Africa as it has a low population of just over 2 million people in a country roughly the size of France, with about 39% of its land set aside as protected wildlife areas! A true nature conservation success story. Where the Okavango meets the desert sands of the Kalahari and fault lines in Northern Botswana it forms the Okavango Delta which fans out and is teeming with wildlife in an almost untouched wilderness. .


    The climate varies seasonally but remains fairly predictable. Days are warm to hot and nights are generally cooler. Except for the first few months of the year, the country is generally without much rain. However, with the slow flow rate of the Okavango its waters are somewhat delayed as the floods arrive during the non-rain season attracting animals from the drier regions, as their own water resources dry up, to this natural oasis. This creates seasonal movements of animals in an almost predictable manner allowing for somewhat better game viewing in certain times of the year.

What makes this safari so special??

    This BOTSWANA EXPLORER PHOTO SAFARI is aimed at those who are passionate about photography and others who want to learn or improve their skills. Gesa and Frank’s goal for this trip is to instruct you on how to get the most out of your camera’s in some amazing wildlife areas. Their expertise in animal behaviour allows for them to predict the next possible movement of the animal allowing you to get the perfectly timed shot. All the while being in a luxury mobile safari camp with the BEST PHOTOGRAPHIC SPECIFIC GAME VIEWING VEHICLE IN AFRICA!!!
 

DETAILED ITINERARY


Day 1

Meeting point in Maun – Transfer to Xakanaka, Moremi

mobile camping

Your flight will arrive around midday into Maun International Airport where you will be met by Gesa and Frank. Your luggage will be loaded onto a vehicle and we will embark on the first journey to the bush. We will be heading into the Moremi Game Reserve which will be our based for the first two nights.
 

This transfer soon becomes game viewing opportunity, not long into the drive we will be entering wilderness areas with the possibility of viewing animals. However, our main goal for the drive is to get deep into the Okavango Delta and explore the more remote areas.

We expect to arrive at our camp around sunset on the first day, just in time for a hot shower followed by some relaxation around the fire. Welcome to paradise.

 

 
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Day 2

Xakanaka, Moremi

Mobile Camping

The days consist of an early morning wakeup call, just before the sun has risen, at which point we will have half an hour to prepare our things and meet at the morning fireplace for a much-needed coffee and some food to keep us going throughout the game drive.

We will then aim to set-off for the morning drive as soon as we are allowed too, as per the regulations. The first few hours of the drive are the most exciting as our chances for predators are at its best, and so is the beautiful morning light. It will be our ultimate goal to find the animals as soon as we can to get the perfect light! A morning coffee break usually takes place in a beautiful spot about halfway through the roughly four-hour morning drive. By this point the temperature is starting to climb and the movements of animals (especially predators) comes to a halt. We would then return to our camp with a nice brunch prepared on an open fire which will be much needed after the morning animal search.

This is typically the time for showers to take place and a bit of relaxing/catching up on sleep. We will discuss with you our afternoon activity plans which generally leave about 3 hours prior to the sun setting and instead of a coffee break, include a sundowner stop where we park the vehicle at a scenic spot, and we hopefully can watch the sunset as the drinks flow. True safari tradition.

Xakanaka: This region of the Moremi Game Reserve is absolutely stunning. It has a large mix of vegetation types that are very typical of the Okavango Delta and thus there are some target species for us to photograph. It is located right in the heart of the Delta with an abundance of water. The result of the permanent water can be seen by the large number of huge riverine canopy trees. It feels somewhat like a jungle mixed with a swamp!


Day 3

From xakanaka To khwai

mobile Camping

After another early breakfast and coffee, we set out for one last drive in the Xakanaka region trying to find anything we have missed out on viewing, but after the normal morning coffee break, instead of heading back in the direction of our camp we will continue towards the Khwai Concession. We will continue East along the seemingly endless mopane woodland and eventually exit the Moremi Game Reserve and soon to enter our new base for the next three nights, the Khwai Community Trust Concession.

Based right on the edge of the Okavango Delta, Khwai attracts large concentrations of game from the drier regions of surrounding area to the permanently flowing Khwai river. And as a result, has high predator concentrations, this will be the area we focus our attention on. The area also has a real wild feeling, like we truly are in a strange but wonderful place.

We aim to arrive to our same familiar camp and crew but this time in a different location, around early afternoon for a brunch/meal. Preparations for a short afternoon introductory drive and we will set off a bit later as Khwai has no strict return time regulations. We will aim to have a sundowner in a beautiful location and celebrate our new home for the next 3 nights. The drive will then most likely continue a little bit into the night as the use of spotlights is allowed in the area. A huge bonus as we get to view nocturnal animal activity!

We will then head back to our camp for a beautiful dinner under the stars and a long night of sounds and smells of this amazing location.

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Day 4&5

Khwai

Mobile Camping

We will stick to the usual morning routine in Khwai of early morning wakeup calls, coffee some food and then we hit the road. Covering many of the small roads in the huge road network that the area has to offer. We will be going through thick sand, deep water, off-road and through dense bush all in the search for predators and beautiful views. The usual morning coffee stop by a pod of hippos and water lilies is a must.

We will then make our way back to camp for the much-awaited brunch and shower prior to the relaxation during the hotter times of the day. All building up to the excitement of the afternoon activity, which usually lasts a bit longer in Khwai because of the ability and freedom of night time viewing of animals with a spot light.

We also leave ourselves flexible at night having the freedom to follow up on the vocalization of lions, often leading to us finding them and viewing their nocturnal activities! A real insight into the lives of these big cats should the opportunity present itself.

The magic of Khwai is the abundance of animals and the freedom that the concession allows for viewing them in their natural habitat. We aim to leave Khwai with most of our animals on our most wanted list ticked off and photographed, and a basic understanding of the beginnings of the Okavango Delta and its complexities.

 


Day 6

From Khwai to Savuti

Mobile Camping

This morning we start with a brief drive in the Khwai area before heading North East to the Chobe National Park. One of the best parts about this longer travel day is that it is a beautiful one. We will be travelling North all along the Mobabe depression which is a vast seemingly endless grass plain which has an abundance of life. We have the chance of game viewing and photographic opportunities throughout the drive. At the most northern tip of this grassland is Savuti, our home for the next 3 nights.

Savuti: An area made famous from its high predator densities and interesting lion pride dynamics leading to the creation of many documentaries. The area is named after the Savuti channel that unpredictably flows from the Linyanti swamp area into the Savuti marsh resulting and an incredible abundance in animal life. However, the channel flowing is a rare sight as it has been known to dry up for more than 30 years! The channel flows into the Savuti Marsh where the waters disperse and eventually disappear as it reaches the Mobabe depression. Our goal for the time in Savuti is to view predators and desert adapted associated aniamals. The rhyolite hills provide safe haven for the leopards which can be encountered early morning or evening when driving around the area. The main attraction however are the famous lions of Savuti.

We aim to reach the camp at around mid-day, at which point we will be shown around the camp, relax and have some lunch. We will then prepare for the first afternoon of game viewing which will be our first introduction to the Savuti area. It will be more of an introductory drive, talking about the history and target animal species for the area. We will be learning of the recent movements of animals from other guides so as to know where to focus our search for the elusive creatures. Seeing as Savuti is within the Chobe National Park, there are set return times for when we must be back at camp so night viewing activities will not be possible in the area.

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Day 7&8

Savuti

Mobile Camping

We have allowed for two full days of safari activities in Savuti in order to give us the best possible chance of finding and viewing our target species for the area. And also, to cover and explore the many roads and beautiful areas that Savuti has to offer.
The days consist of an early morning wakeup call before just the sun has risen at which point we will have half an hour to prepare our things and meet at the morning fireplace for a much-needed coffee and some food to keep us going throughout the game drive.

We will then aim to set-off for the morning drive as soon as we are allowed too, as per the regulations. We usually start by scanning the hills and surrounding areas for the chance of leopards before moving through the woodland areas and eventually into the open plains as the day heats up. A morning coffee break usually takes place in a beautiful spot about halfway through the roughly four-hour morning drive. By this point the temperature is starting to climb and the movements of animals (especially predators) comes to a halt. We would then return to our Camp with a nice brunch prepared on an open fire which will be much needed after the morning animal search.

This is typically the time for showers to take place and a bit of relaxing/catching up on sleep. We will discuss to you our afternoon activity plans which generally leave about 3 hours prior to the sun setting and instead of a coffee break, include a sundowner stop where we park the vehicle at a scenic spot where we hopefully can watch the sunset as the drinks flow. True safari tradition.

 


Day 9

From Savuti To Chobe

mobile Camping

Normal wake up time for this morning’s activity, however we will only be spending a small amount of time in the Savuti region before making our way North East to our new destination along the Chobe river. This drive takes us out of the Chobe National Park briefly before entering it again as we approach the river.

This section of river is a must see when visiting Botswana! It has some large concentrations of wildlife, especially for this time of the year. It is made up of a number of different vegetation types however the river frontage is where most of the action happens! The animal life that occurs here is much the same as what we encountered at the other locations, however in seemingly higher densities and we expect elephants to steal the show! This time of the year the Chobe river is a magnet for elephant activities as the water in the surrounding areas dries up.

The Chobe River is the most northern part of the Chobe National Park and forms the border between Botswana and Namibia. It is known for its large flood plains, which attract many bird species and animals alike. It is a photographic hotspot as the environment is just breathtaking.


DAY 10 & 11

Chobe

Mobile Camping/

Garden Lodge

We have allowed for two full days of activities in Chobe. These consist of one full day of normal routine morning and afternoon drive to explore the area by vehicle. However, on the day of the 11th we will be embarking on our final game drive in the Frankmobil in an Easterly direction along the river front. Our goal here is to get the final vehicle shots we still need after all of our training and practice throughout the trip. Our drive ends at our last nights’ accommodation, Garden Lodge. Here we say goodbye to the Frankmobil and hello to some improved luxury.

We aim to relax a bit at our new accommodation for a few hours and indulge in some well-deserved lunch. For the afternoon, however we will set-off on our final photographic opportunity which is a boat cruise along the Chobe river. We will travel West along the river along the Chobe National Park and should expect to see plenty of wildlife coming down to drink in the late afternoon light which will be the perfect time to let our cameras loose and get those perfect shots.

The perfect end to what would have been an incredible safari.

Garden Lodge:

The Garden Lodge is located in the small town of Kasane on the Chobe River in the Northern Botswana. The lodge is five minutes by boat from the Chobe National Park and approximately eight minutes by vehicle. There are many fine lodges in Kasane, however most have over a hundred rooms, we have eight. Whilst other lodges have ten guests on a game viewing vehicle we have six.


Day 12

transfer

Today is our final day on safari and will start off with a well-deserved sleep in for a few hours. A later coffee and full breakfast will be served prior to our departure where we will set off by vehicle transfer to Kasane Airport. This is the point where Gesa and Frank will say their farewell’s and send you on your way to the next destination.

If you plan on doing the OPTIONAL Victoria Falls extension, a vehicle will come and pick you up from Garden Lodge.


Price includes

     Accommodation as stated above.

     Transportation in the FrankMobile - safari vehicle. Transfers to and from the airport and between locations.

     All meals.

     Services of Frank and Gesa as your personal safari guides.

     Entrance fees and excursions as described in above itinerary.

     A daily allocation of a selection of local beverages including beer, wine, waters and cold drinks. Except at The Garden Lodge.

     Boat Cruise.

Price excludes

     International and domestic flights and airport taxes.

     Pre and post safari accommodation in Maun/Kasane if required.

     Any entrance fees and excursions not included in the above itinerary.

     All beverages at The Garden Lodge.

     Laundry (laundry service available at lodges at extra cost).

     Gratuities.

     Items of personal nature (telephone expenses, curios, medicines etc).

     ENTRY VISA FEES.

     BANK CHARGES (as per bank or 3.5% commission for VISA/MASTER and 4.5% commission for AMEX).
 

Want to join us on safari?