Botswana Livingstone Safari

Travelling to Botswana and Livingstone

Duration – 13 nights  |  Price  $3,575 – 3,910
When – Mar to Sept

Highlights

  • 1 night - Makgadikgadi
  • 2 nights - Nxai Pan Salt Pans
  • 1 night - Maun
  • 2 nights - Moremi
  • 2 nights -Khwai
  • 2 nights - Savuti
  • 2 nights - Chobe
  • 1 night - Livingstone

Offers you the opportunity of starting and ending off in Livingstone, near the remarkable Victoria Falls, as well as seeing Mkagadigadi and Sua- the world’s largest salt pans, the unique wilderness that encompasses Nxai Pan, one of the least visited areas in Botswana and the pristine wetlands of the Okavango.

This serviced camping safari entails a 14 day tour through wildlife areas…Nxai Pan, Moremi Game Reserve,Okavango and Chobe National Park,with diverse habitats ranging from semi-arid drylands to lush woodlands and riverine forests. Days are spent game-driving across vast areas, in search of the tremendous variety of animals Botswana is well known for-from Wild Dogs to huge herds of Elephant, the elusive Leopard, Prides of Lion and good variety of Antelope.

A total of ten nights are spent inside game-reserves and because the number of guests are well controlled and limited-very few vehicles and other signs of civilization. Only private sites are utilized to set up our well-appointed camp.

Please note that this is part of our Classic range of Mobile Tented Safaris, however in order to offer a more cost effective product, 3×3 Dome Tents with en-suite facilities are used instead of the normal larger Meru tents.

Whats Included

  • Dome Tents
  • En-suite shower and toilet
  • Safari team
  • Meals and local drinks on safari
  • Professional guide
  • Activities as specified

Whats Not Included

  • International Flights
  • Visas
  • Meals at hotels or restaurants
  • Personal expenses
  • Gratuities
  • Optional activities
  • Mobile Style: Classic
  • Participation: Fully Serviced
  • Route: Makgadikgadi - Nxai Pan - Moremi - Khwai - Savute - Chobe - Livingstone
  • Max Group Size: 9
  • Nights: 13
  • Activities: Game Drives, Delta Mokoro Excursions, Boat Cruise, Optional Delta Flight

The Itinerary

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Day 1: Mkagadigadi Salt Pans

DEPARTURE POINT IS THE ZAMBEZI WATERFRONT HOTEL (LIVINGSTONE) Guests are required to be at the reception at 07h00 on day 1.

Guests depart Livingstone by road transfer (07h00) and cross the Zambezi River into Botswana at Kazungula, where the borders of Zambia, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Botswana meet. After customs and immigration formalities, you will meet your guide, who will assist with the purchase of drinks in Kasane, before driving south to the villge of Nata, which is situated on the edge of the Madgadigadi Salt Pans.

These Salt Pans, the world’s largest, are the remnants of a once massive inland lake. Today they offer spectacular scenery and endless horizons. In season a large variety water birds nest here. The pans offer a truly unique camping experience as well as an opportunity to witness an unforgettable sunset.

Accommodation: Tented Camp
Activities: Game Drives

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DAY 2 & 3: Nxai Pan National Park

We leave Makgadgadi Salt Pans quite early ,after a light breakfast. Our journey takes us westwards to Nxai Pan National Park. The area is known for large herds of Springbok and Gemsbok, species that are not water dependent. The artificial water-hole at the heart of the pan allows for some remarkable wildlife sightings.

Nxai Pan is an ancient lake-bed scattered with islands of Acacia Trees. The Pans have changed little in thousands of years and offer a place to totally lose oneself in limitless wilderness. Camping for the next two nights is in Nxai Pan National Park, with afternoon and morning game-drives.

Accommodation: Tented Camp
Activities: Game Drives

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DAY 4: MAUN, CAMPING

Today we take a gamedrive out of Nxai Pan National Park and journey on further west into the frontier town of Maun, to our hotel which has a pleasant eating area with a welcome swimming pool.

The afternoon is at leisure at the Hotel, which is situated on the banks of the Thamalakane River.Lunch and Dinner are at guests own expense.

Accommodation: Hotel
Activities: Game Drives

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DAY 5 & 6: Xakanaxa, Moremi

We travel by road to Xakanaxa (pronounced ka-ka-ni-ka), which is an integral part of the eastern waters of the Okavango Delta. The area is encompassed by Moremi Game Reserve and boasts some of the best game viewing in Africa.

The Game-Reserve has areas of dry lands rising between vast wetlands, crystal clear water channels on the edges of Mopane and Apple-Leaf woodlands. Game viewing takes place alongside waterways and floodplains. Species such as Giraffe, Zebra and Wildebeest are but a few that occur here, along with an astonishing variety of birds.  “Botswana Livingstone Highlights” guests join the safari on this day

Accommodation: Tented Camp
Activities: Game Drives

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Day 7 & 8: Khwai Concession

The team breaks camp and we take a leisurely drive to our private campsite in the Khwai River area of Moremi Game Reserve. This region’s diversity of animals is truly astounding. Moremi was procaliamed a conservation area in 1964-the result of this foresight is that Moremi is quite rightly been rated as one of the best game-viewing areas in the world.

Early morning and afternoon game drives. Your guide will generally spend maximum time on game-drives, depending on what is seen, trying to cover as much area as possible. The result of this is guests are given the best chances of seeing a variety of wildlife-although there is of course, that obligatory siesta during the hottest part of the day !

Accommodation: Tented Camp
Activities: Game Drives

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Day 9 & 10: Savuti, Chobe National Park

We leave Moremi, crossing the Khwai Bridge to the northern bank of Khwai River. There is a quick opportunity to buy more drinks in the small village, before making our way to Chobe National Park. Due to the fact that none of Botswana’s wildlife areas are fenced, game can move freely between these two wilderness areas. Hippo, Elephant and sometimes Lion are often found on this route.

Moving through the Mababe depression, we relocate to Savuti were we camp in the region of the flowing Savuti Channel. Game viewing this afternoon takes place along the fringes of the marsh and surrounding water holes. The area is best known for large populations of Bull Elephants-and Prides of Lion that patrol the banks of this enigmatic channel.

We again we have the opportunity to spend many hours on morning and afternoon game drives, and time dependent, an opportunity to climb one of the hills to see San Bushman paintings, an indication that this area has always drawn those who have an affinity to the wilderness. Savuti is unique and the special opportunity of exploring this area always remains with our guests for a long time afterward

Accommodation: Tented Camp
Activities: Game Drives

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Day 11 & 12: Serondella Area, Chobe National Park

We journey north toward the Chobe River ,the second biggest river in Southern Africa (Zambezi in the largest).Chobe River is home the world’s largest Elephant herds; large numbers of big game such as Buffalo, Hippo and Lion can be seen here. Our private campsite is on a Teak forested dune that overlooks this beautiful river. Gamedrives are taken in the afternoons and mornings to find the remarkable variety of species that are drawn to this permanent water source.


The next day, fter an early start, we take a slow drive along the southern bank of the Chobe River, where we can find Chobe Bushbuck and Puku Antelope. The sheer variety of animals, in abundance, make this region a must-see for any wildlife enthusiast.In the afternoon, guests might choose to go on an optional afternoon boat cruise along the Chobe River-perhaps the last river where one has a fair chance to see Lion and Elephant, Leopard or Wild Dog from the unique viewpoint of a boat.

Accommodation: Tented Camp
Activities: Game Drives. Boat Cruise

Day 13 & 14: Victoria Falls, Livingstone-Zambia

We have a leisurely start this last camping morning and say fond farewells to our efficient back-up and camp crew after breakfast.We head eastwards on a last gamedrive to exit-gate at Sedudu Valley. From there it is a short drive to Kazungula Border Post, where your Safari Guide will ensure that your transfer back to Livingstone is seamless, before leaving to lead another safari.

This afternoon can be spent exploring one of the truly magnificent sights on earth-the wonderfully beautiful Victoria Falls-300 feet high and over a mile wide! Witness the power of nature as an average of 550000 tons of Water thunders into the Zambezi Gorge every minute. Optional activities and Victoria Falls Entrance at guests own expense.

Overnight is usually at the Zambezi Waterfront. Please note that the entrance fee to Victoria Falls is not included within this safari.

On the 14th morning, after breakfast, the safari ends. Before proceeding with onward arrangements, guests might want to partake in the numerous optional activities that are available in this adventure capital.

Accommodation: Lodge/Hotel

NOTE:

Although we make every effort to adhere to schedules and itineraries, these are subject to change subject to weather (specifically with current flood conditions, the driving times may differ between the areas quite considerably depending upon the time of year), roads, and animal movements and availability. You will be notified of any changes.

Scheduled Safari Departure Dates

2020

Prices can change, so please contact us for up to date information

March $3575

22nd

April $3575

5th
19th

May $3575

3rd
17th
31st

June $3575

14th

July $3910

5th
6th
19th
20th

August $3910

2nd
3rd
16th
17th
30th
31st

September $3910

13th
14th
27th
28th

When are you travelling?

 

Temperature C° 19 – 32
Rainfall average (mm) 110

Delta & North

Peak breeding time for many of the colourful migrant bird species. Excellent wild flowers, brilliant green foliage, constant sounds day and night, from insects and birds. The bush is alive. January is in the middle of the rainy season with spectacular afternoon thunder storms and warm days (average 30˚C plus) and nights (20˚C plus).

Salt Pans & Kalahari

The short grasses on the fossil river valleys begin to grow rapidly in the middle of the rainy season, attracting the herds of gemsbok, springbok and red hartebeest onto the valley floors. The salt pans are inundated with rain water and at Nxai Pan, thousands of zebra inhabit the pan providing a constant source of protein for the resident lion prides.

Temperature C° 19 – 31
Rainfall average (mm) 80

Delta & North

Ripe figs are eaten by many species including the fruit bats who make interesting night sounds while feeding. Water lilies flowering peak – colourful and noisy reed frogs – the Okavango Delta is brilliant, noisy and alive. With the rainy season all plants are growing actively, butterflies, birds, frogs and all the small creatures are at their most active and at their best. The rains continue in afternoon thunder storms with dramatic skies and sounds. Temperatures range up to 40°C but average above 30°C with warm nights (20°C plus)

Salt Pans & Kalahari

The Bat Eared fox young and other canids begin to forage for the first time and as they accompany their parents, they provide entertaining viewing as they attempt to hunt anything that vaguely resembles prey. The Katydid grasshopper populations are at their peak during their mating season and their distinct three phrase call dominates the hours of night. The predominant desert predators, lion and cheetah, are seen often as they inhabit the pans and river valleys, hunting the grazing herds at their leisure.

Temperature C° 18 – 32
Rainfall average (mm) 70

Delta & North

The mighty Zambezi is in full spate and river rafting is often closed now. The Victoria Falls are as powerful as they can be and very dramatic, truly one of the seven natural wonders of the world. In Botswana, the Marula trees fruit attract their attendant bull elephants, who wonder from tree to tree in search of their favourite mealsThe start of the rutting season leads to the sleek and fat impala males snorting and cavorting to attract females. Temperatures are still warm both day and night but the air is drier and the rains less frequent.

Salt Pans & Kalahari

A late summer afternoon, with the last clouds of the rainy season beginning to dissipate, the male barking geckos emerge to woo the females with a short three to four syllable barking sound. At Nxai Pan, the zebra have begun to move again, drifting in smaller herds towards the permanent water sources and winter grazing along the Boteti River, in the Makgadikgadi.

Temperature C° 14 – 31
Rainfall average (mm) 25

Delta & North

The first signs that the times are changing. Night time temperatures drop to below 20°C on average but day temperatures continue to rise up to 40°C on some days. The cooler mornings, with high relative humidity, lead to wonderful early morning mists over the waters. The impala rut is in full swing and the challenges continue right through the night with dramatic clashes between rival males.

Salt Pans & Kalahari

There is a distinct chill in the night air now, together with the distinct chirp of the rain locust. Any surface water left from the rains has already dried up and while there is still good grazing on the open pans, mammals, birds and reptiles are preparing for the long dry season ahead. At Nxai Pan, the numbers of mammals at the water hole continues to grow as the rain fed water holes are mostly dry.

Temperature C° 9 – 28
Rainfall average (mm) 7

Delta & North

Flood waters from Angola start to reach the top of the Okavango Delta and begin their slow and deliberate progress through this vast wetlands system. With rains past and atmosphere much drier, the nights are cooler with temperatures averaging 15°C, while day temperatures – though still warm – have lost their edge and maximum temperatures seldom exceed 35°C.

Salt Pans & Kalahari

The gemsbok females now seperate themselves from the herds as they prepare to give birth to young that look nothing like the adults. During the game drives, the young calves, which more closely resemble a red hartebeest or tsessebe, may be seen for brief periods when they come out of their hiding places to suckle. The atmosphere is increasingly dry, and the nights cooler with temperatures averaging 15°C, while daytime temperatures, though still warm, have lost their edge and maximum temperatures seldom exceed 30°C.

Temperature C° 6 – 25
Rainfall average (mm) 3

Delta & North

June is a time of excitement! The wild dogs begin to search for their annual den and our guides spend time seeking out their sites. Once they have denned, these rare animals will be easy to find for 3-4 months as they hunt from their den. Temperatures have dropped to their coldest by the end of June, with night temperatures reaching as low as 5°C.Some green bushes and trees have scattered their leaves but many are almost bare. Seasonal waterholes are beginning to dry up.

Salt Pans & Kalahari

The traditional yellows and greys of the Kalahari landscape dominate as any sign of the rains have passed. The Silky Bushmen grass on the edges of the pans sparkles in the dawn light after the first frost of the year. This is winter in the Kalahari and has to be experienced to be believed. It is a time of harsh and arid beauty when one can truly understand the incredible adaptations made by a multitude of species of plants, birds, mammals and reptiles in order to survive.

Temperature C° 6 – 25
Rainfall average (mm) 0 

Delta & North

The Delta floods arrive. The paradox is obvious: the flood arrives when dust and dryness pervade and the rains have long gone. The leaves continue to fall from the trees and the grasses are getting drier and shorter every day. This means that visibility for game viewing is excellent. The nights are still cold but the days are warm and pleasant. This is the typical Botswana weather, sunny and clear. More and more animals congregate near the water and flood plains for grazing

Salt Pans & Kalahari

No surface water exists in this ‘thirst land.’ The many species that survive here – including human beings – have adapted to utilise varied sources of drinkable liquid including the early morning dew, succulent plants, natural springs and even the blood of their prey. This is the Kalahari of legend.

Temperature C° 9 – 28
Rainfall average (mm) 0

Delta & North

The herds are getting larger and limited access to the water leads to tension between the breeding herds of elephant and the nights are filled with elephant sounds. The bush is bare and the dust pervades but there is abundant action and amazing sightings. The floods have passed through the Delta and now reach Maun. Thousands of herons, storks and other breeding birds start to congregate at the Gadikwe heronry.

Salt Pans & Kalahari

At this time, the larger herds disperse into smaller groups as they spread out into the desert seeking out grazing or browsing. The predators will follow them and ‘survival of the fittest’ best describes the mentality of desert inhabitants during the dry season. Daytime temperatures eventually rise to a pleasant mid 20°C but the temperatures at night can fall to below 0°C! Gloves, thermals and hats are the standard for early morning and evening drives!

Temperature C° 13 – 33
Rainfall average (mm) 0

Delta & North

The climate has changed and winter is all but gone. Night temperatures rise rapidly within the month and by month end, the averages reach 15°C plus at night and day temperatures soar well in the 30’s°C. The sun shines, the skies are clear and it is really dry and hot. Unbelievably, the elephant concentrate in still greater numbers as do the buffalo herds keeping the predators well fed as the season takes its toll on the prey species.The water levels have slowly started to drop as the waters from Angola have completed their trek.

Salt Pans & Kalahari

The end of August sees a very rapid change in temperature and in the blink of an eye, the winter is a distant memory. At this time the first of the famous black-maned lions begin to call again with a sense of urgency as they gather the pride females. After the last few months of a mostly solitary life for the pride members, foraging for scarce prey over vast areas, it is time to renew bonds and to reclaim the pride’s territory.

Temperature C° 18 – 35
Rainfall average (mm) 30

Delta & North

It is hot, really hot! But never will you experience game viewing like this. It is well worth the sweat. Day temperatures rise regularly above 40°C and nights are warm with averages in the low 20’s°C. ‘Start early and leave late’ is the answer. This aversion to the midday heat is common to both people and animals alike. Animals are only active at first light and late in the day. Many species even begin to feed at night!

Salt Pans & Kalahari

This is the hottest month in the region and no where is this dry heat as brutal as the Kalahari! Temperatures can soar into the mid to high 40°C and night time temperatures are over 20°C. Even the winds are hot and not a drop of moisture is left in the soil or plants as these desert winds scour the landscape. Mammals are generally active in the early morning and early evening in an effort to conserve as much energy as possible. Strangely, the Kalahari at this time is a patchwork of greens, yellows, whites and greys as the newly flowering acacias and yellow grasses create a vivid contrast to the lighter sands and dry bushes

Temperature C° 19 – 34
Rainfall average (mm) 50

Delta & North

The expectation (or rather the desperation) for rain dominates all discussions. People and animals all await an end to the dryness, dust and oppressive heat. Temperatures remain high both day and night. With the arrival of the rains comes an almost tangible relief. The herds begin to disperse to seek new grazing and will now begin to drink from the seasonal pans. The birthing season begins with the tsessebe , followed by the impala and red lechwe. The predators, such as wild dog and cheetah,  seek out these vulnerable young.

Salt Pans & Kalahari

There is a subtle difference from the last few months. The inhabitants of the desert clearly notice this change too. Springbok will not be feeding but instead will jostle with each other and pronk, seemingly excited and reptiles and insects are seen more regularly as they become increasingly active. There is a tension in the air which increases through the month as the first clouds appear on the horizon. The night skies are lit with brilliant displays of lightening and massive cloud formations.

Temperature C° 19 – 32
Rainfall average (mm) 95

Delta & North

The abundant protein rich grass feeds the mothers of the young antelope, while the lambs and calves grow at an astounding rate. The impala complete their lambing as the wildebeest begin and the rains become more regular with thunder storms every few days. The pans remain full and the bush colours are radiant in brilliant greens. The grasses begin to grow high and while the grazers enjoy the green tender mouthfuls, the stalking predators are becoming increasingly visible in their lighter winter camouflage

Salt Pans & Kalahari

The smell of the first raindrops on dry African soil is one that you will never forget. Almost overnight, the landscape changes: colours are bright and vivid as the dust is washed away, hundreds of wild flowers begin to appear and the bush turns a brilliant green. The pans are once again filled with energetic grazing herds and as always, the predators are nearby and thrive in this time of plenty. Late afternoon thunderstorms and heavy showers are the norm. The rains also result in lower relative temperatures with day times reaching mid 30°C while night temperatures are on average 20°C.

Tour Map

Botswana Livingstone Safari 01

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