Days
10
Price from
€3,165EUR

Incredible nature, landscape and culture awaits in brilliant Botswana

The yearlong water supply of the Okavango Delta and Chobe River makes Botswana a hotbed of wildlife. Add in natural wonders like the Makgadikgadi Pans and Victoria Falls, and you have one of sub-Saharan Africa’s most impressive lands. Round out the adventure with a festive evening with the San Bushmen and time spent in cosmopolitan Windhoek.


Start
Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Finish
Windhoek, Namibia
Countries
Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe
Style
Peregrine
Theme
Wildlife
Code
PFEB
Physical rating
Traveller’s rating
37 reviews
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 13

Why we love this trip

  • The thundering Victoria Falls is one of the world's most spectacular natural wonders, a phenomenon of sight and sound.

  • A morning Game drive in the Chobe National Park get you up close and personal with gnus, zebras and other wondrous wildlife.

  • Head out on an afternoon excursion to the Makgadikgadi Pans, looking out for meerkats and meandering elephants, and enjoy a sundowner in the shadow of an old baobab tree.

  • Enjoy dinner as you watch the sunset from the deck of your houseboat on the Okavango Delta.

  • Riding a traditional dugout canoe along the Okavango Delta is but one of many ways you'll experience the ambience of this beautiful waterscape.

  • Learn more about the Kalahari from the knowledgeable San people as they sing and dance with you by the campfire.

Is this trip right for you?

  • This itinerary includes two nights on a houseboat in the Okavango Delta. Cabins are very small and basic with shared bathroom facilities. It's unlikely, however, that you'll spend much time in your room.

  • Purpose-built overland vehicles are used for the duration of the trip. It is important to note that while these vehicles are not air-conditioned, all windows do open to allow for fresh air. Be prepared for some dust, heat and wind.

  • The early morning game drive in Chobe National Park is in an open 4WD vehicle, and it can be quite cold in the morning. It's important to bring some warm clothes with you.

  • This itinerary features some long travel days, which can be exacerbated by bumpy African roads. It is recommended that you pay close attention to the given approximations of driving hours.

  • You don't have to be an athlete to take a Peregrine overland safari, but a general level of physical movement is required. For example, simply entering and exiting the vehicles several times a day will require a certain level of physical fitness and capability.

  • Overlanding is the perfect journey for those travellers with an open mind and the spirit for adventure. However it may be quite different to any style of travel you have experienced before. Ask your agent for a copy of our Peregrine overlanding flyer for more information.

  • Botswana temperatures rise in the hot dry period of September and October before the rains hit and temperatures can get as high as 34-38°C. Not all accommodation will have air-conditioning ( especially the Houseboat and San Bushmen Lodge ). This is quite common across Africa, particularly in remote locations where lodges or camps operate on solar power or generators.

  • Botswana is a very seasonal destination. What you see and experience can differ quite dramatically depending on the time of year you visit. Please consider this before you choose your departure date. See the 'Climate and Seasonal' section for more details.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2017 to 31 December 2017. View the itinerary for departures between 01 May 2016 - 31 December 2016

Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm on Day 1. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place. Excellent optional activities include a boat cruise along the Zambezi, morning and afternoon game drives, or walks in the Zambezi National Park. You might also choose an awe-inspiring helicopter flight over the Falls and the Zambezi Gorges. Tonight you will dine at the incredible Boma Restaurant, whose menu has been known to include warthog, buffalo, crocodile, impala and more. Throughout the meal you'll be entertained with local song and dance. Everyone is given an African drum and encouraged to join the party. (If you don’t wish to join in with the drumming you may wish to choose an earlier session for dinner.)
Accommodation
  • Victoria Falls Safari Lodge or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
  • Victoria Falls - The Boma Dinner & Experience
Meals Included
  • Dinner
Special Information
An airport arrival transfer is included. This transfer is only valid if arriving on day 1 or if you have booked pre-trip accommodation through Peregrine. Please provide your flight details at the time of booking, or at a minimum 15 days prior to travel (note - we may not be able confirm request made within 15 days of travel). Once you have provided your details a transfer representative will be booked to meet you at the airport and transfer you to your hotel.

Your leader will take you to a local activity centre where a range of activities will be on offer. We have not risk assessed all activities and only those listed in our trip notes are recommended. If you are unsure please check with your leader.
Please note that it is against company policy for leaders to facilitate the booking of any activities that have not been risk assessed or do not adhere to our company’s Responsible Travel policy and ethos. This includes organising transport to and from these activities in our vehicles.
This morning you will visit the magnificent Victoria Falls, named by Dr David Livingstone in honour of his English queen. One of the world's true natural wonders, Victoria Falls form the largest sheet of falling water in the world, when in full flow. Once inside the park, your guide will take you through the falls area, stopping at different vantage points along the way to explain the history of the falls and their surrounds. After your tour, you will return to your lodge, where the rest of the day will be at leisure.
Accommodation
  • Victoria Falls Safari Lodge or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Victoria Falls - Entrance
Optional Activities
  • Victoria Falls - Gorge swing - USD110
  • Victoria Falls - Helicopter flight (12 mins) - USD175
  • Victoria Falls - Helicopter flight (25 mins) - USD334
  • Victoria Falls - Rafting & river boarding (half day) - USD218
  • Victoria Falls - Sunset cruise on the Zambezi river - USD50
  • Victoria Falls - Village & township tour - USD50
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Notes: You may notice businesses offering an optional 'Walk with the Lions' experience. We ask all Intrepid travellers to avoid this activity as it is contrary to our Responsible Travel policy. While wildlife viewing is a big part of many of our itineraries, we strive to only view animals in their natural habitats and to do so with the greatest level of respect. The lion walking industry directly contributes to the captive breeding and canned hunting of lions. While activities like lion walking may appear fun and educational, or even claim to be working in the name of conservation, they are unnatural and stressful for the animals involved. Professional wildlife conservation organisations, including Born Free and the World Society for Protection of Animals (WSPA), advise that habituating lions to humans often shortens their life and may result in lion-human conflict issues.

Follow the Zambezi River to Botswana and make your way to Chobe National Park (100km approximately 2–3 hours, not including border formalities). You will arrive at your lodge at around midday. There you can relax by the pool or take an optional afternoon game drive in Chobe National Park. This can be arranged locally with your leader. You will spend the next two nights in a lodge located just outside Chobe National Park.
This afternoon is free and you may want to take an optional afternoon Game Drive in Chobe National Park, or wander down to the shops.
Accommodation
  • Chobe Safari Lodge or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Chobe National Park - Game Drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
This morning you will enjoy a game drive in Chobe National Park. You might see elephants drinking at the water's edge, large herds of cape buffaloes and many impala within the park. Then head back to the lodge for breakfast.
In the afternoon, embark on a cruise along the picturesque Chobe River, an ideal location for spotting bird life such as saddle-billed storks, malachite kingfishers, fish eagles and beautiful bee-eaters as well as hippos, crocodiles and large families of elephants. You will be joined by other travellers on the boat cruise which has a toilet and small bar to purchase drinks. Enjoy a G&T as the sun goes down on the river.
Accommodation
  • Chobe Safari Lodge or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Chobe National Park - 4x4 Game Drive
  • Chobe National Park - River Cruise
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Extra layers of clothing are essential here for the early morning Game drive in an open vehicle.
Heading south, you will continue your journey ( 410km approximately 6 hours) to the Makgadikgadi Pans for an afternoon excursion. Witness the immensity of this sprawling salt flat, one of the largest in the world. Later you will head to Gweta Lodge, located near the edge of the pans. In the afternoon, leave the lodge in an open game vehicle to and travel out to the Nxaisini pan. Here you’ll sit out in the wild enjoy sundowners and snacks while observing the amazing scenery. With the aid of trackers you’ll spend some time in the company of the local meerkat colony, and look out for elephants that meander their way down to the watering hole to quench their thirst. Soak in this incredible place while the sun sets behind the old beautiful baobab. Back at the lodge, relax in the lounge area while you take in your surroundings and reflect on the day's adventure.
Accommodation
  • Gweta Lodge or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Makgadikgadi Pans - Meerkat Pan Experience
  • Makgadikgadi Pans - Sunset & Sundowner
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Accommodation for this evening is in simple but comfortable rondavels equipped with ceiling fans, tea and coffee facilities, mosquito nets. These rooms have an outdoor enclosed shower & toilet.
After breakfast this morning, it's time to head to Maun, the gateway of the Okavango Delta (approximately 4 hours). For those interested, there is the opportunity to fly over the delta in a small plane for a bird's-eye view. This is a great way to appreciate the vast scale of this waterscape. Your leader can give you more information on this activity and how to reserve a place. Otherwise, the afternoon yours to spend as you please.
Accommodation
  • Thamalakane River Lodge or similar (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Okavango Delta - Scenic Flight - USD385
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Venture to the Okavango Delta (350kms, approximately 6 hours) and board your speedboat. This will take you to your home for the next two nights, a houseboat in the middle of the delta. You will need to pack a small bag or backpack for this trip, as there won't be room for everyone's full luggage. The houseboat has twin-share cabins with bedding, towels and mosquito nets provided (however, no single supplement is available on these nights). There is also a dining area on the deck, tea- and coffee-making facilities and a small collection of books and board games. As evening falls, head to the deck, where your captain will serve dinner. Grab a sundowner, pull up a chair and witness the often breath-taking sunset. This is a unique and memorable way to experience the Delta – not really for what you do, but more for the absence of anything to do. The sounds of hippos breaching and grunting, cicadas trilling and a million mosquitoes seduce you blissfully into the night.

Notes: Cabins are very small and basic, but it is of course unlikely that you will be spending much time in them. On occasion, the houseboat will be unavailable due to regular servicing and maintenance requirements; if this occurs, alternative arrangements on land will be made.
Accommodation
  • Okavango Houseboat (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Okavango Delta - Houseboat River Cruise
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
This morning after breakfast you will take a speedboat and 4WD to a nearby poling station. From here you will experience the myriad waterways in a traditional dugout canoe (mokoro) with a local guide. Your guide will also take you on a nature walk around one of the many Islands in the Delta. After a picnic lunch, return to the houseboat for some relaxation time. You might like to read a book or do some fishing. In the evening, enjoy a drink, pull up a chair and witness the often breathtaking sunset before your captain serves up dinner once again on the deck.
Accommodation
  • Okavango Houseboat (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Okavango Delta - Mokoro tours & game walks
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Travel on to Ghanzi, the 'Capital of the Kalahari' ( 400km approximately 7 hours). Your accommodation tonight is at a community project in Ghanzi and is a little more basic than what you will encounter throughout your journey. However, the concept and experience of Dqae Qare San Lodge is well worth it. It is run and owned by the local San Bushmen and supports the San D'Kar community through employment. There is an impressive concentration of bird life here, and you may wish to go for a walk before dinner to stretch your legs after today's long stint in the vehicle. A three-course meal, prepared by the local women, will be served in the communal lounge and dining area. There is also an 'honesty' bar with wine, beer and soft drinks available to buy. Later this evening you will be treated to an enlightening cultural experience. As you sit around the campfire, the Bushmen will conduct a ‘healing ceremony’. The Bushmen dance in a sand circle around the flames, slowly working themselves into a trance by their chanting and dancing, while others are seated outside the circle, clapping and singing. Occasionally the dancers will leave the circle to place their healing hands on their fellow Bushmen. It’s a privilege to sit and witness this traditional ceremony.
Accommodation
  • Dqae Qare San Lodge or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Central Kalahari - Dqae Qare San Cultural Experience
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Cross the border into Namibia today and head to Windhoek (560km approximately 9 hours, including border formalities). While you're here, perhaps take a look at the excellent German architecture of Tintenpalast (Ink Palace), the Christuskirche (church), the gymnasium and the Genossenschaftshaus (co-operative).

Notes: It's best not to book any flights out of Windhoek tonight. The airport is a one-hour drive from town, and although you should comfortably make it to the hotel in Windhoek by 5pm, it can be difficult to get to the airport in time for outbound flights. No accommodation is included for tonight, but can be requested at your own expense.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
This is the longest travel day on this itinerary so be prepared for a day of inactivity on the truck.

Meals

9 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 8 dinners

Transport

4WD vehicle, Custom-built overland vehicle, Houseboat, Mokoro, On foot, Open 4WD vehicles, Private vehicle

Accommodation

Houseboat (2 nights), Lodge (7 nights)

Included Activities

  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
  • Victoria Falls - The Boma Dinner & Experience
  • Victoria Falls - Entrance
  • Chobe National Park - Game Drive
  • Chobe National Park - 4x4 Game Drive
  • Chobe National Park - River Cruise
  • Makgadikgadi Pans - Meerkat Pan Experience
  • Makgadikgadi Pans - Sunset & Sundowner
  • Okavango Delta - Houseboat River Cruise
  • Okavango Delta - Mokoro tours & game walks
  • Central Kalahari - Dqae Qare San Cultural Experience

Reviews

Our Experience Botswana trips score an average of 4.73 out of 5 based on 37 reviews in the last year.

Experience Botswana, September 2016

Ruth Dunn

Experience Botswana, September 2016

Debra Walls

Dates & availability

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Important notes

1. An optional single supplement is available on this trip. Please speak to your booking agent for more information. Please Note: the single supplement does not apply to the nights spent on the Houseboat (2 nights) or at Dqae Qare San Lodge in Ghanzi.
2. Okavango Houseboat: It is important to know that the cabin sizes in the houseboat are smaller than a standard room. It would be best to pack a day pack for these 2 nights and leave any excess luggage with the truck. This will make it easier for you to get on and off the houseboat and to store a day pack as opposed to your backpack.There are no ensuite rooms on the houseboat, so the bathroom facilities will be shared.
3. Dqae Qare San Lodge: The lodge supports the local San D'Kar community and is owned and run by the San Bushmen people. This is a unique, cultural Kalahari experience and the standard of accommodation may be below what you would expect on a Peregrine trip - but the experience is well worth it.

Essential Trip Information

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