Botswana – The Northern Parks and Wildlife Areas
Picture courtesy of Jackie Appleton. Africa’s largest inland delta, the Okavango, is the centre of any holiday to this part of Botswana. This wetland has always been a haven for animals and birds and is now mostly protected as National Park or Game Reserves. Large areas of the Delta are under private concessions who work closely with the locals to offer you a quality experience which you share with just a few other travellers. With the options of traditional game drives, boat tours, mokoro (dugouts) trips, night safaris and walking safaris you have the chance to see the flora and fauna from so many different angles – not forgetting the light aircraft transfers that give you an eagle’s eye view of this fascinating country.
The Northern Parks and Wildlife Areas
Day 1: Chobe National Park
Day 3: Moremi Game Reserve
Day 5: Okavango Delta
Day 8: Nxai Pan National Park
Day 10: Maun
This itinerary takes to you the World famous areas of Botswana and is a feast of wildlife and wild scenery. With a mixture of the wetland of the Okavango Delta and the dryness of the Kalahari Desert you have a real African adventure of contrast.
Your flight in to the first camp will be in a small aircraft and will give you a great overview of the Delta and then Chobe National Park. On arrival you will be met by your guide and transferred to your lodge located on the Chobe River. Famous for the size of the elephant and buffalo herds you will have a chance to see these (and all the other animals) both from your 4×4 vehicle and also from a boat on the river. Sipping a sundowner and watching the wildlife coming down for their evening drink and the sun setting behind them.
2 nights Chobe National Park
A short flight takes you to your next camp in the Moremi Game Reserve, the first conservation area in the Okavango set up by the local tribes. Set in the flood plains of the Delta, this area is rich in wildlife and has recorded over 400 types of birds. Following the re-introduction of rhino to the area, it is truly Big 5 country with wild dog also present. Again you have the choice of boat or vehicle tours of this amazing area. You also will appreciate how fewer tourists are to be found here. Often you will have the wildlife experience with just your vehicle/boat in attendance.
2 nights Moremi Game Reserve
Another transfer by air or possibly by road has you deep in the Okavango Delta and your third camp site. You will be deep in the Delta and the chance to head out in a mokoro (dugout that is powered by your guide with a long pole). This gives you another, more intimate, way of seeing the wild and bird life here. The silence of your approach means you should have excellent viewing and not disturb the animals. For the intrepid you could elect to have a night or two wild camping further in to the bush.
3 nights Okavango Delta
Catch your next small plane flight out of the Delta and then in to the Kalahari Desert. You leave the green of Okavango behind and enter the vastness of this huge desert. Your next destination is the Nxai Pan National Park which, depending on the time of year, is a grassy plain with clumps of trees around waterholes. The wildlife is abundant during the rainy season then sparser and inhabited by the residents such as bat eared fox. Your camp here is most likely around one of the few waterholes and with views over the plains. Perhaps take a quad bike tour out over the desert/saltpan and experience the flat and hugeness of this area.
2 nights Nxai Pan National Park
Fly back to Maun for your connection back home or onwards to Victoria Falls or different parts of Botswana (see our other itineraries for Botswana).
Being punted through the reeds and waterways of the Okavango Delta by an experienced guide and never quite sure what you will see next – hippo pod, elephant bathing or drinking or the beautiful, tiny Malachite kingfisher perched on a reed.
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