Wildlife Viewing in Northern Botswana
Safari with no mileage limit or time limit - ideal for best nature experiences and game viewing where it is most beautiful: in the island water world of the Okavango Delta, in the Moremi Game Reserve and in Chobe National Park.
On the way, you will observe elephants, giraffes, buffalos and zebras, horse antelopes and sable antelopes, kudus, springboks, bog and grass antelopes as well as sitatungas (marsh antelopes) in the comfortably equipped mobile tent camp. We do not only take a lot of time for large animals, but also for birds and the small inhabitants of the bush, such as pill turners, emerald lizards and ant lions.
Travel Information for Botswana
1. Immigration Requirements
Visitors to Botswana must be in possession of a passport with a validity of six months beyond the intended stay in the country and with at least four unused pages for entry and exit stamps. A tourist visa is granted free of charge on arrival. Tourists to Botswana are only granted a visa for a maximum of 90 days.
Minors travelling to Botswana require a child passport. Botswana also requires minors under 18 years of age to produce an original birth certificate or a certified copy of the unabridged birth certificate stating the parents’ name. In the event that only one parent or any adult other than both parents is travelling with the child, the other parent’s affidavit or legal guardian consenting to such travel should be presented. In the event that parents are not entitled to custody, proof of legal custody by court order or any other official proof of legal custody has to be presented in its original form or a certified copy thereof.
With an average of 300 days of sunshine per year, a dry climate prevails throughout the year in Botswana. Cotton clothing is recommended for the warm summer (October – March) and can be purchased at local safari outfitters. During winter (April – September) evenings, nights and early mornings can be very cool with temperatures below zero, making a pullover or jacket and long trousers essential.
Leisure wear is primarily needed for an outdoor holiday in Southern Africa. Since formal wear is only required in luxury hotels and de-luxe trains, travellers are recommended only to take along the bare necessities. A maximum of 23 kg luggage per person is permitted on independent- or private safaris with Safari24. Soft bags are preferred for lodge safaris, however hard protective cases may also be used. On group tours with Safari24 a maximum of 20 kg luggage per individual is permitted. Such luggage requirements may appear to be limiting, however lodges and hotels have a laundry service so that only a limited amount of clothing should be brought along.
4. Recommended Equipment List
- Travel documents (passports, flight tickets) and cash
- Contact lens wearers and spectacle wearers should bring along glasses and reading glasses respectively
- Medication: pain medication, sticking plaster, antiseptic agent, anti-diarrhoeal agent, antihistamine cream or gel, prescribed medicine
- Sun protection (hat, sun glasses with UV protection factor, sunscreen agent with sun protection factor 50)
- Moisturizing cream
- Lip balm
- Insect repellent
- Antibacterial hand wipes
- Sober-coloured bush hat
- Walking or hiking boots
- Swimwear and bath towel
- Camera with sufficient film material or memory sticks and replacement battery
- Bird identification guide for Southern Africa
- Torch or headtorch
5. Means of Payment
The pula (BWP) is the official currency in Botswana, where Mastercard and VISA are widely accepted in towns and cities. Traveller’s cheques are rather uncommon and should be denominated in euro or US-dollar. ATMs are available in larger towns. Cash withdrawals with Maestro Cards are possible at ATMs, however the amount of withdrawable cash is frequently limited to between approximately €100.00 to €500.00 per card and day in local currency. When using automated teller machines, special attention should be paid to possible ATM fraud. At the end of month there are usually long waiting queues in banks and at ATMs. Shortages of hard cash are possible.
When purchasing luxury items such as jewelry and fur coats a 30% luxury tax is remitted if tourists present their passports and flight tickets before making a payment transaction.
On trips with Safari24 through Botswana there are shopping possibilities in Maun, Kasane and in the Zimbabwean border town Victoria Falls.
In Botswana, English is the official language alongside Setswana, but Afrikaans is also spoken in the western part of the country.
Please consult your family doctor by all means before travelling to Southern Africa. Please also consult your nearest institute for tropical diseases about any changes in health requirements.
8.1. Malaria Prevention
In Botswana there is a high infection risk during the rainy season from November until May in the Northern Okavango Delta, Chobe National Park with its regional centre Kasane, Ghanzi, Ngamiland, Tutume Sub-District and Moremi Game Reserve.
Pregnant women are explicitly advised not to travel to high-risk areas as malaria infections during pregnancies can lead to serious health issues for both mother and child.
Mosquito bites can be prevented by using mosquito repellants generously. A locally- produced repellant is made available on all Safari24 tours, however clients should also bring their own repellant. Since 95% of all malaria infections occur between 08.00 p.m. and 06.00 a.m., long-sleeved shirts and long trousers should be worn in the evenings. Rooms or tents should be sprayed with an environment-friendly insectide to kill off any mosquitoes that may exist. Mosquito nets should be used if available. A tent’s zip fasteners should be closed completely especially at night to lock out bugs and insects. We recommend mosquito coils for outdoor use that can be purchased in supermarkets.
It is recommended to bring along an antimalarial medication as immediate-effect drug.
Malaria can also occur after the use of a prophylaxis, especially in areas where chloroquine resistance has been registered. Both chloroquine-resistant and normal strains of malaria occur in Botswana.
In case of illness upon your return to your home country, please consult your family doctor immediately and inform him about your stay in a malaria area.
In Botswana the tap water is not drinkable. However, it is generally recommended to drink at least two to three litres of water per day (depending on the season) to prevent dehydration.
8.3. Sun Protection
Due to the altitude of many parts of the country and the proximity to the equator, solar radiation is extremely high, which is why sun protection is indispensable.
8.4. Food Intolerance and Illness
Travellers should inform Safari24 about any existing food intolerances and serious medical conditions before commencing a journey.
9. Insurance Coverage
We recommend a comprehensive international medical insurance and travel cancellation insurance. Health insurance should cover medical treatment as well as emergency evacuation and repatriation. Baggage insurance is meaningful when travelling with camera equipment. Articles of value should always be carried with hand luggage.
We recommend these lodges for this tour, a mobile tent camp is also recommended for part of the trip.
Thamalakane River Lodge
This relaxed lodge on the Thamalakane River is 13 km from Island Safari Lodge and 19 km from Maun Airport.
The warm stone 1 and 2 bedroom cottages are equipped with free Wi-Fi, ceiling fans and mosquito nets. This includes verandas overlooking the river. Upgraded units have separate lounges and some have outdoor showers.
There is a casual open-air restaurant with a thatched roof. Airport transfers are subject to a fee.
Chobe Safari Lodge
The tropical, relaxed resort is located on the picturesque Chobe River and only 5 minutes walk from the entrance of the picturesque Chobe National Park, 4 km from Kasane Airport.
Modern rooms are equipped with flat screen televisions, minibars, tea and coffee makers, room safes, mosquito nets, free Wi-Fi and balconies. Upgraded rooms overlooking the river. Family rooms are also available.
The facilities include 2 chic bars and a palm-covered open-air restaurant with a terrace overlooking the river. There is also an outdoor pool. Activities such as game drives, boat and fishing trips are possible.