Botswana Conservation Itinerary

Start planning your safari

PRICE FROM:

Price upon request

DURATION:

8 Days

DEPARTURE:

Dates on demand

GROUP SIZE:

Enquire with reservations

PRICE FROM:

Price upon request

DURATION:

8 Days

DEPARTURE:

Dates on demand

GROUP SIZE:

Enquire with reservations

An enriching 8 day safari experience!

Why You’ll Love It:

  • It's wild adventure that's good for the soul!
  • You’ll connect with nature, with communities and get a deeper understanding of Botswana.
  • This is a rich safari experience where you’ll see first-hand how responsible tourism can positively impact conservation and communities.
  • Get a better understanding about our sustainable safari operation.
  • You’ll get to stay at 3 of our luxury camps.
  • You'll get greater insight into 5 projects we are involved in, and how they help us protect some of Africa’s last great wild places.
  • You will be privately guided by a specialist guide experienced in conservation.
  • This trip will inspire you and give you a better understanding into how, together, we can help protect beautiful Botswana and its people.

This itinerary is fully customizable. To change this itinerary, please enquire with us.

What’s Included:

  • Traveling costs as per itinerary and entrance and park fees
  • Accommodation as specified on a sharing basis, all meals and local drinks
  • Activities (most!) and road transfers
  • Applicable tourism levies, taxes, and all relevant VAT

Exclusions: Premium brand drinks, gratuities and fully comprehensive travel insurance.

Conservation on the move

We have crafted this 8 day itinerary for those of you who are interested in seeing first hand how responsible tourism can positively impact conservation and communities.

Your trip will take you deep into the heart of our sustainable safari operation, where you’ll stay at 3 of our unique camps – Meno a Kwena, Little Sable and Mapula – and get greater insight into 5 projects we are involved in, and how they help us protect some of Africa’s last great wild places.

This exclusive conservation focused safari adventure, is an incredible opportunity for you to not only stay at our camps, but also to see the significant difference and impact your stay can have on the conservation of wildlife and the lives of the people living sustainably in and near wildlife areas.

Our exceptional safari guides have had years of experience in the wildlife and conservation space and are passionate about protecting it and teaching about it. Their personal and intimate understanding of the bush, conservation and community, will truly leave you inspired, giving you a better insight into how together we are helping to protect beautiful Botswana and its people.

Itinerary

Day 1 & 2: Meno A Kwena

Elephants for Africa

Day 1: You will arrive in Maun and transfer to Meno A Kwena, our hidden gem perched on a rocky clifftop overlooking the Boteti River with front-row seats to the comings and goings of the wildlife below.

A mere 90-minute drive from Maun, this classically-styled camp was originally used by Southern Africa’s explorers and although we’ve added a few little touches here and there, it’s refreshingly simple and full of character. The real treat at Meno, however is the connection with nature; from their lofty position, each tent looks down on a menagerie of animals below, from herds of majestic elephant, to dazzles of nomadic zebra – simply sit back, and take it all in. This is the perfect place to start your trip…

At Meno the safari never stops! Situated in an awesome location overlooking the Makgadikgadi National Park, Meno offers spectacular scenery and endless horizons.

Spend your first day enjoying a glittering roster of activities including guided walks with the San Bushmen learning about the traditional Botswana way and a wildlife-watching boat trip – today there is a plethora to see and do. Your first evening will be spent with a representative from Elephants For Africa, explaining first-hand about all the incredible work being done to mitigate human-wildlife conflict. So sit back, relax around the crackling fire pit and take it all in.

Day 2: Wake up on your first morning to the spectacular views of the Boteti river below. From the comfort of your private veranda, grab your binos… We like to call this an ‘armchair safari’. After a hearty breakfast, you will venture out into the Makgadikgadi National Park and hopefully have some close encounters with elephants.

You also have the opportunity to go on a ‘Community Elephant Coexistence’ cultural tour where you’ll visit and speak to local farmers in Moreomaoto, to get a better understanding and insight into some of the challenges faced when living alongside elephants and how they are deterred with the help of Elephants For Africa. This is a vital partnership when it comes to protecting the elephants and the community.

After a wonderfully educational day, spend your evening swapping stories around the dinner table, taking in the nocturnal sounds and the beauty of the star-filled night-sky.

Day 3, 4, 5: Little Sable

Wild Dog Research Camp

Day 3:

Wake up, grab a coffee and enjoy your last moments at Meno a Kwena. After breakfast you will transfer back to Maun and hop onto a small plane, to continue your adventure into the Okavango Delta.

You will be flying first to the Wild Dog Research Camp, situated close to the southern boundary of the Moremi Reserve. Known locally as “Wild Dog Camp” since 1990, it is the research centre for Wild Entrust’s Botswana Predator Conservation program. Here you will spend time with filed researchers, and find out more about the important conservation work this long-standing predator-focused research program is doing.

From here you continue flying onto the Khwai Private Reserve in the northern reaches of the Okavango Delta, with a chance to appreciate the beauty of the Okavango Delta along the way.

Khwai Private Reserve has one of the most beautifully iconic landscapes in Botswana. It is 200,000 hectares (770 sq. miles) of pristine wilderness. Mopane woodlands give way to riverine forests and spectacular floodplains with pans (waterholes) and flooded grasslands that wind their way through the KPR from the Khwai River.

You will arrive at Little Sable Camp early afternoon, depending on events and what wildlife you see along the way. Little Sable offers an intimate and relaxed safari setting – the perfect place to be after an adventurous day on the go.

With 8 traditional style tents on raised wooden platforms, each with a private viewing deck, en-suite bathroom and outdoor shower, you’ll love spending time here. Enjoy your first night leisurely sitting around the crackling firepit, cocktail in hand.

Khwai Private Reserve

Day 4: As the sun rises you will wake to the beauty of the wilderness. Today you get to enjoy the greatest iconic Okavango Delta experiences.

You’ll spend your day on a morning, afternoon and evening game drive looking for signature wildlife. Khwai has an excellent reputation for sightings of elusive species such as wild dogs, serval cats, honey badgers and you may even spot a pangolin. Jump on a Mokoro and wind your way around the crystal-clear waterways, with abundant bird and plant life.

Khwai Community

Day 5: Wake up to a steaming hot cup of coffee and a light breakfast, before heading off. Today we visit Khwai Village, as part of your morning game drive.You’ll get to see first-hand the community work that is being done there, with a visit to the preschool to plant a tree.

Your safari guide will also stop outside the Kgotla to explain its role in the community. After a busy morning you’ll head back to camp for a restful few hours, to enjoy the stillness. Cool down around the pool enjoying the perfect game viewing platform for photogenic opportunities. Or laze in your tent, before heading out again on an afternoon game drive. If you are visiting between June and August, we’ll take you to visit the grass harvesting project en route.

Tonight, a member of the conservation team will talk about how the lodge works hand-in-hand with the local community and how the KPR ranger team monitor wildlife and work closely with the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) on antipoaching.

Day 6,7,8: Mapula Lodge

Elephant Express, Life with Elephant tour and CLAWS

Day 6: After breakfast, you will leave this special little camp and head out to magical Mapula Lodge, situated in the Northern Okavango Delta.

This area offers a diverse matrix of expansive floodplains, woodlands and waterways and is undoubtably one of the most famous wildlife-watching destinations in the world – and it lives up to every expectation. From here you’ll set out on mokoro, winding your way along the meandering waterways of the Delta. Spotting wildlife and exciting birdlife along the way, this is a safari experience hard to beat!

Return to camp, to enjoy the afternoon around the swimming pool with the peaceful lagoon laid out before you. Enjoy the exceptional birdlife, grunting hippos who wallow in the lagoon and the families of warthogs who have made Mapula their home.

After an adventuresome day, spend the evening enjoying delicious cuisine and then retiring to one of 9 canvasand-thatch chalets, replete with king size four-posters and feather-filled pillows to fall face first into after your exhilarating day.

Day 7: Up with the dawn, you will greet the beauty of this extraordinary landscape coffee and rusk in hand. Today you have an early start, travelling by helicopter to nearby Eretsha to see some of the projects in the area.

First you will be taken on a Life with Elephants Tour, where you will learn about the community’s traditional way of life and what it is like to live in close proximity to elephants. This will include visiting the Elephant Express Programme – a partnership between the Okavango Community Trust, the Ecoexist Trust and Mapula Lodge. There are two Elephant Express buses transporting young community members to school, and older members to the clinic, ensuring they don’t need to walk along the dangerous ‘elephant highways’. You will get to learn more about the Elephant Express Programme.

Next a representative from CLAWS will take you out to visit the cattle kraal or the herd of cattle in the bush. You will get to see the work being done by CLAWS and how it is related to the community, lion conservation and improving rangelands.

Spend your last night in our ‘chill pit’, a sunken lounge area overlooking the lagoon. You’ll get to watch the wildlife comings and goings. And as the sun sets and the moon rises, you’ll feel relaxed and inspired by all the enlightening safari experiences you have had the incredible opportunity to see and do.

Day 8: Wake up and enjoy a relaxed morning, and one more scrummy breakfast before you bid farewell to Mapula Lodge. Today you will head back to Maun, and continue to your onward destination.

Meet your guide

Murray McCallum

Born in South Africa, Murray’s background is in Environmental Consulting and Project Management, which tally neatly with his long-standing interest in the interplay between environmental matters, community and conservation. Murray’s formal education comprises an honours in Environmental Science and an undergraduate in Environmental Science and Anthropology. His thesis tackled community resource management and the pressure of poaching and impoverishment. In the field, Murray has managed lodges in Botswana and Zambia, and once kayaked 300 kilometres across the Savuti Channel and Selinda Spillway with Track of Giants – an initiative bringing attention to elephant conservation corridors and the importance of trans frontier park conservation. Murray now works in our Cape Town office as our Sustainability Advisor, and provides conservation and community support for the Natural Selection Trust and Foundation.

 

Conservation & Community Projects

MENO A KWENA

PROJECT 1: ELEPHANTS FOR AFRICA (EFA) 
Elephants for Africa is situated on the north western edge of the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park. This conservation project is dedicated to enhancing human-wildlife coexistence in rural farming communities, which we believe is crucial to protect both the elephant and the communities in this wildlife area. The project focuses on mitigating human-wildlife conflict primarily through community workshopping and installing elephant proof fencing.

LITTLE SABLE

PROJECT 2: WILD DOG RESEARCH CAMP
The Wild Dog Research Camp sits within the Moremi Game Reserve, on the south eastern edge of the Okavango Delta. It is the most well established research centre in the Okavango, and has conducted over 30 years of research on wild dog packs, as well as members of the large carnivore guild, the lions, leopards and spotted hyenas. While the various projects supported by this centre are dispersed across the Okavango landscape, on your visit you’ll get to meet the dedicated resident researchers who are available to take you through some of the projects and showcase the importance of applied conservation in Botswana.

PROJECT 3: KHWAI COMMUNITY / VILLAGE
The Khwai community and village is situated on the eastern edge of the Khwai Private Reserve. It is here that we dedicate a lot of time and effort to implementing multiple community outreach initiatives in and around the settlement of Khwai village. This veritably reflects our goal of continuously improving the livelihoods of communities living alongside wildlife. And like it is for us, your visit and interaction with the community, will truly be an insightful and humbling experience.

MAPULA LODGE

PROJECT 4: ELEPHANT EXPRESS
The Elephant Express project is situated on the north eastern edge of the Okavango and is a wonderful solution to a complex human-wildlife conflict issue, made possible through a partnership between Okavango Community Trust, Ecoexist Trust and Mapula Lodge. The project transports vulnerable members of the community – children, elderly and the disabled – to school and clinics through dangerous elephant corridors. The Elephant Express helps to minimise human-wildlife conflict by reducing the likelihood of dangerous confrontations so elephants and people can co-exist more easily.

PROJECT 5: COMMUNAL HERDING FOR LIVESTOCK & WILDLIFE PROTECTION (CLAWS)
CLAWS has been set up in the north eastern edge of the Okavango Delta to support humanwildlife conflict (HWC) mitigation. This communal herding programme safeguards cattle, creates employment, reduces retaliatory killing of lions, and restores overgrazed landscapes. Here you will see first-hand how by facilitating a return to traditional herding practices, whereby a herder accompanies livestock, lion-livestock interactions are reduced and the perceived conflict between lions and farmers is alleviated. This initiative combines different herds, to reduce the costs of herding per household and achieves two incredible goals: it reduces retaliatory killing of lions, and it improves the grazing land for livestock herders through rotational grazing.

Ready to book this safari?

This itinerary starts at Price upon request/person* and is fully customizable based on the number of people and travel dates.

Start Planning

When to Go & What to Pack:

Our Botswana Conservation safari can be taken all year round. The dry season (April to October) is winter in Botswana, and the green season is summer (November until April). In the dry season, days are long and sunny and temperatures are very pleasant. There is no rain at this time of year but the water levels in the Delta are at their highest (trust us!) so it’s the best time of year for boating and mokoro safaris. In the green season, expect spectacular thunderstorms and green and luscious landscapes. Although the water levels are lower, boating and mokoro safaris can still be done.

As for packing, we recommend all the normal safari kit; neutral clothing, something warm for the evenings and morning, a hat, sun block, binoculars and all the rest. On a mobile safari, you might find a head torch useful, but everything else is provided.

Policies & Access:

Child Policy: Please enquire with reservations.

Disabled Access: Please enquire with reservations.

Wifi: Wifi is not available for the duration of this trip.

Excluded: Expenses of a personal nature, such as telephone expenses & shopping; premium brand drinks; tips and gratuities; additional activities; scheduled flights and related taxes; Visa fees where relevant; cancellation, baggage, medical, and evacuation insurance.