Two main geographic features dominate the country – the Kalahari desert covering about 85% of the country where the descendants of the early bushmen still eke out a living in a lifestyle little changed over millennia, and the great Okavango Delta, a huge wetland system of up to 15,000 sq. kms. that boasts one of the most prolific wildlife spectacles in Africa. The Okavango river rising in Central Africa feeds the delta, which is unique as it is the largest and single wetland system surrounded by desert. Its scenic beauty combine with numerous pristine and diverse habitats to make it one of Africa’s most spectacular and top wilderness & wildlife destinations.
Most camps in the delta offer both water and land based activities, but some are classified as “pure water camps” where visitors can enjoy leisurely dug-out canoe trips along the swamp’s labyrinth of canals past schools of hippo, and fish for the lively African Tiger fish, pausing on the islands for a picnic or sundowner as the sun sets in its African glory.
The Savuti Channel area, which borders the delta to the West and Chobe National Park to the East, is one of Africa’s most famous big game destinations, where amazing concentrations of game congregate at watering places and which is famous for its resident predators, particularly a sizeable lion and hyena population. North on the western reaches of the Channel lies the Linyanti area, a private game reserve harbouring vast herds of ungulates and elephants. Here vehicle concentrations are low and the game viewing exceptional. In contrast, the Chobe National Park whilst hosting a wonderful spectrum of wildlife, has become somewhat crowded due to the number of camps and lodges in the area, but for those with limited time and a tight budget, it is still a very worthwhile option.
South of Maun and the Okavango delta lies the huge open expanse of the Kalahari desert where in March and April, the desert blooms and comes to life following rainstorms that fill the huge Magadikgadi pans with water. These attract large migratory herds of game and a host of wetland birds. Tailor made tented safaris can be arranged to combine the desert with the delta experience.
East Africa: Tropical Rainforest, Savannah Grasslands, Dramatic Semi-deserts, Stunning Wildlife Migrations, Indigenous Cultures, The Great Rift Valley, Soda and Fresh Lakes, Deserted Beaches and Coral Reefs shape the extraordinary landscapes that make up East Africa.
Eastern Africa (Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania & Rwanda) is probably the first option for a safari destination in Africa. Its spectacular range of altitude offers incredible climatic diversity; its wildlife spectacle is unparalleled and varied, its wild places with a wealth of wildlife unspoilt and natural, with nothing contrived, and it harbours some of the world’s oldest and most colourful cultures, all of which fuse together to form the richest African tapestry.
East Africa has so much to offer that it would be difficult to combine all five countries in one itinerary; they need to be considered separately and carefully before settling on an itinerary that will include all the options on offer.
South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe: Wetlands Teeming with Wildlife, Tribal Cultures, Scenic Winelands, Uber-luxury lodges, Vast Deserts, Secluded Beaches, The Cape of Good Hope and Historic Cape Town shape the extraordinary landscapes that make up South Africa.
Southern Africa offers literally a world in one block of countries, so varied is the landscape, even within the different countries that comprise this package. The most ancient desert in the world, the Namib of Namibia, is unique in that here is the only place where towering sand dunes touch the ocean along the desolate Skeleton Coast; well named, since ships have foundered there over the centuries, and lie like stark skeletons on the lonely sands where the icy Atlantic caused by the cold Benguela current contrasts dramatically with the heat of the abutting desert dunes. Botswana incorporates the stunning and vast wetland system of the Okavango Swamps, harbouring a rich diversity of life, whilst the lush winelands and sophistication of South Africa with its 300 year long historical background offers a particularly rich cultural heritage in a sophisticated first world setting. The great gold, diamond and mineral deposits of Southern Africa combined with South Africa’s European first world influence has resulted in a sophisticated tourist infrastructure for destinations in this part of Africa, making it a very attractive proposition for all travellers and offering a wide perspective of pleasurable opportunities.
This vast region is emerging from the shadows to become an exciting location to expand our safaris to a very different experience. Primarily covered by tropical rainforest, these regions are prime locations for viewing lowland gorillas, chimpanzees, forest elephants, the rare bongo antelope as well as a host of other forest dwellers. Trips to this region involve a lot of forest walking, however the massive rivers in the area also provide a different experience in exploring by boat & canoe. There are also some grasslands, as well as deserts in the region that offer some more conventional game viewing.
The Indian Ocean off the East Coast of Africa has some incredible experiences to offer. From your idyllic tropical Island Paradise such as the Seychelles and the Maldives, to another totally different experience such as Madagascar’s Lemurs, plus its tropical forests & its semi-desert baobab forests, there is much to see and do.