In assocciation with Kalahari Wildlife Tours

Tour 49: 18 Day Kgalagadi – Namibia – Botswana Wildlife Tour

THIS TOUR GOES THROUGH A MALARIA AREA!

18 Days
17 Nights

DAY 01 Upington – Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park (South Africa)
DAY 02 Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park
DAY 03 Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park
DAY 04 Windhoek (Namibia)
DAY 05 Etosha National Park / Okaukuejo
DAY 06 Etosha National Park / Halali
DAY 07 Etosha National Park / Namutoni
DAY 08 Rundu
DAY 09 Bwabwata National Park / Mahango Core / Popa Falls
DAY 10 Bwabwata National Park / Kwando Core
DAY 11 Mudumu National Park
DAY 12 Senyati Safari Camp (Botswana)
DAY 13 Chobe National Park / Senyati Safari Camp
DAY 14 Vic Falls (Zimbabwe) / Senyati Safari Camp
DAY 15 Nata Sanctuary
DAY 16 Grobler’s Bridge / Kwa Nokeng
DAY 17 Marakele National Park (South Africa)
DAY 18 Johannesburg – Departure

DETAILED ITINERARY

This tour covers a variety of parks and landscapes in 04 Southern African countries, varying from desert to sub-tropical climate zones, with the emphasis on wildlife. It gives guests the opportunity to experience a variety in wildlife from the arid Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park to Etosha National Park in northern Namibia and Chobe National Park in northern Botswana.

DAY 01 Upington – Kgalagadi Trans Frontier Park (South Africa)
Time of departure will depend on clients’ travel schedule to Upington. Flight schedule to be finalised. (Flight not included)

Depart from Upington on a 03-hour drive through the Kalahari duneveld (“veld” means natural vegetation), passing various pans (dry lakes), to the Kgalagadi Trans Frontier Park,

The word Kalahari derives from the word Makgadigadi, meaning salt pans (salt lakes) in the language spoken by the Kgalagadi people living in the Kgalagadi Region in south-western Botswana. The word Kgalagadi means salt pans too in their language. More than 1 000 pans are scattered throughout the park. The Kalahari is the largest area of sand in the world, covering 2.5 million square kilometres from the Orange River in South Africa in the south to slightly north of the equator. The area referred to as the arid Kalahari covers some 900 000 square kilometres in the south and covers parts of South Africa and Namibia and most of Botswana. The Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park is situated in the southern part of the arid Kalahari in South Africa and Botswana and is jointly managed by South Africa National Parks (Sanparks) and Botswana Wildlife.

En route visit to the last indigenous San tribe in South Africa, the Khomani. Today these earliest residents of the Kalahari, living here for 40 000 years, consist of only 400 people and are resident in an area between 40 and 70 km south of Twee Rivieren. Clients will have the opportunity to view and purchase their handcraft at one of the roadside stalls. (The presence of the San can’t be guaranteed)

The Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park covers 37 000 square km, which is one of the largest conservation areas in the world and one of the last truly unspoilt ecosystems.

Endemic game such as gemsbok, springbok, eland, giraffe, blue wildebeest and red hartebeest roam the sparsely vegetated red sand dunes and the dry river valleys of the Nossob and Auob where a variety of acacia species thrive.

The Park is well known for good sightings of lion, leopard and cheetah and spotted – and brown hyena are common residents. Because of an abundance of prey in the form of mice, whistling rats, birds and insects, smaller predators thrive in the park. The park is home to caracal, honey badger, black-backed jackal, bat-eared fox, cape fox, African wildcat, mongoose and the ever-popular suricate (meerkat).

Kgalagadi is a bird watcher’s paradise with more than 300 species recorded including at least 20 larger raptor species. The world’s heaviest flying bird, the Kori bustard and the stately secretary bird patrol the riverbeds while the noisy northern black korhaan rule in the dunes.

Check in at accommodation at Twee Rivieren.

Depart on an afternoon game drive. All scheduled game drives in Kgalagadi are in the tour vehicle.

The Twee Rivieren area is known for lion, leopard, cheetah and meerkat sightings.
Optional 3 hr sunset drive on an open game drive vehicle and 3 hr morning guided walk with Sanparks guide at own cost
Overnight: Twee Rivieren
Meals: B, L & D (Full Board on all days)

DAY 02 Kgalagadi Trans Frontier Park
Depart early morning, when the gates open, on a circular game drive. The route goes along the lower Nossob River Valley, Lower Dune Road and lower Auob River Valley. Return to Twee Rivieren at noon.

Do an afternoon game drive. The route will depend on sightings on the morning drive and reported sightings on the sightings board at Twee Rivieren
Overnight Twee Rivieren
Meals: B, L & D

DAY 03 Kgalagadi Trans Frontier Park
Early departure on a game drive along the Auob River Valley to Mata Mata on the Namibian Border. This is cheetah territory and is one the best, if not the best, places in Southern Africa to see cheetah. The Mata Mata area is also known for lion, hyena, African wildcat and giraffe sightings.

Do an afternoon game drive along the Auob River Valley.

Relax around the fireplace, overlooking an illuminated waterhole. Predators are regular visitors.

Optional 3 hr sunset drive and 2 hr night drive on an open game drive vehicle with Sanparks guide at own cost
Overnight Mata Mata
Meals: B, L & D

DAY 04 Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park – Windhoek (Namibia)
Enter Namibia at the Mata Mata Border Post. Proceed through the Kalahari along the dry Auob River Valley via Gochas, Stampriet and Rehoboth to Windhoek, the capital of Namibia. Afternoon at leisure.
Overnight Arebbusch Travel Lodge.
Meals: B, L & D

DAY 05 Windhoek – Etosha National Park
Depart to Okahandja, home of the woodcarvers of Namibia where we stop to give guests the opportunity to view and purchase from a wide variety of African craft.

Continue to Etosha National Park via Otjiwarongo and Outjo. Enter the Park at Anderson Gate in the south. The Park covers an area of 22 270 square km. Etosha Pan is 120 km long and 72 km at its widest. Four of the big five species, elephant, black rhino, lion and leopard, are in the Park. Except for the rare and endemic black-faced impala and Damara dik-dik, giraffe, red hartebeest, gemsbok, eland, kudu, cheetah, hyena and large herds of wildebeest, springbok and zebra are common.

After arrival, an afternoon game drive can be done to Okondeka Waterhole where the chances are good to see lion and to the nearby Newbrowni Waterhole where there is always animal activity. An alternative option is to relax and watch the wildlife activities at the waterhole at the Rest Camp.

Game watching at night at the flood-lit Okaukeujo Waterhole at own time.

Optional 3 hr night drive on an open game drive vehicle with Namibia Wildlife guide at own cost
Overnight: Okaukeujo
Meals: B, L & D

DAY 06 Etosha National Park
Depart at on a game drive to Halali Rest Camp. Take the loop route via Newbrowni, Gemsbokvlakte, Olifantsbad and Aus Waterholes. Continue via Homob, Sueda and Salvadora Waterholes to Rietfontein Waterhole, one of the most popular waterholes in Etosha and burial site of Johanna Alberts, wife of the Dorsland (Thirstland) Trek leader Gert Alberts, who died here in 1876. Proceed to Halali Rest Camp.

Depart on an afternoon game drive to Goas Waterhole. Return to Halali.

Game watching at the flood-lit Moringa Waterhole at Halali at own time.
Overnight: Halali
Meals: B, L & D

DAY 07 Etosha National Park
Depart on a game drive to Namutoni Rest Camp along the pan road via the Pan Look-out. Continue via Springbokfontein, Kalkheuwel, Chudop, Koinagas and Klein Namutoni Waterholes, where there is always game coming and going. Proceed to Namutoni Rest Camp at noon.

Do on an afternoon game drive to Klein Okevi, Groot Okevi Waterholes. Re-visit the nearby Klein Namutoni and Chudop Waterholes, where the chances are good to see predator activities.

Game watching at the flood-lit Namutoni waterhole at own time.
Overnight: Namutoni
Meals: B, L & D

DAY 08 Etosha National Park – Rundu
Game drive to Van Lindequist Gate near Namutoni. Damara Dik-Dik is seen very often on this road. Exit the park.

Proceed to Lake Otjikoto. It is a sinkhole lake, which was created by a collapsing karst cave. The diameter of the lake is 102 meters; its depth is undetermined and estimated to be in access of 142 meters. Tilapia guinasana, a mouth-breeding species of fish lives in Lake Otjikoto. The lake was a dumping ground for German Schutztruppe during World War I; in June 1915 German troops dumped war materials in the lake before surrendering to stop the South African and British troops from using them. Most of the larger pieces have been recovered and are displayed in Tsumeb Museum.

Depart to Tsumeb. Visit Tsumeb Museum. Except for the recovered German weapons it houses displays of local tribes, the Tsumed Mine, which produced the most number of minerals of any mine in the world and local history.

Continue to the Hoba Meteorite that lies on the farm “Hoba West”, not far from Grootfontein. It has been uncovered but, because of its large mass, has never been moved from where it fell. The main mass is estimated at more than 60 tons, making it the largest known meteorite (as a single piece) and the most massive naturally occurring piece of iron known at the Earth’s surface

The Hoba meteorite is thought to have fallen more recently than 80,000 years ago. It is inferred that the Earth’s atmosphere slowed the object to the point that it fell to the surface at terminal velocity, thereby remaining intact and causing little excavation. Assuming a drag coefficient of about 1.3, the meteor would have been slowed to a mere 320 meters per second (1,000 ft/s) (contrast this with typical orbital speeds of several km/s). The meteorite is unusual in that it is flat on both major surfaces, possibly causing it to have skipped across the top of the atmosphere in the way a flat stone skips on water.

Depart to Grootfontein. Continue to Rundu. This route goes through typical rural Africa landscapes with scattered reed huts and small Mahango (sorghum) fields. Rundu is the administrative centre of the Kavango Region and is situated on the Okavango River, which is the border with Angola.

Proceed to lodge 16 km from Rundu on the bank of the Okavango River. Afternoon at leisure at the lodge.

Optional afternoon boat cruise on the Okavango River.
Overnight: Hakusembe River Lodge near Rundu
Meals: B, L & D

DAY 09 Rundu – Popa Falls
Depart to Divundu. Continue to Bwabwata National Park (Mahango Core Area). The small but picturesque Mahango Game Park is situated in the north-east of Namibia on the Botswana border. Mahango covers an area of about 30,000 hectares and is bordering on the Okavango River floodplain.

Wildlife includes elephant, lion, leopard, cheetah, wild dog, hippo, red lechwe, sitatunga, buffalo, sable, and roan and other antelopes. Mahango is known for its rich bird life and it is one of the best places to see the endangered wattled crane. Huge baobab trees are to be seen in the park.

Do a circular game drive. Depart to Popa Falls. Time at leisure. Visit the falls, which is not much more than a big rapid. Enjoy sundowners on the riverside bar deck.

Afternoon visit to Bwabwata National Park (Buffalo Core Area). The Buffalo Core Area is not the most popular park in Namibia, but have absolutely amazing game viewing possibilities. The park is home to numerous game. Visitors will find large concentrations of elephants, buffalos but also – and this is special for the Buffalo Park – big herds of roan and sable antelope. Warthog, kudu, impala, reedbuck, red lechwe and of course hippos and crocodiles are also seen quite often. Predators which visit the park are lion and leopard.

A part of the Buffalo Core is situated in the ruins of an old South African Army Base of 32 Battalion. These ruins are often visited by impalas and kudus. It is not forbidden to leave the car and climb on some of the large termite hills along the river side. The views and photographic opportunities from the ant hills are extraordinary.

Optional sunset boat cruise on the Okavango River
Overnight: Popa Falls
Meals: B, L & D

DAY 10 Popa Falls – Namushasha Lodge / Bwabwata National Park (Kwando Core Area)
Travel through Bwabwata National Park, previously known as Caprivi Game Park to Kongola. The 32km-wide Bwabwata National Park of 5 715km² extends for about 180 km from the Okavango River to the Kwando River. Bwabwata forms a crucial trans-boundary link for wildlife migration between Angola, Botswana, Namibia and Zambia and for seasonal dispersal to and from rivers. The riverine forests along these rivers attract large numbers of mammals and numerous species of aquatic birds. Bwabwata National Park is home to buffalo, elephant, lion, leopard, hippo and roan antelope as well as various other antelope species.

Proceed to Namushasha Lodge on the banks of the Kwando River.

Afternoon boat cruise to the opposite side of the Kwando River to the Bwabwata National Park (Kwando Core Area). Do a game drive on an open game drive vehicle. The trail runs on the western side of the Kwando River, with its floodplains, associated grasslands and riparian forests. The park is home to large concentrations of elephant and buffalo, also sable and roan antelope, tsessebe, waterbuck, impala, kudu, giraffe and wildebeest. Common reedbuck, red lechwe, the rarely seen sitatunga and hippo are seen along the river. Main predators are lion, leopard, cheetah and hyena. This area is one of the last refugees for wild dog in Namibia. The area is rich in bird life, nearly 600 species, due to a variety of vegetation types.

Return by boat to Namushasha
Overnight: Namushasha Lodge
Meals: B, L & D

DAY 11 Namushasha Lodge / Mudumu National Park
Morning game drive on an open game drive vehicle in the nearby Mudumu National Park. The Kwando River is the western boundary of Mudumu National Park, which offers a true African wilderness experience. The area is lush with riverine forest, marches, dense savannah and mopane woodland. An astonishing 430 species of birds have been recorded (nearly 70% of Namibia’s total) and much game including the rare sitatunga and red lechwe as well as buffalo, elephant, zebra, antelopes, hippo and crocodiles.

Return to accommodation. Afternoon at leisure.

Optional afternoon boat cruise on the Kwando River or boat transfer and game drive as on day 09 at own cost.
Overnight: Namushasha Lodge
Meals: B, L & D

DAY 12 Namushasha – Senyati Safari Camp / Kasane Area (Botswana)
Depart to Kongola. Stop at the Community Hand Craft Shop. Guest can view and purchase a wide a variety of quality African craft.

Continue via Katima Mulilo to Ngoma Border Post. Enter Botswana. Proceed to Kasane. Replenish supplies for catering at Senyati.

Continue to Senyati Safari Camp 10 km south of Kazangula. Senyati is situated on the border of the Kasane Forest Reserve. The chalets and bar-deck overlook a flood-lit waterhole where herds of elephant, numbering in total up to hundreds a day, come to drink from mid-afternoon until late at night. Spotted hyena, sable antelope, buffalo, kudu, giraffe and impala are regular visitors too. Leopard, lion and wild dog are sporadic visitors.

Relax in the afternoon at accommodation or on the bar deck overlooking the floodlit waterhole. Overnight: Senyati Safari Camp
Meals: B, L & D

DAY 13 Senyati Safari Camp / Chobe National Park
Depart early morning to Chobe National Park. This is elephant country. Chobe National Park is very famous for its abundance of elephant. This Park has the highest concentration of elephant anywhere in Africa, an estimated 70 000!! Chobe is also famous for its huge herds of buffalo and predators including lion, leopard and spotted hyena. Sable – and roan antelope, giraffe, kudu, waterbuck, tsessebe, impala, red lechwe, the endemic puku, Chobe bushbuck, herds of zebra, warthogs, pods of hippo and crocodiles are some of the species to be seen

The Chobe Riverfront is one of the best birding areas in Southern Africa and various species of raptors, including great sightings of fish-eagles, flocks of vultures, various aquatic species, colourful bee-eaters and rollers can be encountered on a game drive.

Game drive until noon. Return to Kasane.

Depart at 15:00/03:00 p.m. on a 03-hour afternoon boat trip on the Chobe River. Good wildlife sightings are common on the boat trips. Pick-up clients after the boat trip at 06:00 p.m. Transfer to Senyati.

Relax at Senyati, overlooking the flood-lit waterhole.
Overnight: Senyati Safari Camp
Meals: B, L & D

Rates on request:
E-mail: dantes@kalahari-tours.co.za or click on CONTACT US.

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KALAHARI TOURS & TRAVEL
Upington 8801

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