When booking a luxury African safari tour there are so many factors but we help our clients decide which factors are most important to them, and through years of operating on the ground in Africa, and knowing the right people we make sure your luxury safari tour in Africa is truly unique, and covers territory that others don’t. We handpick every single luxury African safari property for its location, guides, food and atmosphere, which ensures that you will always have a once in a lifetime experience. All of our luxury safari tours across Africa include that little bit extra, on top of your game drives you will be able to walk, have breakfast in the bush, take night drives, meet the local tribes (in an authentic situation), spend time with zoologists and local conservationists, and use hides to observe the wildlife at close quarters – we also organise a few luxury surprises for you along the way – we believe that every luxury African safari tour should be extraordinary and this is not achieved by clients going to camps which are regimented, and which only offer game drives.
Xakanaxa Camp in Moremi is a favourite of ours when it comes to humble and relaxed luxury African tours, as it backs onto prime game viewing lands, and in front the crystal clear channels of the Delta stretch before you so that you can take boat rides to remote islands, watching huge pods of hippo, elephants drinking and maybe seeing the shy and rare sitatunga antelope. Then of course you can take game drives into Moremi seeing the big cats and all that they have to offer. This camp is owner run and is relaxing and friendly. Xakanaxa was established in the early 1960s and so is one of the first luxury African safari camps to have started operating in this area – it has one of the best locations in the area, constructed from solely local materials the camp also provides jobs for many of the local community. Xakanaxa is just twelve rooms and also offers traditional mokoro excursions.
We bang on about green season being a wonderful time for a luxury African tour all the time, often there are no people, lots of game and beautiful flowers. At this time of year (Dec-Mar) in the Makgadikgadi Pans in Botswana thousands upon thousands of wildebeest and zebra begin to appear on the vast Pans (which are already acknowledged as one of the most exclusive and remote spots for a luxury African tour) – these huge numbers combined with the white salt of the pans, the green grass and the exotic palm trees make this a wonderful spectacle to see and of course with the herds come the predators. The Kalahari and the Makgadikgadi Pans really come to life at this time of year and should not be missed, as do other parts of Africa in the green season – you’ll also get an amazing deal.
Combine this with some exceptional low season offers in the Okavango Delta and you can also stay at the best safari camps in Botswana for virtually nothing on your tailor made luxury African safari tour. Although it is the rainy season the Makgadikgadi and Kalahari receive very little rain so you can be assured not to get too wet while there – an African thunderstorm is also quite extraordinary and well worth seeing. In short we think a Botswana safari including Makgadikgadi is one of the ultimate trips one can do in Africa.
Kwhai Bush Camp is another more rustic safari tour option, run by famous safari operator Kerr & Downey in Botswana, perfect for those not wanting to pay through the nose but wanting to ensure they will have the best guides possible with a fantastically authentic African safari experience. Botswana doesn’t have to be expensive if you know the right people, the key is to book a less expensive camp with a professional well respected operator so you still benefit from their guides and delicious food. Those camps are generally in better locations too and can make for a truly exhilarating safari experience.
Botswana has a reputation as the best place in Africa for luxury safari tours and wildlife viewing for a reason and it certainly lives up to that. If you have time and inclination to let us plan this for you then we can organise the most incredible safari through Botswana for less than you think. Just let us help.
Dereck and Beverly Joubert are the founders of Great Plains Conservation (who manage Ol Donyo, Mara Plains, Zarafa and Selinda – some of Africa’s top safari tour luxury camp options) and are inspirational people not only truly knowing what makes a great safari, but also having a passion for the bush and its inhabitants, which is completely infectious. Because of this they are often being asked for interviews and CBS News 60 Minutes were the last people to interview them. The news team has been in Botswana to film the Joubert’s important conservation work with the lions near Duba – the film follows the characters from the Joubert’s most recent documentary and is well worth a watch, here we also have copied in their amazing video on the leopardess that stole their hearts.
Two of our favourite luxury safari camp managers in Savuti recently had some pretty good wildlife experiences of their own, usually leaving this to the guests! Resident lion researcher Simon Dures invited said managers on a thrilling trip to shoot lions for DNA samples – now we don’t mean shoot shoot but simply stalking and darting them – what an experience, one that we can arrange for you on your luxury African tour if it appeals. The Linyanti pride is currently quite big at 14 members and Simon would like to try and get as many DNA samples as possible. They sneak out of camp with huge camera lenses at the ready and the custom built landrover in the hope of getting some good shots of the action. Simon darts the lions with modified darts, which collect skin samples and then simply fall off. Once the lion has let out a large growl and run away Simon simply collects the samples and keeps them in his fridge for further analysis.
Simon and the team searched for hours in the area the pride was last seen to no avail, until another guide radios in to say they’ve found them on the opposite side of the channel. Sadly the team were too late as the guest vehicles were already there and the mission was aborted but we hope this has given you all an insight into the fantastic conservation work which is constantly going on in Botswana – most of the camps we deal with have a resident researcher or scientist and you are always welcome to sit with them and pick their brains, it can be a fascinating experience and if you give us enough warning we can incorporate a darting into your luxury safari tour.
We cannot discuss luxury African safari tours in Botswana without talking about Vumbura. Unsurprisingly guests recently enjoyed a phenomenal sighting from this amazing camp. One early morning before camp had arisen a lone wild dog was seen haring past camp – all staff were alerted and they all scrambled to try and locate this amazing creature, rare as they are to see.
Trying to find the dog was hard and brief rustles along the way were the only indication to the guides that she was there. On arriving at the pool deck she was found tugging something out of the undergrowth – on lifting her head the guides saw the red muzzle and realized she must be having her breakfast. They caught a glimpse of a fawn coloured leg and deduced that one of local impala had been caught again.
What happened next is still the cause of much debate in the camp as she suddenly stopped feeding pricked her ears and left the meal behind her. The camp staff all thought she had gone to get the rest of the pack but nobody returned – the guides even heard a lone wild dog call far away. On closed inspection the kill was very fresh and had died of shock and blood loss as there wasn’t a single mark on the nose or neck. No one can decide why that lone wild dog didn’t finish its meal but the hyenas dined out in luxury that evening. Another amazing siting from Vumbura.
Lebala Camp in the Okavango Delta is one of the best camps for seeing the endangered wild dog and this is why many include it in their safari tour. Not many clients of ours get excited about these amazing creatures until you actually see them, and your guide explains to you how much of a hard time these dogs have in surviving in modern day Africa. Lebala recently underwent a large refurb so it’s now not only in a fantastic location for wildlife viewing, but also one of Botswana’s most luxurious camps. Lebala Camp staff are wonderfully friendly and the guides there are some of the best in Botswana, you can’t go wrong with this camp.
The Lebala team recently wrote to us about current goings on around the camp and we love sharing these with you as proof of the excellent game viewing you could have when visiting Lebala. April can often be a slight in between time in Botswana as the nights get much cooler and the days can be breezy. The elephant and buffalo herds have started to move into the area as they always do in April making for exceptional baby elephant viewing for the Lebala guests, always an absolute highlight.
A pack of six wild dogs were found relaxing and dozing close to the airstrip and the guides suspect they are travelling around inspecting areas for dens – fingers crossed they will find a suitable spot close to camp so Lebala’s guests can enjoy seeing their puppies. The wild dog will decide on a den by the end of June. One male lion has also been in the area calling continuously as if he has lost his pride – no one is sure whether it’s because he has been kicked out, or he simply stayed asleep for too long and they’ve wondered off. Lazy boys hey! Lebala offers an ultra luxurious experience in a very remote part of Botswana, so you know you won’t see another vehicle or tourist, which makes for an intimate and personal safari. People who include Lebala on their luxury African safari tour are never ever disappointed, and many become repeat guests of this amazing camp.
Luxury African safari tours are our specialty and we know all areas of Africa intimately, including every single luxury camp and lodge, not only Botswana which we have discussed in this post – we are true experts and offer a real insight into the luxury African safari market. We always sell properties objectively based on what’s right for you and are up to date on special offers, as well as running our own promotions. When booking luxury African tour through us you will realize that we take our commission from the luxury lodges and camps, not from you, so your lightening quick, personal and expert services are completely free, and we love it – selling luxury safaris is our passion. We are always up to date on new luxury camps and lodges and get out to see them as soon as possible – one of our favourite new safari camps to hit the luxury African safari travel market is Machaba Camp‘s sister camp Gomoti in the Delta.
Machaba Camp in the Okavango Delta Botswana is one of the best luxury safari camps to open in the last few years and offers a luxury tented experience which is more East African in style than your usual Botswana camps. Machaba is Persian rugs, comfy cosy duvets and luxury furnishings, which just beg to be snuggled up to – all of this based in one of the Okavango’s best game viewing areas. There will often be wildlife wandering through camp and you really feel integrated into nature. It’s sister camp Gomoti promises to be the same and more and we can’t wait to see it, it’s location is pretty special and will combine beautifully with Machaba.