A couple of weeks ago, we wrote about how some of our lodges are now offering specialised private guides for guests on their trips out on safari, we thought it would be an excellent time to continue this private theme with some of the wonderful bespoke, raw, and of course luxurious, mobile safaris. Our friends from Barclay Stenner who run the most exquisite mobile camp in Botswana are the people we will be focusing on in this blog.
This is going to sound ridiculous, but here is a brief outline of what a mobile safari involves. On land into Maun, you will be met by your guide or someone who will be with you throughout the duration of your safari, they will basically assist and help you with everything throughout your time in Botswana. So, on your arrival, you will not have to worry, think about everything, it will all be taken care of. You will be taken to your connecting flight into the Delta where you begin your safari. When you land into the Delta, you will be taken on a game drive to your first camp. You are likely to be in this spot for two nights, so you can settle into the safari way of life. Your days will be filled with game drives, walking safaris and storytelling around the campfire. Following this, the next few days will involve exploring different locations within the Delta and whilst you are away on your game drives, the mobile camp will move everything and set up in a new location, so by the time you finish your game drive, and arrive at your new camp, it will all be set up just how it was at your first stop! It is wonderfully seamless, and the teams work incredibly hard to ensure nothing is left behind to the wild, as well as make sure they have a cool drink for you on your arrival and some good food ready and waiting!
At Barclay Stenner Safaris, the owners are guides themselves, so they will be with you throughout your whole stay. The whole ethos is to have complete and utter privacy throughout your stay, to totally immerse yourself in the wilds of Botswana. They explore both the Okavango Delta and the totally opposite Kalahari Desert. With complete flexibility, the dates, and the locations you would like to explore are all worked around what you are looking to do and to get out of your safari. Offering the highest level of hospitality throughout your stay, they have a very high reputation.
We would like to let you know about two of the types of safaris you can experience; Ten-night Lux Explorer Botswana and the Bushman experience. With the ten-night Botswana experience, you will arrive in Maun and catch your small aircraft to the Moremi Airstrip, from here you will be taken on a game drive to your first camp location and will stay here for the next three nights, getting to know this part of the delta well. On day 4 you will pack your bags, leave them with the camp and embark on your game drive through the Moremi Game Reserve. You will then take a boat trip through the mighty Okavango Delta until you reach your new camp location where you will be staying for just one night. Day 5, you will head out on a game drive, or have a leisurely morning until you are taken to your boat where you will be taken to your next camp – obviously having some stunning sightings on the way. Here you will be staying for three nights exploring the local flora and fauna. On day 8 you will be taken to the nearby airstrip where you will catch your lightweight flight to the Makgadikgadi salt pans. Here you will be staying at the wonderful San Camp and enjoy meeting the habituated meerkats, horse riding if you like and quad biking on an almost lunar type of landscape (make sure you pack some goggles, or large sunglasses to alleviate the dust, your face can get quite sore when going at speed on a quad bike!). Finally on day 10, you will be taken back to the Makgadikgadi airstrip and take your final flight back to Johannesburg. Leaving with fantastic memories of a trip of a lifetime, almost how the original explorers would have… but with a lot A LOT more luxury.
The second mobile safari we would like to mention from Barclay Stenner is the Bushman experience. This is a four-day safari where you will arrive into Maun on day one, you will land into the airstrip and meet the Ju’hoasi Bushman who will welcome you with a traditional dance. After a fitful night’s sleep, you will then embark on your morning bushwalk with the bushmen, who will teach you about the traditional medicines they use from the wilds, and possibly teach you how they track animals. In the afternoon, after busy morning of learning, you will be taken to the nearby village where you will gather around the fire and listen to the stories of the Ju’hoasi. The following morning, you will be taken hunting with the bushman, to see how they use traditional, ancient methods to track animals. In the afternoon, you will cook with the bushman over a fire and listen to more stories and tales from their ancestors. On the morning of day 4, you will be taken out with the bushman to experience how they trap with traditional tools and methods. In the evening, your campfire stories will take a new turn with a traditional trance dance – not the type of trance you see in the middle of a field with heavy music may we add! – but witness some pure magic with one of the elders immersing themselves to be in touch with the nature and the wilderness, it is quite a spectacle to withhold and one that will touch the soul. Finally on day 5 you will bid farewell to the bushman and catch your light aircraft back to Maun and onto Johannesburg and home.
If you would like some more information on how you can book a private mobile safari, then please let us know, we know Barclay Stenner would love to host you – they even had Taylor Swift to stay…!