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Set Departure Safari

Okavango Delta Mobile & Walking Safari

“Explore the Incredible Okavango Delta on this privately guided safari with Frank”

Price $5900 USD (See price tab)
Country
Botswana
Duration
9 Nights
Dates
1 Jun 2023 — 10 Jun 2023
Safari Type
Mobile Safari, Walking Safari
Location
Okavango Delta
Kids Min Age
16

The Okavango Delta is one of the most sought-after safari destinations in Africa. It’s home to an incredible diversity of wildlife along its many pristine river channels and wildly remote islands. This mobile tented safari guided by Frank will uncover the Delta’s many secrets in a mixture of safari drives, mokoro trips and walking safaris.

Starting off at Maun airport you will fly over the Okavango and land in the famous Moremi Game Reserve where you will meet your guides. Spend the next 4 nights exploring two different regions of Moremi on memorable game drives in search of the incredible resident wildlife. There are good chances for lions, leopards and if you are lucky wild dogs. On one of the days you will embark on a half day boat cruise deep into the permanent swamps in search of more aquatic birdlife and the elusive sitatunga antelope.

After Moremi you will head to a remote mokoro station where you will say goodbye to the vehicle and your only form of transport for the next 4 nights will be on foot and by mokoro. Exploring a totally new area in such an authentic immersive way is incredible on its own – now add the abundant resident wildlife and informative interpretations to bring it all to life. Elephants and buffaloes are likely encountered daily and any fresh lion tracks are followed with chances of finding these big cats as they explore this wetland wildlife haven.

“As you all know my heart has been stolen by the Okavango Delta with her many rivers and channels. No matter how many times I visit, it’s only gets better. So I would like to invite you to join me in this exciting region of Botswana and explore it’s fascinating ecosystem on game drives – and of course walking & mokoro safaris. I can guarantee fantastic wildlife sightings, adventure away from big tourist crowds, many laughs amongst friends, drinks around a crackling campfire and special moments out in true African wilderness.

I’ve planned for this safari to be in June which ensures colder winter temperatures in Botswana. This allows us to comfortably explore on foot for far greater distances and also for longer hours – as we are not impacted by the scorching heat of summer. This also coincides with the peak of the annual floods of the Okavango, which turns the dry kalahari sands into a wetland oasis. Perfect for us to explore!

This will be an epic, eco-friendly adventure where you explore the Okavango in detail along with me, leaving only tracks as evidence of our visit. You’ve never experienced the Delta like this before!

Regards,
Frank Steenhuisen”

Safari Rating

adventure
wilderness
wildlife
comfort
photographic
guiding

highlights

  • All-inclusive 8 nights of mobile tented safari in Botswana’s Okavango Delta.
  • 1 final night in a comfortable lodge on the outskirts of Maun.
  • High level and memorable guiding from Frank and Okwa.
  • Fascinating wildlife sightings – Bring your cameras!
  • Day trip boat cruise in the Delta’s permanent swamps.
  • Walking & mokoro safaris in a remote part of the Okavango Delta with great wildlife.
  • Track and approach members of BIG 5 on foot.
  • BOTSWANA! Need we say more?

frank leopard moremi okavango delta botswana 1

map and overview

Flight from Maun to Moremi

2 Nights Moremi Mobile Camp (Xakanaxa area)

2 Nights Moremi Mobile Camp (Xiini area)

4 Nights Wild Expedition Safaris (Private concession)

1 Night Thamalakane River Lodge (or similar)

guides

Frank Steenhuisen

Originally born in Pretoria, I spent the first half of my childhood in South Africa. At the age of 5, my family acquired a holiday home situated in the open wildlife system of the Greater Kruger National Park. The frequent visits to our home in the bush ignited my passion and curiosity for all things wild and natural. I spent as much time as possible on the tracker seat, behind the wheel of our game viewer looking for leopards and flicking through reference books learning as much as I could about Africa’s fascinating wildness.

Today I’m incredibly grateful for my African upbringing, which has provided me with 20+ years of safari experience in Big 5 terrain. This experience is the backbone on which we built the safariFRANK business and has enabled me to share my safari addiction through first hand experience with my guests on privately guided safaris. The last 5 years has seen me travelling Africa full time, identifying new incredible destinations, hosting private safaris and embarking on photographic assignments – spanning across 7 different African countries.

When I’m not on safari helping you to get the most out of your camera and the situation, I’m taking photos myself. I’m a true addict to wildlife photography no matter where I am. While on safari I also spend many evenings under clear African night skies with my guests to teach them the techniques of night-time photography. Whether you are just starting out and wanting to get the most out of your camera or you are a seasoned professional – I can help you get the shot you’re after. Let’s tailor make your safari to the best locations to help get you the perfect wildlife-shots!

Okwa Sarefo

Okwa Sarefo is of the Yeyi tribe and is from the remote village/island of Jedibe in the northern Okavango Delta. He grew up living a largely traditional life along with his siblings on their own island in the Delta where he learned how to pole a mokoro, fish and hunt wild animals from a young age. Okwa and one of his siblings eventually left this traditional life and moved to the village of Etsha where they could be schooled, despite their father’s wishes. Shortly after completing school Okwa returned to Jedibe and managed to secure a job as a mokoro poler in the nearby Jao concession, operated by Wilderness Safaris. Having grown up in the Okavango Delta, Okwa pursued a career in tourism not only because he wants to preserve his country’s natural heritage, but also because of his interest in foreign cultures which he loves to learn about from his international guests. This combination of interests eventually saw him work his way up to a guiding position, moving between some of Wilderness Safaris most prestigious camps including Kings Pool, Mombo camp and Little Mombo. Thereafter, Okwa worked for &Beyond as a guide, lodge manager and eventually landed in the operations department. Eventually, he went on to freelance as a guide for various companies throughout Botswana and developed a passion for training future guides for ‘Nature Guide Training Botswana’ but most notably ‘Ecotraining’ – Africa’s pioneer and most established guide training company. It was during Okwa’s time at Ecotraining where he met Frank by way of introduction.

With his many international clients over the years and safariFRANK’s support, Okwa has since managed to create his own safari business – Wild Expedition Safaris, offering high guiding standard mobile safaris but most notably walking safaris in some of the Delta’s most remote wilderness areas. He also offers his services as a private guide on request with now more than 20 years guiding experience, and freelances as a specialist guide exclusively for Great Plains Conservation at the famous Duba Plains Camp.

A true gentlemen, lover of fresh coffee and one of the best walking safari guides in Botswana.

 

start dates

The below date is available for single travellers or couples to join to form a small group. If you are a group of 4 or more then please get in touch for a private departure!

1 June 2023 - 10 June 2023

suitable for

EXPECTATIONS:

  • Must be willing to sleep in comfortable yet basic tents in unfenced wilderness areas (they are safe!).
  • All accommodation, food preparation and drinks are catered for and already included. You will have breakfast, lunch and three course dinners on all days with snacks in between. No need to bring anything extra unless you have a specific indulgence.
  • Expect cold to mild temperatures (mornings can be 5 degrees and mid-day about 30), perfect for extended walking safaris. Almost no chance for rain.
  • Each tent has an en-suite ‘bush bathroom’ with shortfall pit toilet and bucket shower systems that will be prepared by camp staff.
  • Charging facilities only available for the first portion of the trip, ensure you have extra batteries or power banks for the walking safari section.
  • Guests must be fit enough and willing to partake in walking safaris in areas containing Big Game. Walking safaris can cover about 15km per day in uneven and varying terrain.
  • There is a high likelihood of encountering Elephants, Buffaloes and Lions on foot (potentially dangerous game). The lead guide will be armed. Although these animals might be encountered and viewed on foot they will always be respected, and the aim is to view them without them being aware of the walking groups presence. Wildlife will not purposely be confronted for guest ‘thrills’ or selfies. This is dangerous and unethical guiding.
  • Frank will be hosting the safari and sharing his wealth of knowledge and stories with guests. He is always accompanied by a professional local guide who will be conducting the activities and carrying the rifle.
  • The game viewing and abundant wildlife will be best for the first portion of the safari where more ground is covered by vehicle, this is the best opportunity for photography. While on foot it is harder to locate as much wildlife because less ground is covered and as a result less territories or home ranges of wildlife is traversed. With that being said, the emphasis is very much on finding wildlife on foot and often activities are focussed on tracking big game.

detailed itinerary

First day: Welcome to the Delta

The safari starts off at Maun airport where you will be met by a representative. This person will help the group to board their charter flight into Moremi Game Reserve. This is a short 30-minute flight and will give you a birds eye view of the vast Okavango Delta.

When you land at the airstrip you will be met by Frank and Okwa. Luggage will be loaded onto the vehicle and you will proceed to your private mobile camp. Upon arriving in camp you will be given a safety briefing and introduction to mobile safaris. Thereafter you will be shown your tent where you can freshen up.

Depending on the time and the energy of the group there could be a possibility for a short drive in the area.

moremi fish eagle riding elephant botswana

Day two: Xakanaxa exploration

The days consist of an early morning wakeup call, before just the sun has risen, at which point you will have half an hour to prepare your things and meet at the morning fireplace for a much-needed coffee and some food to keep you going throughout the game drive.

The group will then aim to set-off for the morning drive as soon as allowed too, as per the regulations. The first few hours of the drive are the most exciting as the chances for predators are at its best, and so is the beautiful morning light. A morning coffee break usually takes place in a beautiful spot about halfway through the roughly four-hour morning drive. By this point the temperature is starting to climb and the movements of animals (especially predators) comes to a halt. The group would then return to Camp with a nice brunch prepared on an open fire which will be much needed after the morning animal search.

This is typically the time for showers to take place and a bit of relaxing/catching up on sleep. Okwa and Frank will discuss to you the afternoon activity plans which generally leave about 4 hours prior to the sun setting.

Xakanaka: This region of the Moremi Game Reserve is absolutely stunning. It has a large mix of vegetation types that are very typical of the Okavango Delta and thus there are some target species to see. It is located right in the heart of the Delta with an abundance of water. The result of the permanent water can be seen by the large number of huge riverine canopy trees. It feels somewhat like a jungle mixed with a swamp!

elephant khwai delta

Day 3: Boat trip into the Swamps

Today will be a spectacular day! The plan will be to head out for a shorter morning drive in the area to cover any regions yet to be explored and hopefully to find something not yet seen. But then instead of returning to camp, the group will board a private boat and will set out on a day boating trip deep into the permanent swamp of the Okavango.

The goal for this long boating trip is to explore far into this habitat and the creatures that call it home. The elusive Sitatunga antelope lives in this region and would sure be a highlight if luck be on your side. The bird life is along the water ways of the Delta and you will be on the lookout for kingfishers, herons and if lucky maybe a Pels Fishing Owl. It’s a unique habitat and it will be the only time during the trip where the permanent swamps are explored.

There will be a packed lunch which will be enjoyed somewhere out in a secluded section of this wilderness.

The group will then boat back to the land and depart from the Xakanaxa region to an area in the south named Xiini, game drive all the way!

Your same camp and crew will be waiting for your arrival in Xiini.

moremi boat okavango delta safari

Day 4: Xiini Exploration

The days consist of an early morning wakeup call, before just the sun has risen, at which point you will have half an hour to prepare your things and meet at the morning fireplace for a much-needed coffee and some food to keep you going throughout the game drive.

The group will then aim to set-off for the morning drive as soon as allowed too, as per the regulations. The first few hours of the drive are the most exciting as the chances for predators are at its best, and so is the beautiful morning light. A morning coffee break usually takes place in a beautiful spot about halfway through the roughly four-hour morning drive. By this point the temperature is starting to climb and the movements of animals (especially predators) comes to a halt. The group would then return to Camp with a nice brunch prepared on an open fire which will be much needed after the morning animal search.

This is typically the time for showers to take place and a bit of relaxing/catching up on sleep. Okwa and Frank will discuss to you the afternoon activity plans which generally leave about 4 hours prior to the sun setting.

Xiini: An area of the park that is further away from lodges and campsites making it much more remote and wild. It is also home to the largest lion pride in the Moremi which can be well over 15 pride members. Along with such a large pride comes plenty of food, as the area is also home to large buffalo herds.

leopard moremi botswana tail golden

Day five: Expedition into the Wild

Today you will start with a short drive in the Xiini area for a last chance at viewing any wildlife by vehicle, before making your way towards Maun at around midday.

Prior to reaching Maun you will turn sharply left and head on a seemingly random dirty road. Following this for about 1hr30 you will eventually reach a mokoro station. From here you will say goodbye to the vehicle and step into a mokoro, your mode of transport for the next 4 nights. A local mokoro poler from the nearby village will pole you deep into the Delta to your walking camp. Depending on the time there could be an opportunity for an introductory afternoon walk from camp.

mokoro elephants okavango safari

Days 6-8: Walking and Mokoro Safaris!

The next three full days will be spent exploring a vast and unspoilt wilderness in the most authentic and traditional means possible: on foot and by mokoro (traditional canoe). Okwa and his accompanying staff members are from the Bayei tribe, whom were born and raised in the Okavango. Okwa himself grew up on an island in the Delta where he spent his childhood hunting and exploring the waterways as daily life.

For Okwa and his team, this is like taking a stroll in their backyard. They have been doing it for many years and know how to avoid danger and go unnoticed. The walks will be focussed not only on the smaller details of the delta and its ecology but also largely on finding wildlife on foot should any fresh signs present themselves.

The mornings normally consist of a longer walk, in order to cover some distance. Looking for any signs of fresh lion tracks to follow, and if found, which would definitely be a highlight! Although extremely rare, sometimes even rhino tracks can be discovered which brings about extreme excitement in your guides!

The afternoons are much more relaxed and often involve a mokoro ride to gain access to a new area for a shorter walk. The days are however flexible, wildlife and guest dependant, and will be discussed with the group as the experience unfolds.

One thing is guaranteed however – an Okavango Experience like no other!

walking safari botswana wild expedition safaris

Day 9: Back to some civilisation

One final walk in the nearby area on this day will be enjoyed before returning to camp for a heart breakfast. Shortly thereafter it’s time to pack up and head back to the mokoro station where a vehicle will be waiting to transfer the group back to Maun. If still required there will be the opportunity for a covid-19 test to be conducted in Maun. You will then all check in to a comfortable lodge for a well-deserved proper shower and some wifi.

Day 10: The final day

A transfer will take the group to the airport where you will bid Frank and Okwa goodbye. You will be on time for onward connections.

We highly recommend extending your safari to either more lodges in northern Botswana or to Victoria Falls. From Maun you are able to book a direct flight to Kasane where you have a choice of lodges, or a transfer can take you across into Zimbabwe for a stay at Victoria Falls.

zimbabwe victoria falls river lodge luxury 37

accommodation

The accommodation for the entire trip will be in 3×3 dome tents with a shaded entrance, en-suite toilet and shower. These tents contain solid beds with a foam mattress, quality linen, warm duvet and towels. The toilet for these tents are pit-fall toilets, which are dug with a spade by the staff prior to your arrival. The showers are bucket showers which are filled with warm water by the camp staff upon request.

dome tent mobile safari okwa wild expedition safaris botswana okavango delta

price

USD$ 5,900 per person sharing.

(The price will be converted from USD$ to your currency at the time of booking. Any price indicated in another currency other than USD is merely indicative.)

  • Maximum of 8 Adults sharing.
  • Minimum of 4 Adults.
  • Enquire for single supplement.

Included:

  • Accommodation as stated above.
  • Transportation within the itinerary stated above.
  • All meals.
  • Frank Steenhuisen as your private safari host.
  • Entrance fees and excursions as described in above itinerary.
  • A daily allocation of a selection of local beverages including beer, wine, waters and cold drinks.
  • Boat Cruise and mokoro trips.

Excluded:

  • International flights and airport taxes.
  • Pre and post safari accommodation in Maun/Kasane/Victoria Falls.
  • Any entrance fees and excursions not included in the above itinerary.
  • Laundry.
  • Gratuities.
  • Items of personal nature (telephone expenses, curios, medicines etc).
  • ENTRY VISA FEES.
  • BANK CHARGES (as per bank or 3.5% commission for VISA/MASTER and 4.5% commission for AMEX).
  • Covid-19 testing.
  • Comprehensive Travel insurance.

additional information

Additional Info:

  • Services subject to availability at the time of booking.
  • Times of activities, meals, transfers is subject to change.
  • Given the nature of this safari, the age restriction is a minimum of 16 years paying full fare.
  • Maximum age is 65. Anyone older than this is required to produce a medical certificate proving that they are physically able to participate in the activities and terrain in which the safari tour will be conducted in. (for your own and also the groups safety)
  • PLEASE NOTE that whilst we endeavour to accommodate guests at the above stipulated lodges/camps, safariFRANK reserves the right to replace such with one of a similar standard and location.
  • Terms and conditions apply.
  • Rates are quoted as per person sharing.

HANDY TIPS:

  • Visas/Passports: Please ensure: 1) that you have pre-arranged your entry visa if required; 2) that your passport is valid for at least six months after your scheduled departure date; 3) that you have a minimum of 2 consecutive clear pages. If this is not the case, there is a danger of being turned away by the Immigration Service on arrival at the airport – assuming your airline has agreed to bring you and risk a fine in the first place.
  • Health: No vaccinations are mandatory but please consult your doctor for medical advice. Parts of Botswana are considered to be malarial so we recommend speaking to your doctor about the use of anti-malarial prophylactics (normally Malarone), especially if visiting during the summer (December to April) – subject to advice from your own doctor.
  • Luggage: Is restricted to 15 kg (including hand luggage) per person in a soft bag. Weight is generally less important than volume as everything is carried with you on safari.

Ready for an adventure? Lets Talk!

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