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Aug 2010 safari

Denver, Colorado
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Aug 2010 safari

Is it really too late to start planning a safari for Aug 2010? I know with the world cup this isn't the perfect time for late planning.

Family had recommended Ker and Downy and Micato. Looks wonderful but our budget is closer to $5000 for 2 travelers for 5-6 days of safari. (not including international air) We don't need high luxury. Just looking for something safe, with very knowledgeable guides and outstanding wildlife viewing. Any other recs? If not Botswana other sites for good safari? Thanks for your thoughts.

Stanley, Falkland...
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1. Re: Aug 2010 safari

"We don't need high luxury. Just looking for something safe, with very knowledgeable guides and outstanding wildlife viewing"

Well, in general, you get luxury whether you want it or not. As I understand it, The operators need to pay very high fees for the concession, and so do not want to cater for the backpacker market. Quite the opposite.

However, you will get safety and very good guides and outstanding wildlife viewing.

For somewhere less expensive, try any other country in Africa. But in that region, I would recommend, Namibia, Zambia, and South Africa.

USA
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2. Re: Aug 2010 safari

The later in Aug, the less World Cup interference. I just saw an interview with Botswana's High Commissioner to the UK and he did not think World Cup would have that big of an effect in Botswana.

Micato is about as expensive as you can get. Botswana is an expensive destination, though. And as Peterscot stated, luxury is pretty common in Botswana.

Try a mobile safari, which is also quite luxurious and comfortable, but less than many of the permanent tented camps. Wilderness, AndBeyond, Massons, Capricorn all run mobiles. I've done one mobile in Botswana (and hope to do more) and was highly impressed with the guiding and wildlife, which compared very nicely to the more expensive permanent tented camps.

I've just heard about some new mobiles in Zim. That's a less expensive destination than Botswana. I went with NatureWays in Zim and it was great. Rather than driving, Zim mobiles are usually walking/canoeing.

Back to Botswana--Chobe is not quite as expensive, but not as secluded, remote, and untouristed. But wildlife, esp. eles, is right up there. The Chobe River cruise is unique on the continent. One affordable spot in Botswana that I have not gone, but would like to, is Mashatu--closer to Gaberone than Maun.

Good luck!

Denver, Colorado
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3. Re: Aug 2010 safari

Thanks for your thoughts. Much appreciated, I will check out your recs.

Kate

Denver, Colorado
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14 posts
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4. Re: Aug 2010 safari

Just trying to see if there is anything in between caviar and chandeliers and crowded busses and pitching tents. Thanks for your thoughts. Kate

USA
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5. Re: Aug 2010 safari

The other thing you want to assess (besides no cavier and crowded busses) is that the place you are going has a sizeable population of animals that are used to vehicles. So that's another factor. Good luck!

Philadelphia...
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6. Re: Aug 2010 safari

KBand,

There are lots of alternatives to chandeliers and crowds. You need to come to grips with your budget first. How much are you willing to spend per day per person. That will dictate the level of travel comfort and amenities you can get.

Based on what you wrote, you're looking at $500 per day per person. That should put you in a decent lodge. I'd focus on the Okavango and Moremi area which is relatively easy to get to, but will offer you a pristine environment to see wildlife.

I'd take a look at www.andbeyondafrica.com for ideas on where to go and will give you an idea of costs.

Good luck.

Stanley, Falkland...
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7. Re: Aug 2010 safari

The best camps and guiding I've experienced in Botswana were with the Kwando camps. Kwando Lagoon is not luxurious,but neither is it cheap.

Philadelphia...
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8. Re: Aug 2010 safari

KBand,

Another thought is a mobile safari. You can stay for longer since you are looking at a price tag of around $250-300 per person per night for a mobile safari. That way, you have longer in places and will therefore increase your chances of seeing some amazing things.

Contact Eric at eric@bushcampsafaris.com

He runs several different trips. You will be camping, but the guides are with you 24/7, you will have camp staff that will cook, set up and break down for you, and if lucky (like I was in Aug '09), have a private safari. Even if you don't, Eric takes a maximum of six people so there are no crowded anything (but also no caviar...)

Photos of my trip with Bush Camp Safaris are here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/92973754@N00/sets/72157622129106070/

Enjoy.

Denver, Colorado
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9. Re: Aug 2010 safari

Thank you all for your thoughts and recs. I will definitely check out the mobile safari options. The photos were terrific and hopefully convinced my husband that the cost of this will be more than worth the amazing experience! Looking forward to it. K8andMark.

London
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10. Re: Aug 2010 safari

Hi K& & Mark,

I've just come back from Kenya & did quite a bit of research on who to do this with. The company I travelled with also does Botswana (I know because I was considering it as an alternative initially) but as well as all those expensive lodges, they do mobile safaris in a small group or you can also do it privately. I think they allow only 10 people on each tour which is quite nice. And bear in mind that when you stay at the top lodges, you are also doing your game drives in a group - they are not private. So I don't think you lose out really. They have quite a few options. www.jenmansafaris.com I found them great for Kenya & was more than happy with the service I got.

Good luck! Hope you manage towork it all out.

Maddi