I'm planning a 3 week trip in August/September 3013 through Namibia and Botswana to Victoria Falls (or vice versa). We want a small group camping tour (self drive is out of question). Ideally we want to see highlights of Namibia (dunes - Namib desert, rock engravings in Damarland, visit Himba in Kamanjab, Etosha) and game parks in Boswana (Okavango Delta, Moremi or Savuti, Chobe riverfront) plus Victoria Falls. Such tours don't exist and a custom itinerary is too expensive (unless we find someone to join - send me a message if you are interested!).
So I settled for Cape Town to Victoria Falls that all overland tours do, but I want small group, max 12 people. closest to my itinerary are Jenman, JJ Africa Tours and Nomad. Please help me decide which to chose based on pros and cons (no trip includes Moremi or Savute, all finish in Victoria Falls):
Jenman - 22 days, half camping, half accommodated (good balance for us), 12 people max, goes everywhere in Namibia plus seal Colony, 3 days in Etosha (v. good), visits Delta from north (Etsha 13, stay 2 nights Guma Lagoon camp (drive in), short mokoro trip, only one day spend in Delta), travels through Caprivi with stop in Mudumo, no game drive in Chobe - only boat cruise.
JJ Africa - 20 days, much smaller group: 6 people max, 7 nights accommodated, rest camping (good balance for us), doesn't visit Himba but visits San village (I really would like to visit Himba), only 2 days in Etosha but does a game drive and river cruise in Chobe, goes to see rock engravings and seal colony in Namibia, standard mokoro 2 day trip from Maun (good amount of time in Delta but in most crowded area). Very small company, very few reviews but all I found are very good.
Nomad - 12 person tours are only in fully accommodated version so more expensive (and we want some camping), 20 days, does not go to rock engravings (I really want to see them) or seal colony, does visit Himba and San village, only 2 days in Etosha, has an option of taking Chobe drive a d does river cruise, flies from Maun for 2 nights to Gunn/Moremi Crossing camp (wet camp, no drives) which seems to me very attractive compared with mokoro trp than cannot go very deep into Delta, but maybe there is no much difference?
In summary, Jenman itinerary seems best for us, JJ Afrca has much smaller group for same or even lower price and I think 6 people is optimal for what we want, and Nomad has fly-in Delta camp which sounds great to me. Tough decision.
I looked also at Sunway safaris and Africa in Focus, but they skip to many things I want to see without obvious advantage compared to above options.
I will post this on Botswana and Namibia forums. I woud be very grateful for your opinions.