We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Help planning an Itinerary

Galway, Ireland
Level Contributor
86 posts
7 reviews
Save Topic
Help planning an Itinerary

Hi Guys, I am in the early stages of planning a trip in Africa for next year (Im thinking late March) and I am looking for (large amounts!) of advice. My initial plan, which is in need of plenty of refinement and detail is the following: Fly into Victoria falls and from there visit Chobe and possibly the Okavango Delta. Spend about a week around this area. I then want to fly to Kruger and spend a few days there, I may spend a few days in Johannesburg on the way to Kruger. I am thinking of staying at the Gomo Gomo game lodge in Kruger. After this I plan on flying to Cape Town and spending 4 or 5 days exploring the city and surrounding area.

 

I am trying to figure out the best way of doing the Botswana leg of the trip. There doesn’t seem to be any tours that do a loop through the north of the country through Chobe, the Delta and then back to Victoria Falls (and I hear that there isn’t much in the South of the Country so I don’t want to spend a lot of time travelling through this area). I am not looking for high end accommodation, a basic lodge or camping is all I want. I considered driving myself but from what I have seen the roads can be challenging and I don’t have experience of 4x4 driving so I am ruling out this option.

 

Does anybody have suggestions as to how I could do this, the best budget places to stay or do people I should change the route I take altogether?

Namibia
Level Contributor
553 posts
36 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Help planning an Itinerary

I won't comment on the SA part of your trip as that is clear. There are tours that are more budget and where you do more camping than staying in high end lodges. Depending if you have set dates there are companies that offer scheduled tours from Vic Falls to Chobe, the Delta and back to Vic Falls. Most tours however either start in Maun/ Vic Falls and than end in Vic Falls/ Maun, but that shouldn't be a problem as you want to go to South Africa in any way and there are flights from both cities.

If you can't find a suitable tour though, you can also fly into Vic Falls, stay here and than take a transfer over to Kasane and do the Chobe from here. Kasane in any case is the main hub for the Chobe and you can do day tours from here. You can than fly to Maun and do a camping tour for 3 days as well. This would give you a bit more flexibility than finding a tour that covers all your interest and it could be cheaper as well.

Clive - Suricate Safaris

Stavanger, Norway
Level Contributor
7 posts
38 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Help planning an Itinerary

Just a little comment from me - We have been selfdriving the same area twice now and are planning our third trip. The driving isn't challenging at all, and we are not used to African roads coming from Norway :) Selfdriving is a great experience, and if you choose a Landrover with a roof top tent its a very flexible and good solution. We have used the company Safari Drive and their landrovers do the job nicely. If you are interested you can find further details about our roundtrip in north Botswana here:

offcoursephotos.com/Trips/…20Report.html

Have fun :o)

Marianne/Norway

Galway, Ireland
Level Contributor
86 posts
7 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Help planning an Itinerary

Clive - thanks for the tips. After a bit more looking into it I think flying to Maun and then travelling overland to Vic falls is the way to go. There are plenty of different ways to do that route.

Dont be afraid to comment on the SA leg of my trip that is definitely open to change. I am not familiar enough with the area to know the best way of doing things. I gave Gomo Gomo lodge as an example of what I was looking at. On the cheaper end of things but with good reviews. I'd welcome more suggestions

TravelWild - I'd love to give the self drive a shot but I have seen in a number of places that it can be challenging. Your saying that area is suitable for somebody with no off road experience?

Stavanger, Norway
Level Contributor
7 posts
38 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Help planning an Itinerary

Hi there,

I didn't have any off road experience at all and I had no trouble with handling the roads. They are sandy, so you drive slowly of course. If you find any tarmac (in and around Kasane and a stretch from Maun towards Moremi) it can be scattered with potholes. But again, you drive slowly like everybody else. We (my Irish boyfriend and I) drove all around the Okavango panhandle, criss crossed Moremi for 7 days, drove to Chobe River via Savute Safari Lodge along the Chobe River and stayed at the campsite Ihaha for another 5 days. No problems with the roads. They are sandy and a bit bumpy, a few stretches of gravel and a few stretches of tarmac with potholes. That's all. We drove in the dry season - July/August. It was just perfect for us. Both of us wanted to drive, because it was good fun. We did the same trip a few years later. We also added South Africa and Zambia to that trip. Started in SA, through Bots to Zambia and all the way back again. Fantastic. Next time we will definately go for a self drive trip again. For us it has worked perfectly 3 out of 3 times! That's all I can say :o)

Namibia
Level Contributor
553 posts
36 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Help planning an Itinerary

It all depends what route you are taking and when you are traveling. If you stick to the tar road from Maun via Nata to Kasane you don't need any 4x4 experience, but if you want to drive from Maun via the Delta and Shavuti to Kasane and Vic Falls, than my opinion differs. It can be quite a tricky drive and one I would certainly not to with only one vehicle and no experience.

Than rather check that you find a tour operator that offers a good camping trip that covers that route. Not only will you have an experienced tour guide, but they will also know where the best camping spots are and were the most animals are at certain times.

Clive - Suricate Safaris

West Hollywood...
Level Contributor
307 posts
Save Reply
6. Re: Help planning an Itinerary

That trip report was awesome!

~LuckyChucky

New York City, New...
Level Contributor
73 posts
13 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Help planning an Itinerary

We went with a local company JJ Africa Tours, I know they do short trips from Victoria falls to the Okavango delta and back. We camped because we too, did not want luxury hotels! We had amazing service and top notch food, even whilst camping! We hope to return in 2014 once we get more vacation time!

Simcoe, Canada
Level Contributor
5 posts
38 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Help planning an Itinerary

All of these are very interesing and good for my husband and myself. We are going to Vic Falls in Spetember and are wanting to rent a vehicle and travel a bit on our own. We were really nervous as we heard that the police can be corrupt and it might not be too safe. We are in Vic Falls for two weeks and the third week and a bit we will be at the Ndabiri on Msuna Island and this is where we are wanting to take day trips or overnight ones on our own if possible. Has anyone done this and do you have any helpful tips and information. Thanks everyone. Valerie

Avila Beach...
Level Contributor
1,115 posts
9 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Help planning an Itinerary

OK as a complete novice with NO driving experience, in 2 trips through Botswana as a 4x4 passenger I can say that there can definitely be driving challenges and risks, particularly if you don't know what you are doing. I have seen/heard plenty of people stuck in the sand and this could become dangerous if you are on your own. Water crossings may be a necessity. Not saying don't do it, just be aware of what you are signing up for and come prepared. Being stopped by authorities for alleged "violations" is certainly a possibility (have experienced this in Zimbabwe, but have heard of it in Bots as well). Having said this, some of the most amazing places you can see in your lifetime - I can't wait for the next trip!

Incidentally, I have only stayed inside Kruger (which is amazing), but I have heard spectacular things about Gomo Gomo - enjoy!

Edited: 11 July 2013, 04:59
Simcoe, Canada
Level Contributor
5 posts
38 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Help planning an Itinerary

Thanks for that. My husband and I do some four wheeling as we have an off road vehicle. We have also traveled in our vehicle on beaches in Australia to get to great camping. We are more nervous of the people, which is probably silly on our part but you hear some stories and it does make one worry. We are looking forward very much to going. Thanks again.

Get answers to your questions about Botswana