Southern Africa – Botswana (Part II)

From Namibia we headed to the Okavango Delta in Botswana. The goal of this part of the trip was seeing animals. This page doesn’t feature pictures of many animals as most of the photos were taken on Tom’s cameras. It’s too hard to work out who took which shot, so they’ll all just end up on Tom’s website eventually.  IMG_7890

Transport around the Okavango Delta is fastest by small aircraft – you get great views too!

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Our first “tented camp” at Kanana was a bit rough…


Being a far less active holiday than our usual fare I was trying to keep up some sort of exercise regime.


Our first camp had a number of water activities on offer. This is not one of them! This is a road and we are in a car not a boat.


Our guide told us we were going to see a dead lion. We pulled up, and I was just about to ask “how long has he been dead?”… when the lion shook his head! Ha, ha. This was the pose most lions seemed to adopt during daylight hours.


Elephant company at sunset on Day 1.


Day 2 we headed out onto the water. This morning was in the mokoro, the traditional canoe – though made of fibreglass rather than tree trunks. It was very peaceful and a really good way to feel like you were really “in” nature.


The mokoro were powered by the poler standing at the back – good balance required!


Water lily


Being on the mokoro meant we were very quiet which gave us the opportunity to see the very shy Sitatunga antelope. We hadn’t taken the DLSRs with us as we were worried (probably unnecessarily) about them getting wet, so this is my best shot of it!


Returning to the camp after our morning out. The water channels at Kanana were narrow and relatively shallow – perfect for hippos. The general approach seemed to be to drive the boats “James Bond style” i.e. as fast as possible so that if there were any submerged hippos they didn’t have time to cause any damage.


Sunset on the delta.


After two nights we moved onto our next “tented camp”, Okuti, in Moremi Game Reserve. It was really hot (high 30Cs) while we were here. And the siesta time in the afternoon could really only be used to pass out on the bed and feel the sweat roll off you.


Okuti also offered boat trips, so we headed out on the water on our first afternoon. The waterways were much wider and deeper compared to Kanana so less hippos to worry about!


Though we did get to see a few elephants in the water. This was after we’d backed off a bit – we had been parked on the right-hand side of the grassy patch when the elephant decided it wanted to be there!


Okuti at dusk.


Quality bridge construction in Moremi Game Reserve.


During the afternoon activities our guides would find somewhere pleasant to have our chosen sundowners. Here is Tom hanging out with some hippos and a G&T.


To get between the different camps we took small aircraft – using bush airstrips. This is the airstrip used for Okuti.


Our third camp was the most ‘tent-like’ (or rustic) of the camps… it was tough but we struggled through.


The first afternoon at Linyanti Bush Camp we relaxed by the pool and watched this fire race across the horizon. We were slightly concerned as it was large and moving quickly, though the wind was in our favour. The camp staff were not worried as the Linyanti marshes and river are between us and the fire.


Sundowners after watching a large pack of African wild dogs.