namibia etosha national park watering hole giraffes zebras springbok

Dramatic Wildlife, the Caprivi Strip, Traditional San Tribes with Timothy (Tim) Smith

Overview

Join us for world-class game viewing, exquisite wildlife lodges that don’t cater to mass tourism, and an insight into the ancient and mystical world of San hunter-gatherers. On this unique new safari, you’ll discover Namibia and Botswana as few travelers do, with “insider” experiences that get you to pristine wildlife areas and into fascinating local cultures. Explore famed Etosha National Park as few do, from the eastern gate, as well as the exclusive private Onguma Game Reserve, home to a family of black rhinos as well as lion, leopard, and cheetah. Heading to a tented camp in the land of the traditional Ju/’hoan people, learn firsthand about their profound knowledge of the bush environment and join them on a walk to experience their traditional skills. We give you a complete change of scene in Botswana’s waterworld of the Okavango Delta. Here, we’ll safari by mokoro (dugout canoe) in the pristine lagoons of Nxamaseri in the northern Okavango Delta—far from the Chobe crowds. In the once-forbidden Caprivi Strip (now referred to as the Zambezi Strip) in northern Namibia, you’ll explore the riverine landscapes of Bwabwata National Park, the new jewel in Namibia’s conservation crown. Along the Kwando River, the elephant viewing is excellent, as is the birding along the reedy channels at the park’s eastern fringe. We cap our group size at just six travelers, so we’ll have many lodges for our exclusive use and great wildlife experiences shared with our phenomenal Trip Leader, Timothy Smith, a true safari expert, tracker, and top guide (wildlife experiences are so much richer with a small group!). We end our breathtaking safari adventure at Victoria Falls, “the smoke that thunders.” If you’re looking for an African wildlife adventure without equal, this is it!

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-2
Windhoek, Namibia / AfriCat Foundation

From Windhoek, we head to the renowned AfriCat Foundation, a wildlife sanctuary whose main focus is big cats, especially injured or captured leopard. Here we track leopards by 4WD vehicle and learn about the conservation work done to ensure the survival of leopard in Namibia.

Days 3-4
Onguma Game Reserve / Etosha National Park

From elegant Onguma Tented Camp, adjacent to game-rich eastern Etosha National Park, we explore private Onguma Game Reserve, home to kudu, giraffe, zebra, and impala as well as lion, leopard, and cheetah—and a family of black rhinos—and within famed Etosha National Park itself.

Days 5-6
Nhoma Safari Camp / San Tribes / //Nhoq’ma Village

We enter the world of one of Africa’s oldest cultural groups, the San tribe. Our accommodation, Nhoma Safari Camp, lies within the traditional area of Namibia’s San people, and they will demonstrate their traditional hunting and food gathering techniques as well as skills such as rope-making and setting of traps. One fascinating activity is our bush walk with the hunters.

Days 7-8
Nxamaseri Island Lodge / Tsodilo Hills / Okavango Delta, Botswana

We visit the magnificent rock art collection in the Tsodilo Hills, then continue to Botswana’s remote Nxamaseri Island Lodge—far from the safari crowds of Chobe. Here we enjoy an enriching perspective of the Okavango Delta by mokoro (canoe), a wonderfully quiet way to explore, with just the sound of the birds and the water to accompany us. The Okavango flows inland into the Kalahari Desert, creating a labyrinth of lagoons, lakes, and hidden channels.

Days 9-11
Nambwa Tented Lodge, Caprivi Strip, Namibia / Bwabwata National Park

Crossing back into Namibia, we enter the Caprivi Strip, renowned for its abundant wildlife, navigable waterways, large stretches of national park—and a truly remote feeling. Beautiful Nambwa Tented Lodge is in Bwabwata National Park, part of the new Kavango-Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area (Kaza), connecting 110,833 square miles of protected regions in Botswana, Angola, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Namibia. The wildlife here migrates freely across fenceless borders. Our days are filled with game drives and boating on the Kwando River. Wildlife in Bwabwata includes elephant, hippo, roan, kudu, sable, buffalo, lion, leopard, hyena, cheetah, giraffe, impala, zebra, and wildebeest.

Days 12-13
Kasane / Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

We head to Kasane Airport in Botswana, transfer into Zimbabwe at Victoria Falls Town, and overnight at the historic Victoria Falls Hotel. An afternoon hike brings us right across from the face of the magnificent Falls. Depart on Day 13 or join one of our extensions: Cape Town (South Africa), Among the Elephants Extension (Zimbabwe), or Tracking Gorillas (Rwanda). You can also extend your stay at Victoria Falls to experience its adventure opportunities, including bungee-jumping and “The Flight of Angels.”

Highlights

Highlights

Maximum of six travelers—for the best game viewing opportunities!
Leopard tracking at AfriCat
Cultural experiences with San hunter-gatherers on their ancestral lands
Rhino, leopard, lion, and elephant in eastern Etosha
The pristine northern Okavango Delta—far from the Chobe crowds
Tsodilo Hills, a World Heritage Site of rock art
Delightful safari accommodations in utterly remote natural settings
Victoria Falls, one of the world’s natural wonders

Details

Length: 13 days
Cost From: $9695  
Arrive: Windhoek, Namibia
Depart: Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Lodging: 12 nights hotels and lodges
Meals: All meals included (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Activity:
Trip Level:

Game viewing by 4WD vehicle, river boat, and mokoro (canoe), rugged road travel