Situated in the southern reaches of Africa, Botswana is renowned for its pristine wilderness characterized by deep lagoons, massive wetlands, lush palms, rugged hills, and desert plains scattered with scrubland— and truly astonishing wildlife. Texas Monthly Traveler and Wilderness Safaris have designed the ultimate 10-day safari exploring this amazing country, including stays at Vumbura Plains and Abu Camp in the Okavango Delta, and at Mombo Camp in the Moremi Game Reserve.
Day 1-4: Vumbura Plains, Okavango Delta
Situated in the northwestern corner of Botswana, the Okavango Delta is a World Heritage Site as it is the largest inland delta in the world. The magnificent Okavango River sprawls out over the dry sands of the Kalahari Desert forming this flourishing waterlogged oasis featuring countless meandering waterways and crystal clear lagoons studded with water lilies, as well as fertile floodplains and reeded islands inhabited with abundant wildlife. The Okavango Delta stretches over 15000 square kilometres. Visitors can enjoy a number of wonderful activities such as game viewing, fishing, bird watching or taking an authentic guided Mokoro excursion through this wetland paradise in a traditional dugout canoe. Commonly spotted animals include: lion, rhino, leopard, giraffe, hippos, elephants, crocodiles and countless species of bird.
Flight from Maun Airport to Vumbura Plains North
Arrive at Vumbura Plains North
Hot-air Balloon Excursion from Vumbura
· Hot-air balloon flights available from Vumbura Plains and Little Vumbura
· Take-off 10 minutes before sunrise
· Optional helicopter flight to and/or from the launch site is available
· On landing enjoy snacks and champagne
· All passengers receive a commemorative flight certificate presented by the pilot
Experience the Okavango Delta from the air, on this exciting hot-air balloon activity from Vumbura Plains or Little Vumbura. Three options are available for guests to access the launch site: a helicopter flight both ways, helicopter one way or drive both ways. If driving to the launch site, the morning wake-up is between 1.5 to 2 hours before sunrise. The balloon carries four passengers and the pilot, and lift-off commences 10 minutes before sunrise. The flight follows the direction and speed of the wind thus the flying time varies, though on average it is about 45 minutes. Passengers must be able to stand for the duration of the flight and to enter/exit the basket, while a parent or guardian must accompany any child under the age of 16. On landing, guests are treated to Champagne and snacks before continuing with their mornings game viewing, either with their guide in a vehicle or an optional scenic helicopter flight.
Overnight: Vumbura Plains
A modern-style safari camp that wouldn’t look out of place in an architecture magazine, Vumbura Plains is designed and operated in total empathy with its diverse surroundings. Partnerships with local communities in this region of the Okavango Delta have created empowerment opportunities while allowing guests access to its many treasures.
Fourteen light, airy guest rooms feature designer fittings and touches of unabashed luxury, including private plunge pools and salas, and indoor and outdoor showers. Safari activities focus on day and night game drives through a variety of game-rich terrains. Seasonal water activities can be very rewarding, to say nothing of a hot air balloon safari.
INSIDER TIP: Secure a spot at the telescope for exceptional viewing of birds and wildlife. If you are lucky you may even catch a glimpse of the resident otter family!
All meals, twice daily scheduled camp activities, park fees, laundry and all local drinks excludes premium imported brands and champagne.
Day 4-7: Mombo Camp, Moremi Game Reserve
Moremi Game Reserve
Situated in the east of the Okavango Delta, Moremi Game Reserve ranks as one of the most beautiful reserves in Africa. It covers more than 4871 square kilometres of pristine wilderness, and the varied terrain includes savannah, winding waterways, and dense forest. This diverse ecosystem supports an incredibly wide spectrum of wildlife, ranging from large herds of buffalo, wildebeest and zebra, to the rare sitatunga and lechwe antelope, lion, cheetah and packs of wild dog in the open grasslands. The birdlife is prolific and includes most of the 550 bird species recorded on Botswana’s national bird list. A range of luxury lodges in the reserve offers visitors the perfect base to experience this corner of paradise.
Depart from Vumbura Plains North
Flight from Vumbura Plains North to Mombo Camp
Arrive at Mombo Camp
Overnight: Mombo Camp View iBrochure
Mombo Camp, on Mombo Island just off the northern tip of Chief’s Island, is built under large shady trees and overlooks a wonderful floodplain teeming with wildlife. Accommodation comprises nine spacious tents raised off the ground, all built to maximise the vistas over the plains. Each tent is elegantly furnished, complete with en-suite bathroom, a dressing area, indoor and outdoor showers and a bathtub that creates a sense of indulgence. The expanded deck includes a sala and plunge pool.
A large living and dining area looks out over that same view, while Mombo’s famous traditional dinners are hosted in the nearby boma. Mombo shares a boutique, spa, gym and lap pool with Little Mombo. Large concentrations of plains game often occur in front of camp; you may see a variety of animals without even leaving the veranda. Informative game drives explore the savannah and floodplain mosaics of Chief’s Island with prolific wildlife-viewing opportunities.
Unique Selling Points
• Arguably the best big game viewing in all of Africa
• Bountiful hunting ground for large prides of lion and leopard
• A sumptuous and luxurious camp in the midst of the Delta
All meals, scheduled camp activities, park fees, laundry and all local drinks excludes premium imported brands and champagne.
Day 7-10: Abu Camp, Okavango Delta
Depart from Mombo Camp
Flight from Mombo Camp to Abu Camp
Arrive at Abu Camp
Overnight: Abu Camp
Abu Camp offers Africa’s premier elephant interaction experience where you’ll have the opportunity to see the Okavango Delta through the eyes of the herd as they accompany you into the bush, and subtly make a case for the conservation of all elephants.
The six luxury guest tents, with private plunge pools and viewing decks, peep out across a lagoon from under ancient fig trees. Game drives, guided walks, and mokoro and boat excursions reveal the many wonders of this wildlife-rich area. The Abu team delight in creating unique moments for guests, whether in the company of elephants or at night around a crackling campfire.
To speak with a Texas Monthly Traveler safari specialist, please call 512-975-9737 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.