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Botswana safari and beach hol recommendations please?

5 replies

iknowimcoming · 03/01/2020 10:36

Hi - would love to take our dc (18 and 20) on a safari holiday as DH and I went to Kenya several times inc our honeymoon in our younger days, dc are keen too btw! A friend has recommend Botswana as the safest/best place currently to do this and we would maybe combine with Seychelles on way home for a week - any hints/tips/recommendations please?

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Annebronte · 03/01/2020 14:40

Botswana is fabulous but terribly expensive. Have you thought about Zambia? I’ve been on lots of safaris over the years as used to live in Southern Africa and I think the South Luangwa Valley is one of the absolute best game reserves. It’s great for big cats, especially leopards. We did a great trip with our teens: two nights at Victoria Falls; seven nights in S Luangwa (spread over three different camps); five nights chilling by Lake Malawi. Lake Malawi is worth looking at as a beach option. Look up Pumulani and Kaya Mawa. Expert Africa and Africa Travel Resource both have very good websites for researching your trip. Aardvark Safaris are excellent, though their website is less informative.

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LochJessMonster · 03/01/2020 14:46

Ooh following as this has come up in our family holiday discussions recently too!

We did a moving safari in Kenya a while back, staying in different lodges around the Savannah and want to repeat that if possible.

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BubblesBuddy · 04/01/2020 14:46

I have been to Botswana and the reason it’s expensive is that lodges are small and it’s a very personal experience. I have also been to Zambia and staying in two camps in south Luangwa makes sense as some do waking safaris. Three is a bit too many in 7 days. Getting to know an area is wonderful, especially on walks.

The Okavango delta with its wildlife is only in Botswana. You cannot get this experience anywhere else. A great combination are land based and water based camps.

All safaris are safe. All safari countries are safe if you take normal precautions. The safari experiences are slightly different and both Zambia and Botswana offer smaller camps and great wildlife viewing. What you want to pay might influence you.

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separatebeds · 16/01/2020 17:58

@annebronte Please can you tell me a bit about your experience at Lake Malawi. Does it work as a beach option? is the lake good to swim in are there not croc and hippos?.

We were planning safari and then beach but this sounds like a good option.

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Annebronte · 16/01/2020 18:24

There are three really good options for Lake Malawi: Pumulani, Kawa Maya and Mumbo Island. They’re all quite different, so check them out online. The water is beautiful for swimming. There are no hippos near the resorts, although you can see the odd pod of them when out in a boat trip. The guides know where they are. We felt extremely safe. One potential hazard is bilharzia. The resorts do clear water reeds around their beaches and test the water regularly, but I treated myself and my family just in case. Treatment is a single dose which you can buy in Malawian chemists; it’s hard to get without testing at home. Expats who live in Malawi just treat themselves annually. We stayed in Pumulani and it was fabulous. We swam, snorkelled amongst cichlids, they have paddle boards, kayaks, ‘doughnut’ rides etc a dhow for sunset cruises, you can visit the local village, they’ve an astronomical telescope. It’s a lovely place! I think Kawa Maya has even more, but they are both also quiet and low key. The sunsets over the lake are incredible. I’d highly recommend it. we flew from Mfuwe to Lilongwe with Ulendo air then had a road transfer. You could also have flown to the lakeside. If you go to Kawa Maya I think you’d have to fly as it’s on Likomo (sp?) island.

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