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Key West, Florida
9 posts

Hi! I just found out that I’ll be in Durban for work at the end of May and I’ll have 12 days to kill before leaving (May 23 to June 3).

I understand this is EXTREMELY LATE to plan logistics for such a venture, though I was looking at the possibility of flying roundtrip from Durban into Maun, pick up a 4x4, visit Chobe for a few days while crashing at a couple of campsites in and around Maun (Audi camp, Maun restcamp, Crocodile camp, etc..). Obviously staying at one of Chobe’s campsites (Ihaha, Savuti or Linyanti) would be ideal, though I’m sure those book solid a year out. Regardless, I’ve contacted Chobe with no response.

Or looking at the option of renting a 4x4 in Durban and drive to the Kalahari Game Reserve and staying at their wilderness campsites (though I don’t know the availability of those). I contacted DWNP (both the Maun & Gaborone offices) regarding site availability for Kalahari with no response through email or phone calls.

I’ve done quite a bit of camping/traveling throughout East and Central Africa and I have all necessary gear for bush camping so I would just need the basic 4x4 (not the camping deluxe version with bullet proof windshield wipers). Still waiting to hear back from a few companies for pricing and availability.

Regarding a roundtrip flight to Maun from Durban, I hear it’s cheaper to book that flight over there?

Recommendations? Ideas?

Cumbria, United...
Level Contributor
972 posts
285 reviews
1. Re: Recommendations?

You may be lucky in Chobe we were there last June and it was only half full. The previous June we went to Sunday Pan and many of the campsites were empty in the Kalahari,if you are having difficulty perhaps use an agent to book like Mackenzie 4x4 in Maun who booked ours 2 years ago and arranged permits for us for our UK agent. last year we used Andy Ragget of Drive Botswana who booked sites for us. We booked a camping equipped 4x4 last year from Bushlore in Johannesburg and they also would book sites for you.

There have been many discussions on here re the difficulty of self booking in Botswana.

The Kgalagadi may be booked we were there last May and it was very booked you can check availability on the SAN parks website and book on line.

both venues are great so Good Luck

Key West, Florida
Level Contributor
1 post
3 reviews
2. Re: Recommendations?

Thanks! I've contacted those agents, fingers crossed.

Level Contributor
293 posts
1 review
3. Re: Recommendations?

Aside from the above from ... here is a bit more

Im afraid that booking campsites here is a a bit of a joke theses days, especially since nearly all the campsites are privatised.

Your trip is perfectly do-able in any way you have suggested and May is still a little early, so although you may not get the campsites you want, you may well be lucky.... Central Kalahari should be fine as there are plenty of sites.... Savuti and Chobe much more difficult Linyanti public site may well be ok (although its not a great area for game drives).

Anywhere in Moremi may be tough but Khwai Community Concession should be fine for campsites (No Ablutions) and is an incredibly productive area in May,.

Flights I dont know about, but here is what I would do... get someone else to book all the campsites for you.

try Travel Adventures Botswana for a vehicle in Maun, they will book all the campsites for you.... Excellent company but they do have fully kitted out 4x4,s.

If you get your own car then go to Travel Arrangements Agency here in Maun, they will book all the campsites for you for a modest fee... well worth it. It will be very frustrating for you to try and book all the campsites direct.... use an agency instead.

Both companies are on the web.


Owner of Safari Lifestyles

Cape Town, South...
Level Contributor
60 posts
1 review
4. Re: Recommendations?

Here’s a thought….why go so far on safari when you can do it within reach of Durban? In the Map Studio book ‘Road Tripping South Africa’ I wrote the section called Ultimate Safari, which is a route for normal hire cars from Durban:

Head north to St Lucia, do a fantastic boat trip on the estuary to see hippos, crocs, birds and take a trip into iSimangaliso Wetland Park. Drive through Hluhluwe Imfolozi Game Reserve famed for rhino, buffalo, elephants and all the big game. Then head north towards Pongola and camp alongside Lake Jozini and go fishing for tiger fish on this enormous dam or just take a cruise. You will be right by the Swaziland border so go into Swaziland and go on an underrated safari in this small, easy country, which still has good numbers of rhino. There are several reserves under the banner Swaziland Big Game Parks; Mkhaya, Hlane, Mlilwane, etc, most of which provide camping opportunities.

The Ultimate Safari would then continue from Swaziland to Kruger but you can do a circular route through Swaziland and be back in Durban in 10-12 days having seen all the big game and experienced some rewarding cultural encounters.

Carrie Hampton – Media at Fair Trade Safaris

Key West, Florida
9 posts
5. Re: Recommendations?

Thanks for the info. Definitely possibilities there as well. I'll look into that as it's getting hard to lock down a reasonably priced standard 4x4 rental anyways..

6. Re: Recommendations?

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