I must start by saying THANK YOU. I am amazed how generous everyone is with their time and advice. And the level of experience and knowledge surpasses any guide book I could ever buy.
I started using this site to search for certain key words about tour operators and camps, but very quickly became addicted to reading every post I came across. Oh, yes, and taking very long diversions to look at everyone's photos. After seeing Rocco's photos of Botswana and Joan's of Namibia, (thanks to both of you) I can't wait to get back to Africa. So, I ditched the idea of trying to put it together myself (which is why I was on this site in the first place) and contacted Bert at Fish Eagle Safaris. I can't remember who recommended him, but thanks. He got back to me immediately. I thought everything would be full for the summer and I'd have to wait until fall, but it must be my lucky day. After all of the magnificent photos, of course I want instant gratification. Here is what Fish Eagle is proposing:
Start Windhoek 6/24.
Best of Namibia Wing Safari
-2 nights Sossusvlei Wilderness Camp
-2 nights Damaraland Camp (possibly Doro Nawas
-2 nights Ongava Tented Camp (possibly Ongava Lodge)
-3 nights Duba Plalins
-3 nights Duma Tau
I've seen the other threads with comments on the camps, so I'm not asking for repetition. You are all so generous with your time that I tried to make sure I did my homework first. My specific questions are as follows:
*Do you think I should mix up the camps with different operators? That is the way I would normally go if I planned each piece of the trip myself. I was considering a combination of Wilderness Safaris and Sanctuary. But, if I do the Namibia Wing Safari (all WS camps), then that means giving up WS in Botswana. I have read so many wonderful things about Duba Plains that it was always at the top of my list. And, Duma Tau came with some great recommendations also. If I keep WS in Botswana, does anyone have a suggestion for a replacement wing safari or non WS camps in Namibia? This is only if you think I should mix up the operators a bit. I've been to CC Africa camps and lodges and loved them and also Star of Africa, and loved it too. I wanted to try someone different which is one of the reasons I'm asking about Sanctuary.
*Do you think equal time in Namibia and Botswana is the proper allocation of time? I originally intended to go to Botswana only, but the photos of Namibia changed my mind.
*Should I be concerned about only 2 nights at each of the Namibia camps? Normally I'd like 3 nights at each place and to move around less. I can probably do that by not joining the group (which is fine with me), but which portion do I give up?
I can only spend two weeks total, including travel to/from the U.S. Ideally I would do one country/2 weeks every year. But, alas, I haven't won the lottery yet. A trip every two or three years is about all I can afford. I do know this can be done much less expensively and if I did that I could go back more often. But, I like the level of accomodation chosen and of course, you get what you pay for, right? I've tried to stay away from the absolute most expensive place, but from what I've read here if Fish Eagle said Kings Pool had room I'd happily write that check.
Sorry for the long post. Thanks in advance for comments, suggestions, advice.
Botswana Namibia trip in June 07
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