Botswana in September

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Feb 11th, 2003, 06:41 AM
  #1
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Botswana in September

After several months of research & reading posts on this site - it's booked! I want to especially thank Karvey, Lisa, & Liz for all the info. We fly WashDC-Atl-Jo'burg SAA: 2 nites Jo'burg, 3 nites in each Tubu Tree, Duba Plains,Kings Pool & 4 nites Cape Town at Victoria & Alfred. I know every one recommends The Grace in Jo'burg but are there hotels similar but not as costly. We're not on a low budget but we'll only be sleeping . This is our first safari & packing seems to be a challenge.What to take?? Any help would be great.
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Feb 11th, 2003, 08:53 AM
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LizFrazier
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Jann-
It sounds wonderful! You go girrrl! We will all be waiting your trip report. Since I haven't been to Capetown, or spent time in any of the cities, I won't comment on the attire. For safari you pack light and all lightweight cotton clothes that you get laundered each day at the camps. Two or three changes is adequate. For the cities, I'm sure someplaces require better attire. Liz
 
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Feb 11th, 2003, 11:38 AM
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Thank you ,Liz. Will for sure post a trip report. Can't wait. Wish we could have done Mombo but maybe next time.
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Feb 11th, 2003, 12:29 PM
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Congratulations!!

Same here. After about a month of research I booked my safari for Botswana in September. Our schedule is different than yours, but I am glad you are happy with what you are doing..
We can compare pictures when we both get back.

Ingrid
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Feb 11th, 2003, 01:46 PM
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Ingrid, I would love to hear your trip plans.
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Feb 12th, 2003, 07:55 AM
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I'm sure this will be the trip of your life - congratulations!
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Feb 12th, 2003, 11:12 AM
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Jann, I was in Botswana last fall, and it's lovely. Grace in J'Burg - nice. As for packing, remember the weight and dimensions limits for the small plane from Maun to your camp.

Emphasis on cotton - tans, grey-greens, greys - whatever blends in. Avoid dark and white things, bright colors (except at night for dinner).

Here's what we took for a dytime: 2 pr shorts - 3 tees - cotton sweater - 2 long sleeve shirts to wear out - windbreaker - hats - light-weight boots, walking shoes and tennis shoes - socks - handkercheifs for the game drives.

For the evening: 1 pr long pants - something nice but very casual and comfortable to wear. I saw very few skirts!!! No dress shoes - but nice sandles will be good. Sweater.

Keep in mind you have access to free daily laundry.

Your tour operator should send you some guidelines.

Remember: important you pack in soft duffle bags for the small plane flights - pilot must be able to fit your bags with others in cramped cargo spaces.

Take some dramamine if you're a bit unsure of your tummy - the flights can be bumpy!

We found the camps accepted VISA and MC, but not AmEx. Take some US cash for tipping staff, rangers and bar tender.

And confirm your seats with SAA every week or so - they tend to change planes and you'll find they don't then give you equivalent seats.

You'll love Botswana, and September is a terrific time to go.
 
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Feb 12th, 2003, 03:09 PM
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Jann:

We will spend a day in J'berg before heading out to the safari. We are thinking about going to a cultural village or take a tour of the city.


After much, much thought - we decided to go with a luxury mobile tented safari. Only eight guests allowed. We will have large meru-style tents with en suite - bathrooms, showers, real beds, etc.

We will have laundry and our own cook, etc. Two game drives a day with mokoro game drives, etc.
We are also taking our own night vision goggles, so we can see the animals roaming through the camp at night.

We will start in Maun and spend a few days in the Okavango delta, Chobe and Moremi - ending at the falls.

It's about 12 days, then we will go to Cape Town for five days. We will do a great white shark cage dive one of the days. The rest is pure sightseeing.

I haver never camped in my life, and never will do it again. However, I felt that this had to be the exception, so we could experience the wildlife more "up close and personal."
The animals walk through the camp at night - sounds soo exciting to me!!!

The only thing separating us is a piece of canvas!!!

We will be camping in areas away from the crowds, creating a more authentic feel without having to "rough" it.

Ingrid

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Feb 17th, 2003, 01:24 AM
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Jann
So pleased to hear you are all booked and ready to go.
It was such a relief to me too to get my 2004 trip finalised and booked.
I've been trying desperately to persuade husband to let me squeeze in another trip to Africa this year, but to be fair, there are so many other places on our list... it has to be a No.
Are you visiting in Sept 2003?
I cant wait to hear back from you, especially about Tubu Tree which is also on our itinerary.
As for packing, I believe Wilderness Safaris have a packing guideline on their website which might be useful.
Kavey
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Feb 17th, 2003, 12:45 PM
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Lolita, Thanks for all the advice on packing & what a great list! IngridG, What a great safari.. camping & nite goggles-WOW! You're really doing it!Can't wait to hear about your safari. Kavey, Yes,it's Sept. 2003 & it was great to get it booked- especially the camps that we wanted. I'll let you know about Tubu Tree. Also, did you know they closed Kings Pool for a while to upgrade & will open May 1 as a six paw with each of the nine bedrooms having their own swimming pool , lounge area & sala. We just received the description of the upgrades . Can't wait to see the camp.
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Feb 17th, 2003, 01:10 PM
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Kavey Are you working with Bert at Fish Eagles? I thought you mentioned him. Anyway, after seeing his name mentioned so many times on this site, I contacted him & he is terrific. Just wanted to say thanks to all Fodorites for his name.
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Feb 17th, 2003, 11:44 PM
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Jann
I agree that Bert is a wonderful agent and I certainly did discuss my trip with him during the planning stages. One thing I was very impressed with was his honesty - he told me upfront that I would probably find a UK agent cheaper (when booking from within the UK) and that he would not be able to price the international flights for me in any case. And he was willing to help me even though I stated (upfront) that I would be getting quotes from a UK agent too. He was right that the UK quote was cheaper for me and very gracious when I let him know that I would therefore book in the UK. I did send him something to say thank you as he really was instrumental in getting me started on finalising my itinerary at a time when I was finding it hard to narrow down all the choices.
An agent willing to be so helpful and share his knowledge without pushing for the sale above all else is a rare thing - and if it had been financially viable I'd have really liked to give him my business.
Kavey
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