Kings Pool vs Duma Tau

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Sep 7th, 2005, 02:25 PM
  #21
 
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Hello,

Mitch and Mkhonzo -- how recently have you stayed at Kwando? I thought about booking Kwando rather than Duma Tau for my 2006 trip because I like the guide-tracker system, but found that it was more expensive than Duma Tau for June 2006.

Cheers,
Julian
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Sep 7th, 2005, 02:31 PM
  #22
 
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Mkhonzo

Most WS camps are in private concessions, and they too will stay out as long as you like. The main exception to this is Mombo, where the game is so abundant it doesn't seem to matter. And FWIW I had my worst experiences at Kwando and I have been to 11 camps and enjoyed 94 game drives, so I do have something to compare it to. I do understand that the guide in question is now gone, but if I were to visit Kwando again, I would have to stump up the cash for a private vehicle, otherwise they just dont cut it.
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Sep 8th, 2005, 12:39 AM
  #23
bwanamitch
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Julian,

I've been at Kwara in 2003. And the complete Kwando circuit is the only fixed part on my next Botswana itinerary (2006 or 2007). Imo Kwando offers the best game drive experience in Botswana, and of course, their vehicles are much more comfortable than those of WS. I even would say that I prefer Kwando game drives compared to those in the Mombo Zone since my priority is not counting of wildlife sightings but the overall experience.

Kwando is for those people who like a more bushier safari experience, as mkhonzo already said, the emphasis there is more on wildlife than on luxury camp living with secure walkways and room safes.

Some people mentioned shopping in this thread. Well, the shop at Kwara had the best collection of safari wear and souvenirs that I've encountered so far, and their discreet but very practical brown shopping bags are nice. And of course, the designer part in me really loves this stripe elephant, imo the best safari company logo in BW.

Mitch
 
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Sep 8th, 2005, 07:07 AM
  #24
 
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Hi Lolo12,

Duma Tau had all the usual knick-knacks, but they also had great selection of Botswana baskets, both stock and ones made by the staff. Also some cool hand made jewelry that were pretty unique.

The JNB airport store is very good. But it's more "generic" African things, and nothing specifically from Botswana.

There are some shops across the street from the Maun airport as well that has good selection of baskets. But we didn't have much time at Maun.

Feel freel to email me at [email protected] if you'd like to talk more about shopping (one of my favorite hobbies when not on safari)
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Sep 8th, 2005, 09:07 AM
  #25
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Just another shopping link:
http://www.botswanacraft.bw/
 
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Sep 8th, 2005, 11:48 PM
  #26
mv
 
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Bwanamitch

Kwando does no longer have the "tool" under the windscreen. Only one "tool" pr camp for walking trips

MV
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Sep 9th, 2005, 01:34 AM
  #27
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Can't say that I'm happy with this. This certainly limits the options of the tracker during game drives. Or do they still track down leopard by foot if they lost the spoor from the vehicle?

Mitch
 
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Sep 9th, 2005, 01:54 AM
  #28
mv
 
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Mitch

dont worry. the tracking is still top notch. I will be leaving in 10 days for Kwara/lebala and Lagoon. Will post report

MV
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Sep 9th, 2005, 07:22 AM
  #29
 
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I hear you on all comments. As stated Kwando is TOPS when it comes to game & sightings. They have a proven track record....Like all things in the bush there never can be a guarantee of a sighting, after all you are in a massive wilderness where the game moves freely.
Price wise, Kwando is more than competitive & yes june has become a very busy month for them, whereas for the rest it is still regarded as a slow month. My guess is that rate is sustained by demand and if they were so bad, how is it then that their camps sre full in June?

Sensitivities about the tool under the windscreen....
To bad it's a neccessary item for the trade and if you don't like it then perhaps Africa isn't neccessarily your destination.
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Sep 9th, 2005, 07:30 AM
  #30
 
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What tool is there under the windscreen? Sorry, I’ve never been to Botswana.
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Sep 9th, 2005, 08:42 AM
  #31
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Nyamera,

have a look at this thread:
http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...4&tid=34649018

Mitch
 
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Sep 9th, 2005, 09:30 AM
  #32
 
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Thanks Mitch, I half understood that the “tool” was a firearm. I was going to jump at Mkhonzo’s throat - for implying that you should keep out of Africa if you don’t like guns, and that they are necessary in the safari business - when I remembered that this is a civilised forum, so I decided to ask first.

I think you should stay at home if you feel that animals should be shot for your protection. In Kenya the only people I’ve seen with guns are KWS rangers. In a Tsavo camp where elephants and buffaloes where walking around among the tents the askaris’ only “tools” where a spotlight, a stick and a “hooligan horn”. There haven’t been any firearms when I’ve been on walks, but I suppose spears are meant for killing as well … They had guns at Samburu Intrepids – I was told that if I heard shots it was too scare away the elephants – and I didn’t like that at all.
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Sep 9th, 2005, 09:48 AM
  #33
bwanamitch
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Well, in some countries policemen aren't carrying guns, in others they do. I hope you wouldn't say that the latter only do that because they want to shoot people.

Mitch
 
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Sep 9th, 2005, 10:00 AM
  #34
 
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No, but they are for shooting people.

I would not go on a trip with an armed guide because I wanted to see people that might attack me. It’s a bad comparison (not as bad as yours though) because I wouldn’t keep away from a safari because of a gun in the vehicle, but I’d feel very uncomfortable about it.
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Sep 9th, 2005, 11:00 AM
  #35
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In the area where I will be in one week they once had a lioness that charged over a long distance and tried to jump on an open safari vehicle. Fortunately there were no clients on the vehicle and the driver was protected by a closed cabin. One could only assume that this unusal aggressive behaviour was caused by the heavy poaching activities in that area. The lioness was shot a few days later.

If this would happen during an ordinary game drive I certainly would feel much more comfortable if the guide beside me is carrying such a tool.

Unfortunately some areas are apparently not so peaceful than others.

Mitch
 
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Sep 9th, 2005, 11:01 AM
  #36
 
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I just feel, like if you have the urge to intrude into the world of wild animals, and want to be as close to them as possible, you have to accept there’s an - almost non-existent – risk they’ll attack you. To have the backup of shooting them in case “almost” happens feels very wrong.
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Sep 9th, 2005, 11:08 AM
  #37
 
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I answered your post before reading it! Telepathy?

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Sep 9th, 2005, 12:06 PM
  #38
 
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Enticed into the debate.....

Well, well, well......It can be argued although I understand that science has pretty much confirmed that man has its origins in Africa, right? Consequently man has coixisted with African wildlife for somewhere near a few million years, in fact up until as recently as two million years ago when homo erectus migrated out of Africa into Europe, homo sapiens emerged in Africa somehwre around 100 000 to 50 000 years ago. Consequently I'd say that as minekind we are hardly are venturing into the world of the animal....Maybe those that have been dissacociated with their roots feel that way, I certainly don't.

That said, there are creatures in the world know as lawyers who have rather efficient predatory skills and can and will take lodge owners, reserve managers and safari operators to the vultures lair if in any way they can prove negligence. Consequently the soft bellied tourist who is ravaged by a lion IS going to cry foul if her/his khaki clad hunky chump of a ranger or guide was not equipped to deal with a situation. Regrettablly rifles are an appropriate means of defending a TOURIST and are not carried into the wilderness by safari operators for potential killing sprees.

And on a final note: How is a guide to know how you will react to a charging buffalo (it does happen and so do car accidents, which are just that:accidents) Will you stand still as told, will you flee in panic, will you in fact react in such a way that endangers his life, others and the animal? You can't answer that unless you have been in that situation before and with those anomolies, is it not prudent to minimise the risks of losing a life by carrying a weapon?

Don't let your heart bleed on this issue: The game of Africa is ruthless, murder happens daily, lions KILL, leopards Kill, people kill, people survive, daily. If you can't stomach a rifle under a windscreen, then how will you stomach all that Africa is and the west is not?

Hence my statement that maybe for those that this poses an issue Africa is not for them. To them I suggest that they go watch the roar on the big screen or keep to the manicured paths of the petting zoo..

Guess you hit a nerve, but at least hope that my response tainted with some humour was an entertaining read!
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Sep 9th, 2005, 12:31 PM
  #39
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Ergo you have left Samburu Intrepids immediately after they told you about the shooting? In conclusion you, as the intruder whom they were trying to protect, would have been the cause of any shooting...
 
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Sep 9th, 2005, 12:34 PM
  #40
 
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The coexistence stopped working when man got firearms – on other continents before that - and I’ll not sue anyone if I get mauled, which I could be even if my guide had a gun.

Shouldn’t you climb a tree or lie flat on the ground if a buffalo charges? If I’d do something stupid, the risk of hurting someone, especially the animal, would be minimised by not carrying a gun.

I’ve stomached worse things – like armed hold-ups – but I prefer gamedrives without guns and they are, as proven by the majority that don’t carry them, definitely not necessary. And, there are lots of things to stomach in the west as well.

No thanks, no zoo for me.

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