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Vaccinations and Traveling S Africa / Botswana / Seychelles

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Apr 16th, 2017, 03:16 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Nov 2003
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Vaccinations and Traveling S Africa / Botswana / Seychelles

Hi,

We are planning our first (bucket list) trip to Africa and are most likely booking an A&K small group tour.

Starts in Cape Town, then by rail to Johannesburg, fly to Victoria Falls, then Choba River cruise, then Botswana safari (Chief's Sanctuary Camp) then fly to Seychelles.

I am getting varying info on what vaccinations I would need (other than routine ones given when a child, etc) and if I do need Yellow Fever vaccination to go into Seychelles since I am arriving there from Botswana, etc.

Any advice would be helpful!
budg is offline  
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Apr 17th, 2017, 08:11 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
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Congratulations on booking such a great trip.

Look for a travel clinic near you. They will know what inoculations you nee for your destinations.

Have a great trip!
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Apr 18th, 2017, 06:32 AM
  #3
 
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If you live in the US go to https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel

There are equivalent websites in other countries.

For vaccinations I use Passport Travel, but if you live near a major university hospital they often have travel clinics. I would not rely on a general practitioner and certainly not on internet postings.
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Apr 18th, 2017, 12:42 PM
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Rightly put Thursdaysd. Beyond the yellow fever shot, a must for all African countries the other vaccines need certification and justification from experts in tropical medicine specifically Africa.What one would need for the rainforests of Asia need not be the same elsewhere. Pl don't post asking for medical advice here in your own interest. Head to a closest General hospital with a specialist department and take advice. It helps being candid with all possible details you can provide.
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Apr 18th, 2017, 05:15 PM
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I would think that A&K would know exactly what is required. The company I usually travel with sends information prior to trips with suggestions for inoculations and you can go to a clinic with that information. Wouldn't doubt you might need malaria pills also.
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Apr 20th, 2017, 02:25 PM
  #6
 
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Hi Budg,
 
I agree with the other posters that A&K should be able to provide the answers for you. I can tell you know that a Yellow Fever vaccination is required for travelers older than 1 yr who are coming from a partly or wholly infected area within the preceding 6 days of arrival into Mahe. I short, coming from South Africa, Zimbabwe and Botswana, you will not require a YF vaccination. I’d get A&K to confirm that in writing for you.
 
I presume the trip you are doing includes Sussi and Chuma (Victoria Falls), Chobe Chilwero (Chobe) in addition to Chief’s Camp that you mentioned? Chief’s was just rebuilt last year and looking stunning – very high end resort like property in the middle of the Delta. The camps in this itinerary are branded as Sanctuary Lodges which is under the Abercrombie & Kent umbrella; hence the inclusion of Sanctuary Retreats portfolio into the itinerary. Good thing for you is that they are amongst the best! However, there are literally dozens of great camps/lodges to choose from with varied focuses, game viewing and activities. Have you considered looking into any of these options? Perhaps A&K’s bespoke/tailor made safari department can assist you in weighing all of the options available.

A few other things to note: If you are taking Rovos Rail from Cape Town to Pretoria, the train arrives into Pretoria station at 12PM. The Livingstone flight from Johannesburg departs at 10:40AM on South African, 11:00AM on British. Meaning, you’d be forced an overnight in Johannesburg. If you are taking Blue Train, the train arrives Pretoria station at 3PM. Again, a forced overnight in Johannesburg. I’d make sure that the dates of the train trip align with day 1 in Johannesburg on your small group tour to avoid additional overnights in Johannesburg.

In terms of getting from Chief’s Camp to Seychelles, the flights don’t connect in Johannesburg same day so you will be forced to do another overnight in Johannesburg. The following day, the flight arrives fairly late into Mahe (8:40PM) so unless you are staying on Mahe Island, you cannot connect same day to a nearby island.

Best best logistics for what you are seeking to do would be Jo’burg overnight upon arrival, Rovos from Pretoria to Vic Falls (overnights in Vic Falls), Chobe Chilwero, Chiefs, Cape Town (there is a non-stop flight between Maun and Cape Town), Cape Town to Seychelles with only 1 forced overnight in Mahe.

Alternatively, you can look into doing a stunning beach option in Mozambique which is much more easily accessed from South Africa. You can take a look at Benguerra Lodge, or Azura Retreats as some examples.

Either way, sounds like you have a lovely trip ahead of you. Enjoy!
 
Kota Tabuchi
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Apr 22nd, 2017, 10:29 AM
  #7
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Thanks everyone! Yes, appears we won't need a YF, but malaria yes. If we do the trip we will overnight twice in Johannesburg, but that is ok with us.

appreciate all the advice!
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Apr 23rd, 2017, 11:35 PM
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Yes, malaria is endemic to Vic Falls but seasonal elsewhere, not present in Cape Town or Joburg. Malarone, mefloquine and doxycycline are all equally effective and have wildly different cost, side effects, doses. Research and decide which fits best for you. In winter, I use lots of bug spray, sleep under a fan (when it's not too freaking cold!!) and since it's cold, long sleeves, pants, socks. If you are a regular blood donor (or want to be) give before you leave. With or without the pills you can't donate for a year after visiting a malaria area.

When are you going? I would do that trip through a good travel agent. I paid significantly less for an exact itinerary as an A&K trip. Much better value and more flexibility doing a private tour.

That's not an itinerary I'd do, however. The train doesn't go through the nicest scenic areas and takes a long time. Then your time in northern Botswana (the Okavango Delta) isn't enough for the time and cost to reach it. I'd combine the Seychelles when you do East Africa (do you really need beach time on this one?). Too much flying/transiting. Not enough enjoying the wildlife experience for me. I'd do CT, fly direct VF/Chobe. 2 camps in northern Botswana for at least three nights each - add another Sanctuary Camp (or other), then fly to Kruger to get the opportunity to see rhino as there are very few in Botswana. See them while you can. Or CT/fly direct Kruger/VF/Chobe/Botswana. Then hit the beach if necessary in Mozambique or Thonga/Rocktail Lodge in S Africa on the east coast.
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