Game drives by the knowledgeable staff of Kwara Camp in the Okavango Delta are a rewarding experience, whether you like large game, beautiful scenery, or birdlife. On the two occassions I visited the delta, I got to see lions, elephants, buffalo, giraffes, a wide variety of antelope, zebras, hippos, and a leopard and a cheetah. Night drives allowed us to see springhares, owls, nightjars, serval, civets, and other nocturnal creatures.
Being from the UK when I first saw these mounds all over Africa I had no idea what they were!
Luckily my Australian friend informed me - Termite Mounds - Amazing!
I have since seen these in their thousands on my trip in Australia, but I was fascinated when I saw them in Africa, and this one here was one of many in the Okavango Delta.
As we drove into the wetlands we came across plenty of game on the surrounding plains, zebra were running away from our jeep as they heard us coming......oh there were so many animals all around us!
The waterways of the delta are truly amazing, and I will always remember sitting in the Mokoro, with our poler poling us down the waterways, huge colourful dragon flies in my face, beautiful waterlillies sitting on the side of the water with huge sprawls of papyrus.
All the time my hand in the water of this amazing place in Africa.
The Okavango delta is a haven for wildlife.
I already said that I fell asleep to the Hyena laughing one night which was a little eerie to say the least!
Whilst on a game walk we spotted this poor dead Giraffe.....if you are lucky you will see lots of wildlife (living!).
These waterways are some of the worlds most famous. The Okavango Delta is so huge, when you are on the waters it feels as though you are in just a tiny section!
The traditional way to travel on the delta is in a Mokoro - which is a dugout canoe, these are still made and used today and not only by tourists.
The Mokoro's look real small, when I saw it and saw what we had to put in it I certainly never thought we would float or fit! LOL......But I was suprised again when our Mokoro man put his stick in the water, balanced perfectly and took us downstream!
We left Maun and drove towards to Okavango Delta in our jeep.
The Okavango Delta was a place of amazing landscapes - the palms, waters, flatness, insects and game. There was a weird kind of atmosphere out there too - quite eerie, and there were animals you did'nt expect to be living in these parts.
One night I fell asleep listening to Hyena laughing loudly - now that was bizzare!
Sam told me about the plants and animals of the delta and I began to realise that I was able to enjoy the tour more because I couldn’t take photos. I could concentrate much more on the trip this way and my annoyance disappeared. I was also very happy that I was alone. It was so peaceful and I liked Sam’s quiet way of telling about things.
After about an hour we began the bushwalk, which was most interesting. We saw a herd of zebras about 30 m from us, some ostriches, many antelopes, baboons, different birds and finally two elephants not far where we stopped to have our lunch. Sam took me to have a closer look at those enormous animals and it was really wonderful to see them in their natural environment. I don’t know how to explain it but it was different than seeing them in the national parks. Sam said that according to the law in Botswana one is not allowed to go closer than 100 m to an elephant as that distance is long enough for a human to get away if the elephant decides to attack. Those two were eating grass peacefully and didn’t give any attention to us. Sam also told that in that side of the river elephants were for watching and in the other side for hunting. He told me a lot about the trees and plants, too, and it all was very interesting. We rested the hottest part of the day in the shade and chatted a little. On the way back we saw some more elephants, which seemed to be bit angry and were tooting at each other. We were joined by two other mokoros with four tourists and we all we driven to the camp in the same land cruiser. I don’t know if the weight of five people made the drive back much harder or if the driver drove faster, but the drive was most unpleasant. The road had many huge potholes and when we drove through them we jumped half a meter up to the air and back to our bums. I was really happy when we finally got back to the main road. My bottom was really painful on the following morning!
When I got back to the camp I asked if there were any other people who wanted to take the mokoro trip on the following morning, but the answer was still negative. The receptionist asked me to come and check before I went to sleep. I totally forgot it though. In the morning I walked to the reception and heard that I was the only one who had booked a mokoro trip, so I was forced to pay extra. I had everything ready for the trip so as soon as the landcruiser arrived we left. It was early in the morning and quite chilly so the blanket they had in the car was really useful. I wrapped myself in it. I enjoyed the drive and saw some locals with donkeys and carts and thought it would make a nice photo. But there was no power in my camera. Not to worry I thought as I had extra battery with me. I changed the battery but the camera didn’t work. I was so mad! I was alone in this tour and the driver would have stopped anywhere where I wanted to take photos and my camera wasn’t working! That day I saw the most beautiful scenery of my holiday, we drove through a small village with round mud huts, I saw local people working in the field etc. and I could not take photos. I just couldn’t believe it. I knew that the battery was powerful only on the previous night as I had checked it. What happened? I don’t know. All I know is that my camera was not working! It took about two hours to reach the delta and the road was bad to say it mildly, but the driver was very careful, so it wasn’t that bad really. I met my guide who was called Sam and after a while we left. The mokoro is narrow and shallow but I didn’t feel any fear while sitting on it. On contrary I felt most comfortable on it. The Okavango Delta was beautiful. First I saw white and pink water lilies and some other flowers. The water was crystal clear and I could see right to the bottom of the river. There were some small fish swimming in the river, but though I really wanted to see a hippo we were not lucky. We floated through a narrow channel between high reeds and papyrus.
Tour companies offer scenic flights over the delta. It's about an hour long. Prices range between $100 to $150. Small Cessna planes.
I was there in the summer, the dry season with brown vegetation and dry river. Frankly, I didn't enjoy it because you couldn't see much from the air. We spotted some wilderbeests and impalas. I was feeling sick because the cabin was very hot.
If you normally have motion sickness. Pop a pill and ask to sit next to the pilot, it's the best seat to prevent motion sickness.