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sub-Saharan Africa Topics specific to sub-Saharan Africa. (Includes all countries South of 17 degrees latitude)
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  #1  
Old 24 Mar 2009
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Question Reservations needed in top tourist spots in Namibia and Botswana in July/August?

Hi guys
Between mid July and mid August, my wife, son and I will borrow a 4x4 in Cape Town and head north through Namibia and then east through Botswana. All the guide books say it will be busy because of South African school holidays (also Namibia/ Botswana holidays?)

Do I need to book park entry and campsites now, or is it possible to just pitch up on the day, (I’d prefer the later…) in places like Sossusvlei, Fish River Canyon, Etosha and Chobe?

I will obviously have to book a trip into the Okavango Delta: Is it best to reserve this in advance or just turn up in Maun the day before? Do you recommend any particular outfit?

I was last in south western Africa in early 2000 and no bookings were necessary, but it was cyclone season, so everything was quiet (and wet/windy…). What about prime time July/August?

Many thanks for any advice you can give?
Cheers
Chris
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Old 24 Mar 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris View Post
....but it was cyclone season, so everything was quiet (and wet/windy…)
We have cyclones down here??????

There are a lot of places to stay at most the places you mention. Chobe might be a problem, mainly because Botswana Parks have the worst booking system in the world but just tell the guys at the gate you will take any camp they have and then go in, chances are 99% that you will be the only person on a 'fully booked' camp. If Etosha is full then go to Halali camp, my favorite and always least visited.
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Old 24 Mar 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeanVisser View Post
We have cyclones down here??????
Jean
Thanks for this info.

In Feb/Mar 2000 I had Tropical Cyclone Eline chasing me from Malawi to Namibia. The day after I crossed the Bots/Nam Trans-Kalahari Highway border, it closed, because the road was flooded!

cheers
Chris
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Old 25 Mar 2009
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For Botswana you can try this site. Its new. Maun Self Drive 4x4 - Botswana DWNP reservations

But look at this page that just came on in the past week. Reflects the issue that there are a lot of people that need reservations and few sellers during July and August.
Maun Self Drive 4x4 - Forums
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Old 25 Mar 2009
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Hi Chris,

In most instances you will find alternative accomodation close the various sites. eg Rather camp at Solitaire and then take a day trip to Sossusvlei. Much cheaper that way. For the delta go to Old Bridge Camp in Maun. They have decent accomodation (Prince Harry always stays there) and they organise trips into the delta.

Availablility depends a lot on the european holidays, possibly more than the SA ones. March-June seems to be very popular.

Make sure to stop buy at Neuras wine Farm, between Maltehohe and Solitaire, the dryest vineyard in the world. Little miracle in the middle of the desert.

Charlie
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Old 25 Mar 2009
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hi chris

I would not book anything, Botswana parks are like JeanVisser said - maybe with the exception of the Kuthse, so just book them in Maun or Gabs. Outfit? Just get a pair of flip flops, a pair of shorts and a T shirt for together not more than fifty Rand (3 quit) in CT at Makro - thats enough for six weeks. Just enjoy ... Mika from CT
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Old 25 Mar 2009
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Hi Mika

Quote:
Originally Posted by mika View Post
Outfit? Just get a pair of flip flops, a pair of shorts ......
"Outfit" can mean "what you wear", but also a "commercial company that runs tours", hence the question about tours into the Okavango by boat/accomadation. English is great isn't it. You lend/I borrow etc.

Let's chat on the phone soon,
cheers
Chris
PS. Just thought, "Outfit" can also be a m/c with a sidecar...
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Old 25 Mar 2009
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As you know Chris I am an English examiner for Civil Aviation and would agree that 'outfit' would essentially mean clothing for a purpose

outfit: Definition, Synonyms from Answers.com - just looked this up

Personally as all over Africa, I'd do it on the ground, finding a tour operator that is!!! Changing clothes is easier at ground level too!

Kira
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Old 26 Mar 2009
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In Moremi, Savute and Chobe, there are no campsites to be had till October. The booking system has changed effective the 1st of the year. No reservations, no campsites, no entry into the park except on a prepaid daypass. There were some issues with the money at the gates, so don't count on the gates taking your money. At this time, no one has reported experiencing it differently.
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Old 27 Mar 2009
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Hi all,

we just booked two nights Savuti for may so it might still be possible. As someone mentioned earlier the booking system here in Botswana is complete crap though. We first tried to book trough the office in Maun (after getting several wrong phonenumbers and faxnumbers) but everything was full except Ihaha campsite. The other day my wife went to pay one night on that Ihaha campsite here in Gaborone so she asked again if anything was available at Savuti and surprise, surprise...no problem. Booked and paid immediately.

Yesterday got a fax from Maun to check if i still needed some other nights reserved at Savuti (which i had never requested)????????????

I would say, try your luck...

Koen
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