Botswana & Victoria Falls Adventure

Namibia · About Escorted or Guided Tour

This Classic trip showcases some of the best that Africa has to offer. Journey from Namibia, across Botswana and on to Zimbabwe on an authentic African adventure that includes the elephants of Chobe National Park. Meet San Bushmen in the blazing Kalahari and explore the Okavango Delta by dugout mokoro canoe. A knowledgeable CEO will ensure your accommodation will provide the most authentic travel experience possible, including an overnight in bushmen huts for a bedtime you’ll never forget.

What's Included

Traditional dinner. Okavango Delta excursion with entrances, wildlife walks and dugout canoe trips. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.

Highlights

Witness the immense Kalahari Desert and Victoria Falls, experience wildlife walks and wilderness camping, float past hippos in a dugout canoe, learn about the San Bushmen, search for wildlife.

Dossier Disclaimer

The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.

VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.

Itinerary Disclaimer

While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission.

Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.

Important Notes

1.This is not a physically demanding journey; however, travelling can be difficult, with long drives and poor road conditions at times. Despite this, most clients feel that the diversity of the African landscape, countries, culture and wildlife are all well worth the experience. We use a comfortable and safe air-conditioned vehicle for the long drives.

2. Please note that this tour combines with other G Adventures tours. As such, the staff and some travel companions on your tour may have previously been traveling together with G Adventures, prior to Day 1 of your tour. Likewise, some staff and travel companions may be continuing together on another G Adventures tour, after your trip concludes.

3. It is compulsory to show a valid Yellow Fever Certificate if you are travelling to Botswana and Zimbabwe from a Yellow Fever endemic country. Entry into Botswana when travelling from the following countries (but not limited to) will require a Yellow Fever Certificate: Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast) Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea Zambia, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, São Tomé and Príncipe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, Venezuela

Group Leader Description

On this tour, you will be accompanied by a group Chief Experience Officer (CEO) and an expert driver. The Chief Experience Officer (CEO) will be the group manager and leader. All of our leaders in southern Africa are registered and licensed tourism guides, meaning they’ve studied to have a broad knowledge base of the region’s history, cultures, and wildlife, and are legally certified to lead/guide tours in the regions visited. Most of our leaders in the region are from South Africa, though it may be possible that you’ll have a leader from another country in the southern African region.

As the group manager and leader, the aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places where are travelling, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. He/she will take care of the small things so you can concentrate on enjoying your adventure. In addition, as an integral part of the team, your driver is skilled and experienced driver who has intimate knowledge of the vehicle and routes travelled.

We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting.

Group Size Notes

Max 18, avg 14.

Meals Included

7 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 3 dinners

Meals

Eating is a big part of travelling. Travelling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available in southern Africa. On this tour, we provide only a few meals for you and your group members, so as to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility in you choices. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other’s company. There is no obligation to do this though – while in the larger centres, your CEO will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip.

Your CEO prepare the meals included in the Okavango Delta, arranging to purchase the foodstuffs before our bush camping excursion begins. Breakfasts will generally be cereals, if time allows a warm breakfast may be prepared. Lunches will be light meals such as sandwiches and/or salads. All evening meals will be freshly-prepared hot meals, and will consist of a variety of continental and local dishes.

For the included meals, vegetarian meal requests and other dietary requirements need to be specified prior to arrival.

Transport

Air-conditioned touring vehicle, walking, mokoro, safari vehicle.

About our Transportation

For all of our standard class trips in southern Africa, including this tour, we use a private local bus for the journey. With air conditioning, and sliding windows, this style of transportation is a comfortable way to travel through the region. In addition, even with a full group of 18 travelers, there will be extra space for the benefit of the group. Having our own private vehicle throughout the tour allows us the flexibility of making stops when needed. In addition, we are able to travel to out-of-the-way locations where public transportation does not reach.

Road conditions in the region can range from good to very poor. As such, we slow our traveling speed in the rough spots and enjoy some sand and bumps en route – something which is of course part of the adventure of traveling in Africa!

In the Okavango Delta, we leave our bus behind and explore in the area in mokoros – traditional dug-out canoes. The mokoros usually seat 2 people and are handled by ‘polers’ – so named as they move the mokoro forward by using a very long pole pushed into the ground under the water. This is a relaxing and peaceful way to take in the fascinating environment and wonderful scenery of the delta.

Solo Travellers

We believe single travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and single travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.

Accommodation

Hotels (2 nts), lodge/chalet (4 nts), basic camping (1 nt).

My Own Room

The “My Own Room” option for this tour may include either rooms or tents, depending on the individual itinerary and accommodation breakdown.

My Own Room Exceptions

Day 4 (basic camping).

About Accommodation

Hotel
2 nights in comfortable twin rooms with en suite or shared facilities.

Cabin/Huts
1 night are spent in simple Hut. Rooms are twin or single with shared facilities.

Lodge
1 night in standard rooms with en-suite facilities.

Adventure Tents
2 nights are spent in simple Dorm/Adventure tents. Rooms are twin or single with shared facilities.

Basic Camping (participative, please bring your sleeping bag and towel)
1 night is spent in pitched tents in the Delta with very basic facilities (no shower, dig-out toilet). Tents are twin.

Joining Hotel

For details of your joining hotel please refer to your tour voucher, G Account, the G Adventures App or contact your travel agent.

Joining Instructions

The nearest international airport is Windhoek Hosea Kutako International Airport. It is about 40 km from downtown. There are a variety of ways to get into the city.

Taxi: When arriving at the international terminal, walk straight ahead and out the doors and just to your left you will see sedan vehicles which are the taxis. The amount should be $250N but agree the price before getting into the vehicle.

Shuttle: When arriving at the international terminal, walk straight ahead and out the doors and just to your left you will see a mini-van. This is the shuttle service to Windhoek/Windhoek hotels/guesthouses and departs when the vehicle is reasonably full (Cost is $120N payble in South African Rand 1ZAR=$1N).

If you have paid in advance for an arrival transfer, a G Adventures representative will be at the airport to meet you. If for any reason you are not met at the airport, please call our local support line. If you are unable to make contact for whatever reason, please make your way to the joining point hotel via taxi.

Please note that Day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned for that day other then your welcome meeting in the evening, so you can arrive at any time.

A G Adventures Representative will organize a short meeting soon after arrival, during which you will meet other tour participants and receive information about general and specific aspects of the trip. A welcome note will be left for you in the hotel so you have all the necessary information regarding the meeting time. If you arrive late, s/he will leave you a message detailing what time and where you should meet the next morning.

Arrival Complications

We don’t expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, as soon as possible please contact your starting point hotel, requesting that you speak to or leave a message for your CEO (if you are not on a group tour please refer to the emergency contact details provided in this dossier). If you are unable to get in touch with your leader, please refer to our emergency contact details. If you have pre-booked an airport transfer and have not made contact with our representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the Starting Point hotel, following the Joining Instructions. Please apply to your travel agent on your return for a refund of the transfer cost if this occurs.

Emergency Contact

Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Local Representative (if one is listed below) or our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.

AIRPORT TRANSFER
If you have purchased an arrival through G Adventures or if an arrival transfer is included in the cost of your tour, please note that:

Your arrival transfer has been arranged based on flight information provided to us. If you are advised of a flight schedule change within 48 hours of your scheduled arrival time, we will do our best to rearrange your arrival transfer however we cannot guarantee this. If your arrival transfer does not arrive within 30 minutes after you have exited the arrivals area please call the local emergency contact numbers listed below for more information.

EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Local Representative (South Africa)
From outside South Africa: +27 713823286
From within South Africa: 071 3823286

If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.
Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0344 272 0000
Calls from Germany: 0800 365 1000
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999

What to Take

You will be on the move a lot, so our advice is to pack as lightly as possible. Your baggage should be clearly labelled and restricted to one soft compact suitcase (please avoid a hard-top case), or sports bag, maximum 15kg, plus a daypack. Luggage limits on airlines are strictly enforced and space on vehicles is limited. Porters are not often available, so be prepared to carry your own bags. It is important to pack clothes for warm days and cool evenings, as well as a warm jacket for early morning safaris. A set of smart casual clothes is also advisable. A set of smart casual clothes is also advisable. During the winter months (May to October), the temperatures can get quite cold in Botswana. It is wise to bring plenty of layers for cool mornings and evenings. A set of smart casual clothes is also advisable. Please don’t forget to bring your sleeping bag for the two nights spent in pitched tents in the Delta.

Checklist

Additional Items:
• Sleeping bag and liner (Seasonally appropriate)

Cold Weather:
• Long-sleeved shirts or sweater
• Scarf
• Warm gloves
• Warm hat
• Warm layers

Documents:
• Flight info (required) (Printouts of e-tickets may be required at the border)
• Insurance info (required) (With photocopies)
• Passport (required) (With photocopies)
• Required visas or vaccination certificates (required) (With photocopies)
• Vouchers and pre-departure information (required)

Essentials:
• Binoculars (optional)
• Camera (With extra memory cards and batteries)
• Cash, credit and debit cards
• Day pack (Used for daily excursions or short overnights)
• Ear plugs
• First-aid kit (should contain lip balm with sunscreen, sunscreen, whistle, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, bandaids/plasters, tape, anti-histamines, antibacterial gel/wipes, antiseptic cream, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, water purification tablets or drops, insect repellent, sewing kit, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
• Flashlight/torch (Headlamps are ideal)
• Fleece top/sweater
• Footwear
• Hat
• Locks for bags
• Long pants/jeans
• Moneybelt
• Outlet adapter
• Personal entertainment (Reading and writing materials, cards, music player, etc.)
• Reusable water bottle
• Shirts/t-shirts
• Sleepwear
• Small travel towel
• Sunglasses
• Toiletries (Preferably biodegradable)
• Watch and alarm clock
• Waterproof backpack cover
• Windproof rain jacket

Warm Weather:
• Sandals/flip-flops
• Shorts/skirts (Longer shorts/skirts are recommended)
• Sun hat/bandana
• Swimwear

Note: Seasons in Southern Africa are quite extreme. Winters can be really cold and summers will be really hot. If you travel during winter months (May to October) please ensure that you bring warm clothing and a suitable sleeping bag.

Note: There is an option to rent a sleeping bag for your one night in the Okavango Delta. The cost is USD10 approx and paid for on-site.

Laundry

Please note that you will be on the move a lot, and as such there will not be a lot of time for same-day laundry service. Please ask your guide/CEO to arrange if any laundry needs to be done, so that he / she can advise or make arrangements for you.

Visas

All countries require travelers to have a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity), and you are required to acquire the entry visas for each of the countries visited. Please double check with your agent and/or visa agent what the visa requirements is for each country that you will be traveling to. Some countries do require that you get your visa before arrival. If you show up at a border and should you not have the required visa you will be denied entry to the country and be send back to the closest embassy/high commission to get the visa. All arrangements and expenses for that will be at your own cost. The CEO will assist you with travel arrangements but will not be able to accompany you. You will also have to catch up with the group at their next destination at own cost.

We have been experiencing a lot of problems with people that need visas for Namibia and Malawi. Namibian and Malawian visas is not available at the border, so please make very sure if you do need a visa before arrival.

The information provided here is to be used as a guide only. Please consult with the relevant embassy or your travel agency before you travel. We cannot take any responsibility whatsoever for the use of this information.

Namibia

http://www.namibia.org.za/consular.htm
http://www.namibiatourism.com.na/visas/

Visas cannot be obtained on arrival.

FOREIGN NATIONALS EXEMPTED FROM VISA REQUIREMENTS WHEN TRAVELLING TO NAMIBIA
Angola, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Cuba, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Iceland, India (Diplomatic and Official Passport up to 3 Months), Ireland. Italy, Japan, Kenya, Lesotho, Lienchtenstein, Luxemburg, Malaysia, Macau (SAR), Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, New Zealand, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Russian Federation (Including States of the former U.S.S.R), South Africa, Singapore, Spain, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Tanzania, United Kingdom, United States of America, Zambia, Zimbabwe.


Botswana

Please note that starting June 1, 2017, Botswana will be implementing a $30 USD entry tax for visitors entering the country, except for residents and citizens of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) member states. This entry tax is payable at all points of entry into Botswana and will be valid for 30 days and includes multiple entry. For further information please visit the BTO website www.botswanatourism.co.bw/tourismlevy

http://www.botswanaembassy.org/index.php?page=visa-consular
http://www.botswanatourism.co.bw/entryFormalities.php

Visas cannot be obtained at the border.

Countries that do not require a visa for Botswana
Antigua & Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Brazil,Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, France, Gambia, Germany, Greece, Grenada, Guyana, Holy See, Hong Kong, Hungary,Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Kiribati, Lesotho, Liechtenstien, Latvia, Lithuania, Luzembourg, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mozambique, Namibia,Nauru, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway & Colonies*, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Samoa, San Marico, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovak Republic, Solomon Islands, South Africa, South Korea (Republic Of), Spain, St. Kitts And Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent & The Gurenadines, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Tanzania, Tonga, Trinidad & Tobago, Tuvalu, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States Of America, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Countries that do require a visa for Botswana
Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Belarus, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, China, Columbia, Comoros, Congo (Republic Of), Congo (Democratic Republic Of), Cote D’ivoire (Ivory Coast), Cuba, Czech Republic, Djibouti, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equitorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Georgia, Ghana, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Korea (Dem. Peoples Rep), Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan (Kirghizia), Laos (Peoples Dem. Rep), Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Macedonia, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, Micronesia, Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morroco, Myanmar (Burma), Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Palau, Panama, Phillippines, Qatar, Rwanda, Sao Tome & Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sumatra, Suriname, Syria, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Thailand, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Vatican City, Vietnam, Yemen


Zimbabwe


PLEASE READ THE ENTIRETY OF THE TEXT BELOW AS THIS IS IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR YOUR ENTRY INTO ZIMBABWE***

Please note that visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. The visa requirements for your trip vary depending on where you are from and where you are going. We keep the following information up to date as much as possible, but rules do change. It is important that you check for yourself with the Embassy of Zimbabwe. Please, keep in mind that all countries require passports valid for at least 6 months from the moment of departure from the country.


It is the responsibility of the traveller to check with their nearest Embassy and confirm the requirements for entry into Zimbabwe***

Please be sure to do your research to determine if your nationality requires a Visa, can purchase one upon arrival or must apply for one in advance.

A Visa to enter Zimbabwe is required by several nationalities, please read the full details listed below.

There are 3 categories:

CATEGORY A:
Countries whose nationals do NOT require a Zimbabwe Visa.

Antigua & Barbuda, Angola, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Botswana, Cayman Islands, Congo DRC, Cyprus, Fiji, Ghana, Grenada, Hong Kong, Jamaica, Kenya, Kiribati, Leeward Islands, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malaysia, Malawi, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Montserrat, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Samoa Western, Seychelles, Singapore, South Africa, Solomon Islands, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent, Swaziland, Tanzania, Trinidad and Tobago, Turk & Caicos Islands, Tuvalu, Uganda, Vanuatu, Zambia

CATEGORY B:
Countries whose nationals are granted a Zimbabwe Visa at port of entry on payment of requisite visa fees.

Algeria, Andorra, Argentina, Austria, Australia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bermuda, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Burundi, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Cape Verde Islands, China, Comoros Islands, Cook Islands, Croatia, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominic Republic, Egypt, Estonia, Equatorial Guinea, Finland, France, French Polynesia, French West Indies, Gibraltar, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Haiti, Hungary, Indonesia, Iceland, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea (South), Kyrgyzstan, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macau, Marshall Island, Micronesia, Moldova, Monaco, Netherlands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Northern Mariana, Norway, Palau Islands, Palestine, Papua New Guinea, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Russia, Rwanda, Samoa, Sao Tome, Serbia, Slovak, Slovenia, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, United Kingdom, United States of America, Uzbekistan, Vatican, Virgin Islands


Canadian Passport holders can ONLY get a Single entry Zimbabwe Visa at the port of Entry.

CATEGORY C:
Countries whose nationals are required to apply for and obtain a Zimbabwe visa prior to travelling (single entry Zimbabwe visa ONLY).

Afghanistan, Albania, Armenia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cameroon, Central Africa Republic, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Congo Brazzaville, Costa Rica, Conakry, Cote de Voire, Djibouti Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, French Guiana, Gabon, Gambia, Guam, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Guyana, Honduras, India, Iraq, Jordan, Korea (DPRK), Laos, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Myanmar, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norfolk Islands, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Reunion, Romania, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Taiwan, Thailand, Togo, Tunisia, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen Republic, Yugoslavia

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you have purchased a single entry visa upon arrival and then decide to leave Zimbabwe (even for a few hours) you will need to buy another visa to re-enter Zimbabwe. In this instance you should buy a double entry visa upon arrival as it works out cheaper. Multiple entry visas cannot be obtained at the port of entry into Zimbabwe. You may enter Zimbabwe on a single entry visa and then obtain a multiple entry visa from the town office – but this may take up to 7 working days to be issued. Alternatively, a multiple entry visa can be obtained from the Zimbabwe Embassy in your country prior to departure for Zimbabwe.

Information accurate as of July 1, 2016

Detailed Trip Notes

REGIONAL INFORMATION
Climate
Southern Africa is renowned for its excellent outdoor living climate. The winter months are from May to September and are characterized by cold nights and pleasant days. Summer is from October to April and starts off with increasing dry heat and dust. Rains generally only start from mid to late December and last until March; this period is hot and humid.

Electricity

220-240V, 50 HZ, Most electrical plugs are 15 amp 3-prong with round pins. International adaptor are called for, they can be purchased locally (approx 2 U$).

Language There are multiple official languages in Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe, although English is widely spoken. There are also numerous dialects spoken throughout different parts of these lands.

Namibia:
Full country name: Republic of Namibia
Area: 824,292 sq km (318,259 sq mi)
Population: 2,032,000 (July 2005 est) 1.820,916 (Census 2002)
Capital city: Windhoek (pop 161,000)
People: 86% African (50% Owambo, 9% Kavango, 7% Herero, 7% Damara, 5% Nama, 4% Caprivian, 3% San, 2% Baster, 0.5% Tswana), 7.4% mixed, 6.6% white Languages: English, Afrikaans, German, Oshivambo, Herero, Nama
Religion: Christian, Lutheran, native religions
Government: Republic
President: Hifikepunye Pohamba
Major industries: Meat packing, fish processing, dairy products, mining (diamond, lead, zinc, tin, silver, tungsten, uranium, copper), millet, sorghum, peanuts, livestock, fish, tourism.
Major trading partners: UK, South Africa, Spain, Japan, Germany, USA

Formally known as South West Africa. The whole territory became German protectorate in 1884, except for the British/Cape Colony enclave of Walvis Bay. After the First World War the territory was administered by South Africa until independence on 21 March 1990. The capital is Windhoek and the second largest town is Walvis Bay, Namibia’s only port. Swakopmund is a coastal town with a German influence and revolves mainly around tourism. Namibia’s economy relies on diamond mining in the south, cattle farming in the north, fishing along the coast and tourism. Most of the country is desert or semi desert. There is a population of around 1.8 million. This, around 1, 5 people per sq. km is one of the lowest in the world. The official language is English although there are many different cultures including Herero, San, Koikoi, Owambo, Afrikaans and German. Namibia was at one stage a German colony therefore having German-speaking people. About 75% of the locals are Christian and the others have traditional beliefs. Namibia is a land of contrasts. Being largely semi-desert and desert, midsummer temperatures may rise to 40°C, while winter night temperatures can drop to freezing. Along the coast it is cool, with regular morning fogs. Namibia’s rain falls in summer, from October to April, and the land averages 300 days of sunshine annually.

Botswana:
Full country name: Republic of Botswana
Area: 600,370 sq km (231,800 sq mi)
Population: 1.6 million Capital city: Gaborone (pop 192,000)
People: Botswana 60%, Bakalanga, Basarwa, Bakgalagadi
Languages: English, Setswana
Religions: indigenous beliefs 50%, Christian 50%
Government: parliamentary republic
President: Seretse Ian Khama
Major industries: diamonds, copper, nickel, coal, salt, soda ash, potash, livestock processing, sorghum, maize, millet, pulses, groundnuts (peanuts), beans, cowpeas, sunflower seed, livestock
Major trading partners: EU, Southern African Customs Union (SACU), Zimbabwe

The first inhabitants of Botswana were the San (Bushmen). They still populate the country, but the Tswana tribe is now more prominent. Other tribes include the Kalanga, Nbukushy, Yei and the Herero. The Herero women still wear the full-length Victorian-style dresses, which were introduced to them by German missionaries in the late 1800’s, however it is now a tribal trademark. The British controlled Bechuanaland (as Botswana was then known) from 1885 until the country received their independence on September 30th 1966. Ironically diamonds were discovered in Botswana in 1967! Interesting fact – Botswana’s diamonds do very well on the International market as they are classified as “Blood free,” meaning they are not used to fund guerrilla warfare. Botswana has the strongest economy and currency in Africa, mostly due to their diamonds and livestock. The European Union put many stipulations on their imported meats and Botswana’s tight veterinary checks, aiming at controlling foot and mouth, mean that the EU are happy to buy their meat. Agricultural income will improve when they have combated the problem of widespread drought. They are currently installing irrigation systems around the country to try to feed the most water-deprived areas. Botswana handles its international debt much better than any other African country with the interest being paid with one months export earnings, rather than the six months earnings it takes most other African countries. With the amount of for ex saved up the country could survive with no income for 36 months. Botswana has the world’s highest birth rate at 3.5%, and average women have 5 children. The country has a strong currency, the Pula meaning rain and the Thebe meaning raindrop. Government policies and poaching: Their policy on tourism is “high cost and low impact” therefore rather having a few less tourists and charging more money for the privilege of a visit to a park or similar. The country has a very good army, which has an anti poaching unit. Poaching has in the past been a problem in the country but in now almost under control. The army is allowed to shoot to kill without asking questions if you are caught poaching. Rhinos are very few due to poaching and they have breeding programs in place.

Zimbabwe:
Full country name: Republic of Zimbabwe (and formerly Southern Rhodesia, Rhodesia, the Republic of Rhodesia, and Zimbabwe Rhodesia)
Area: 390,757 km²
Population: 16 111 699
Capital cities: Harare
People: The country is made up of Bantu-speaking ethic groups, with the majority of the population comprised of the Shona and Ndebele groups.
Languages: Zimbabwe has three official languages: English, Shona (the Bantu language with the most native speakers), and Ndebele (also a Bantu language). In total Zimbabwe as 16 officially recognized languages.
Religion: The majority of Zimbabweans are Christian.
Major industries: Mineral, gold and agricultural products make up the majority of Zimbabwe’s exports.
Currency: The Zimbabwean Dollar

Officially the Republic of Zimbabwe and formerly Southern Rhodesia, Rhodesia, the Republic of Rhodesia, and Zimbabwe Rhodesia) is a landlocked country located in the southern part of the African continent, between the Zambezi and Limpopo rivers. It is bordered by South Africa to the south, Botswana to the southwest, Zambia to the northwest and Mozambique to the east. Zimbabwe began as the British crown colony of Southern Rhodesia, created from land held by the British South Africa Company. President Robert Mugabe is the head of State and Commander in Chief of the armed forces. Morgan Tsvangirai is the Prime Minister. Mugabe has been in power since the country’s internationally-recognized independence in 1980.

Spending Money

Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.

Money Exchange

The Namibian currency is the Namibian Dollar (NAD), which is equivalent to the South African Rand.

In Botswana, you pay with Pula (BWP). The official currency of Zimbabwe is the Zimbabwean Dollar, denoted by ZWD.

It is advisable to pay in US$ in Zimbabwe, as it is not that easy to get a good exchange rate, however, change will then be in ZWD.

Each currency can be obtained locally by changing foreign currency or by using ATMs (where available) which will disperse local currency. Your CEO will inform you where you can change money throughout the tour and approximately how much money you will need.

The easiest foreign currency to exchange for locally for any of the local currencies is the $US; however the British Pound and Euro may also be exchanged as well. Please note that due to past problems with forgery, $US notes that are older than year 2006 are not accepted in Africa.
Large note ($US 50, $US 100 etc) can be difficult to change in some places, but will gain you the best exchange rate.

If you plan to rely on cash, please bring foreign currency (Euro, Pound, USD) with you, as it is often expensive to buy these currencies locally. And in more rural areas, it is often not likely.
If you plan to buy your visas at borders, you will need to bring $USD cash to pay for these visas. Please note you cannot use the local currency or any other currency to buy these visas- they must be purchased in USD.

Please do not bring Travellers’ cheques to Africa. They are difficult if not impossible to exchange in many places.

Visa/Plus system cards are the most widely accepted debit cards. it is harder to find machines Mastercard/Cirrus cards. We highly recommend that if you hold a Mastercard, you obtain a Visa card prior to departure and travel with both. This is also useful should something unforeseen happen to one of your cards during your travels.
While there are many ATMs in the major centres, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work in Africa. Check with your bank.

Credit cards can be used in major cities and towns ONLY but please do not rely on them as a method of payment because they are generally not widely accepted. You should be aware that to purchase products or services on a credit card a fee of 5%-10% usually applies. The majority of our optional activities can also be paid by credit card. Your CEO will advise on these.

Please note that in many areas there may be occasional power-outages, where there will be no electricity for hours at a time. In addition, ATMs outside of larger centres often run out of cash or can be out of order unexpectedly. These factors could affect your ability to access money from ATMs. As such, please do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money.
A combination of foreign currency and debit/credit cards for cash advances is best. Always take more rather than less, as you don’t want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds.

As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com.

Emergency Fund

Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an ‘emergency’ fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!

Departure Tax

All passengers are advised to check the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe website for updated information on applicable departure taxes for Zimbabwe: http://www.caaz.co.zw/.

Tipping

Tipping is an expected, though not compulsory, component of your tour program. The gesture serves as an expression of appreciation for exceptional service, and amounts given are up to your discretion.

Tipping is one of the most direct ways that you can have a positive economic impact within the African community. Although it may not be customary for you, it is an important source of income for those in the tourism industry. Giving a tip should be a seen as a formal ‘thank you’, and the action should in no way be awkward.

The best method of tipping someone that has served the whole group is to plan in advance, and not rush when it comes to saying goodbye. A suggestion would be for each group member to contribute anonymously by putting their tip into an envelope. This often works the best and the group should gather to present the gift to the recipient(s), offering their thanks and showing their appreciation. This method brings the action out into the open, allowing for a friendly and appreciative interaction between the group and the recipient(s).

You may use the following as a guideline, all given in a per person format:

CEO: $5-8 USD (per day, per person)

Local guides: $2-3 USD (per day)
Safari Guide/Driver: $2-3 USD (per day)

Restaurant Staff: 10-15% of cost of bill

Okavango Delta polers: 50-100 BWP (Botswana Pula)

Optional Activities

Please see the itinerary for information on optional activities, descriptions and estimated pricing.

Health

We recommend you contact your family physician, or your local travel clinic for the most up-to-date health information at least one month before departure. Travellers should also carry a basic first-aid kit and hand sanitizers/antibacterial wipes on their travels. Medical facilities are basic throughout these countries. For your own safety, we strongly recommend that you advise your tour leader of any medical condition that may affect you while travelling with the group. Your tour leader will be able to inform you of local health advisories (e.g. drinking water quality). Please ensure you have all the inoculations recommended by your doctor.
 
 
Yellow Fever Certificate Note: (Updated: May 2017)
 
It is compulsory to show a valid Yellow Fever Certificate if you are travelling to the following G Adventures-visited countries from a Yellow Fever endemic country:

-           Botswana
-          Ethiopia
-          Kenya
-          Madagascar
-          Malawi
-          Mozambique
-          Namibia
-          Rwanda
-          South Africa
-          Swaziland
-          Uganda
-          Zambia
-          Zimbabwe
 
For some of these countries, proof of Yellow Fever vaccination is also required for passengers who have travelled more than 12 hours through the airport of an endemic country. If other countries not endemic to Yellow Fever have been visited after visiting an endemic country, then a Yellow Fever certificate may still be required on entry. Please check country-specific regulations before your departure.
 
 
Malaria
Malaria is a mosquito-borne disease that is present in some regions in Africa. Risk of malaria can increase during periods of heavy rain, during the rainy seasons, and in densely populated areas of Southern & East Africa. To prevent malaria, we recommend speaking to your doctor about taking preventative medication (prophylaxis), combined with regular use of insect repellent spray/cream. Please check updated travel health advisories specific to malaria before your departure.

Safety and Security

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government’s advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers’ cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home – you won’t need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your CEO has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Your CEO will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.

Protests and Demonstrations- Protests and demonstrations, even those that are well intended, have the potential to turn violent with no warning. Counter protests can also turn violent. Action by security forces to disperse demonstrators and protesters may occur at any time. If you are in an area where demonstrators or protesters are gathering, avoid the temptation of staying for a good photo opportunity and leave the area immediately.

Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards) have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).

Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk.

We take all prudent measures in relation to your safety. For ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling, please visit:


www.gadventures.com/travel-resources/safety/

Trip Specific Safety

GENERAL: Look after your personal items. Do not leave your valuables visible in a car or hotel room. Lock your hotel room door when you enter and when you leave. Do not carry large amount of cash on you. Avoid displaying flashy jewellery and carry your camera in its pack on your shoulder rather than around your neck. Keep your passport, airline tickets, money, important documents locked up in your room/safe – do not carry it with you.

Medical Form

Our small group adventures bring together people of all ages. It is very important you are aware that, as a minimum, an average level of fitness and mobility’ is required to undertake our easiest programs. Travellers must be able to walk without the aid of another person, climb 3-4 flights of stairs, step on and off small boats, and carry their own luggage at a minimum. Travellers with a pre-existing medical condition are required to complete a short medical questionnaire, which must be signed by their physician. This is to ensure that travellers have the necessary fitness and mobility to comfortably complete their chosen trip. While our CEOs work hard to ensure that all our travellers are catered for equally, it is not their responsibility to help individuals who cannot complete the day’s activities unaided. Please refer to the physical ratings in this Trip Details document for more information.

The medical questionnaire can be found online at:

www.gadventures.com/medical-form
.

A Couple of Rules

Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your CEO, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy please bear in mind that all clients must have medical coverage and that we require a minimum coverage of USD 200,000 for repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.

Planeterra-The G Adventures Foundation

The Planeterra Foundation planeterra.org is a Canadian non-profit organization that helps empower local people to develop their communities, conserve their cultures, and create humane and supportive systems for their endeavours. Planeterra provides capacity building and catalyst grants to get community social enterprises off the ground. These businesses address local challenges by providing benefits for indigenous people, empowering marginalized women, and granting disadvantaged youth access to education, employment, and brighter futures. Planeterra also works to ensure these businesses have a thriving customer base by integrating programs into G Adventures’ itineraries globally.

G Adventures is Planeterra’s largest corporate donor, covering all operating costs so 100% of your donation will bring opportunity to people in need.

Dollar-a-Day Program
G Adventures’ Dollar-a-Day Program provides travellers with the opportunity to give back to the people and places visited on our tours by donating one dollar for every day you are on trip. 100% of these donations go directly to support community development projects worldwide that are implemented by Planeterra.

Feedback

After your travels, we want to hear from you! Your feedback information is so important to us that we’ll give you 5% off the price of your next G Adventures trip if your feedback is completed on-line within 30 days of finishing your trip. Your tour evaluation will be e-mailed to you 24 hours after the conclusion of your trip. If you do not receive the tour evaluation link in the days after your tour has finished, please drop us a line at customerservice@gadventures.com and we will send it on to you.

Newsletter

Our adventure travel e-newsletter is full of travel news, trip information, interesting stories and contests. To avoid missing out on special offers and updates from G Adventures, subscribe at www.gadventures.com/newsletters/

Stay current on how our company invests in our global community through our foundation – Planeterra. Sign up for Planeterra’s monthly news to learn more about how to give back and support the people and places we love to visit.

Travel Forum - The Watering Hole

Be sure to stop by The Watering Hole, our adventure travel forum. If you’re interested in meeting others booked on your upcoming trip, check out the Departure Lounge section of our forum and introduce yourself. Otherwise, just drop in at anytime to share some travel tips, ask questions, meet other travellers and quench your thirst for travel. Our forum is located at wateringhole.gadventures.com.

Minimum Age

You must be 18 to travel unaccompanied on a G Adventures tour. For minors travelling with a guardian over 21 years old, the minimum age is 12.

International Flights

Check-in times and baggage allowances/restrictions vary by airline and can change at any time. For the most up-to-date information for your flight, please contact your airline. We recommend checking in online in advance to avoid potential delays at the airport.

Max Pax

18

Group Leader

Chief Experience Officer (CEO)/driver throughout, local guides.

PRODUCT_LINE: DADF, ID: 22841

Itinerary

Day 1: Windhoek

There are no planned activities until an evening welcome meeting.

Included Activities:
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting

Day 2: Windhoek/Kalahari Desert (1B, 1D)

Continue through the eastern part of Namibia and cross into Botswana before travelling into the heart of the Kalahari.

Arrive in the late afternoon and camp close to Ghanzi. Opt for a “bushman walk and dance”. Enjoy a local meal before settling in for the night.

Included Activities:
Border Crossing (Namibia – Botswana)

Transport:
Private Vehicle (5.00 hour(s), 470km)

Day 3: Kalahari Desert/Maun (1B)

Travel along the northern portions of the Kalahari Desert throughout the day – this is a severely arid and barren landscape, though very beautiful.

After arrival in Maun, the biggest town in the Okavango Delta area, pick up any supplies needed and prepare for the journey into the Okavango Delta.

In the evening, watch a traditional dance group performance on the poolside terrace.

Additional Notes:
If you pre-booked the Okavango Delta Flight, you will be flying today.

Included Activities:
Dikgantshwane Performance

Transport:
Private Vehicle (5.00 hour(s), 330km)

Day 4: Okavango Delta (1B, 1L, 1D)

The excursion begins with a drive in customized safari vehicles for about 1-2 hrs to the “dock” to board a mokoro (a dugout canoe) that takes us deep into the delta. After a 1-2 hrs in the mokoro, arrive to the camp.

Included Activities:
Okavango Delta Excursion

Transport:
4×4 (1.00-2.00 hours)
Mokoro (1.00-2.00 hours)

Day 5: Okavango Delta/Nata (1B, 1D)

Enjoy one last sunrise in the delta before travelling back to Maun by mokoro. Stop in Maun, pick up your luggage, have lunch, and continue to Nata.

Transport:
Mokoro (1.00-2.00 hours)
4×4 (1.00-2.00 hours)
Private Vehicle (3.50 hour(s), 340km)

Day 6: Nata/Kasane (1B)

Travel to Kasane outside the gates of Chobe National Park, home to the largest elephant population in Southern Africa.

Opt for an evening boat cruise or wildlife safari drive. For photography enthusiasts, this place is heaven with hippos, elephants, and crocodiles all living by the river.

Transport:
Private Vehicle (4.00 hour(s), 255km)

Day 7: Kasane/Victoria Falls (1B)

Opt for a sunrise wildlife safari drive for one last chance to see the Big Five.

Cross the border to enter into Zimbabwe and continue on to Victoria Falls, arriving in the early afternoon. This is a great base to see natural wonders and take part in some adventure activities.

Opt to get up close (and wet from the spray) while visiting the immense Victoria Falls, raft the whitewater of the mighty Zambezi, or, for the more adventurous, bungee jump with Victoria Falls in view.

Additional Notes:
Your accommodation is in Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe) and NOT Livingstone (Zambia). Please make sure you have the necessary visa.

Included Activities:
Border Crossing (Botswana – Zimbabwe)

Transport:
Private Vehicle (0.50 hour(s))
Private Vehicle (1.00 hour(s))

Day 8: Victoria Falls (1B)

Depart at any time.

Additional Notes:
We highly recommend booking post-accommodation to fully experience everything Victoria Falls and the Zambezi area has to offer.

Interested in Botswana & Victoria Falls Adventure?

G Adventures

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