Safari Offers for Botswana, Green Season

Botswana

Come June to October in Botswana,  we scramble at the last minute to find availability due to the high demand over this time.   As we roll into November availability gets a little easier to find and pricing drops. This period (November to March) has warmer temperatures, dramatic African afternoon storms and a new lease on life literally as flowers bloom,  migratory birds return and there is an abundance of young antelope all around. The Delta itself, becomes more spacious as the water recedes and dries up and the green lush new vegetation is revealed. To sum up the USP’s for travel in the Green season are

  • Explosion of new life
  • Summer birds migrate back
  • Excellent lighting for Photography
  • Beautiful colours all around
  • Increase of predator sightings due to all the newborns
  • Dramatic late afternoon African thunderstorms

The following Botswana partners offer some great deals in the Green Season

Machaba Safaris 

15 November 2019 – 31 March 2020

Applicable to Machaba Lodge, Little Machaba and Gomoti Plains

– Guests can stay three nights at any of their camps and receive COMPLIMENTARY INTER-CAMP TRANSFERS EX MAUN PLUS a surprise gift or

– Guests can stay three nights and received the third night complimentary 

NEW: Stay three nights Machaba Camp & three nights Gomoti Plains leading in at USD4333 per person including all inter-camp air transfer

Natural Selection

Validity 01 Nov 19 – 19 Dec 2019

We are able to offer the following INCREDIBLE offers:

– Stay two nights Hyena Pans and, two nights Jackal and Hide and get four nights FREE at Clarendon Fresnaye on a BB Basis.

– Stay two nights Meno A Kwena with three nights Sable Alley and get three nights FREE at Ilala Lodge on a BB Basis including 1 dinner at the Boma and Drum experience

Belmond Safaris offer

Book the best of Botswana

Botswana is one of Africa’s most popular and exclusive safari destinations

PACKAGES

Validity: 01 Nov 19 – 31 March 2020


– Two nights Pangolin Chobe Lodge
– Two nights Belmond Savute Elephant Lodge
– Three nights Belmond Eagle Island 

01 Nov 19 – 23 Dec 19

Package price  = USD5158

SPECIAL OFFER PRICE: USD3782 pp sharing

01 Jan – 31 March 2020

Package price – USD5754 pp sharing

SPECIAL OFFER PRICE: USD3936 pp sharing

Package includes:

– Start Kasane Airport

– Return transfers Kasane Airport / Chobe Pangolin Lodge

– 2 nights Chobe Pangolin Lodge on a Fully inclusive basis

– Mack Air transfers

– 2 nights Belmond Savute Elephant Lodge

– 3 nights Belmond Eagle Island Lodge    

Contact us for any further questions regarding the above offers

ALL RATES ABOVE ARE RACK RATES

Please contact us for your net rate  – janine@personalcollectionbyta.com

FAMILY TRAVEL

 “The biggest lesson from Africa was that life’s joys come mostly from relationships and friendships, not from material things. I saw time and again how much fun Africans had with their families and friends and on the sports fields; they laughed all the time.”Andrew Shue (American actor)

What more could you ask for in a destination like Southern Africa, than to enjoy some family time with your children. 

  • It brings us back to a life we knew growing up
  • 100% natural settings with trees, stars and endless savannas
  •  Install’s an appreciation of the Africa’s natural beauty
  • Educational  
  • Takes away the rush of our daily lives
  • It teach children to respect our wildlife
  • Memories lasting a lifetime , and stories for generations to come
  • Hardly any time to get bored

Southern Africa has many places that accommodate families however there are some hotels and lodges that cater perfectly for families.  Below are just 3 choices that come to mind

Images courtesy of Imvelo Safaris, preferred partners of Personal Collection by Thompsons Africa , experts in Southern Africa

African Bush Camps

The Best Part About Memories is Making Them –  Travel can be a wonderful time for a family to bond and a safari is a great way to connect through disconnecting from the normal routine. Everything is new and exciting; seeing an elephant for the first time, making pizza out in nature, or learning the call of an eagle. Watch  African Bush Camps Family Adventure Safari video to see why their family-friendly camps are the best on offer.

You can see how families become a part of their family, hosts entertain children with games and activities while guides ignite a sense of wonder and curiosity in the kids they teach. Their guides are experts in explaining, in fun and interactive ways, how everything in the ecosystem is interconnected, making it an enriching educational experience. 

“Travelling in the company of those we love is home in motion.”

Leigh Hunt

Samara

“We did not inherit the land from our forefathers. We have simply borrowed it from our children.” – NATIVE AMERICAN PROVERB

Samara offers an adventure for all ages. Family-owned and family-run, they are passionate about educating the next generation of conservationists and opening their eyes to the wonders of the wild. Inspiring educational activities combined with a breathtaking malaria-free setting make Samara the epitome of a child friendly safari.

Kids Programme & Babysitting

The Samara Kids Programme, part of our child friendly safari activities, caters to children up to 12 years old.

Experienced staff will engage your children in a variety of age-appropriate, fun and educational activities whilst you relax and unwind.

Activities include:

  • ‘Outdoor classroom’ bush excursions in the lodge grounds
  • Track identification
  • Rock painting like the Khoi-San
  • African crafts
  • T-shirt making
  • Orienteering & navigating
  • Storytelling
  • Colouring-in
  • Board games

When parents are away from the lodge, babies and toddlers younger than 2 years old must be placed under the care of the experienced childminders available. This babysitting is available during game drives and over dinner. A dedicated children’s menu is available at both lodges, and special requests can be accommodated.

Activities for teenagers

Unlikely to take kindly to being grouped in with the ‘kids’, we have a host of activities ideally suited to teens and young adults.

These activities cater to those already into the Big Outdoors as well as those who simply want to get that perfect ‘Insta-worthy’ picture to show friends back home.

These include:

  • Air rifle target practice
  • Bush walks (minimum age 16 years)
  • Sleep-outs (weather dependent)
  • Conservation activities
  • Overnight trail (minimum age 16 years; subject to ranger availability)

The activities described above can also include parents, allowing you to reconnect as a family on an exciting wilderness adventures.

Sabi Sabi

ELEFUN CENTRE AT SABI SABI BUSH LODGE

Families with children are always welcomed at Sabi Sabi Bush Lodge, and children are afforded a bush and nature experience, from the youngest to the eldest members of the family. The EleFun Centre is a fully-fledged children’s facility within the lodge environs, which fosters awareness and an appreciation of nature.The EleFun Centre offer hands-on, interactive activities designed for children between the ages of 4 and 12 years. Age-appropriate bushveld themed activities are guided, and supervised, by qualified staff, and include bushcraft subjects such as bush survival, bugs & birds, tracks & signs of wildlife – all environmentally sensitive subjects that every child will find fascinating.  

There is time for creative hobbies, while the afternoon sessions are fun-filled with games. Selected rangers lead bush walks and talks, and the childcare professionals provide specially planned midday child-friendly game drives, based on the topics covered in the rangers course, at the time of your visit.

The beautifully designed centre also includes a wonderful, secure outdoor play area. While set itineraries will take place every morning and afternoon, children are welcome to enjoy the facility between formal sessions.  Parents and/or guardians can relax and enjoy the incredible safaris, have a pamper session in the Amani Spa or just kick back and enjoy some private time, knowing that their children are reveling in their own special bushveld experience.

JUNIOR RANGER PROGRAMME

10:00 – INTRODUCTION TO JUNIOR RANGER PROGRAMME (AGES 4- 12)

Childcare professionals will introduce the variety of activities that are required in order to qualify as a Junior Ranger. These will of course be based according to their ages.

11:00 – 12:00 – ADVENTURES WITH NATURE 

This is the time for interactive bush activity. Weather permitting, a Ranger – or the EleFun co-ordinator – will lead the children in and around the lodge grounds on a walk, and for the older children there are additional midday educational drives out into the bush. The young Junior Ranger group will learn interesting facts about the Sabi Sabi bushveld and the animals, e.g. bugs & birds, bush survival or tracks & signs of nature.

12:00 – 13:00 – HOBBIES AND CRAFTS

In cases of inclement weather, children will enjoy an arts and crafts session, where boys and girls can enjoy hands-on projects, all relating to nature and the natural world – this could get messy but they definitely won’t be bored.

13:00 – 14:00 – CLOSED FOR LUNCH WITH PARENTS OR GUARDIANS

14:00 – 15:30 – GAME TIME

We encourage all the children to join us for our indoor and outdoor afternoon games which are really fun as well as educational. There is a spacious outdoor area with an obstacle course, a maze, open field to play soccer or enjoy some water sports and jungle gyms. There are also general knowledge quizzes based on African animals and they learn different animal sounds too. 


Images courtesy of Imvelo Safaris

WHY ARE ELEPHANTS IMPORTANT?

Elephants are among the most intelligent of the creatures with whom we share the planet, with complex consciousnesses that are capable of strong emotions.

Across Africa they have inspired respect from the people that share the landscape with them, giving them a strong cultural significance. As icons of the continent elephants are tourism magnets, attracting funding that helps protect wilderness areas. They are also keystone species, playing an important role in maintaining the biodiversity of the ecosystems in which they live.

During the dry season, elephants use their tusks to dig for water. This not only allows the elephants to survive in dry environments and when droughts strike, but also provides water for other animals that share harsh habitats.

When forest elephants eat, they create gaps in the vegetation. These gaps allow new plants to grow and create pathways for other smaller animals to use. They are also one of the major ways in which trees disperse their seeds; some species rely entirely upon elephants for seed dispersal.

On the savannahs, elephants feeding on tree sprouts and shrubs help to keep the plains open and able to support the plains game that inhabit these ecosystems.

Wherever they live, elephants leave dung that is full of seeds from the many plants they eat. When this dung is deposited the seeds are sown and grow into new grasses, bushes and trees, boosting the health of the savannah ecosystem.

We wish to thank all the rangers, conservationist and activist out there for never giving up and giving their lives to save these majestic animals from being wiped out!

WORLD RANGER DAY 31ST JULY 2018

Today its World Rangers Day, Personal Collection by Ta, supports these men and woman and are exceptionally grateful for their tiresome conservation work. And love for wildlife. Today we celebrate the following special organizations and really special people.

BLACK MAMBAS 

The Black Mamba Anti-Poaching Unit is the first majority female anti-poaching unit in South Africa. Founded in 2013 by Transfrontier Africa NPC, to protect the Olifants West Region of Balule Nature Reserve. Within the first year of operation the Black Mambas were invited to expand into other regions and now protect all boundaries of the 52,000ha Balule Nature Reserve, part of the Greater Kruger National Park.

Our teams work to the concept of the “Broken Window” philosophy, striving to make our area of influence the most undesirable, most difficult and least profitable place to poach any species. With a passion for wildlife and rhino conservation, these women are the voice in the community through their conservation work.

The objectives of the Black Mamba project are not only the protection of rhinos through boots on the ground but also through being a role model in their communities. These 32 young women and 1 man want their communities to understand that the benefits are greater through rhino conservation rather than poaching, addressing the social and moral decay that is a product of the rhino poaching within their communities.

They are concerned for their children’s sake as the false economy has brought loose morals and narcotics into their communities. Here are photographs of these wonderful strong woman.

Images taken Julia Gunther & Lee-Ann Olwage

Please read more about Black Mambas and donate to this wonderful organisation.

AKASHINGA is a community-driven conservation model, empowering disadvantaged woman restore and manage a network of Wilderness areas as an alternative to trophy hunting. Many current western-conceived solutions to conserve wilderness areas struggle to gain traction across the African continent.

They decided to innovate, using an all-female team to manage an entire nature reserve and have been astounded by the transformation and potential. The program builds an alternative approach to the militarized paradigm of ‘fortress conservation’ which defends colonial boundaries between nature and humans. While still trained to deal with any situation they may face, the team has  a community-driven interpersonal focus, working with rather than against the local population for the long-term benefits of their own communities and nature.

KEY POINTS

  • A growing body of evidence suggests that empowering women is the single biggest force for positive change in the world today
  • Trophy hunting areas across Africa take up one-sixth of all landmass across participating countries.
  • An expanse greater than all of France
  • The hunting industry is rapidly declining, leaving these wilderness areas and communities without sufficient income to incentive’s conservation – Unless an alternative source of income is provided, these areas will be lost, along with their rich biodiversity
  • Akashinga employs the most marginalized women from rural communities; educates and trains them to be rangers and biodiversity managers – protecting the large landscapes previously reserved for and financed by trophy hunting
  • A woman with a salary in rural Africa invests up to 3 times more than a male into their family
  • 72% of operational costs of the Akashinga model go directly back to the local community – turning biodiversity conservation into a community project
  • These factors equal a better financial return for the local community than what trophy hunting provided
  • This is an efficient, effective and calculable model which inspires and empowers women and gives them the opportunity to secure their own destiny, whilst safeguarding biodiversity
  • It prepares women for the worst-case scenario in their roles, but fosters a harmonious relationship with local communities as the best defence against illegal wildlife crime.

Read more about this awesome organization, Akashinga and donate to save our wildlife. Photographs taken from Akashinga website.

CHOBE ANGELS BOTSWANA

In 2005, Chobe Game Lodge had only two professional female guides out of the 12 man team and it was then that management decided it was a great opportunity to create an all female guiding team to do something about the lack of women in the largely male dominated guiding fraternity of Botswana. The beautiful Chobe Game Lodge is one of the flagship properties in Botswana and was built in the early 1970s, when tourism in the country was just in its infancy.

It is fair to say that there should be more women in senior positions in the Botswana Tourism industry and Chobe Game Lodge wanted to set an example for the industry and achieve what everyone, including most of the staff at the lodge, thought impossible. A full team of 16 female guides!

The challenge was finding and recruiting guides. In 2005 there were less than 10 female guides in Botswana which made it difficult to find guides who would maintain the high guiding standards expected at Chobe Game Lodge. The Chobe Game lodge Management team then sat down and worked out a strategy which was two-fold. Recruit some of the top female guides in the country and work with the Botswana Wildlife Training Institute asking them to refer all female trainee guides to Chobe Game Lodge for field training.

The result was unequivocally successful. Not only did we manage to recruit young energetic female guides from the region, but freshly trained guides were receiving all their practical training at Chobe Game Lodge, allowing them to soak up all the much needed local knowledge. Under the guidance of the in-house Environmentalist, this acquired field knowledge combined with the theory they received in the classrooms of the Botswana Wildlife Training Institute, is the foundation to a successful guiding career for the female guides.

Today the 16 strong lady guide team, aptly named the ‘Chobe Angels’ run the show under the wise watchful eye of our in house Environmentalist, with constant training being the priority.

70% of our guides were trained at Chobe Game Lodge and twice a year they conduct an intensive refresher course in conjunction with leaders in the field of guide training. Thereby introducing new theory and keeping passion at the forefront.

The female guiding team have proven their metal by taking part in the Chobe Explorations inter camp Luxury Mobile Safaris in 2011, starting at Chobe Game Lodge and heading through the country and into the Okavango Delta staying at each of the Desert & Delta Safaris lodges. A wonderful experience, superbly driven and guided by the ladies! In 2013 the Chobe Game lodge ladies guided the Chobe Exploration mobile safaris exclusively.

This has set a precedent for the industry out there to break the mould and provide equal opportunity. Through Chobe Game Lodge’s concerted effort and the on-going support of the Botswana Tourism Organisation and the Botswana Wildlife Training Institute, there has been a significant increase of female guides within the country. There are now at least three times the amount of ladies in guiding positions than in 2005 and that number increases year on year.

Equal opportunity for women is just one of the many initiatives Chobe Game Lodge has implemented as part of our Responsible Tourism strategy. Already fully Ecotourism certified by Botswana Tourism Organisation.

This article originally appeared on the Chobe Game Lodge website. You can also read more about Chobe Game Lodge on our website. 

Well done, Chobe Game Lodge for implementing this dream and empowering these epic woman to also be a part of this wonderful eco warrior “Chobe Angels” 

We are exceptionally proud of all these woman, men and organizations that never stop working against hunting, poaching and conserving our precious Africa.  Thank you to all of you, you are pioneers to all the little and big creatures that live in Africa.

 

BOTSWANA BANS PLASTIC BAGS

Minister of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism Mr Tshekedi Khama has said in view of their negative environmental and public health impact, the ministry has decided to ban use of carrier plastic bags.

Minister Khama told a media briefing on February 27 that consultations with stakeholders, both within government and private sector, had been done.

“The process has started and my ministry has embarked on informing Batswana and other stakeholders to prepare and get ready for the ban as well as putting in place alternatives for the plastic carriers/flat bags,” the minister said.

Minister Khama said one of the waste streams which posed a risk to the environment was management of plastics with waste carrier bags presenting the most challenge.

He said in an effort to curb the plastic impact on  the environment, a number of countries and cities across the world were now shifting towards the ban on the use of plastics as a pollution prevention measure.

Minister Khama explained that regionally, some countries had already moved to ban the use of plastics like in Rwanda and lately in Kenya.

He further said several attempts had been made in the past to manage and control the menace caused by plastic carrier bags in the environment through various strategies such as public education and awareness in proper use, recycling and minimisation of use.

Furthermore, he said the country developed Botswana Compulsory Standard (BOS) which regulated the thickness of the carrier bags, saying the objective was to allow for use of plastic carrier of 24 microns thickness while prohibiting thinner ones from use in the country. Minister Khama noted that all these initiatives had not yielded any positive and sustainable results to curb the proliferation of plastic bags in the environment. Ends

Source : BOPA Author : By Patricia Bakang
Location : Gaborone Event : Press briefing
Date : Feb 28 Wed,2018

The Botswana Government have announced their intention to ban the use of plastic carrier bags effective 01 Nov 18.  Guests travelling to Botswana should be aware of this and are advised not to take plastic bags into the country.  The proposed fine for carrying plastic bags will be approximately USD500.