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botswana planning


Brassilva

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Hi

First of all  thank you for accepting me in this forum.

 

We are 4 friends going for a trip in Botswana and a bit of namibia next october, for 3 weeks, with a camping car, and we have some questions, for what we'll apreciate your help:

 

1. We arrive at Or Tambo airport at 10 o'cloak in the morning. We pick the car in the airport and we go in the direction of Botswana. we go direction khama Rhino Santuary. Do you think we can cross the border and arrive there in the same day, or maybe is better cross the border in direction to gabarone and stay  at molokodi reserve and next day khama Rhino?

 

2. After Khama Rhino we want go direction central Kalahari and we want reach the closest camp at matswere gate. do you think its possible arrive for example kori camp or deception valley? Wich one the best?

 

3. We will stay 3 night in CKGR and then exit by Tsau gate. One night stop at Maun and we want cross Okavango and chobe in direction to kasane. We thougt one night the bridge camp; the second in kwai and then direction Savuti 2 night. Is it feasable? Wich camps you sugest us?

 

4. From The bridge campsite we can do mokoro trip?

 

Thank you very much

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Peter Connan

Welcome @Brassilva

 

Sorry, I only saw your questions now.

 

1) From JHB to Khama Rhino is minimum 7 hours driving time. This does not include border formalities, or fuel or comfort stops.

I would say it's too far. Driving at night in Botswana is very dangerous. The cattle and donkeys go and lie down in the road, as it retains the heat better than the sand.

But this applies to anywhere in Botswana, and Khama is not that far from the border. I would recommend finding lodging somewhere in SA, just before crossing the border. There appears to be a number of suitable places, but I have not stayed in any of them, so connot make specefic recommendations, except to say that you will be arriving late and leaving early, so don't worry about the scenery, all you need is a bed and a bath.

 

2) Even from the border as recommended above, one of the campsites close to Matswere gate should not be too hard a day, as long as you start reasonably early. One thing: make sure you fill up at Mopipi. Fuel at Rakops is not guaranteed.

 

3) I have done Third Bridge to Savuti and Savuti to Kasane, each in one day. But Khwai is beautiful too. Take note though that there is no fuel whatsoever between Maun and Kasane. And a lot of this section is soft sand and you will want to do game drives as well. You need fuel for at least 1000km of normal driving for this stretch.

 

4) It was possible to do a Makoro trip from Third Bridge when I was last there in 2012. I doubt that has changed.

 

One last question: do you have experience with driving in deep, soft sand? You will need experience or knowledge, and preferably both!

 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

I don't think you'll have enough time on day 1.  Let's say it takes about about 2hrs for airport time, then pick up your vehicle.  Just picking up the vehicle may take 2hrs to go over all the paperwork and features of the car, etc.  Once done, you still probably want to get some groceries, maybe not.  Then there's the border crossing.  

 

We stayed close to the border on the SA side on day 1 then headed to Khama the next day.  after a long flight, it's nice not to be one the road and rush all that distance.  

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On 8/22/2018 at 10:51 AM, Brassilva said:

do you think its possible arrive for example kori camp or deception valley? Wich one the best?

 

On 8/22/2018 at 10:51 AM, Brassilva said:

From The bridge campsite we can do mokoro trip?

From Matswere Gate to Deception Valley is around 2 hours.  We stayed at CKDEC02 and it was fine. I don't think there's much choose between the sites - both have reasonable access to the Valley.

 

On 8/22/2018 at 10:51 AM, Brassilva said:

we want cross Okavango and chobe in direction to kasane. We thougt one night the bridge camp; the second in kwai and then direction Savuti 2 night. Is it feasable? Wich camps you sugest us?

 

This is feasible. By "bridge camp" I presume you mean 3rd Bridge? It's worth spending 2 nights at either 3rd Bridge or Khwai (or both). Savuti also needs 2 nights.

 

On 8/22/2018 at 10:51 AM, Brassilva said:

From The bridge campsite we can do mokoro trip? 

 

Yes - you have to drive to Mboma where there is a place offering mokoro trips. It's not far.

 

Lots of good advice above re driving in sand and ensuring fuel - there's often no fuel at Rakops and you then have to go to Mopipi. From Maun to Kasane there's no station, so you have to have enough for the full distance, plus reserve. 

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