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A Trip of Firsts: A March Mobile Safari in Botswana


anthracosaur
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anthracosaur

I. Background and itinerary

 

My wife and I celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary next year and decided it was time we went back to Africa. We'd honeymooned in Timbavati and Sabi Sands, returned to South Africa a few years later, and done the northern circuit in Tanzania, but had't been to the continent since 2016, so it was time to return. Botswana was a destination I'd thought about since we'd returned from our honeymoon, while there we'd shared drives with an Australian couple who'd visited Chobe and their stories and photos showed a place I wanted to see, so I started putting together trip ideas. When I plan a trip I always assemble a variety of options and present them to my wife who whittles down the options based on what interests her most, this time I presented numerous Botswana options and a couple of ideas for Zimbabwe. To my surprise, she showed the most interest in Zimbabwe, particularly Mana Pools. So I started planning for Zimbabwe in May/June of 2023.

 

During planning for next year a few folks on here posted about significant discounts they'd seen for late 2021 and early 2022, as Covid continued to keep people from traveling some of the operators were eager to attract people willing and able to travel. Posts from @ExtraordinaryAlex@mtanenbaumand @AArdvark0got me wondering if we could manage a short trip in early 2022, it would need to be the second week of March to match my Spring Break, and the price would need to be right, but I was curious and contacted some operators about possibilities. After a bit of back and forth we settled on an offer from Letaka Safaris for a 6 night mobile safari in Botswana visiting Moremi and Khwai. The trip allowed us to see two prime areas in Botswana at a 40% discount and at the time of our booking no one else was signed on to the trip, there was a good chance we would have the trip to ourselves. In addition, we've wanted to try a mobile for a variety of reasons and this seemed like an opportunity to see if we enjoyed it. So, inspired by this wonderful trip report I booked the trip and we crossed our fingers that no one else would sign up.

 

 

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Tom Kellie

~ @anthracosaur:

 

Those seven bee-eaters on a branch are something else! 

 

What a wonderful portrait.

 

Thank you for posting this trip report.

 

What a nice anniversary safari.

 

As I've never visited Botswana, I'm especially interested in trip reports about wildlife there.

 

      Tom K.

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michael-ibk

Very happy our report inspired you - and obviously you had a great time, these opening shots are fantastic. Also particularly like the huddled Bee-Eaters! Looking forward to this.:)

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mtanenbaum

I'm so happy you were able to do this! Looking forward to hearing more. What a great leopard sighting, and I'm wondering if you saw the ellies on your mokoro trip? We saw only birds and a tiny frog on ours, but I have plenty of ellies in the water in Chobe. I love the beeeaters picture too! I got some nice ones of them but not all in a row, they were not cooperating with us for that particular shot!

 

Now if I could only get my husband to go to Africa with me for our anniversary sometime....

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ExtraordinaryAlex

Cracking! So glad you got to travel!

 

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shouldbewriting

Wonderful photos! Eager to hear the rest.

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Atravelynn

So did anyone else sign up?  You could not cram another bee eater onto that branch!  I am guessing they must be related.  That's a first for me for sure.  How nice you've got another trip in the works!

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