What to bring on safari and general precautions / tips
These are general recommendations, not exhaustive lists
What to bring:
- binoculars - one pair per person. Essential. There is really no need to tell birders this! It’s not a bad idea to bring an
extra (small) pair, too, in case your favourite bins are lost or broken
- if space allows, a ‘scope and tripod
- enough film/video cassettes and spare batteries for your camera if you want to take photographs / videos
- hats, suncreams for sensitive skins
- warm as well as light clothes in the cool months (May to August when midday temperatures may be quite warm and
night temperatures cold to freezing) and light clothing for the other months. Even in summer it is a good idea to bring at least one warm jersey or jacket as occasionally there are sudden drops in temperature caused by unusual weather conditions
- raincoats (from November to April)
- comfortable footwear
- basic medicines, including malaria prophylactics.
- bird books covering the region traversed (Bona Safaris can advise on good field guides, and may even be able to
supply you with one if you wish.) Your bird guide will have a relevant book
- a notebook
- a good torch and spare torch batteries.
Note: lodges/camps in the interior of Okavango Delta are only accessible by light aircraft. Passengers on these aircraft (which depart from Maun airport) are allowed a maximum 10 kg luggage in a soft bag. Arrangements may be made to leave large suitcases in Maun (e.g at the offices of the camp you are flying to) and these may be collected when you return to Maun to proceed to your next destination. If, however, you are flying directly from your Okavango camp to Kasane in the north, it will be necessary to forward your large suitcase from Maun to Kasane separately by air (either in light aircraft going up to Kasane or on Air Botswana) for which there will be a fee. The necessity for this will be determined once your itinerary has been established.
Occurs in the Game Reserves and National Parks (and surrounding areas) of northern Botswana. Precautions to be taken against contracting malaria include taking appropriate prophylactics (consult your physician), wearing long sleeved shirts and long trousers in the hours of darkness when the mosquitoes are active, spraying oneself with mosquito repellant, sleeping under a mosquito net or in a tent that has mosquito-gauze windows. One is at greatest risk in populated areas (towns, villages where the average safari traveller does not overnight).
With the above basic precautions adopted, the chances of contracting malaria are slight, so tourists should not be anxious about this illness to the extent that it spoils their holiday. Thousands of tourists visit Botswana at all seasons without any repercussions to their health. Residents in malarial areas often do not take prophylactics as the long term effects of regular use of these drugs is unknown. For short term visitors, this is not a consideration and the precautions mentioned above are advised.
We will take care of your travel and safari arrangements within Botswana.
It will be easy for you to organise flights to the two main tourist airports of Botswana, Maun (gateway to the Okavango Delta) and Kasane (gateway to the Chobe National Park), which are both linked to Johannesburg International Airport. Kasane is only 90 minutes drive from Victoria Falls in neighbouring Zimbabwe. There are international flights to Victoria Falls from Harare and Johannesburg.
presently not required for the nationals of all Commonwealth countries, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Finland, France, Greece, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Namibia, Netherlands, Norway, Pakistan, Rep. of Ireland, Samoa, San Marino, Sweden, Switzerland, USA, Uraguay. Required for other countries. Applications for visas should be made with the relevant embassy or consulate or by writing to The Chief Immigration Officer, P.O. Box 942, Gaborone. Botswana at least 3 months in advance of the intended visit. Two passport photographs are required with visa applications.
How much time do you need for your safari in Botswana?
This is difficult to answer, and it really depends on your expectations and budget. Many people stay about a week, visiting two or three areas; some request longer trips, some shorter. Some like to spend all their time in one locality, to soak it in; others opt for variety, e.g. a combination of a Chobe and an Okavango experience. Many add on a day trip to Victoria Falls.
If you let us know what you require by filling in and sending us the enquiry form on this website, we will be happy to advise you and provide quotations.