Botswana
North-West

Here you’ll find travel reports about North-West. Discover travel destinations in Botswana of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

52 travelers at this place:

  • Day13

    Maun Day 14

    April 20, 2017 in Botswana

    The Sedie students, their Headmistress and another staff member, had all stayed in tents for the night and we gathered together as a group at breakfast. From there we moved into Maun in two vehicles and the first activity of the day to catch-up with our primary students of yesterday at Mathiba. More activities followed, with Oxley College 'teaching' smaller groups and a lot of fun occurred and it was sad in the end - and somewhat poignant as the kids sang a farewell to us - to leave for the secondary school later in the morning.

    After a wait at Sedie School, the group departed for a visit to a local farm, some 18 kms from Maun. Crops included maize and water melons, with cattle and sheep in evidence.

    Returning to school for lunch, we ate the packed lunch that had been provided by Sitatunga Camp. After lunch we practised for the 'concert' and also tackled some problems set in an Ethics task set by Mr Parker.

    By 3.30 enough of a crowd of Sedie staff and parents had gathered for a presentation to take place. Both groups of students sang songs - the entire Oxley party sang 'Waltzing Matilda' - and the Oxley students introduced theatre sports to Botswana, with James Rapp producing an outstanding skit. After a rendition of 'We are the world' by all those involved in the exchange the 'concert' ended with a thoughtful 'thank you' speech by Tom Lloyd and a prayer.

    Back to Sitatunga Camp by early evening where we moved into cabins for our final night. Much talk at dinner with tiredness catching up with everyone.
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  • Day12

    Mathiba School + Day 13

    April 19, 2017 in Botswana

    Today was our introduction to primary education as we visited Mathiba Memorial Primary School, a feeder school to nearby Sedie School. We were welcomed by 60 little kids all excited about the arrival of the 'Australians'. After introductions, we broke up into groups of about 12 Mathiba kids to two Oxley students who taught them new skills of speaking in English, colouring in, theatre games, etc.

    We rotated through the morning and finished a midday at which time we walked around to Sedie School where we joined the Sedie School students for lunch.

    After lunch we visited the nearby HIV/AIDS clinic for a talk given by the nurse who explained how the Botswanan Government had introduced programmes to prevent the spread of AIDS and educate the local people.

    From the clinic we bused into the town centre and wandered around for a while (generally in and out of fast food joints!) before we returned to our campsite at Sitatunga late in the afternoon.

    Once we all returned to the camp, plus 10 Sedie students who came to spend the night with us, we were lucky to be the audience for a talk given Mike Fitt of Wilderness Safaris about the reintroduction of rhinos into the Okavango, and the progress that the program was making. It was fascinating for both Australian and Botswanan students and appreciated by all. It was very generous of Mike to give up his time to talk to us.

    After dinner the rest of the evening was taken up with practising for tomorrow's 'concert', whether it is song, dance or theatre sports. We were joined by Senatla, the Headmistress of Sedie School, as well as one of their staff. A busy day for all!!
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  • Day52

    Savuti, Chobe National Park

    June 27, 2017 in Botswana

    Drove down to Savuti for 3 nights and were glad that the sand wasn’t as bad as we remembered (it had been a terrifying experience crossing a huge sand ridge on our past trip). The landscape there is very different, more dry and with large stands of baobob trees. Very beautiful. We saw some amazing elephants at the water holes there, a lioness in the distance, and most exciting of all a group of 4 wild dogs! We’ve been fortunate enough to now see wild dogs 5 different times! This sighting was interesting because the dogs had just eaten and were simply sleeping on the road. We were able to observe them for a few hours, sleeping, playing, and interacting with each other and sometimes with the vehicles there – including chewing on our tire - as they’re very inquisitive creatures.Read more

  • Day56

    Ihaha, Chobe National Park

    July 1, 2017 in Botswana

    Back to Ihaha for a night, where we enjoyed a beautiful drive back up and were lucky enough to see an elephant crossing the very deep river. So fun to watch that versatile trunk become a snorkel. Fun times. We will miss this park, but aren’t sure if we’ll be back. Not sure why it is that when something becomes more crowded, it somehow takes away from the feeling of authenticity and the excitement of discovering and sighting animals on your own. We hope Zambia is as wild as we remember it, we’ll keep you posted.
    One last thing to report with rather mixed feelings. While having breakfast on our last morning and enjoying the sun coming up over the Chobe river, a baboon we'd seen on previous occasions came into camp and tried to grab breakfast. John was behind the truck because he'd seen this guy earlier up the hill (recognizable by a withered arm). The baboon had snuck around a nearby bush and rushed straight for Christy at the front of the truck. Christy threw her yogurt bowl --then a spoon -- when he kept coming at her with teeth bared being very aggressive and scary. John managed to grab our pepper spray and get some in his face - but he also got plenty in his own face, too! The baboon took off, but obviously had lost fear of humans. On the way out, Christy spoke to one of the rangers, who said "I'm going to go see about him" as he pulled out a rifle and started loading what looked to be real bullets. Of course, we feel sad and responsible on the one hand knowing that we signed that creature's death sentence. Yet on the other hand, the baboon had become a serious danger (he'd also been aggressive with other campers that morning as we heard screams and also shared stories at the abolition block). Definitely people's fault (making food too accessible/possibly feeding them), not the baboon's, that he'd become this way. Sad.
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  • Day45

    Kasane, Botswana

    June 20, 2017 in Botswana

    From Popa Falls we drove to Kasane in Botswana (easy border crossing) after another nearly full day of driving. There had been a minor fuel leak in one of the tanks that was getting worse (our mileage went from ~10km/liter to ~6.5) so we had to make a stop at a repair shop when we arrived in town. The shop that our rental operator had told us to go to appeared to be an empty warehouse. After a few calls back and forth, we drove around back to discover quite a busy place. They diagnosed that we had a crack in the fuel tank and were able to make a temporary fix (bonding it with some sort of compound) until we can get it welded in once we get to Lusaka, Zambia – a much larger town where we’ll be making other repairs/maintenance.
    Given repairs weren’t complete until dark, we opted to stay in a real bed in a local guesthouse. Very comfortable place located in a residential area of Kasane. Had a good sleep before our visit to Chobe for the next 10 days.
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  • Day56

    Ihaha, Chobe National Park

    July 1, 2017 in Botswana

    We spent 6 nights at what was our favorite camp the last time we visited Botswana. It’s still a beautiful setting on the river, but because poachers had been coming to rob tourists (in addition to killing animals), the Botswana Defense Force had to step in and so now patrols through the night are normal. These disrupt the feeling of being in the wild. The other big change is simply how many people are now here. On our drive into the park, we saw at least a dozen safari vehicles along our river drive --- very different from the past trip where we maybe saw a few in a day. All that said, Chobe is still incredibly beautiful and teeming with wildlife. We saw lions on our first and second days (cubs at last!) and from our campsite, we were able to see a pair of honey badgers, springhares, a male lion, a hyena, and elephant (all in the dark) and wilddogs running by one morning (Christy’s favorite wake up call is now “Christy! Wilddogs!!!) We also had an amazing experience watching a martial eagle (Africa’s largest eagle – majestic as you can imagine) trying to hunt a mongoose. It was sitting on a dead tree branch watching a group of mongoose below and eventually tried to grab one of them. It missed and retreated to a branch. The amazing thing was, the entire clan of mongooses (mongeese?) charged up the tree and chased it away to nearby bush. There was then a bit of a standoff before the eagle, trying to retain some dignity, swooped down again to try to scare the badass mongooses before flying quickly away. AMAZING!Read more

  • Day11

    Sedie School, Maun Day 12

    April 18, 2017 in Botswana

    After a late breakfast this morning we were picked up by Sei Letsapa in his minibus and driven the 13 kms into Sedie School. Once there we were invited into their staffroom where there was a gathering of local dignitaries to welcome us, including the local education office rep, chairwoman of the school council, many others, the Heads of both the secondary school and Mathiba Primary School, some of the school staff (not bad since they are on holiday), and all the Sedie hosting students. An impressive array listened to many speeches of welcome.
    After the welcome we were shown around the school from the computer room, to the agricultural beds that each Form 3 has to tend as part of their education.
    After familiarising ourselves we settled into a pattern of activities with sessions being organised by a Sedie science teacher, a Botswana history talk, an Australian history talk by Peter Craig, an ethics session (Michael Parker) and a music session to choose some songs for our final concert.
    Late lunch under the tgotla (the meeting tree) and then we dispersed to be hosted for afternoon tea by four of the Sedie families in their own homes. We found this experience most rewarding.
    We arrived back at Sitatunga well after dark for dinner after which we practised for our concert. It had been a busy day - but a good one
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  • Day62

    On entre dans un nouveau monde: celui des "riches" avec leur propre 4x4 comme nous ;) Et d'entrée, on roule dans le parc national de Chobe...ce qui n'est pas de la tarte du tout!!!

    Harter Start in unsere neue Reisephase mit Geländewagen: gleich mal in die sandige Chobe Riverfront reingefahren - ein Traum!!! Hunderte von Elefanten - überall. Nur eben nicht optimal für den ersten Tag ohne Allraderfahrung. Mehrmals tief durchatmen, wenn es dann wieder durch die Elefantenherde ging, Gedanken und Nerven sortieren: nicht zu nah an kleine Elefanten mit Mutterkuh, nicht zu schnell vorbei, nicht zu langsam, sonst bleiben wir im Sand stecken, aber Motor aus, wenn Bulle Ohren aufstellt und Drohgebärden macht oder langsam zurück. Als wir dann noch den Wagen an einer zum Glück ruhigen Stelle ausgraben mussten, entschieden wir uns, dass es doch ganz gut wäre vor Sonnenuntergang wieder sicher aus dem Park heraus zu sein und nahmen den direkten einfachen Weg um die Herden herum. Puh!Read more

  • Day11

    From one terrain to another

    July 3, 2017 in Botswana

    After another delicious chocolate muffin for breakfast (for me anyway), we went out on a truncated game drive. 7:30 to 10:15 we searched for new species and cats, but luck was not on our side this morning. We saw, the now typical, zebra, impala and elephants with some more warthogs and dwarf mongoose for good measure. We said goodbye to Sello. (tip: $20/person/day is standard for the guide. We gave $10/person/day for rest of staff).
    By 10:40 we were on the 12 seater plane, headed for Eagle Island, another Belmond resort in the Kalahari desert of Botswana.
    Eagle Island Lodge is in the center of the Okavango Delta where the mighty Okavango River drains into the Kalahari. The Lodge was recently remodeled and is stunning! Our tent has a plunge pool (the water is too cold for me though), an indoor and outdoor shower, real windows and a view to rival any! The channels of water up to our deck are an easy path for any hippo, and there is evidence of elephant throughout the lodge grounds. While relaxing on our deck, I heard bleating and found a baby bush buck right next to our tent.
    We went on a sunset barge trip with our guide, Onx. He is actually the Belmond environmental manager and is in charge of all the safaris and guides for the 3 Belmond camps. He was mom and dad's guide 3.5 years ago when they were here and loved him. Mom requested he guide us which he agreed to do, even though he doesn't guide anymore.
    We saw a few elephant and hippo. It's unbelievable how fast hippos can move in the water! The sunset was beautiful.
    Now dinner at the lodge and then our escort back to the tent to relax before a full day tomorrow. 😊
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You might also know this place by the following names:

North West District, North-West

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