Anya's 7-Day Botswana Kalahari & Makgadikgadi Pans Safari

Enquire Now

Tour Highlights

  • Central Kalahari Game Reserve
  • Makgadikgadi Salt Pans
  • 4x4 Game Drives
  • Bushman Walk Experience
  • Family Travel

Client Review

Botswana Okavango

We had a dream trip thanks to Pembury Tours! We are so pleased with the services provided by Pembury Tours. Our tour consultant was Anya Visser, and she couldn't have helped us more. Great communication, very professional and extremely helpful. She managed to efficiently organize all our trip requirements, in great lodges, with smooth transfers. Everything was great, especially the bushmen experience at deception valley.  We honestly couldn't be more satisfied so we would like to thank her for organizing one of the best trips of our life. Thank you!!

~ Jerry & Jennifer M

Tour Consultant's Overview

This is the second safari in Botswana that I have planned for Jerry M. I first received an enquiry from Jerry M in March 2017 to assist in planning a safari in the Chobe Game Reserve, Okavango Delta and Victoria Falls for Jerry, his wife and daughter. I put together Jerry's safari in Chobe Game Reserve and the Okavango Delta with a few nights in Victoria Falls. After returning from his first safari in Botswana and Victoria Falls, Jerry contacted me in July 2017 interested in another safari in Botswana for December 2017. The trip would only be for himself and his daughter this time. Jerry mentioned his interest in seeing the Kalahari and adding Chobe or the Okavango Delta for this safari. Jerry went to the Okavango Delta and the Chobe Game Reserve in his previous safari in April 2017, with this in mind I suggested something completely different.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Although December is considered the "wet" season in Botswana and many lodges in Chobe and the Okavango Delta close or experience less game viewing opportunities, the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans are full of life as the migratory herds pass through from the Chobe and Okavango Delta area. I suggested a 7 day safari in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve and the Makgadikgadi Pans. The game viewing and scenery would be completely different to Jerry's previous safari in Chobe and the Okavango Delta.

The Central Kalahari Game Reserve would give them a opportunity to see the classic Kalahari animals such as Oryx, Zebra , Springbok and eland, they would also be able to see the well known predators of the Kalahari such as the black-maned Kalahari lions, cheetah and jackal. After reviewing the itinerary, Jerry was happy with this safari and excited for the new safari adventure! He showed the itinerary to his mum and she decided to join her son and grand daughter for a portion of the safari. Everything was booked and in place and their safari began! I am now planning Jerry's next adventure to Namibia!

272/Dvl Oyrx

Day 1: Arrival in Central Kalahari

Upon arrival in Johannesburg on SA147 arriving at 08h35, you will be met by our representative at the arrivals hall who will bear a name board with your name on. He will hand over your travel documents and assist you to your onward flight to Maun.

Upon arrival at Maun Airport on flight SA8300 arriving at 13h15, you will be welcomed by a representative from your safari camp and assisted to your onward light aircraft transfer to your camp in the central Kalahari. Here your ranger will meet you and transfer you to your lodge for your 3 night stay.

272/Deception Valley Lodge   Drive

Days 1 to 4: Central Kalahari Game Reserve (3 nights)

The Central Kalahari game Reserve (CKGR) is the largest, most remotely situated reserve in Southern Africa, and the second largest wildlife reserve in the world. Waist-high golden grasses seem to stretch interminably, punctuated by dwarfed trees and scrub bushes.

Wide and empty pans appear as vast white stretches of saucer-flat earth, meeting a soft, blue-white sky. At night the stars utterly dominate the land; their brilliance and immediacy are totally arresting.

The park contains wildlife such as South African giraffe, bush elephant, white rhino, cape buffalo, spotted hyena, brown hyena, honey badger, meerkat, yellow mongoose, warthog, South African cheetah, caracal, Cape wild dog, black-backed jackal, bat-eared fox, cape fox, African leopard, Kalahari lion, blue wildebeest, plains zebra, common eland, sable antelope, gemsbok, springbok, steenbok, impala, greater kudu, aardvark, cape ground squirrel, cape hare, cape porcupine, chacma baboon, red hartebeest and ostrich. The land is mostly flat, and gently undulating covered with bush and grasses covering the sand dunes, and areas of larger trees.

Many of the river valleys are fossilized with salt pans. Four fossilized rivers meander through the reserve including Deception Valley which began to form around 16,000 years ago.

275/Hippo  Leroo

Day 4: Central Kalahari to Makgadikgadi Pans

This morning you enjoy your morning game activity and brunch before you are collect and transferred to the nearest airstrip for your light aircraft transfer to your lodge in Makgadikgadi National Park. You bid farewell to the Central Kalahari and Kay. Upon arrival in Makgadikgadi Pans, you are met at the airstrip in the Park and transferred by road your lodge along the Boteti River.

274/Leroo Ext

Days 4 to 7: Makgadikgadi Pans (3 nights)

The Makgadikgadi Pans Game Reserve, a salt pan– with an area of 3 900 sq. kms is situated in the middle of the dry savanna of north-eastern Botswana. It is one of the largest salt flats in the world. The pan is all that remains of the formerly enormous Lake Makgadikgadi.

Lying southeast of the Okavango Delta and surrounded by the Kalahari Desert, Makgadikgadi is technically not a single pan but many pans with sandy desert in between, the largest being the Sua (Sowa), Nwetwe and Nxai Pans.

The pans themselves are salty desert whose only plant life is a thin layer of blue-green algae and Very little wildlife can exist here during the harsh dry season of strong hot winds and only salt water, but following a rain the pan becomes an important habitat for migrating animals including wildebeest and one of Africa’s biggest zebra populations, and the large predators that prey on them. The wet season also brings migratory birds such as ducks, geese and Great White Pelicans. The pan is home of one of only two breeding populations of Greater Flamingos in southern Africa, and only on the Soa pan, which is part of the Makgadikgadi pans.

272/Dvl Game Dr2

Day 7: Makgadikgadi Pans & DEPARTURE

This morning you enjoy your morning game activity and brunch before you are collect and transferred to the nearest airstrip for your light aircraft transfer to Maun Airport. Upon arrival in Maun Airport you bid farewell to this African Wonderland. You check in for your connecting flight SA8301 departing at 14h00 to Johannesburg.

Deception Valley Lodge

Pembury Rating:  

What makes Deception Valley Lodge special is the rare opportunity to meet and explore this remarkable environment with Bushman Guides of the Naru-speaking tribe, one of the oldest cultures in Africa. Experience safaris and walks with real Bushmen.

Exploring the bush on foot, while your guide will teach you of the hunting and survival skills, the culture and crafts of the San people, who over the centuries have adapted their lives to survive in the most inhospitable environment of them all.

Deception Valley Lodge an oasis in the Kalahari of Botswana, a luxury lodge close to the famous Okavango Delta. Experience the Kalahari with Bushman at hand, to share their knowledge, while you can relax in total luxury at this unique destination.

Eight chalets arranged in a sickle moon around a waterhole with walkways that connect the chalets with the main lodge area. There are six chalets, which consist of a double bedroom, separate lounge, Victorian bathroom with a slipper bath, outside shower, and a private veranda
In every chalet there is a bar fridge, ceiling or floor fan, mosquito nets, lock up chest, and hairdryer. Guests are provided with fluffy towelling gowns and slippers. Framed Bushman artefacts decorate the walls and provide points of interest and the rustic decor features custom made furniture and fittings using unexpected materials.

Leroo La Tau

Pembury Rating:  

Situated on the river bank of the Boteti River with the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park in the distance, Leroo La Tau offers a stunning seasonal game-viewing experience as wildlife can be seen congregating along the river. Leroo La Tau has 12 luxurious thatched en suite chalets, all of which are situated on individual raised wooden platforms.

A wide private balcony provides the perfect setting to enjoy the views of the river and bush landscape beyond.

Each chalet is furnished with two twin beds, a writing desk, fan, and electric lights. Although the camp aims to provide total comfort and luxury, this is done while still maintaining a rustic bush atmosphere.
The main lounge and dining area, with its inviting wooden and thatch finish, allows you to relax at the bar while listening to the wide variety of night sounds so characteristic of the African bush. Alternatively you can lounge around the swimming pool or enjoy the panoramic river vista from the game-viewing hide built into the bank of the river.

Download the full itinerary to read which experiences were included in this itinerary and which were suggested.

Daily Safari Programme at Deception Valley Lodge

A visit to Deception Valley Lodge would not be complete without experiencing a walk with the San (Bushmen). ‘Braam’ Badenhorst, one of the owners, grew up in the Kalahari with the San and several of his friends live on the reserve and are available to show guests the way they used to live and survive.

Walk through a terrain that appears to the uninitiated to offer little in the way of sustenance, but is a treasure-trove of fruits, berries, tubers, barks, herbs and flowers used in cooking, medicine, ceremonies and for a plethora of other purposes. All this before we turn to the mammals, birds, reptiles and insects that form part of the fascinating panoply of their desert world.

Activities are varied. The Reserve’s extensive network of tracks make for perfect day and night driving terrain. The Kalahari sand offers excellent opportunities for tracking lion and leopard and where your guide can follow off road as this is a private game reserve. Other activities include bush walks with San (Bushmen) hunters, sleep outs and a relaxing afternoon in the swimming pool.

Afternoon and night safaris in custom built game viewing vehicles afford visitors the chance to see a variety of different species which include the magnificent Kalahari lion, cheetah, leopard as well as giraffe and kudu. The elusive brown hyena has also been seen on occasion. Night safaris reveal reveal a fascinating world of nocturnal species. Deception Valley is also a bird lover's paradise.

Daily Safari Programme at Leroo La Tau

Makgadikgadi Pans National Park, one of Botswana’s most diverse national parks, also offers sanctuary to the second largest zebra migration in the world during the dry season when the water dries up in the salt pans, they migrate to the Boteti River.

The lodge offers guided day and night game drives. Depending on the water level, boat activities are also provided. Optional cultural excursions can be arranged to Khumaga Village, as can guided nature walks in the area surrounding the lodge.

Leroo La Tau translates as ‘lion’s paw’ but, although the surrounding area features abundant Lion, Zebra and Wildebeest, it also boasts Chobe Bushbuck, Leopard, Cheetah, Brown and Spotted Hyena, Impala, Kudu, Jackal, Porcupine, Genet and Caracal, to name but a few. Birding is also spectacular, from the rare wattled crane, to saddle billed storks, and a variety of vultures and other birds

Jerry M Route

This tour started on

17 December 17

When this tour took place, the cost per person sharing was:

$ 2,791
€ 2,382 • £ 2,104 • R 36,824 •
* Rates based on today's exchange rates.
Remember, this is an actual itinerary, 100% tailor-made to meet this client's expectations. We can use this itinerary as a starting point for you.

I'm Anya Visser

I tailor-made this itinerary for my client and can do the same for you.