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Botswana Trade February 2014

In this Issue:

Spotlight On Spotlight on: Botswana Hospitality and Attractions

Thebe River Safaris – Affordable Accommodation, Tours and Activities
Thebe River Safaris was started in 1994 by Jan van Wyk with a single land cruiser. Jan’s original idea of sharing the wonders of the Chobe National Park with visitors has continued with game drives, cruises and mobile safaris, taking guests into the true African wilderness. His business has expanded to include lodge and camp accommodation in Kasane, and additional day trip activities, all at affordable prices.

Located just a few miles from the entrance to Chobe National Park, Thebe Lodge and Camp overlook the placid Chobe River. Suited for travelers on a budget, the accommodations echo the surrounding bush with a rustic design and comfortable, well-appointed twin and double rooms. All rooms have en-suite bathroom facilities, tea and coffee stations and air-conditioning. The lodge is also equipped with a restaurant, bar and pool area with views of the Chobe River, an activity center and spa services to pamper the tired body after a long day on safari. In addition to the lodge, Thebe offers spacious camping sites with shared ablution and kitchen facilities.

The company can arrange a variety of activities for your clients while on holiday in northern Botswana. Multi-day mobile guided budget and comfort level safaris run between Maun-Kasane and offer access to some of Botswana’s best safari game areas, including Chobe, Savuti, Moremi, Okavango, Nxai Pans or Deception Valley. Or your clients can choose to stay in the Kasane area and arrange to spend the day on a game drive through the stunning Chobe National Park, unwind on a relaxing sunset cruise on the Chobe River, take a day trip to Victoria Falls, or a cultural tour on Impalila Island.

Spotlight On

For more information, please email or visit

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What’s New What’s New: Product Updates

&Beyond’s Investment in Lodges Continues
The reconstruction and refurbishment of &Beyond Sandibe Okavango Safari Lodge has begun.

Drawing inspiration directly from nature, the suites at &Beyond Sandibe Okavango Safari Lodge are being elevated above their surroundings, gazing out onto the winding channels and lush floodplains of the Delta. Uncluttered and elegant, the lodge will feature a copper palette, with natural rust tones. Copper-clad mokoro, sculpted wooden tables, and intricate baskets will celebrate the very best of Botswana craft. At night, the rooms will become private cocoons, with fireplaces providing warmth and light in winter.

The lodge is now fully closed in order to allow for heavy construction work, which will continue until July. The entire lodge will be comprehensively remodeled during this time, with the latest in alternative energy sources installed in line with & Beyond’s core ethos of Care of the Land, Care of the Wildlife, Care of the People. “The innovative design of &Beyond Sandibe Okavango Safari Lodge is driven by nature and reflects the sustainable footprint of the lodge while remaining warm and intimate,” says Joss Kent, &Beyond CEO.

Eight completely revamped guest suites, each raised high above the papyrus beds of the Delta and boasting a private plunge pool, will reopen on July 1, 2014, as will the freshly re-designed guest area. Work will continue in areas of the lodge blocked off to guests after the re-opening, with an additional four suites due to open by September 1, 2014 and a further three planned thereafter.

What’s New

For more information or updates, please visit

Refurbished Tuli Safari Lodge to Reopen in its 50th Anniversary Year
A relaxing, authentic, family-friendly Botswana safari destination, Tuli Safari Lodge, celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, making it one of Africa’s longest established photographic safari lodges. Following the damage sustained in the devastating floods in January 2013, a major refurbishment project was put into action to ready the ‘grand dame’ for the future. Though currently closed, the lodge will reopen in August 2014.

What’s New

Tuli Safari Lodge’s refurbishment will retain what everyone loved about the lodge – its charm, authenticity and history – while expanding capacity and making lots of ‘behind the scenes’ improvements. Refurbishments include:

Eight New Suites – the stunning canvas and concrete suites are designed to meld with the bush
Three Fully Refurbished Suites – Three existing suites will be retained and refurbished to the same standard as the new suites
Outdoor Sitting Areas – New seating areas to make the most of the lodge’s relaxing gardens
Refurbished Swimming Pool and Changing Facilities
Back-of-House Facilities – modernized with an upgraded kitchen, new laundry and improved staff facilities

“We are very excited about the improvements being made at Tuli, which will complement the legendary Tuli hospitality to enhance the experience for guests and position the lodge well for the future,” said Stephen Lansdown, Chairman of Tuli Safari Lodge (Pty) Ltd. Bookings can be made now for stays from August 4, 2014 onward.

For further information, please email or visit

Young Explorers Discover the Wilderness with Ker & Downey Botswana
Ker & Downey Botswana understands the importance of family. With their Young Explorers safari, there is no need to leave the kids at home. This safari is a specially designed safari that offers families the opportunity to discover the wonders of the African wilderness together. Activities are designed to be both educational and inspiring for children and teenagers alike.

The family adventure safari is based at one of two rustic camps:

Footsteps Camp (Okavango Delta) – This comfortable, private camp accommodates six guests in three specially-designed twin-bedded meru tents complete with sewn-in floors. One of the three tents can be converted into a family tent that sleeps three. Each tent has its own private en-suite bathroom with porcelain flushing toilet and hot water filled bucket shower. Daily laundry service is included. The ‘bush kitchen’ is run by the chef and prepares menus for all appetites.

Saile (Linyanti) – Spacious and comfortable tented accommodation in six twin-bedded meru-style tents at Saile, with comfortable beds and private en-suite bathrooms with flushing toilets and hot water filled bucket showers. A main dining and lounge area is set-up for guests to enjoy their meals, as well as relaxing in the heat of the day between activities.

What’s New

A selection of activities is planned with the whole family in mind. Parents can enjoy some time alone while an expertly trained Young Explorers guide entertains the children with a multitude of activities to suit all ages. Activities are designed to be both educational and inspiring, and the time spent at the Young Explorers camp is sure to leave a lasting impression and fond memories with all family members. 

What’s New

For more information, please visit

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Just In Just in: New Botswana Suppliers’ Travel Specials

Journey to the Heart of Botswana with Orient-Express Safaris
Marvel at the majesty of Botswana as you explore incredible nature reserves. Stay in authentic surroundings, as local experts lead you to experiences other travelers rarely access. This summer invite your clients to take advantage of an exceptional 40% off offer and embark on a journey to the heart of Botswana with Orient-Express Safaris.

Offer is valid for all three Orient-Express safari camps – Eagle Island Camp, Khwai River Lodge, Savute Elephant Camp. Booking period is March 1, 2014 – April 30, 2014 for travel between August 1 – August 31, 2014. A minimum stay of six nights at a combination of OE camps, and either Eagle Island Camp or Savute Elephant Camp must be included in the itinerary. Nights must be consecutive and offer is not combinable with any other promotions, special rates or offers. Due to this incredible discount, prepayment is required on confirmation and cancellations will be charged in full.

Just In

For more information, please email or visit

Great Plains Conservation and Uncharted Africa Team Up on Super Packages
Great Plains Conservation and Uncharted Africa Safari Co. have combined forces to offer a selection of complementary experiences in the very best areas of Botswana: the Selinda Reserve, the Okavango Delta and the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans. Packages included:

Jack’s Camp and Zarafa Camp – Two camps in Botswana that exude the perfect fusion of classic design, style, space and award-winning experiences.

San Camp and Selinda – Enthralling and exciting… Bushmen and wild dog hunts. Baobabs and baboons. Sleep out decks and four poster beds. Space and exploration. Elephants and elegance. Salt pans and the spillway.

Mobile Safari Expeditions and Selinda Explorers Camp – This is an authentic camping experience with no sacrificing of standards. Professional guides, delicious cuisine, and stylish camps are seamlessly integrated with gracious and attentive service in wild and beautiful locations.

Selinda Explorers Camp and Kubu Island – Get active on Safari! Quad bikes, exploring, walking, canoeing, swimming, space, wildlife, adventure and fun!

Saddle and Paddle – Horse riding in the Makagadikgadi, canoeing and walking along the Selinda Spillway.

Just In

Click here to read more about these exciting offers.

Affordable Botswana with Thebe River Safaris
Chobe is still one of the few places in the world where your clients can experience real wilderness and an abundance of wildlife. This region offers some of the most spectacular wildlife sightings in Africa. To open the season, Thebe River Safaris is offering the following special to experience the best of Botswana.

Stay for three nights at Thebe River Lodge and experience the wilderness of Chobe and the beauty of Victoria Falls. This package includes three nights’ accommodation at Thebe River Lodge, one boat cruise on the Chobe River, meals, and one guided day trip to Victoria Falls (excluding visa and park fees). Pricing starts at $598 per person sharing.

Just In

For more information, please visit

“Land of Giants Special” with Mashatu Game Reserve
Mashatu is home to no less than seven of Africa’s “giants” – the African elephant, the lion, giraffe, the baobab tree, the eland, ostrich and the kori bustard. Discover all these and more with the “Land of Giants Special” from Mashatu Game Reserve.

Just In

Take some time to connect with the essence of what life is meant to be – uncomplicated, bold and beautiful – and do so with one free night! This special is a “pay for three nights and stay four” offer. For more information, please click here.

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Botswana in the News Botswana in the News

Botswana Stars in Apple’s short film, “1.24.14,” honoring 30 Years of the Mac.
To celebrate the 30th birthday of the Mac, Apple released “1.24.14,” an innovative short film that documented people in 15 countries doing amazing things with Apple products. Botswana was the only African country represented in the film, with gorgeous images of our country featured in the opening and closing scenes, and throughout the short film. Beverly and Dereck Joubert contributed to this production, shooting scenes and images from the Selinda Concession. Thanks to Apple and the Jouberts for showcasing the beauty of Botswana for millions of viewers worldwide to see.

To view the film and the behind-the-scenes vignettes, click here.

Great Plains Conservation Wins Best Safari Property in Africa at 2014 Safari Awards
Great Plains Conservation’s Zarafa Camp has won the “Best Safari Property in Africa” award at the 2014 Safari Awards held in London earlier this month. Great Plains Conservation camps, lodges and experiences were shortlisted for three awards, winning Best Safari Property in Africa for the second year. The Selinda Canoe Trail was named runner-up for Best Mobile Safari Operator in Africa and Zarafa Camp was runner-up for the Best Ecologically Responsible Safari Property in Africa.

Dereck Joubert, Great Plains Conservation CEO said, “Being honored with The Best Safari Camp in Africa is like receiving an Emmy Award in television, a real privilege and endorsement of a team of staff that works incredibly hard to bring across an atmosphere of authenticity and caring. A safari is often a once-in-a-lifetime experience, so it needs to be special. For us it’s the perfect platform to engage in meaningful conversations about wildlife conservation, like our Zeros for Rhinos reintroductions, banning of hunting, and anti-poaching. We need serious ambassadors for wildlife and if the Great Safari Guide award allows us to have that conversation at more or different levels, we won’t waste the opportunity.”

Zarafa Camp in Botswana is the crown jewel of Great Plains Conservation. The Safari Awards come on the heels of industry and media recognition, including the Andrew Harper Grand Award 2013, Robb Report, Relais & Chateaux Environmental Award 2013, and Forbes’ The Hotel Detective’s “Top 10 Luxury Hotels Rooms of 2012.”

Botswana in the News

Original source: Great Plains Conservation press release from C 4 Global Communications.

For more information on Great Plains Conservation, please visit

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Wildlife Sightings Wildlife Sightings

You won’t need binoculars to see the latest wildlife sightings sent to us from various camps throughout Botswana. Wilderness Safaris shared some leopard drama in the Delta with us (though you’ll have to read on to learn more). Babies are taking over the land at African Horseback Safaris. Kwando Safaris reported lions out in full force. And Ker & Downey Botswana watched as a wild dog popped in for breakfast. For more news and sightings from these various camps, click on the links below:

Wilderness Safaris
African Horseback Safaris
Kwando Sightings Report
Ker & Downey Botswana

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We appreciate the support of you, our valued trade partners, in promoting travel to Botswana. We welcome your comments and ideas on ways our destination office can continue to support your efforts.

Yours in travel,

Botswana Tourism – U.S. Office

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