Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Take advantage of the April 2011 bank holidays for great value

The combination of Easter bank holidays, The Royal wedding and May bank holidays in April mean that just 3 days leave from work allows you to take a 10 days holiday, saving the valuable leave days for more trips later in the year.! with the added bonus of low cost safari ideas to take advantage of visiting the bush at this special time of year.

Spend between a 7 to 10 days or longer if you wish in Zambia
EG: South Luangwa at Nkwali Camp (£1950) or combine the Luangwa with the Lower Zambezi for a comprehensive safari (£3100)(see below). Click here for full details We have some excellent idea's for safaris in Botswana which can be tailored around these dates and which combine the Okavango Delta with Linyanti - Chobe - Savuti etc Click for Botswana idea's
Please contact us early to be sure to take advantage of the limited space and great value . tel: 01628 621685

Emerald season is so called due to the extraordinary colour of the bush once the rain starts to fall. Spend a week at Robin Pope safaris flagship Nkwali Camp - boating (mid Dec-March), walking and game viewing - in this most wonderful time of the year. Although there is a rumour about saying the game is not at its peak - this is just not true.
The game in the central area of the park, where Nkwali operates, is resident. The cats are territorial and we see them throughout the year. There are plenty of open areas and high ground that does not get wet. The game mostly congregates on the high ground and, of course, this is where the roads have been built! Another false rumour is that it rains all day. The mornings usually have beautiful blue skies with clouds building throughout the day leading to evening storms.
Extend your Green Season safari to the Lower Zambezi:
The Lower Zambezi reopens in April, after the peak of the rains, to glorious blue skies. The bush is still fresh although already starting to dry out. Many of the birds are coming to the end of the breeding cycle - with the youngsters following the parents around! The wildlife is in peak conditions after months of lush grazing.
The combination of the South Luangwa with the Lower Zambezi is always excellent. The South Luangwa is a larger park with more game diversity. But the Lower Zambezi has the extra dimension of the Zambezi River - a spectacular, clear wide river. Although there is some boating at Nkwali during April it is limited and does not compare to boating on the Zambezi.
Chongwe River Camp is perfectly situated on the confluence of the peaceful Chongwe River and the mighty Zambezi. The massive grove of winterthorns provide a superb backdrop for this relaxed camp with views of the rivers and the Zambezi escarpment.


Includes. Domestic flights, transfers, meals, drinks, activities, park fees
Excludes. Airport tax, Visas, items of personal nature.

Friday, 17 December 2010

WILD DOG - Sighted on Masai Mara. At camp used by Busanga safaris.

The Mara is a spectacular wildlife destination and we are all familiar with the Lions, Leopards and Cheetahs from a myriad wildlife documentaries or if you have been lucky enough to visit the Mara already. But never seen on TV or otherwise since the 80s,s were its wild dog. These animals need huge ranges and the vast plains were ideal hunting grounds. Sadly, distemper, encroachment, domestic animals and ignorance led to their extirpation from the Mara ecosystem.
In 2008 there were rumours of a return of Wild dogs to the Masai Mara. Kicheche Mara Camp's manager, Jarrod Kyte, does not go in for rumour and hearsay, and nor do his guides, but after spending an afternoon in the Lemek Hills they were astonished to find a pack. The pack appear to have been transient animals and they were not seen again, although there was little doubt that a small number had returned permanently, though they were holed up in the close cover of the hills and escarpments of the Northern Mara and were highly elusive. This find had a remarkable effect on Kicheche's Masai staff, many of whom had grown up with the Wild dogs and were enchanted by them. Sadly though, there were no other sightings for over a year, until December 2010.

Wild dog kill
Kicheche Mara's head guide, Daniel Ntoyian, was returning from a local airstrip transfer. Right outside Kicheche camp he spotted two dogs. Hunting. Wild dogs do not ambush their prey like the other principal predators; they are coursing animals, like jackals and hyenas, and will chase prey for many miles to exhaust them. In this case they had singled out a Thomson's gazelle fawn and ran it down in quick time.
Daniel and his two now breathless passengers witnessed the hunt start to Finnish.

For some reason the Mara is not very busy in November and early December, although we always say it is worth a visit at any time, the dogs may know this which might explain why they were on the open grasslands. But to find them in hunting,is astonishing and pretty much the hardest wildlife currency anywhere. Many said it would never be seen again - they've clearly never stayed at Kicheche.Another of Busanga safaris recommended camps and the base for our Mara Bush camp Safari.

African Wild dogs, also sometimes called African Hunting dogs or Painted dogs, are pack animals. Each pack has male and female hierarchies; the oldest females are the alpha dogs, but for the males, the situation is more variable. Only the alpha female will produce litters, sometimes very large ones, with as many as 15 or even more sometimes recorded, though 10 is a more usual number. The whole pack is tasked with feeding and protecting the litter.

Why not visit our kenya safaris page and discover what great safaris can be had on the Mara.

This news was brought to us by our friends at Wildlife Extra and Kicheche Safari camp

Friday, 3 December 2010

REALLY WILD PLACES Special offers to Botswana 20% Off the cost off your nights on safari in July

From the beginning, the aim of Busanga Safaris is to provide our guests with access to the very best wildlife and to use best camps to balance levels comfort (often very high), Botswana offers a great range of opportunities to achieve both. As a promotion at the start of the key time to visit Botswana (July) , Busanga safaris are offering this incentive which drives the cost of a really high quality safari down.

The Okavango Delta, Kwando Linyanti wetlands, Nxai Pan National Park and the Central Kalahari Game Reserve are all highlights of Botswana’s wilderness areas. The Kwando family of camps offers a full and extraordinary range of places, people and activities that will complete an unforgettable safari. This variety in a safari destination achieves the perfect balance of wildlife, culture and adventure
• Lagoon and Lebala - The Kwando Linyanti wetlands, Botswana
• Kwara - The Okavango Delta, Botswana
• Tau Pan - The Kalahari Desert, Botswana
• Nxai Pan - Nxai Pan National Park, Botswana

Kwando Linyanti Wetlands & Okavango Delta
Kwando Safaris has two extensive concessions in these areas offering a true wilderness experience. The original Kwando concession consists of 232,000 ha (550 000 acres) of remote African wilderness, while the Kwara concession in the Okavango Delta is 175,000 ha (430,000 acres).

The wildlife areas of northern Botswana are unfenced, creating a vast expanse of pristine wilderness and natural animal movement. The large concentrations of wild animals in northern Botswana are typical of what is often referred to as ‘old Africa,’ and written about by the early African explorers such as Dr. David Livingstone. Botswana offers us a chance to glimpse this Africa of history.

Kalahari Desert and Salt Pans
Kwando Safaris operates camps in both Nxai Pan National Park and the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. Nxai Pan and Tau Pan were the first safari camps to be built in their respective areas and offer an unprecedented opportunity to experience truly pristine wilderness areas and a complete contrast to the lush wetlands of the Okavango Delta.

Nxai Pan forms part of the great fossil pan system which includes the vast Makgadikgadi salt pans. These pans were once the bed of a super lake fed by the Okavango, Zambezi and Kwando rivers.

As at Nxai Pan – despite the arid environment – the Kalahari desert (Tau Pan) is home to an surprisingly diverse number of flora and fauna perfectly adapted to their surroundings.

Please call or email our UK office Tel ; 01628 621685 and we will be happy to provide more info on the individual camps and put together an itinerary just for you.