- Experience, from the saddle, exceptional wildlife; elephant, giraffe, antelope, buffalo...
- Ride sure and high quality horses and experience breath-taking gallops
- Interact with the local communities throughout the ride
Day 1 1 : UK - JOHANNESBURGYou will catch your international overnight flight to Johannesburg (flights not included, but we can help you organise your flights to arrive in time for all transfers).
It is important that you book to arrive early the following morning in Johannesburg, before 09:00, in order to leave enough time for you to catch your transfer - leaving 2 and a half to 3 hours to change terminal, perhaps collect your baggage and catch your flight for Maun.
Day 2 2 : JOHANNESBOURG - MAUN - OKAVANGO DELTA - Approx. 2 hours ridingMobile delta campYou will be met at Maun airport in Botswana (reached by a flight from Johannesburg which we can help you to organise if you wish). You will immediately be transferred out by car to the south of the Okavango Delta. After a short transfer by car (30 to 45 minutes), you will meet the horses and your support team. In order to integrate well with the local community and promote tourism in the area, our team uses the services of the local community for the trip's logistics (baggage transfer, camp setup and the cooking). Your baggage will be transported depending on the water level by either by donkeys or by mokoro - a type of traditional canoe.
You will then start you horseback safari through the delta. The itinerary is not set in stone and will be arranged depending on the season and the level of water found in the different riding locations, this allows for a new discovery of the area on ever safari. The camp is simple yet comfortable - where you will really get to embrace the African bush.
You will ride out for the first time in the afternoon in order to familiarise yourselves with your horses before a first night in the bush camp out in the delta.
Day 3 3 : OKAVANGO DELTA - Approx. 6 hours ridingMobile delta campThe precise itinerary you will follow will be organised depending on the period of the year, the water level and changed expressly to follow the movements of the wildlife; this will ensure that in all seasons you will have the best opportunities to view the native animals on your safari. A typical day will start with a hearty breakfast eaten together around the fire. The day's programme will then be dedicated to the discovery of the delta and the exploration of the stunning landscapes and wildlife. Each morning you will ride for around 4 hours. This morning ride will be the perfect opportunity for gallops along the flooded plains, as well as fording and swimming the delta's deepest outlets.
At midday, you will return to the camp where each day the support team will have set up your tents in time for lunch in the heart of the bush. You will also have time for a bit of relaxation. In the middle of the afternoon, you will head out for a second ride (around 1h30 - 2 hours) at a gentler pace (no galloping), as this ride will give you the perfect occasion to take breathtaking photos in the last light of the day, and to immerse yourself completely in the sights, sounds and smells of the bush.
You will return to the camp just before nightfall for an aperitif, dinner under the stars and a night slept falling asleep to the sounds of the local wildlife.
Certain afternoons, you may if you wish decide not to ride and instead head out in Mokoro, a traditional canoe, to discover the delta. This experience will bring you close to the African flora and fauna, especially the birds.
Day 4 4 : OKAVANGO DELTA - Approx. 6 hours ridingMobile delta campYou will ride out for a new day on your horseback safari by following paths trodden by elephants making their way between the islands. Several metres above the waters where your paths weave, the mopani trees grow with their leaves like butterflies and whose canopy offers protection from the strength of the morning sun. The landscape before you will stretch out as either a savannah landscape, forest or groves of fig trees, baobabs, kigelia and ebony trees that are mixed between the elegant palms.
You will head back to your camp for the night.
Day 5 5 : OKAVANGO DELTA - Approx. 6 hours ridingMobile delta campAfter an early rise and a full breakfast, you will ride out for 4 hours through the delta. You may see some of the famed Okavango wildlife; lechwe and graceful antelopes that race through the flood pains at a gallop. You as well will enjoy some fantastic gallops across the flooded plains, home to gnus, zebras and a multitude of birds. You will ride along the uncountable streams of water lined with mopani and palm trees. You will have you dinner and spend the night in your camp.
Day 6 6 : OKAVANGO DELTA - Approx. 6 hours ridingMobile delta campOn horseback you will ride across the little islands linked one to the other by paths used by hippopotami leading to the main island. These areas are perfect for observing wildlife and are full of surprises. Gazelles, lechwe, hippo, buffalo... A magical environment for unforgettable gallops in the deepest flooded plains of the delta. Here and there the clear and nourishing waters of lagoons dot the landscape full with water-lillies and bulrushes.
Day 7 7 : OKAVANGO DELTA - Approx. 6 hours ridingMobile delta campYou will ride out through the bush and the plains covered in fig trees and mopani, or butterfly trees, where you may meet the numerous giraffes and the more timid antelope. Or you may, riding across a flooded plain, come across a family of baboons having fun in the African sun.
Day 8 8 : OKAVANGO DELTA - Approx. 6 hours ridingMobile delta campAnother beautiful day's riding through the heart of the delta. You will once again be able to observe a rich variety of wildlife before stopping for lunch in the shade of the large plain's trees. You will certainly cross herds of elephant and buffalo before riding to the camp for sunset and your last night sleeping out in your incredible itinerant camp.
Day 9 9 : OKAVANGO DELTA - MAUN - JOHANNESBURG - Approx. 2 hours ridingYour last morning of the safari will see have you ride out before leaving your horses, the team and the delta behind. You will be transferred to Maun and take the regular return flight to Johannesburg at 14:00 and then you connection to the UK (not included), or you will start your extension in Africa - safari in the Kalahari, Victoria Falls, Mozambique... Contact us for more information!
Day 10 10 : ARRIVE IN UKArrive in to the UK in the early morning or start your extension to see more of southern Africa.
Don't hesitate to talk to us about an extension to Victoria Falls or an off-road vehicle safari through central Kalahari, an incredibly special part of the world for observing wildlife and fauna.
Dates & prices
• Groups are made up of 2 to 8 riders max.
• There is a 5% discount on the safari price (not the flight price) if guests book a full 12 Night Delta & Kalahari Ride combination
• Road transfers are included for the seven night riding safari. Shorter safaris are possible, however transfers would then be approx. £45 return from Maun
• The single tent supplement is approx. £511 for the trip (2019 rate) or £555 (2020 rate). If you are happy to share your tent throughout the trip, you will not be charged this supplement. We can offer 2 single tents free of charge to genuine single travellers, on a first come, first served basis.
• The minimum age is 12, but young riders must be experienced and willing to spend long hours in the saddle. The guide holds the right to decide whether younger riders may have to travel with an accompanying vehicle should they be unable to keep up with the group during the course of any safari.
• Non riders can accompany the safari subject to availability and at the discretion of the guides. An itinerary will then be proposed and costed on enquiry.
• IMPORTANT : Riders over 95 kg must contact us before signing up for the ride
The itinerary may be modified at anytime for security reasons, meteorological or events beyond our control such as blocked roads, rivers in flood, drought, strikes and local holidays. Equus Journeys, our local partners and their local guides will always strive to find the best solution and will alter the itinerary as needed.
The names of the hotels and accommodation are given for information only and depending on availability, they may be modified without notice and replaced by another of a similar standard.
1 backup guide
1 cook, technician and groom
Drinks (water, wine, beer, soft drinks)
Price doesn't include
January - February 2020
Departure Return Price without flights Price including flights Status 16/02/2020 25/02/2020 £2,840 Open Book now
March - April 2020
Departure Return Price without flights Price including flights Status 02/03/2020 11/03/2020 £2,840 Open Book now 10/03/2020 19/03/2020 £2,840 Open Book now 06/04/2020 15/04/2020 £3,340 Open Book now 25/04/2020 04/05/2020 £3,340 Full
May - June 2020
Departure Return Price without flights Price including flights Status 03/05/2020 12/05/2020 £3,340 Guaranteed departure Book now 24/05/2020 02/06/2020 £3,340 Open Book now 05/06/2020 14/06/2020 £3,340 Guaranteed departure Book now 14/06/2020 23/06/2020 £3,340 Guaranteed departure Book now 22/06/2020 01/07/2020 £3,340 Full 30/06/2020 09/07/2020 £3,740 Full
July - August 2020
Departure Return Price without flights Price including flights Status 19/07/2020 28/07/2020 £3,740 Guaranteed departure Book now 02/08/2020 11/08/2020 £3,740 Guaranteed departure Book now 16/08/2020 25/08/2020 £3,740 Guaranteed departure Book now 24/08/2020 02/09/2020 £3,740 Open Book now
September - October 2020
Departure Return Price without flights Price including flights Status 06/09/2020 15/09/2020 £3,740 Open Book now 13/09/2020 22/09/2020 £3,740 Open Book now 27/09/2020 06/10/2020 £3,740 Guaranteed departure Book now 11/10/2020 20/10/2020 £3,740 Guaranteed departure Book now 24/10/2020 02/11/2020 £3,740 Open Book now
November - December 2020
Departure Return Price without flights Price including flights Status 01/11/2020 10/11/2020 £3,340 Open Book now 18/11/2020 27/11/2020 £3,340 Open Book now 26/11/2020 05/12/2020 £2,840 Open Book now 04/12/2020 13/12/2020 £2,840 Open Book now 13/12/2020 22/12/2020 £2,840 Open Book now
Minimum riding ability
Minimum riding ability
Some of the horses are very docile and will be more suitable for intermediate level riders - ask us for more information.
IMPORTANT : Riders over 95kg most contact us before signing up to this ride. Heavier experienced riders over this limit may be accepted but at our discretion and may be required to pay for a 2nd horse to alternate on for the duration of the safari.
Between 4-7 hours will be spent in the saddle each day. The longest days will be on the “move” days. This is when the camp is moved to a new location.
Tacking ability and participation
Trip conditions and Requested experience
may well be a wetland but there are hundreds of islands that host a wide variety of wildlife. The islands are generally comprised of floodplains and woodland.
Riders who don't ride regularly must absolutely get back into the saddle before heading out on this safari.
Riders must also be prepared to meet people whose cultural specificities and differences of approach must be treated with acceptance and respect.
Water bottles holders are provided on each saddle (enough space for two saddles). Saddle bags are available.
We recommend our riders to wear a helmet to the correct standard and you should bring your own to ensure a proper fit.
A bathroom tent, a shower tent (bucket shower) and a mess tent are all shared (1 hot bucket shower and 1 bush loo shared between 2 tents). Breakfast and dinner will be had out around the campfire.
The mobile camp is transported by a flotilla of mekoros (traditional dugout canoes) poled by members of the local community, who live on the fringes of the Delta and know it intimately. When the water levels are too low for the mekoros to navigate, a train of pack donkeys takes over.
There are no charging facilities on this ride. We recommend guests bring with them a solar external battery bank to charge all camera equipment etc.
No wifi and little to none mobile coverage. No laundry service.
Breakfast will be had out in the bush; savoury, sweet, tea, coffee, hot chocolate, eggs and bacon.
Lunch will buffet style with options such as salad, cold meats, fruit and cheese.
Dinner will be served around the mess table and be made up of meat, vegetables, grill and fresh fruit.
Mineral water will be provided. As space is so limited on these safaris it really helps us to properly plan and pack for these trips for our guests to provide us with their specific drinks requests for both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks and where possible to include daily quantities. Drinking water, teas and coffees are provided.
The Okavango Delta is a seasonal flood plain and so different times of the year offer different experiences - each magical in its own way. The seasons in southern Africa are the reverse of the UK and so December/January is mid-summer with high temperatures and the chance of dramatic thunderstorms, whereas July/August is mid-winter when temperatures are lower and there is little chance of rain. The water level in the Delta depend on the rainfall in Angola and the floods usually arrive around April/May and recede around September/October, but this varies every year and is difficult to predict. The following guide may prove useful when planning the best time for your holiday.
March/April : Daytime temperatures are warm/hot (25-35c) and will drop to 10-20c at night. There is a small chance of rain and the bush is green and lush. There will be waterholes left over from the rainy season but the flood may not have arrived yet. Because of the rain, lush grazing and plentiful waterholes the game is dispersed and not gathered in big herd but will look fat and healthy.
May : Daytime temperatures are falling (20-30c) and it is starting to feel cooler at night (5-10c). The floods normally arrive in May which brings high levels of bird life. The large herds of lechwe antelope and buffalo will start to move into the area, but game is still dispersed as there is plenty to eat and drink.
June-August : Daytime temperatures are still pleasant (20-25c) but night are cold (3-5c) and so the early morning and late evenings are chilly. The floods are at their highest and so there is plenty of wading from island to island and boat activities. Hippo and crocodile may move into the area as well as large buffalo and antelope herds.
September/October : Spring arrives and temperatures start to climb with daytime temperatures of 30-45c, dropping to 15-25c at night. The floods are starting to recede, the islands are dry as there has not been rain for months and so the game starts to concentrate around the water holes.
November - February : The rain can arrive anytime in November. Daytime temperatures are high before the rains (30-40c) but drop after each shower. It is unlikely to rain persistently, but usually for a few hours. Nights are still warm (15-20c). The bush turns green after the rains and the grass starts to grow again. Once the waterholes start to fill again the game will disperse. The antelope will give birth during this time of plenty.
Guide and local team
All rides will be led by a professional experienced guide armed with a rifle. He will be accompanied by an assistant back up guide. Guides will be up to date on their first aid training and will carry a basic first aid kit on all rides. A GPS and a handheld radio or satellite phone are also carried in the event of an emergency.
- Guide: US$ 10 per day per guest
- Camp Staff (including back up rider): US$ 10 per day per guest
- Community Staff (Delta only): US$ 2 per day per guest
- Wherever possible you should wear neutral colours, such as beige, brown or natural bush colours for riding as bright colours, such as red, yellow or white can startle the wildlife and they will see you long before you've seen them
- We recommend travelling in your riding boots and carrying your hat and some riding clothes in your hand luggage - then if your luggage goes astray you are still able to ride!
- You must bring a headtorch or small torch for moving around camp at night.
- There is no electricity at Camp, a solar charging bank could be a useful item to charge camera batteries
- Equus Journeys strongly recommend that you wear a riding helmet and that you take your own to ensure a correct fit.
- Sunhat for when not riding
- Sunglasses - with a cord attached so they don't fly off when riding
- Buff or bandana
- Long sleeved shirts provide protection from the sun and thorns
- Fleece, jumper or jacket - the evenings can be cold, particularly June - August
- Waterproof jacket - the rains can be difficult to foresee and it's better to be prepared. Rain is more likely Oct-April, but in the Delta you may appreciate a waterproof jacket for splashy canters May-September
- Casual clothes for the evening
- Lightweight, comfortable riding trousers or jodhpurs - we recommend riding in them at home before taking them on holiday to ensure they don't rub
- Shorts for lazy lunchtimes
- Casual clothes for the evening
Hands and Feet
- Comfortable riding boots. We recommend short boots with half chaps but you may wish to take long chaps to protect against thorns. We don't recommend taking your favourite long leather boots in case they get damaged. During the flood season you may wish to take a second pair so that you aren't putting wet boots on
- Sandals, flip-flops or trainers for moving around the lodge and camp
- Gloves - your hands are particularly exposed to the sun whilst riding
Other useful items
- Binoculars for viewing game
- Camera and high capacity memory card. Spare battery
- Bumbag for carrying your camera and small items whilst riding
- Waterproof pouches if you want to bring your camera or phone with you whilst riding
In your luggage
- Any liquids, such as shampoo, moisturiser, deodorant unless they are less than 100ml and all bottles can fit in a small, clear, plastic ziplock bag. Some toiletries are provided by the camp so you can pack lighter.
In your hand luggage
- Any valuables, such as your camera, ipod, ipad etc.
- Your riding hat
- Sunscreen and lip balm - must be high factor
- Insect repellent, preferably containing deet
- Any medication you regularly take
- Blister plasters in case of any rubs
- Antiseptic cream, plasters, aspirin, anti-histamine, insect-bite salve etc...
- Spare prescription glasses/contact lenses
- Anti malarial tablets and Yellow Fever Certificate if required (check with your doctor)
A first aid kit is available in camp but please make sure to bring any prescription medication with you.
Visa & Health
Visas are not required by British, Australian, Canadian, USA or other EU nationals for stays in Botswana of up to 90 days.
Visas are also not required by transit passengers, provided they are continuing their journey by the same or first connecting aircraft, and do not leave the airport.
Nationals of countries not listed above are advised to contact the high commission/embassy to check visa requirements.
Those nationals who do require a visa for Botswana must include a copy of their travel itinerary with their application, along with a letter of support from their intended host and return visa or residence permit from his/her country of residence.
Travel to or from South Africa
If you are planning to enter South Africa before or after you visit Botswana, you should refer to the travel advice for South Africa.
Travelling with children
The Botswana government has introduced new immigration rules from 1 October 2016. Children (under 18 years of age) who are travelling into or through Botswana must provide a certified copy of their full unabridged birth certificate as well as a valid passport (an abridged (short) birth certificate won’t be accepted).
If the child is travelling with one parent, with another adult or unaccompanied, the parent or parents who aren’t present will need to provide an affidavit giving their consent for the child to travel. For more information please contact the Botswana Embassy.
Travelling with children via South Africa
If you’re transiting through South Africa with children, see our South Africa travel advice page for information and advice about the documents you’ll need to carry.
More information: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/botswana/entry-requirements
Addresses of consulates
- Botswana High Commission
6 Stratford Place
London W1C 1AY
Tél. : (020) 7499 0031
Fax : (020) 7647 1000
- Ambassade du Botswana
88 Avenue de Iéna
Tél. : 01.47.20.08.23
You should check with your doctor who has access to the most up-to-date information but the following vaccinations are usually recommended - Diphtheria, Tetanus and Polio (DTP) together with Hepatitis A and typhoid.
If you are staying longer than 3 months or have a particular risk you might consider a rabies vaccination. Vaccination against Tuberculosis as well as Hepatitis B are also sometimes recommended for stays longer than 3 months.
Malaria is prevalent in the country, but mainly during the warm and wet season and particularly in the northern half of the country. The south is generally considered lower risk. Don't underestimate this tropical disease and take precautions. Buy repellent (preferably with 50% DEET) and sleep under a net and speak to your doctor about anti-malarial medication.
Budget and money
Notes in denominations of P100, 50, 20 and 10.
Coins in denominations of P5, 2 and 1, and 50, 25, 10 and 5 thebe.
It is not necessary to change money into local currency for any of our Botswana rides - they accept GB Pounds, Euro, US Dollars and South African Rand.
Telephone and jetlag
Mobile phone roaming agreements exist with international mobile phone companies. Coverage is average in the major towns but you are unlikely to get any signal at all when in remote camps.
Time zone: GMT + 2hr
Did you know?
Did you know?
A vast inland river delta in northern Botswana, the Okavango Delta is a huge oasis has a with one of Africa's richest eco-system - but one which is also very fragile at the same time. The Delta is home to an abundance of African wildlife and it is the 1000th UNESCO World Heritage Site in the world. The whole area is affected by annual floods which originate in Angola, arriving sometime in May to fill up waterways and lagoons before being soaked up by the floodplains and the sands of the Kalahari over the passing months. These floods are the lifeblood of this area, making these arid plains a lush animal habitat.
Our mobile horseback safari in the Okavango Delta is a safari unlike no other. No vehicles are used during the safari and a partnership with the local community guarantees this as a genuinely environmentally friendly safari.
There is no permanent riding camp, instead a lightweight mobile camp is transported into place by a flotilla of poled mokoros (traditional dugout canoes) which are steered by members of the local community. When the water levels are too low then pack donkeys belonging to the local community are used to carry everything into place.
Lead by David Foot, who has a wealth of over 25 years of experience guiding throughout Africa, this safari emphasises the reality of the Delta away from the glamping permanent camps, living basically and at one with the African nature. As you ride through the Delta on horseback, from camp to camp you will have the knowledge that your carbon footprint on this amazing area, is very minimal.
All of the Big Five (elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion and leopard) are present and an abundance of plains game – but this is a vast area and you never know what you may see!