Okavango & Beyond Trip Notes

Okavango & Beyond

Last Modified: 13 Jul 2016
Okavango & Beyond
Trip code: YBSB
Validity: 01 Jan 2016 to 31 Dec 2016
Soak up the sights and sounds of peaceful waterholes, meandering creeks and mighty rivers on this refreshing African adventure. Some of the continent's most iconic animals call Southern Africa home, including elephants, rhinos, giraffes, hippos, crocodiles and ostriches. Explore the remote waterways of the extraordinary Okavango Delta in Botswana, be awed by the thunder of Zimbabwe's Victoria Falls and travel down the Chobe River at sunset as animals come out to play. The contrast of Africa's wild plains and bustling cities makes for an enriching and thrilling travel experience.
Table of Contents
StyleAccommodationFinish point description
ThemesAccommodation NotesFinishing point instructions
Is this trip right for you?Meals introductionEmergency contact
Why we love itMealsVisas
MapTransportWhat to take
ItineraryMoney mattersClimate and seasonal information
Itinerary disclaimerGroup leaderHealth
Physical ratingSafetyTravel insurance
Included activitiesJoining pointA couple of rules
Important notesJoining point descriptionResponsible Travel
Group sizeJoining point instructionsThe Intrepid Foundation
Your fellow travellersFinish pointFeedback
Style
Original
Themes
Overland, Wildlife
Is this trip right for you?
- Camping out in the amazing Okavango wilderness means digging a bush toilet and going without a shower. It's all part of the delta experience.
- You will need a reasonable level of fitness for the cycle tour in Soweto, as the town isn't totally flat.
- The African wild comes alive at sunrise, so there will be some early starts for game drives. The thrill of spotting your first lion or rhino is well worth any loss of sleep!
- Our purpose-built overland vehicles allow for excellent game viewing, equipped with large sliding windows. They have no air-conditioning, however, so they can get dusty and hot at times.
- The going can be slow over the long distances and often bumpy roads. A little bit of patience will go a long way towards your enjoyment of this beautiful land!
Why we love it
- Besides being one of the world's most dazzling waterfalls, Victoria Falls offers a range of exciting activities, from nature walks to breathtaking scenic helicopter flights
- A sunset cruise is the ultimate way to soak up the ambience of the Chobe River. Keep an eye out – and a camera at the ready – for elephants, cheetahs and lions frolicking on the shore
- Experience the untouched wilderness of Botswana's Okavango Delta, staying on a remote island bush camp. As night falls, the sounds of the African bush are like nothing else
- Visit the Khama Rhino Sanctuary – an important local conservation project and the last remaining place in Botswana where both black and white rhinos live
- Cycle through the colourful streets of Soweto and hear first-hand stories of the township’s colourful history
Map

Itinerary
Day 1 Victoria Falls
Mhoro! Welcome to Zimbabwe. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm. You can arrive at any time as there are no activities planned until this important meeting. Please ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time for this, consider arriving a day early so you are able to attend. If you are going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting. Today your leader will take you to a local activity centre where a range of activities will be on offer. Scenic helicopter flights are incredible – if you opt for one, choose Zambezi Helicopter Company (CAA Zimbabwe), the only operator Intrepid endorses.

Notes: We have not risk assessed all optional activities. If you are unsure, please check with your leader. Note that it is against company policy for leaders to facilitate the booking of any activities that have not been risk assessed or do not adhere to our company’s Responsible Travel policy and ethos. This includes organising transport to and from these activities in our vehicles. You may notice businesses offering an optional 'Walk with the Lions' experience. We recommend that Intrepid travellers bypass this activity as it is contrary to Intrepid's Responsible Travel guideline, which opposes the exploitation of animals, wild or domestic. You may also hear about the Devil's Pool. Intrepid does not recommend this activity, due to the high risk involved. Our leaders cannot assist in organising this activity.
Included Activities
  • Victoria Falls Entrance
    Optional Activities
    • Helicopter flight (12 mins) - USD175
    • Flying fox - USD50
    • Gorge swing - USD110
    • Canoe trail - USD185
    • Village & township tour - USD50
    • Helicopter flight (25 mins) - USD334
      Accommodation
      Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)
      Day 2 Chobe National Park
      Travel to Chobe National Park in Botswana (approximately 2–3 hours). Chobe, the first national park to be established in the country, is perhaps best known for its high concentration of elephants, which can often be seen swimming in the Chobe River. The river also attracts wallowing hippos, a variety of birdlife, and crocodiles which like to sun themselves by the water's edge. Cheetahs and lions also come down to drink. In the late afternoon you will embark on a scenic sunset cruise on the Chobe River – a relaxing way to spend the afternoon. Your camp, located outside of the park, has flush toilets, showers, WiFi and optional accommodation upgrades.
      Included Activities
      • Chobe - River cruise
        Accommodation
        Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)
        Meals
        1 breakfast, 1 dinner
        Day 3 Maun
        There's time for an additional game drive for those who would like to further explore this beautiful park (this is optional). As well as elephants, you might see some of Chobe's other noble creatures – from giraffe and zebra to impala and tsessebe. Then it's time to head to Maun (approximately 10–11 hours). This town is the gateway to one of the world's most famous and most complex ecosystems, the Okavango Delta. Arrive, stretch your legs and set up camp on the outskirts of town at a simple campsite. Here there are shared facilities, WiFi and optional accommodation upgrades.
        Optional Activities
        • Chobe - Dawn game drive - BWP350
          Accommodation
          Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)
          Meals
          1 breakfast, 1 dinner
          Day 4 Okavango Delta
          Travel into the unspoiled wilderness for an adventurous camping experience. The Okavango Delta is unlike anything in the world – a 16,000 square kilometre maze of wetlands made up of meandering waterways, green islands, lush plains and prolific wildlife. The delta is filled with a diversity of flora and fauna that includes hippos, crocodiles, elephants and big cats. But it's not the animals that are the main attraction – it's the incredible ecosystem. You'll explore the waterways by mokoro, a traditional dugout canoe navigated by friendly local 'polers'. You'll also spend some time exploring on foot with your experienced and knowledgeable guides. Camp on a remote island in the heart of the wild. Toilets will be dug and there are no showers. Hear the nocturnal creatures of the African bush come to life as the sun goes down.
          Included Activities
          • Okavango Delta - Mokoro trips & bushwalks
            Accommodation
            Bush camp (no facilities) (1 nt)
            Meals
            1 breakfast, 1 lunch, 1 dinner
            Day 5 Okavango Delta
            It's an early start this morning as you venture out for a sunrise walk, hoping to catch a glimpse of some elephants and perhaps the fascinating and rather noble-looking Cape buffalo. Return to camp to enjoy some breakfast and reflect on the morning's viewing with your fellow travellers. As it warms up, you'll have the rest of the day to relax. You might like to take a refreshing swim. There is also the option of an afternoon walk or another mokoro trip. You may notice that the mokoros of today are made with fibreglass but retain their original shape – this strikes a balance between tradition and sustainability.
            Accommodation
            Bush camp (no facilities) (1 nt)
            Meals
            1 breakfast, 1 lunch, 1 dinner
            Day 6 Maun
            After taking down your camp, it's time to return the mokoro to the poling station and board the vehicle once again. Travel back to Maun (approximately 2–3 hours). Though this town is best known as a stepping stone to the delta, it's worth a stroll around. Perhaps check out the Nhabe Museum if you feel curious and have time. Tonight you will camp on the outskirts of town at a simple site which has shared facilities.
            Optional Activities
            • Scenic Flight - Okavango Delta - USD140
              Accommodation
              Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)
              Meals
              1 breakfast, 1 dinner
              Day 7 Khama Rhino Sanctuary
              Travel to the Khama Rhino Sanctuary (approximately 9–10 hours). Situated on the edge of the Kalahari Desert, the Khama Rhino Sanctuary is a conversion of a former hunting area into a conservation project. Built to protect Botswana's only remaining populations of both black and white rhinos, the sanctuary is also home to other wildlife including zebras, giraffes, leopards, ostriches and wildebeest, all of which can be seen around the many natural waterholes. Visiting this project benefits local communities and contributes to the protection of the highly endangered white rhinoceros. In the evening you'll head out on a dusk game drive to see the rhinos (this will be replaced by a dawn game drive if the group arrives at the sanctuary too late). Your camp tonight has shared facilities and optional upgrades.
              Included Activities
              • Khama Rhino Sanctuary - Game drive
                Accommodation
                Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)
                Meals
                1 breakfast, 1 dinner
                Day 8 Soweto/Johannesburg
                Cross the border into South Africa and travel on to Soweto, which is located in the Johannesburg area (approximately 10–11 hours). Johannesburg is a sprawling city of remarkable contrasts. As you come into town you'll likely see opulent mansions alongside tin-roof shacks, and verdant city parks alongside the concrete. About half of Jo'burg's 3 million residents live in Soweto and its surrounding areas. Enjoy a relaxing evening upon arrival.
                Accommodation
                Guesthouse (1 nt)
                Meals
                1 breakfast
                Day 9 Soweto
                Take to the streets of Soweto on a bicycle and learn about the Soweto uprising and the resistance against apartheid. It's interesting to see how the community has changed and developed into what it is today. You'll also visit a former migrant workers' hostel and stop at many other local landmarks. Your cycling adventure should finish up at around 3 pm today. With no further activities planned, your trip comes to an end at this point. No accommodation is provided for tonight, but this can be arranged when you book this trip. If you are departing, it's best to book a flight for 8 pm or later.
                Included Activities
                • Soweto - Cycle tour
                  Meals
                  1 breakfast, 1 lunch
                  Itinerary disclaimer
                  ITINERARY CHANGES Occasionally our itineraries are updated during the year to incorporate improvements stemming from past travellers' comments and our own research. The information given in this itinerary may be slightly different to that in the brochure. It's very important that you print and review a final copy of your Trip Notes a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans. If you have any queries, please contact your travel agent or our staff. We are here to help you! Please note that while we operate successful trips in this region throughout the year, some changes may occur in our itineraries due to inclement weather and common seasonal changes to timetables and transport routes. This can happen with little notice so please be prepared for modifications to the route. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary from time to time.

                  OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only. Prices are approximate and are for entrance only and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability and it may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. This means that it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, however we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with booking these activities. The decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.
                  Physical rating

                  The step up into the overland truck, while not overly high, can become tiring, as can the constant setting and packing up of camp. You need to judge yourself to be physically fit enough to haul yourself up and down at least 8-10 times a day.
                  Included activities
                  Victoria Falls Entrance
                  Chobe - River cruise
                  Okavango Delta - Mokoro trips & bushwalks
                  Khama Rhino Sanctuary - Game drive
                  Soweto - Cycle tour
                  Important notes
                  1. A single supplement is available on this trip.
                  2. This trip finishes in Soweto on Day 9 after our cycle adventure. Please don't book any international flights until after 8pm this evening.

                  Group size
                  Maximum of 12 travellers per group.
                  Your fellow travellers
                  GROUP TRAVEL
                  As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure.

                  SINGLE TRAVELLERS:
                  Our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and don't involve a compulsory single supplement. Single travellers share with people of the same gender in accommodation ranging from twin to multishare. Some of our itineraries have accommodation booked on a mixed gender share basis and where applicable this will be specified in our Trip Notes. On a selection of our trips, you have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure that you have your own accommodation (where available). Please note that this only applies to accommodation during the tour - pre-trip and post-trip accommodation will be booked on a single room basis.

                  A Single Supplement is available on this trip, please ask your booking agent for more information.
                  Accommodation
                  Bush camp (no facilities) (2nt), Camping (with basic facilities) (1nt), Camping (with facilities) (4nt), Guesthouse (1nt)
                  Accommodation on this trip is mainly in two-person canvas dome tents with basic camping beds/stretchers and mattresses supplied.

                  The type and variety of accommodation is determined by conditions on each of our routes. Each route is different - on some we use a mixture of campsites and wild camps; on others we also use hotels. In Africa it's not usually practical to camp when staying in towns and cities so we use hotel accommodation and eat out in local restaurants.

                  There may be the occasional night stop, when we stay in the grounds of a hotel or at a campsite which may also have rooms/cabins available. In this case there may be a choice of camping or upgrading to a room. Rooms cost approximately USD60 per room per night for a twin room and cannot be pre-booked. The day by day itinerary advises when upgrades may be possible (subject to availability).

                  Keep in mind that if we are staying in dormitory accommodation, you may have to share with other passengers or be split into same sex rooms.

                  Campsites do have facilities but they usually aren't to the same standard you would find in western countries. For example the bathroom facilities can be very basic (the toilets may be a squat-style hole in the ground). There is rarely toilet paper provided and shower facilities can be as simple as a hose pipe spurting out cold water. Wild camps have no facilities at all.

                  Not all campsites are as basic as this description - it's just to make sure there are no surprises for you.


                  ACCOMMODATION TYPES:
                  Our accommodation styles range from Basic to Comfortable. Read below for what you can expect from each category. The style of each night of accommodation is listed on the day to day itinerary, alongside any exceptions you need to be made aware of.

                  BASIC
                  This is roughing it in the roughest sense. Our Basic accommodation includes campsites and wilderness lodges with very limited facilities, and homestays with squat/drop toilets and no showers. Sometimes you might spend a night on a train, bus or boat (all seated, no sleepers). Luxurious, it isn’t, but sleeping under the stars or in a hammock in the jungle is all part of the experience.

                  SIMPLE
                  Simple by name, simple by nature: think local guesthouses and homestays, the occasional shared dorm-style room, overnight sleeper trains or boats, and campsites with facilities. Some of our Simple accommodation has outside facilities, and you may be starting the day with a brisk shower if hot water isn’t available (some say cold, we say invigorating).

                  TOURIST
                  No frills, no fuss and no chocolate on your pillow at bedtime, but a clean and comfy place to lay your head. Tourist accommodation covers basic hotels, local guesthouses and lodges, permanent campsites and the occasional multi-share room. Our Tourist rooms usually have no heating or air conditioning, and sometimes you’ll be sharing a bathroom.

                  STANDARD
                  A cheerful room to call your own at the end of a long day of seeing the sights and sites. Our Standard rooms are convenient and cosy, and will usually include an en suite bathroom. Rooms are sometimes on the small side and amenities may be limited.

                  COMFORTABLE
                  Pretty much exactly what it says on the box. Expect pleasant accommodation, your own bathroom, and heating/air conditioning where appropriate. Most of our Comfortable accommodation has lifts, porters to help with your bags and are – yep – a comfortable spot to end your busy days.
                  Meals introduction
                  Your crew will come up with meal ideas and quantities needed for large groups. If you have any dietary requirements please tell us at the time of booking, and also remind your crew at your welcome meeting.

                  A typical camp breakfast might be toast with spreads, cereal, something hot such as eggs or pancakes, as well as tea and coffee. Lunch is almost always a sandwich with healthy salad and assorted fillings, sometimes with fruit to follow. There may be a chance on occasion to buy your lunch. Dinner might be a BBQ, rice dish or pasta dish and there is always the chance to try some African food such as ugali and stew.

                  On the more remote sections of your trip, your food and diet will be dependent on what is available locally as well as tinned and dry ingredients.

                  One thing is sure - you definitely won't go hungry or lose weight on your safari! When you aren't camping you will have the freedom to decide where, what and with whom you eat.
                  Meals
                  8 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 6 dinners
                  Transport
                  Boat, Mokoro, Overland vehicle

                  Our trucks are purpose-built, self contained safari vehicles. Intrepid’s fleet of vehicles varies depending on your group size, trip route and style. In Southern Africa some departures may use vans and luggage trailers subject to group size and vehicle availability. Your vehicle type may differ from those listed above. It is also important to note that our overland vehicles are not air-conditioned, but all vehicles have windows that can be opened to allow for fresh air.

                  There are many early starts with long hours spent driving on rough roads on all African itineraries. While most people love the chance to watch the changing landscape and daily village life, feedback shows that long periods of inactivity does not appeal to all clients. We provide the approximate distance covered each day and how many hours this normally takes to drive so that you can choose the safari experience which is right for you.

                  African conditions are extremely tough on vehicles. While we fastidiously maintain our vehicles at our workshops, you should not expect Africa to be your traditional touring experience. While it's certainly our aim to avoid them, it's important that you set off on your trip knowing that the occasional breakdown can happen and are best treated as part of the African adventure. Due to wet weather there may be times when we have to take an alternative route which will mean longer travel times.
                  Money matters
                  When it comes to money matters on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget a sensible amount for things like meals not included, drinks, shopping, optional activities, tipping and laundry. It’s always better to bring a little more than you think you’ll need.

                  Also make sure you’ve read your trip details thoroughly so you know what’s included in the trip price and what isn’t. This should make budgeting a little easier. You’ll find this info in the Inclusions section of your Essential Trip Information (that’s this document).
                  Please note: all recommendations for additional costs, tipping etc. are in USD. You will need to convert these into the relevant local currency.


                  MEALS NOT INCLUDED

                  Breakfast, dinner and most lunches are included while camping on our overland safaris.

                  For lunches not included, a budget of USD10 to USD15 per meal will be more than sufficient.

                  For dinners not included, your leader will normally recommend options and restaurants where you can safely try the local specialties of the region. Expect meals to cost between USD12 to USD25 for a main.

                  These are indicative prices only. If you are in a tight budget and are happy to try local food, you can eat cheaper than this.


                  TIPPING

                  Gratuities aren’t compulsory on your trip, but they can make a big difference to locals employed in the tourism industry. If you are happy with the services provided, a tip is an appropriate way to thank them. While it may not be customary to you, it is of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many Intrepid destinations.

                  Usually the equivalent of around USD5 to USD10 per person, per day to cover tips is fine. Over the years we have found that many of our travellers find the need for tipping to be both tiresome and embarrassing, especially if they don't have the correct small change. To overcome this, your leader might raise the idea of a group tipping kitty. At your group meeting, your tour leader may discuss the idea of running this kitty, whereby everybody contributes an equal amount and then your tour leader pays the tips as you go. The leader will keep a running record of all monies spent (except restaurant tips). The record can be checked at any time and any money remaining at the end of the tour returned to group members. This kitty does not include tips for your leader and crew.


                  TIPPING GUIDE

                  To give you a bit of guidance, we’ve put together the following tipping notes. These are just suggestions, based on feedback from past travellers and our staff on the ground.

                  - Basic restaurants – When checking the bill, if there’s an addition of 10% service charge, there’s no requirement for tipping. Otherwise, 10% of the total bill amount is appropriate.
                  - Local guides – Throughout your trip you may at times have a local guide in addition to your leader. We suggest USD2 to USD3 per person, per day for local guides.
                  - Your crew (including leaders, drivers and cooks) You may also consider tipping your crew for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference; however as a guideline USD3 to USD4 per person, per day can be used. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip. It is best to then divide these amounts into separate envelopes for each crew member. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.


                  EMERGENCY FUNDS

                  We try to plan for every eventuality, but there are still some things beyond our control. Please make sure you bring an extra USD500 for emergencies (e.g. natural disasters or civil unrest). Sometimes these things necessitate last minute changes to our itineraries, and we can’t guarantee there won’t be some extra costs involved.


                  CREDIT CARDS, ATMS AND MONEY EXCHANGE:

                  Credit cards are generally accepted in tourist shops and some restaurants across Africa. Visa and Mastercard are generally preferred over American Express, Diners, etc. Smaller venues take cash only. Foreign currency is easily changed at exchange bureaus and they generally offer the best rates.

                  With ATMs being increasingly available in the many major towns and cities and even some campsites, credit or debit cards are a convenient way to access money. Be aware that your withdrawing limit may vary from country to country (regardless of your withdrawing limit in your home country) and it can be as low as the equivalent to USD100 per day. Throughout Africa, cards with the Visa logo are most readily recognised, although MasterCard is also accepted in most places. A charge is made for each international transaction - please check with your bank how much this fee will be. Check with your bank before leaving home that your card can be used as a debit card in Africa. You may also want to notify your bank that you are visiting Africa as it's not unknown for banks to freeze cards which show sudden transactions in other countries. If you're on a multi-country tour, your tour leader will be able to give you an approximate idea of how much money you may need for your stay in each country.

                  PLEASE NOTE: Many businesses and banks in Africa, especially East Africa, do not accept US dollar notes older than 2006. If you are bringing USD, we strongly recommend large bills in good condition, 2006 series onwards only. Any old or damaged notes may not be accepted.

                  ACCESSING CASH IN ZIMBABWE:

                  While accessing money in Africa is becoming easier in general, Zimbabwe is an exception. The country is experiencing a cash crisis. Due to Zimbabwe's increasing dependence on the USD and suspension of printing their own currency, it is becoming increasingly difficult to withdraw cash at banks and ATMs. Credit/debit cards are not widely accepted. You should plan your travel expenses in advance and bring sufficient cash into the country to support your stay. Your leader or local representative will be on hand to advise on this matter should you need it.
                  Group leader
                  On this trip you will be accompanied by 3 crew members, a Group Leader, a Driver and a Camp Assistant.

                  Your Intrepid Group Leader’s role involves organizing the overall operation and smooth-running of the trip and managing trip logistics.

                  Your Group Leader will work towards making the trip as safe and enjoyable as possible for all travellers. Intrepid trips are built around the co–operation and participation of all the group members under the supervision of the group leader.

                  While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting, especially when tracking and identifying game - we think it's the best of both worlds.

                  Our Group Leaders are chosen for their leadership skills and are wonderful ambassadors for our company and our beautiful continent and its people.

                  Your Driver’s main responsibility is to get you to your destination safely; they are also responsible for the maintenance of the vehicles along the way.

                  We endeavour to provide the services of an experienced leader and driver; however, situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders.
                  Safety
                  Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trip.

                  We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, air tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.

                  Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your Intrepid itinerary, and Intrepid makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your Leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns.

                  For more details on the type of conditions and safety standards you can expect on your trip, please refer to Intrepid's operational safety policy on our website. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how well it's being implemented in the field:
                  www.intrepidtravel.com/safety


                  FIRE PRECAUTIONS:
                  Please be aware that local laws governing tourism facilities in this region differ from those in your home country and not all the accommodation which we use has a fire exit, fire extinguishers or smoke alarms.

                  BALCONIES:
                  Some hotel balconies don't meet western standards in terms of the width of the balcony fence being narrower than 10cm.

                  TRAFFIC AND DRIVING ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROAD:
                  Depending on where you come from please note that drivers in this part of the world may drive on the opposite side of the road from what you are used to. Look both ways before crossing any road. Traffic can be a little more chaotic than you might be used to at home. Be aware!

                  SEAT BELTS:
                  Please be aware that local laws governing transportation safety may differ from those in your home country and not all the transport which we use is able to provide seat belts.

                  PETTY THEFT AND PERSONAL SAFETY:
                  While travelling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking alone at night and encourage you to walk together and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair or on the floor and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing.

                  WATER SAFETY:
                  Please take care when taking part in any activities in the ocean, river or open water, where waves and currents can be unpredictable. It's expected that anyone taking part in water activities is able to swim and have experience in open water. All swimmers should seek local advice before entering the water.

                  TRAVEL ADVICE & TRAVEL INSURANCE
                  We recommend that you check your government's advice in relation to the areas you will be visiting for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers.

                  UNFENCED CAMP SITES:
                  On some trips you will at times stay in unfenced camp sites within national parks. While this is a fantastic experience, there are a few safety rules to follow. While staying in national parks it's important that you listen to any advice given by your tour leader and the park rangers regarding responsible and safe behaviour.
                  Joining point
                  Victoria Falls Rest Camp and Lodges
                  Stand 5 Parkway
                  Victoria Falls
                  ZIMBABWE
                  Phone: +27 0216836444
                  Joining point description
                  Victoria Falls Rest Camp is located in the middle of Victoria Falls town, with just about everything you need within walking distance.

                  The rest camp has all the facilities you should need for your stay, including a pool and access to the internet.
                  Joining point instructions
                  If you have pre-booked a transfer, your driver will be waiting for you in the arrivals area near the point you clear customs. Please look for our driver who will be holding a card with your name on it. The driver will wait for an hour after your scheduled arrival time.

                  If you are unable to find your driver please make your way to the ‘Wild Horizons’ desk which is located in the arrivals terminal. Wild Horizons operate our ground transfers and a representative will be able to help you. If you are still unable to find your driver you can call +27 11 4717400 during business hours, or +27 82 822 9407 after hours. If you are delayed beyond one hour after your scheduled arrival time, please make your own way to the hotel.

                  If you are making your own way to the hotel, there is a taxi stand outside the airport building. A taxi should cost approximately 20USD.
                  Finish point
                  Vhavenda Hills B&B
                  11749 Mampuru Street, Orlando West Extension
                  Soweto
                  Johannesburg
                  SOUTH AFRICA
                  Finish point description
                  Located in the Orlando West suburb of Soweto - a vibrant area with numerous restaurants, bars and museums and historic sites nearby.
                  Finishing point instructions
                  If you have pre-booked a departure transfer, please inform your leader and they will notify you of your departure transfer time. For international flights your transfer driver will be at reception 3.5 hours prior to the flight departure, while for domestic flights the driver will be there 2.5 hours prior to departure.

                  If you are making your own way to the airport the hotel will be able to help book you an airport shuttle or taxi. Please ask at reception.
                  Emergency contact
                  In the case of a genuine crisis or emergency, Intrepid's South African Office can be reached on: +27 11 471 7400 (South African business hours) or +27 828229407 (24/7).

                  For general enquiries or questions about your booking, please contact your agent or adventure specialist, or visit us at www.intrepidtravel.com/contact-us

                  For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/

                  While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

                  We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager.

                  You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. But we do ask you to be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is complete.

                  Intrepid's South African Office: +27 828229407
                  Visas
                  PASSPORT

                  As a general rule most countries expect that your passport has a minimum of 6 months validity remaining. Please ensure the name on your passport matches the name on your booking and airline tickets. Your passport details are required to complete your booking. Your consultant will contact you when this is required. Take a copy of the main passport pages and other important documents with you, and leave another copy at home with family or friends.

                  VISAS

                  Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Your consultant will also be happy to point you in the right direction with acquiring visas. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarise yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time.

                  We keep the following information up to date as much as possible, but rules do change - it's important that you check for yourself. Residents from countries not listed below must consult the relevant embassies or your travel agent.


                  ZIMBABWE:

                  Australia: Yes - visa on arrival
                  Belgium: Yes - visa on arrival
                  Canada: Yes - visa on arrival
                  Germany: Yes - visa on arrival
                  Ireland: Yes - visa on arrival
                  Netherlands: Yes - visa on arrival
                  New Zealand: Yes - visa on arrival
                  South Africa: Yes - visa on arrival
                  Switzerland: Yes - visa on arrival
                  United Kingdom: Yes - visa on arrival
                  USA: Yes - visa on arrival

                  Zimbabwe visas are required by most nationalities, including from the EU, US and Australia. For most nationalities, Zimbabwe visas are available at the point of entry. If you plan to purchase your visa on arrival you will need approximately USD30/45 in cash. All nationalities should check with their nearest Zimbabwe Embassy for up to date information.

                  Please note: As of January 2016, the KAZA Visa for Zimbabwe and Zambia will be unavailable to purchase. Singular visas for Zimbabwe remain available on arrival at point of entries.


                  BOTSWANA:

                  Australia: No visa required
                  Belgium: No visa required
                  Canada: No visa required
                  Germany: No visa required
                  Ireland: Yes - visa required
                  Netherlands: No visa required
                  New Zealand: No visa required
                  South Africa: No visa required
                  Switzerland: No visa required
                  United Kingdom: No visa required
                  USA: No visa required

                  Citizens of countries not listed above, including most EU countries, should check with the relevant consulates as to whether a visa is required. For passengers requiring a visa to Botswana, application forms can be downloaded from http://www.gov.bw/en/ as well as instructions for applying.

                  Entry Requirements - Yellow Fever Certificate:
                  A valid Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate is required for all passengers over one year of age who arrive or are transiting through Botswana, from a country or region listed by the World Health Organization as infected by yellow fever. Travellers unable to present a valid yellow fever vaccination certificate issued at least 10 days before arrival will be refused entry. There is no option for travellers without a vaccination certificate to be vaccinated on arrival. Please note this also includes transiting through an infected country or region.


                  SOUTH AFRICA:

                  Australia: No visa required
                  Belgium: No visa required
                  Canada: No visa required
                  Germany: No visa required
                  Ireland: No visa required
                  Netherlands: No visa required
                  New Zealand: No visa required
                  Switzerland: No visa required
                  United Kingdom: No visa required
                  USA: No visa required

                  Citizens of the above countries do not need visas to visit South Africa as a tourist for up to three months. Citizens of all other countries should check with the relevant consulates as to whether a visa is required.

                  Entry Requirements – Passports:
                  Please note that non-machine readable passports are no longer accepted by South African immigration. All visitors to South Africa must have a machine readable travel document (e-passport). Failure to present an e-passport will result in denied entry. Passengers with a valid visa issued in a non-machine readable passport will be handled on a case by case basis, but a fine will still be applicable.

                  Entry Requirements - Yellow Fever Certificate:
                  A valid Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate is required for all passengers over one year of age who arrive or are transiting through South Africa, from a country or region listed by the World Health Organization as infected by yellow fever. Travellers unable to present a valid yellow fever vaccination certificate issued at least 10 days before arrival in South Africa will be refused entry. There is no option for travellers without a vaccination certificate to be vaccinated on arrival. Please note this also includes transiting through an infected country or region.

                  Entry Requirements - Travelling with Children:
                  Parents need to produce an original unabridged birth certificate if they are travelling with children. This regulation has been put in place to protect children from being abducted, kidnapped and child trafficking. The Department of Home Affairs has urged all parents to apply for unabridged certificates for their children. Additionally, further documentation including permission to travel, may be required if only one parent is travelling. These are requirements of the immigration regulation 6 (12)(a) for parents travelling with children. More information can be found here: http://www.dha.gov.za/index.php/civic-services/traveling-with-children

                  We recommend travellers check all entry and visa requirements before travel as they can change.


                  BORDER CROSSINGS ON THIS TRIP:

                  Exit Zimbabwe - Kazangula Road (Day 2)
                  Enter Botswana - Kazangula Road

                  Exit Botswana - Martin's Drift (Day 8)
                  Enter South Africa - Groblers Bridge
                  What to take
                  What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking, we recommend you pack as lightly as possible and make sure that you are able to carry and lift your own luggage, and walk with it for short distances.

                  Most travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, although an overnight bag with a shoulder strap would suffice if you travel lightly. Smaller bags or backpacks with wheels are convenient although we recommend your bag has carry straps. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water and a camera etc for day trips.

                  Below are some ideas and helpful tips on what you specifically need for this trip.

                  ESSENTIALS:
                  - Sleeping bag. We recommend a 3–4 season sleeping bag because it can get very cold at night in winter months in desert and mountainous regions.
                  - Travel pillow
                  - Closed in shoes. As this trip includes camping and/or bush walking we highly recommend that you take a pair of comfortable, closed-in walking shoes. Closed-in shoes will help to protect your feet from cuts and scratches when walking through bush/grass-lands, and will also act as a barrier protection in rare cases against bites or stings from dangerous animals in this environment.
                  - Lightweight clothing. You will need to bring a mixture of lightweight clothing, some warm items for the evenings, and long shirts and pants for protection against mosquitoes in the malaria areas. Clothes should be easy to wash and dry. Some people like to take jeans for evenings out but they can be tough to dry and should not be used for trekking. Avoid nylon and other synthetics, which can be very uncomfortable in hot weather. Ex-military or military style clothing and equipment is NOT recommended.
                  - Waterproof/windproof jacket is a good idea for wet days, and early morning or evening game activities when it can be cool.
                  - Warm fleece and beanie for morning and evening game drives.
                  - Sun protection - hat, sunscreen, sunglasses

                  RECOMMENDED:
                  - A simple plastic bag/waterproof toiletry bag (that can hang on a nail on the back of a door) will be useful to keep your clothes dry inside basic camp shower structures.
                  - A good quality, high-beam headlamp or torch for around the campsite at night. Some campsites have limited lighting and are powered by generators that switch off at a certain time. Although the trucks do carry lamps for meal times it’s a good idea to bring a headlamp to navigate the campsites and in particular going to the bathroom in the middle of the night.
                  - Personal medical kit. Your guide will carry a large kit but we recommend you carry items such as mild pain killers, electrolytes, anti-diarrhoeal, antibacterial gel, wet wipes, bandaids/plasters etc.
                  - Insect repellent.
                  - Water bottle. We recommend at least a 1.5litre capacity. The sale of bottled water contributes to an enormous environmental problem around the world. In addition to the water in bottles, the production of a 1 litre plastic bottle takes 2 litres of water and 200ml of oil. A large proportion end up in limited landfill or discarded in waterways and natural environments.
                  - Camera with spare batteries. Most of our trips have access to power to recharge batteries for phones and cameras every couple of days but we recommend you take a spare battery. You’ll take more photos than you think.

                  OPTIONAL:
                  - Sleep sheet. If you are travelling during the hot season you may wish to also pack a sleep sheet so you will be comfortable no matter what the weather.
                  - Thermarest. While we provide a basic camping mattress for each client, some travellers find they like the extra comfort of a double layer.
                  - Ear plugs to guard against a snoring tent-mate
                  - A good book, a journal or an Ipod for the long drives.

                  LUGGAGE LIMIT:
                  The weight limit for luggage on all trucks is a strict maximum of 20kg.
                  Your main luggage will be stored in a compartment at the back of the truck. Traditional, framed suitcases are not recommended as they are large and can damage other travellers belongings while on the road. Backpacks or duffel bags are an ideal choice.

                  VALUABLES:
                  Please try to avoid bringing unnecessary valuables, and use your hotel safe and the safe on the overland truck to store the bulk of your money, passport, and airline tickets. It’s also a good idea to purchase a money belt or pouch that is easily hidden. We strongly recommend that you photocopy all important documents e.g. air tickets, passport, vaccination certificate, etc. and keep the copies separate from the originals. While not valid, a photocopy makes it very much easier to obtain replacements if necessary.

                  BATTERIES/POWER:
                  Most of our trips have access to power to recharge batteries for phones and cameras every couple of days. We always recommend that you carry an extra battery for your camera just in case. Our overland vehicles are equipped with multiple power boards which may be used at the crew’s discretion, however, do bear in mind that only a minimal number of items can be charged at a time and will not be allowed if there is a risk of running the vehicle’s batteries low. Batteries may also be recharged from hotel room wall sockets. Hotels and many campsites have electricity and charging of batteries is advised before checking out the following day.
                  Climate and seasonal information
                  Yes it is Africa, however the winter months can be very cold. Please bring a very warm sleeping bag as well warm winter clothing such as thermals, wool pullover, fleece, jacket, gloves and a woolly hat.
                  Health
                  All travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, Intrepid reserves the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund.

                  You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations and anti-malarial requirements before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements (including a spare pair of glasses) as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. For legal reasons our leaders and guides are prohibited from administering any type of drugs including headache tablets and antibiotics. Please ensure that you are adequately prepared.

                  YELLOW FEVER:
                  A valid international certificate of vaccination against Yellow Fever is required in many countries. You may need to present this on arrival at the airport or border crossing. Some countries will refuse entry if you are unable to present your certificate. It's also quite common for your home country to request a Yellow Fever certificate on your arrival back home.

                  It is your responsibility to check with your doctor well in advance of leaving home about the Yellow Fever requirements for the countries you'll be visiting.


                  TYPHOID:
                  It is recommended that if you are travelling to Harare you make sure that your Typhoid vaccinations are up to date. There has been an outbreak of typhoid in parts of Harare, with over 1500 cases reported since October 2011. For more information speak to your doctor and see the World Health Organization (WHO) website.

                  DRINKING WATER:
                  As a rule we recommend you don't drink tap water, even in hotels, as it may contain much higher levels of different minerals than the water you are used to at home. For local people this is not a problem as their bodies are used to this and can cope, but for visitors drinking the tap water can result in illness. Generally this isn't serious, an upset stomach being the only symptom, but it's enough to spoil a day or two of your holiday. Bottled water is widely available and your leader can recommend safe alternatives when available. Water consumption should be about three litres a day. Rehydration salts, motion sickness tablets, and diarrhoea blockers are available from many pharmacies.


                  TSETSE FLY:
                  It is best to avoid dark coloured clothes such as blue and black while on safari. These colours can attract the biting tsetse fly.
                  Travel insurance
                  Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects.

                  When travelling on a trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24 hour emergency contact number has been seen by your leader.

                  If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country.

                  http://www.intrepidtravel.com/insurance.php
                  A couple of rules
                  Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land, but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for Intrepid travellers. Intrepid's philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter and in particular, the local people who make our destinations such special places. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our group leader has the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

                  Everyone has the right to feel safe and secure on their trip. We don’t tolerate any form of sexual harassment at Intrepid, either between passengers or involving our leaders or local operators. Sexual relationships (consensual or otherwise) between a leader and a passenger are unacceptable. If you ever feel another person is behaving inappropriately please inform us immediately by contacting the emergency contact number detailed in these trip notes.
                  Responsible Travel
                  We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestions on how you can be a responsible traveller.

                  http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/rt/responsibletraveller

                  The Intrepid Foundation
                  Since Intrepid Travel commenced operating in 1989 we've been committed to giving something back to the communities we visit. One way has been through our support for local humanitarian, development and conservation projects. Many of our travellers want to contribute something too. Whilst it is often tempting to give hand-outs to those less fortunate, this has the potential to promote a culture of begging and dependency. Handouts are not a sustainable way for individuals or communities to live. That’s why we established The Intrepid Foundation – to make it easier for travellers wishing to give back to communities in an effective and meaningful way.

                  The Intrepid Foundation is a not-for-profit fund offering a selection of excellent grassroots organisations which you can contribute to. All donations to The Intrepid Foundation will be matched by Intrepid Travel dollar for dollar (up to AU$1,000 per donor and a total of AU$400,000 for all donors in each financial year, excluding emergency appeals). And every cent gets there as Intrepid Travel pays for all the administration costs. Donating is simple and secure. Please ask your leader for information on the projects we support through The Intrepid Foundation or go to our website:

                  http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/

                  Organisations and projects currently supported by The Intrepid Foundation in South Africa include:

                  * Thusanani Children's Foundation works to prevent and treat developmental delay in orphaned and vulnerable South African children, aged 0-6, in Children's Homes (orphanages) where they live. Developmental delay in these children has a far reaching negative impact on their formal schooling in later years and they run the risk of being seen as children with special education needs. Treatment and prevention of developmental delay can set children on the right path that enables them to be contributing members of society, and break the cycle of abuse and poverty.

                  Feedback
                  After your travels, we want to hear from you! We rely on your feedback. We read it carefully. Feedback helps us understand what we are doing well and what we could be doing better. It allows us to make improvements for future travellers.

                  http://www.intrepidtravel.com/feedback