“If you go to Khutse alone and unprepared, you will die!” That was the general consensus from all our research as we planned our first trip to the Khutse Game Reserve in Botswana. "One life, live it" was our cheesy attitude and off we went on our 3-day/2-night camping trip to Khutse…and we lived to tell the tale!
The African bush is a mecca for the nature and wildlife lover and enthusiast and there aren’t many better ways (if any, in my opinion) to go around seeing this wild haven than in the comfort of a 4x4 vehicle, preferably driven by yourself at your own leisure. Such vehicles aren’t always cheap to come by, well in that case, how about renting out a self-drive 4x4? That’s what we did not too long ago and would definitely recommend it to others as well.
In the Lesoma Valley, just off the main road that takes you to Kazangula and then Kasane in northern Botswana, is a gem of place, called Senyati Safari Camp. We went on a long-weekend trip to Kasane at the end of September, wanted to stay in self-catering chalet accommodation and couldn't have been happier with the recommendation to check out this place out.
After our last rain-soaked trip to Kasane in northern Botswana, we decided to give it another go, but this time before the heavy summer rains started. The Independence Day long weekend (end of September - beginning of October) gave us the ideal opportunity, so we invited my dad along, packed up a few items and made the 940km drive up from Gaborone to Senyati Safari Camp, about 17km before Kasane itself.
Located about 100km south of Gaborone, the Big Valley Game Lodge is a new(ish) lodge near the capitol city which aims to offer visitors a scenic, relaxing bush experience not too far from home (for those who live in Gaborone).
For the outdoor, nature and wildlife lovers out there, camping is a big and enjoyable part of that whole outdoor experience. And most reserves, national parks and lodges have designated camp sites where travelers and overlanders can pitch their tents, relax and get away from the hustle and bustle of every day life.
There's nothing better than setting up your campsite, pitching your tent, getting the fire going and sitting back to relax for sundowners with a cold drink in your hand! The only downside to this is if your camp chair is old, flimsy and causes searing pains in your buttocks and lower back. Time to get a new chair then!
At the very end of the main road in Kasane in northern Botswana is a group of lodges and a campsite owned by Under One Botswana Sky. One of these is the Chobe Bush Lodge which looks out onto the Chobe National Park and for travellers like us, who had thrown away their leaking tent on the first night of a 12-day trip around Botswana, this lodge saved our entire trip.
As a keen, amateur overlander I have a tendency to spend more time than is healthy looking at used 4x4 car ads online and one such ad had me quite intrigued to the point where I thought to myself “This is too good to be true”, and as fate would have it, it was.
A road trip around Botswana over the Christmas holidays seemed like a perfect way for us to see the country we live and work in and to quench our desire to be out in the bush, mixing up some camping with some lodge accommodation and seeing what Botswana has to offer along the way. Little did we know how unprepared we’d be for a seemingly simple but exciting trip!
"We are a young, married, Botswana-based couple with a passion for going out into nature and the bush any chance we get!"