FAQ’s – frequent asked questions
May I participate even if I’m not a photographer and my interest in photography is limited?
The tour has been created as a photographic adventure and is accompanied by a professional travel photographer. However it is so unique and spectacular that also non-photographers will enjoy it fully and will be stunned by the breathtaking landscapes and the wild animals!
What photographic equipment is suggested?
This, of course, is very subjective and depends on many parametres. As a standard equipment we suggest in any case a (digital) SLR camera. To save weight, be as flexible as possible in most situations and don’t need to change lenses in adverse surroundings we suggest a high quality travel zoom lens (for example 24 – 120 mm) and in case a telezoom lense for the safari. Also a wide angle for landscapes is very useful. There are also opportunities for those interested in macro photography. Don’t forget to bring your travel tripod for the night pic’s and some special landscapes! It’s up to you whether to bring along even a second camera body in order not to change lenses too often. Don’t forget sufficient memory cards (2 x 32 GB, 1 x 64 GB). A polarizing filter for the landscapes is often useful.
What am I going to learn during this trip?
The trip is accompanied by an experience travel photographer, Catherina Unger, who will assist with every photographic problem and is always ready to give advice for picture composition, camera adjustments and some tips and tricks. The intensity of the photographic assistance depends on the interest of the group members. After the daily activities we offer some postproduction sessions (Lightroom, Photoshop) in the remaining time in the evenings (depends also on power – mostly possible in the lodges and not during the camping safari). Catherina Unger has been instructed by one of the most famous Italian Adobe-Gurus and will help you to make the best of your pictures.
Do I need to bring a PC (laptop, macbook)?
No, you don’t need to. But you could do it – in order to make first copies of your memory cards and start with a postproduction.
A health insurance is compulsory for this trip, but not yet included in the price. Please let us know if you need any assistance and we will be happy to help you and suggest an appropriate travel insurance company in your country.
Insurance for photographic equipment:
In the packages of most travel insurances there is included a luggage insurance but this is limited to a certain amount and does not cover the photographic equipment. However there are existing some insurance companies that are specializing in photographic insurances.
Botswana – climate, equipment, health, general
Botswana is a very sunny country, that can be traveled all year round. While in Europe we start to prepare warm cloth in October, in Botswana the springtime begins.
Summertime (November to march) is warm and might be rainy. In the months December and January the temperatures can rise up to 35 °C. The months September – November are perfect, it is the end of the dry period. Because in the bush there is no water anymore the animals have to go to the waterholes in the parks.
The coolest months are June and July. Especially in the mornings and evenings the temperatures can drop below zero. During daytime however they rise to 20/25 °C.
Which cloths will I need?
We suggest comfortable, light clothing made of Merino, Cotton or other natural breathing material that is possible to launder quickly (most lodges and also our camps in case of sufficient water offer this service). For the early morning drives and the evenings also a warm fleece jacket or a wind jacket can be necessary. For the daily activities we suggest comfortable footwear (or even trekking sandals), for the walks in the bush sturdy shoes are more appropriete because of the thornes. For the walks in the bush don’t wear too colorful – dress in the classic safari colors (green, brown, beige, no white, no big patterns). Don’t forget a headgear. You will not need elegant clothing except you want to dress a little bit up for some dinner in the lodges. Most lodges have a pool – don’t forget your swim wear.
Which other items are important?
A good sunscreen – the african sun burns! A torch or even better a headlamp for the nights in the camp.
Moisture body lotion – desert air makes dry skin! Shower gel and shampoo – please bring possibly ecological products: we shower in the middle of nature and there is no purification plant!
Don’t forget any of your medicines – often we will be far away from the closest pharmacist… Insect repellent. Lip balm.
Is this tour physically demanding?
Of course – this is not a relaxing holiday but it is more thought for curious explorers even if we have included as much comfort as we could. However the long drives in the safari car on gravel roads will be tiring – but the spectacular sceneries and the breaks we will include on the most beautiful places will compensate! On some days we offer walks and hikes, normally during the most pleasant hours of the day (in the mornings or late afternoons) and the participation is optional.
Which kind of food should I expect?
You will be surprised how much you will feel like at home! Because of its colonial past many uses and dishes of the european kitchen are found throughout Botswana. Normally the day starts with a rich breakfast in the Lodges with toast and eggs, jam, coffee and tea. Often you will be served also fresh fruit and cereals, sometimes there are muffins, yogurt, homemade cakes… During the camping safari the breakfast will be a bit lighter as we get up really early and have only some cookies and a cup of coffee. Another breakfast will be served during the morning safari followed by a rich brunch when we get back to the camp with salades and salted cakes, noodles or rich sandwiches.
During the dinners you will find out how European meets exotic kitchen! With a bit of luck you will be served game (kudu and oryx, ostrich and springbock), aromatic sufflès but also pasta dishes and vegetables. Botswana is a country for “meat-lovers” – the game as well as the beef or chicken is of very good quality! Please let us know in any case if you are vegetarian or suffer of some allergies.
Botswana – a safe place to travel?
Botswana is one of the safest countries for travelers in Africa. We will pass much time in private reserves and Nationalparks. The whole journey is accompanied by two guides – one local, English speaking, authorized driver guide and our travel photographer Catherina Unger who has travelled Botswana many times. However we suggest to keep yourself informed before the tour by the Department of foreign affairs of your country and check the updated information about safety.
How flexible are we with the daily programs, are there options?
Yes, there are many days in our program when you have a choice between different activities (optional, not included in the price). We will send you a complete list of the activities on request. We suggest to book all the chosen activities in advance and as soon as you know you want to do it – many of them are quickly sold out (helicopter flight over the delta…)
Which currency is used in Botswana?
Exchange rate 1 Euro = 12,23 Botswana Pula, 1 Botswana Pula = 0,08 Euro (August/2017)
Credit cards (Visa or Master) are accepted in many lodges and shops. ATM’s are found in the bigger towns.
How much tip should I give in Botswana?
Tips are always optional and should be given only if you are very satisfied with the received service. In the lodges you’ll find a tip box. In the restaurants a tip of 5/10 % is common. Also the guides and drivers of the journey will appreciate a tip at the end of the trip. US$10 per guest per day for a group guide, US$5 per guest per day for mokoro polers, trackers or a butler, US$5 per guest per day for the general staff
Medical issues and malaria prophylaxis
Botswana (at least the Botswana we will meet in our travel) is a rather clean and generally safe country for the health of a western traveler, the health standards in the lodges are very high. The best way for a safe journey throughout the country is a good prevention and a well-equipped first-aid kit. Don’t forget painkiller, tablets against diarrhea, disinfectant, plasters and dressing material.
Vaccinations and malaria: We will stay in a malaria risk area although we travel during the end of the dry season when the malaria moskitoes are less active. However we move in humid areas where malaria risk is given. Pls inform yourself with your doctor or the competent local centre for travel vaccinations which prophylaxis and vaccinations are most appropriate for you.
We will not take any responsability for the safety and health information!