A Travellerspoint blog

Day Sixty – Campsite Reservations

21st November 2011

overcast 27 °C

In the last two or three years some bright Botswanan spark decided that all government run game parks and nature reserves should have their facilities privatised. The government still controls entry permits, and so gets plenty of park sustaining dosh, but the various campsites and lodges have been sold to the highest bidders; several different highest bidders. This meant at least two things: one, the campsites no longer cost two pounds fifty a night, and, two, each campsite is owned by a different company which each have their own office, most without any signs to guide you to it, somewhere hidden in a little town called Maun.

‘Little town’ is probably a tad condescending given that Maun is the fifth largest ‘city’ in Botswana. It serves as the hub from which tourists plan their trips in and around the Okavango Delta and Chobe Game Reserve. We made straight for the government wildlife office – they’d know how to help. And help they did, in a way. They knew how to tell us that the camps were private, but the pleasant lady smiled kindly as she told us that she had no idea who owned them or where their offices were, she continued to say that unless we had proof of accommodation she couldn’t give us a permit for more than one day in the park. It was making like it would be one of those days. Heading in to town and no further on in our quest we found the singular sign that advertised a camping reservations office. This was a lead and it allowed us to ask where their competitors where; one by one we hunted them and over the course of an entire day we organised two weeks of campsites, park permits and, like Sheiks on tour, we hired a plane to fly us over the delta.

Posted by ibeamish 08:38 Archived in Botswana

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