Mala Mala & Chobe River Photo Safari - South Africa & Botswana Jul/Aug 2023
US$ TBC Sharing
US$ TBC Single
US$ 4,000 Deposit
PHOTO SAFARI LOCATIONS: South Africa & Botswana
PLACES VISITED: Mala Mala Private Game Reserve & Chobe River
PHOTOGRAPHIC SKILL LEVEL: Any level from beginner to advanced
PHOTO TOUR LEADER/HOST: Stu Porter
This 12 Day Photo Tour offers two very different experiences. This departure begins in one of South Africa’s best private game reserves with a traditional land and vehicle-based photo experience. The second component will be at the Chobe River in Botswana, with a water and boat-based photo experience like no other in Africa. This amazing combination will guarantee a variety of very unique photographic opportunities.
Our meet & greet service will welcome you at the arrivals hall in Johannesburg, South Africa. You will spend your first night resting up in an airport hotel that is within easy walking distance from the airport. On the following morning, you will board a flight to Skukuza in the Kruger National Park. Enjoy being one of only three photographers in a private safari vehicle as we spend 7 days at one of South Africa’s premium private game reserves, Mala Mala.
Sharing a common unfenced boundary with the famous Kruger National Park, Mala Mala offers an intimate photographic experience in this pristine wilderness area of South Africa. Off-road driving is permitted at Mala Mala and this will ensure that we get up close to many of its amazing resident animals which amongst many, includes all members of the “Big 5”. An unrivalled feature of Mala Mala is the beautiful Sand River which winds its way for over 15km through the reserve. During the mild winter season, this river is the only source of freshwater and acts as a magnet attracting animals from far and wide. Predators are aware of this and the winter season is known to be the best time to see and photograph the resident Lions and Leopards that are drawn to the river and the abundant source of food that it attracts.
Having a long period of time in this reserve will allow us to explore all areas and get to know some of its resident animals as we follow their stories on a daily basis. Flexibility for photographers is standard at Mala Mala and we will spend most of our time out in the field.
The first part of this photo safari will come to an end with a domestic flight back to Johannesburg, where we will spend one night in an airport hotel. This break will give us time to go through some of our images and also meet up with three new participants who will join us for the next section of the photo tour at the Chobe River in Botswana.
After breakfast, we will depart on a regional flight to Kasane in Botswana and arrive at our hotel for a late lunch. For the next 3 days, we will enjoy spectacular boat rides on a very cleverly modified photographic boat. The boat is very stable and can easily accommodate six participants and me as your photo host.
Botswana’s enormous Chobe National Park extends all the way to the Chobe River and this allows the reserves abundant wildlife easy access to the river. We will spend our photo boat excursions photographing an array of waterbirds and a variety of animals as they come down to drink. Herds of Elephants are common and often swim across the river to reach small islands where food is abundant. From the comfort of your rotating chair, fitted with a special gimbal for your lens, your camera will not stop clicking as you record the abundance of the Chobe River’s well-known wildlife.
We will spend 3hrs every morning and 3hrs every afternoon on the photo boat (a total of 6 excursions on the river) We have reserved the photo boat for our exclusive use.
The safari will end with a flight from Kasane back to Johannesburg, which will arrive in the early afternoon, allowing time for you to connect with your international flight home that same evening.
Alternatively, at the end of the scheduled tour, you could add on the optional extension to see and photograph the famous Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe, just a short drive away from Kasane. Please click on the “EXTENSION” TAB for more details.
Along with an impressive portfolio of birds, you will also have a good chance to see and photograph the following:
Lion, Leopard, African Wild Dog, Cheetah, Elephant, Cape Buffalo, White Rhino, Hippo, Spotted Hyaena, Jackal, Crocodile, Giraffe, Waterbuck, Greater Kudu, Bushbuck, Nyala, Puku, Red Lechwe, Zebra, Wildebeest, Chacma Baboon, Vervet Monkey, & Warthog.
We were very lucky to have found the Wild 4 Team when we were able to take a short photographic safari as part of a business trip to Cape Town. So when we could plan a photography trip overseas, naturally we contacted Stu and Justyna. We brought along a good friend who wanted to do her first photo safari. To say the three of us had a blast would be to underestimate the experience. I wonder how many other photographers have been a few feet from a cheetah taking down an impala only to share the kill with a caracal. Other highlights included a rare king cheetah, mating leopards, a den of wild dogs with their pups, photographing and touching a boomslang, green mamba and black mamba, and being surrounded by a herd of elephants. But perhaps the best part of all was being back with friends whom we know and trust. We know a good thing when we experience it. When we are ready for our next African adventure, you can bet we will contact the Wild 4 Team.
Michael & Toni Anderson, USA
I have enjoyed photographic safaris in Kenya, Tanzania, and South Africa but I cannot express how GREAT the “BEST of BOTSWANA” trip was. The different areas on the delta all had amazing animals and diversity of climate from Moremi to the river environment of Khwai and then to the sand and dryness of Savuti. But the the time spent on the Chobe River was the best experience I have ever spent in Africa. Stu, Justyna you are the best! Thanks also to Letaka, Pangolin and our great guides. I would highly recommend this safari to everyone. It's a buffet of Africa you will never forget.
Denny Donohue, USA