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Thread: Moremi info

  1. #1
    Chi Guest

    Default Moremi info

    Hey all.

    I'm planning a short trip to Moremi, possibly also Chobe in July. When we were there last year in August, the park wardens in South Gate said the camp sites were in the process of being privatised. They were constructing new ablution blocks etc. He also said that the booking system and the prices might change.

    Many of you have probably been there since then, did any of the changes happen? Or should one still book the camp sites in the DWNP office in Maun?

    There used to be a community camp site in Khwai area. Is it still operational and does anybody have experiences with this one? And perhaps contact details.

    Cheers!

  2. #2
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    The privatisation didn't happen, you still book through the DWNP office, however now you need to pay park fees there too, they will not take payment at the gate and you won't be alllowed in without the correct paperwork. They have finished the new ablution blocks which were kept in very good condition when we were there in May - cleaned well every day (like you, we were there last August so we appreciated the luxury of a hot shower this time round!)
    Sorry no first hand info about the Khwai community campsite but I've heard it's still operational.
    I see you're in Namibia Chi, - did you get the late rains in June too? We were stunned when it rained in Windhoek in mid-May.

  3. #3
    Chi Guest

    Default

    Thanks for the update!

    It's the strangest weather... It's actually drizzling a bit as I'm writing this. Ok, it's only a few drops, but this time of the year we should have clear blue sky...

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    Use the search function, everything has been answered under the Botswana section before.
    Everything is a hammer.
    Unless it is a screw driver.

    Then it it a chisel.

    083 399 2046

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    We have just returned from Moremi on 18 June,

    The sites are not privatised. You have to book throught the Botswana Wildlife Offices in Maun.

    Bookings are pretty full except for South Gate which does have some openings. South Gate has been berated on previous posts because no game in the vicinity. We saw plenty within 10 km radius including Leopard. It is preferable to stay in Moremi rather that outside ie Mankwe or Dizhana as you will have a long drive every day to get to Moremi.

    All Moremi Sites have new ablutions. Hot water is provided through solar heaters.

    Any specific qusetions I will gladly answer.
    Owen Shaw
    [email protected]

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    We were booked for Moremi entering on 29 June. 3Days ago our tour guide let us know that due to the rain conditions are so bad he is diverting that part of the tour to CGKR. We are natyrally very dissappointed. are conditions really so bad that one shoul avoid?

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    It might be comforting to know that a tour guide knows what he is doing, rather than lead you into trouble.

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    Strange decision on the part of your tour guide, seeing as the CKGR saw just as much if not more rain than Moremi and wet roads in parts of the CKGR can be just as bad as Moremi...

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    Thx for the recent Moremi info Tabatwa.

    Few Q's if you can help, we will be at 3rd Bridge from 11 - 14 July.

    1. Do you have an update on the Baboon problem?
    2. Will T4A be accurate with its warnings to keep us out of very deep water?
    3. Do they have solar panels at 3rd Bridge too?

    Regards
    Schalk

    Skalla
    Hilux D/C 4L V6.

  10. #10
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    Hi Chi

    If you are still looking for a contact number for the campsites near North Gate, I have some numbers for you:

    Khwai Trust 00267 6801211
    Kazikini Camp 00267 6800664 (not quite sure where this site is as I've never tried it)

    Good luck with your trip. We are trying a slightly different route in July.

    Khama Rhino Sanctuary, Maun, Guma Lagoon lodge, Tsodilo Hills, Shakawe, Ngepi camp, Namushasha lodge, Ngoma bridge (still have to check if this bridge is okay), Chobe, Makgadikgadi pans, Limpopo River Lodge and then back to Jhb.

    Galagos
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    FGASA member
    Safari tour operator


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  11. #11
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    Default Khwai

    We were in Moremi over December last year and spent a night in the Khwai camp site. The new ablutions have also been put up there. However their cleanliness leaves little to be desired. We stayed at the MGKHW03 stand in front of the vlei. Very nice. Try and book it or number 04.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beau View Post
    We were in Moremi over December last year and spent a night in the Khwai camp site... MGKHW03 stand in front of the vlei. Very nice. .
    MGKH is a Moremi number, so the camp site you are referring to is North Gate. Khwai Community camp site have zero facilities and is simply a place under a camel thorn tree where you are allowed to camp in the area.

    Kazikini Community camp is 28.5km before you get to South gate from Maun. I can highly recommend it! It has flush loos and hot showers. Mankwe is 36km from South Gate.

    I always plan my trips to stay close to the parks on the night before I enter. The reason for this is that the extortionate conservation fee of 120 pula per person per day only covers you from time of entry to 11Am the next day. So if you enter just before dark, you pay that anyway and have no benefit for it.

    Saying that, the camping part of your park fees is only 30 Pula per person per night and that's cheaper than anywhere else in Botswana I have stayed. So I would rather stay in the park than outside.

    If your previous night is in Maun, I'd get up early and drive to South Gate, entering before lunch time.

    So, if you leave Maun just before lunch time, I would go to Mankwe and do a game drive on their roads in the afternoon and enter Moremi the next morning early.

    If you leave Maun after lunch, I would take it easy, drive to Kazikini, relax under a big marula tree and get used to the slower pace of the bush. Still entering the park the next morning.

    Skalla,
    The 3rd Bridge baboon problem has been there and the same for the last 15 years that I know of. It has not changed. I know you read the post on the problem before, so common sense will make you do the right thing. It's not something I would worry about too much. Deal with it when you get there. In my experience, the easiest way to deal with it is to avoid staying under the big Jackal Berry tree. It is the biggest dark green tree for miles, so you will know which one it is. Do not stay in someone else’s numbered camp site, but I believe the sausage Tree in front of the old ablution block is not a numbered camp site any more. Just stay there and if someone from the park wants to argue, politely tell him that you will not stay with the baboons. Simple.

    T4A is an amazing tool, but you can not follow it blindly. I have driven on very dry ground where T4A warns about water crossings and vice versa. Moremi has an insane amount of tracks, so if you get to a water crossing, don't assume it is shallow even if it looks ok. Walk it, or send wife to walk it and then decide weather you can drive it or not. If you can't, or don't want to, there will be a track around it. It is not worth drowning your engine because you were too lazy to walk, or didn't feel like getting muddy... The rules are the same as any other place you get obstacles.

    All the new ablution blocks in the park are the same. You can not assume that the water will be hot as animals sometimes damage the pipes or wires. There will however be water and the new ablution blocks are of a high standard.

    Andries,
    I'm a little suspect of your tour operator's decision. I have a friend who is a translator for groups who visit these parks and she is there at the moment with a group. Last word from her was that most roads are fine and the rain water has mostly subsided. CKGR is slightly less popular, so bookings will be easier to get, but make no mistake, the roads can be a nightmare!

    CHI,
    The Khwai community camp sites have no ablutions, no water and no facilities. They are quite expensive at over 150 pula per person per night. However, I can highly recommend them! We have had astonishing wildlife experiences in the area including wild dogs and leopards. Khwai Trust 00267 6801211


  13. #13
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    We returned last week from Moremi, Savute, and Chobe. All ablution facilities were new and clean. There was warm (not hot) water most of the time although at times the water was cool in the morning (best to shower in the late afternoon).
    Do not go without a fully paid reservation. I booked in September and was asked to pay a deposit. It was exteremely fortunate that I happened to phone the reservations office in April to discover that I needed to pay the balance. Had I not done this I would have been refused entrance into the parks. We witnessed someone who had driven from Kasane to the Ghoha gate being refused entry because they did not have a paid reservation. They were forced to return to Kasane. With a paid reservation we had no problem changing our bookings when we got to the camps, the reserve camp sites were always available.
    The roads were better than I expected. I never dropped tyre pressure below 1.8 and never engaged low range at all, only center diff lock (I have a Prado automatic). The only water hazard of any consequence was between Xakanaka and the Domba Hippo Pools. Being a novice I turned around at this water and took the long way to North Gate via South Gate. I later discovered that quite a few vehicles had driven through this water. The worst road was the Sandridge road to Savute but it presented no problem. Remember to strap down your fridge very securely on this road!

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    50something, were you there after the rains of 8/9/10 June? I’m leaving for Moremi and Chobe on the 26th of June, also driving Prado but with Conqueror trailer. Our only worries are the water crossings, did you always find a bypass for them?

    Campsites are fully paid, but would like to move some of the South Gate bookings to 3rd Bridge or Xakanaxa.

    Greetings
    Gert


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    Hi Gert
    No doubt we will bump into each other there as I also leave on Friday 26. We are at Xakanaka for 28, 29 and 30 June and North Gate for 1 and 2 July. I hear that Moremi was quite wet and muddy after the recent rains but am hoping that most of the water has dried up by now.

  16. #16
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    Gert. We had already left by the time it rained - we were in Caprivi by that time. However, I don't think the rain will be a major factor as the area dries out very quickly. The only water hazard we avoided was the one on the way from Xakanaka before the Dombo Hippo Pools. Had we got there earlier in the day we would have seen others going through this with very little trouble but we arrived late in the day and, being on our own, I wasn't prepared to risk it and spend the night there if we got stuck.
    The only other water we encountered was just north of North Gate. There were quite a few water stretches here but all except one had optional detours close by. The only one we had to tackle was wheel deep and quite short.
    With a confirmed booking you should have very little trouble changing camps. We swopped nights at Third Bridge and Linyanti for extra nights at Xakanaka, Savute, and Ihaha. At Savute we were given the reserve site which was better than the other sites as it was close to the ablution block. At Ihaha we were given one of the reserve sites but moved to our booked site (which was better) the following day.
    Last edited by 50something; 2009/06/24 at 12:07 PM.

  17. #17
    mandiecandie5 Guest

    Default Switching campsites

    Hi 50something--

    When and how did you switch your reserved DWNP campsites? We plan to do the same on our upcoming trip (we took whatever campsites were left at time of booking). So on two different nights were the campsites didn't match up with our planned itinerary, we decided that we'll try to swap Linyati for Xakanaxa, and South Gate for Savute.

    Can you prearrange the "swap" at the DWNP office in Maun or is this something you just did on the spot with the rangers at each campsite? Thanks in advance for any advice!

  18. #18
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    Default Switching campsites

    Quote Originally Posted by mandiecandie5 View Post
    Can you prearrange the "swap" at the DWNP office in Maun or is this something you just did on the spot with the rangers at each campsite?
    We had some bookings for South Gate and tried to swap them when we went to the DWNP office in Maun to pay the park fees, - they told us to 'negotiate' at the camps we wanted to stay at. So we tried to arrive at the alternative site quite early in the day and ask if we could stay there instead of our allocated site. Xakanaxa were very good, even asked if we wanted to stay more nights - we did. North Gate were a bit more reluctant, they said it was peak season and very busy (it wasn't, it was May and there were only 5 groups camping) but they said OK in the end (we didn't push it, just stood there looking confused!). We couldn't find anyone to ask at Third Bridge so just camped in an unmarked site and hoped for the best - the ranger came along next morning and asked to see our booking and was OK about the swap, and also said we could stay another night. But as I said it was April/May and not very busy, so the situation might be more difficult in busy periods. Also all these sites were in Moremi. I think (not sure) that it might be more difficult to swap sites between Chobe and Moremi because you'll have to exit Moremi and enter Chobe to get to Savuti, and from what I understand you can't enter without a reservation ... so I don't know if you'd be able to change that at the gate. Has anyone tried it yet?
    Alternatively, keep trying for a reservation at Savute (phone the DWNP office), we managed to keep adding a night here and there every time we phoned in the 2 month period before we left home.

  19. #19
    mandiecandie5 Guest

    Thumbs up

    Thanks for your input, even though your experience was earlier this year it is helpful. I'll be sure to report back what we end up doing! We'll be there Sept 11-19.

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