Deception Valley Lodge will rely fully on solar power for the operation of the lodge from the end of November 2015. The generators will provide back up in case of many overcast days.
It is with great pride that we announce, after 8 years of working together with Deception Valley Lodge, Footsteps in Africa are now the exclusive representation, taking care of all of the Sales, Marketing and central reservations.
The Footsteps in Africa team across the globe are delighted to continue to tell the Deception Valley Lodge story.
With immediate effect, all reservations will be handled by Footsteps in Africa.
We at Lodges of Botswana and Footsteps In Africa are well aware of the fact that our marketing material creates certain expectations and that the fulfilment of expectations is the key to a happy client. We seek therefore to ensure that our client’s expectations are met at all times and that our marketing material accurately represents a level of service and a wildlife experience that we are able to offer.
With regard to water levels in the Okavango, these are directly affected by meteorological conditions, which produce different environmental circumstances, each and every year. Of the many unpredictable forces that we have to contend with, meteorological conditions, are for most. You might think that after being in the Okavango for 35 years we would be able to predict the exact course of each flood and rainy season, however these things are simply not predictable. This makes it very difficult, and at certain times of the year, downright impossible, to predict water levels. The level of the water in the area of our operation can remain static for months and then drop suddenly and dramatically without warning. A short, but violent, thunderstorm, can likewise, raise water levels for several weeks at a time. Each of these changes can affect our access to channels and floodplains by mokoro and make a difference to the activities that are available to our clients. In addition to this, we have to contend with a large hippo population that can move, after being in one place for months at a time, overnight to a new location, which can likewise effect our access to floodplains and channels. The bottom line is that while we fully appreciate the importance of mokoro activities to our client’s experience, our concern for their safety is paramount and it is the unenviable task of our guides and managers to make decisions on a daily basis as to what constitutes acceptable and unacceptable risks.
We attempt to bring some certainty to these equations by terminating our overnight mokoro trails from end of October to April. However, it is almost always the case that throughout this period we are able to do shortened daily mokoro excursions and use mokoro to access Chief’s Island for our guided walking. However, at the risk of repeating ourselves, we cannot allow a decision concerning our client’s safety to be overridden by a marketing decision.
Our Okavango Camps are very excited to have Russell MacLaughlin - Wildlife Photography and Shannon Wild arriving on Saturday to do a full photo shoot of the 3 Camps. We are so excited to see the brand new images....watch this space!
Let their imaginations run wild, use all of their five senses and learn through fun. There is nothing better than running barefoot in the Kalahari sand, playing with elephant dung ‘soccer balls’ and going on an bug hunt. See a safari through your child’s eyes, listen to tales around the camp fire and learn about the ‘Little Five’. These are memories and experiences that will last a lifetime. Let Botswana inspire your family with its raw beauty, wild open spaces and abundant wildlife.
There is simply no better family holiday than one in the African bush.
Read more on the family safaris page on our website.
Deception Valley Lodge - This young lioness somehow got hold of a shoe sole, and she had lots of fun with it. She was the envy of her brothers and sisters.
Please note: No tourists were harmed in the making of these images
The annual pulse of Angolan floodwaters is the principal annual recurrence here, on which absolutely everything depends. The timing and the extent of the flooding means everything to us – what areas become accessible by mekoro, the dug-out canoes that are our traditional means of transport, where the game will move, what the extremes of temperature are likely to be, and what sort of breeding season the fish, on which so much other life depends, will enjoy. News of the flood is, as you may imagine, eagerly awaited if skeptically received. Somehow one never knows what the reports portend for one’s own patch of swamp – will the water flow this year to the East? The West? Will it be evenly distributed or will some unheralded event – a minor shift in the earth’s temperamental crust, or the creation of a new hippo path, direct and divert the flow in unpredictable directions? Are the water-flow meters maintained by the Dept of Water Affairs accurate? Are they being read properly? Can we believe the anecdotal reports of famously mischievous local characters? The proof, as always, is in the pudding.
This year delivered what all reports were indicating – the biggest flood in 20 years. It is at times like these that being old-timers works to our advantage – our camps and our airstrip were built when floodwaters were characteristically much higher than they have been in the past couple of decades – decades which have also seen a massive increase in the numbers of camps and airstrips, many of which are now under water. Whilst sympathizing with our colleagues, we are rejoicing in the high water, which is providing a badly needed flush of the Okavango system, inundating old river-courses and floodplains long colonized by acacias, pushing water into ancient fish-breeding areas, raising the water table far inland, replenishing aquifers and constricting the reach of the annual fires that sweep the country during the dry winter months.
In particular, our activities in the central Okavango centre around the use of traditional mekoro, and high water opens vast areas to us for safe use, allowing us to utilize shallow floodplains where hippo can’t surprise us, and giving us ready access to areas we haven’t visited, but on foot, for many years. Our camping trails are getting into pristine areas, and we are looking forward to an explosion in the fish and water-fowl populations later in the year. As the waters recede from late-August onwards we expect wonderful game and bird sightings on the fringes of the floodplains and forests. With any luck we are entering a new cycle of high water, the very raison d’ etre of the Okavango swamps.
All excellent!! Shower / toilets: best view ever. Guide Obie – really good! Food quality – could not ask for anything – better top quality. General staff – friendly and good fun! Would return without doubt..
All excellent!! Safari walks are a great of experience!
All excellent!! Was all I had hoped for!
All excellent! Food was excellent, beyond expectations! Guide excellent too – learned a lot!
A wonderful experience, relaxed environment. Everything achieved beautifully!!It would be very helpful if staff had name tags.
Very excellent! Food was the best we had the whole trip!! More than enough! Staff – always willing to help! Very organized!
All excellent! Pony provided wonderful service. We felt very at home and loved everything about our stay!
All excellent! Pre-warning about flies/,mosquitoes useful – felt very immersed which was great. Enjoyed being more free in the bush & not too protected / mothered!
All excellent!! A wonderful experience with nature and simple accommodation to stay in – so peaceful.
The white rhinos were delivered to us on the 10th of July. They arrived quite late in the evening and that made the release quite tricky but the team did a great job and the two rhinos wandered off into the Kalahari bush on the night of the 10th of July. They are about 7 years and 5 years old. They were relocated from another game farm in Botswana. They seem to be settling in very well, still quite shy and elusive but happily walking the farm and getting to know their new territory. We have had a few sightings of them now and they can be viewed quite well and they are fairly relaxed. We have also had the one come and drink at the pan right in front of the lodge the other evening!
Human footprint inside an elephant track in the Okavango sand. Puts into perspective how big these giants are compared to us! #deltacamp #okavango
Footsteps in Africa
News, views, sights and sounds from the Botswana bush!