Okavango River Delta Sustainable Tourism

The grounds are kept by local members of the Polers' Trust and are peacefully located on the river.

The Okavango Polers Trust runs MbiRoBa, a community-based camp in northern Botswana.

Part of traveling responsibly is gaining insight into how the community is affected by visitors. The townspeople of a remote region in Botswana have created a significant organization to support over 500 of their inhabitants. The Okavango Polers Trust creates jobs for villagers and teaches them about tourism. By guiding boat trips, selling crafts and maintaining the grounds, the members of this organization are able to share in the proceeds of their camp. 

Down an extensive dusty road lies the village of Seronga, enriched with the waters of the world’s largest inland river delta. Drawing tigers, hippos and other creatures to its shores, the 16,000-square km waterway enables visitors to view regional wildlife and flora of the otherwise arid countryside. To experience the Okavango Delta in local fashion, visit MbiRoBa Camp, run by The Polers Trust, and glide along the river in a guided mokoro, or dugout canoe.  At night, listen to happy hippo howls from the river while eating at the basic, open air restaurant, or cook your own food on open fires in the camping area.

Our local mokoro driver poses with us before our journey. We were so impressed with his knowledge of the area, including medicinal uses of local plants, bird and fish species, and tracking elephants!

Getting There: Okavango Polers Trust is located in Seronga, about two hour’s drive from Mohembo, the border town between Namibia and Botswana.

Fuel up before starting the journey. Drive your vehicle onto the free ferry (6:30 am-6:30 pm) from Mohembo to cross the river. This ride only lasts ten minutes. When exiting on the other side of the river, there is just one direction to take you toward Seronga. Because dirt roads are rough, it is advised to make this trip in daylight hours and with a spare tire, just in case of a flat. If you wish, call ahead to be sure that the roads are passible for non-4WD vehicles. The drive will take approximately 2 hours, winding you through tiny villages and farms. When arriving in Seronga, you will be greeted by lots of children running toward your car. Wave, smile or stop for a conversation. Then, turn left at the four-way stop. The Polers Trust is located about 3 km down this road, on the right side. There will be signs for the MbiRoBa Camp.

Accommodation: Simple thatched rondavels sleeping two, spacious family chalets sleeping five, and camping spaces are available. Bring your own camping equipment or rent it here.

Activities:

  • Overnight Mokoro/ Bush Camping Trip
  • One Day Mokoro Trip
  • Nature Walk & Bird Watching
  • Multi-day Mokoro Vacations, including island camping, nature walks, animal viewing, etc… (Starts and ends in the city of Maun, on the southern edge of The Okavango Delta.)
  • Volunteer Tourism — ask about building schools in the region and other current projects.
  • Traditional Dance and Culture Shows can be scheduled upon request.
A lazy ride in a mokoro, with nature passing by! Get ready to see hippos, crocs, birds, elephants, frogs and more!

Pack: Bring enough food and water for your mokoro trips, unless you have previously arranged for meals through MbiRoBa Camp. Pack a cooler with ice and cold drinks if desired. The generator runs from dusk until dawn, providing electricity only at that time. Pack flashlights.

Booking Information: When booking, let the staff know if you will be eating at the restaurant or needing food and drinks for the mokoro trips. It will also be helful to let them know what time you plan on arriving.

Tel: +267 6876 861

Main Email: okavangodelta@botsnet.bw

Director of Operations Email: kwenaetsiletraveltours@botsnet.bw

If you are interested in arranging an extended tour of Botswana, including a trip with The Polers Trust, contact Thabo at Kwenaetsile Travel and Tours kwenaetsiletraveltours@botsnet.bw

Photo of some staff members of The Polers Trust

2 thoughts on “Okavango River Delta Sustainable Tourism

Say it Loud

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s