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Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

Great Wyrley
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Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

Hi

I am self driving a Hi Lux from Nxai Pan to Linyanti area in January. I would be grateful if anyone could tell me what time I should allow for this journey and what the state of the road is or likely to be.

Maun, Botswana
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1. Re: Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

Nxai Pan to Maun would be around 3 hours. Then maun to Linyanti would be around 6 hours if the roads are dry or 7-8 hours if the roads are wet from the rains.

Great Wyrley
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2. Re: Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

Thanks for that info appreciated.

Maun
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3. Re: Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

Where about in the Linyanti are you going? Pretty much all of it is private concessions and you will not be allowed in unless you are staying at one of the camps. There is a public Linyanti campsite up to the north of Savute which is actually in Chobe National Park. This is quite a drive and you will need to take care in January as the depending on which way you go it will be mostly sand and dirt track and likely to be flooded in places. From Maun to the Linyanti Public campsite I would allow a good 8-9 hours. If you let me know exactly where you are heading in Linyanti then I can give you some more details.

Mark, Gondwana Tours & Safaris, Maun

Maun
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4. Re: Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

Where about in the Linyanti are you going? Pretty much all of it is private concessions and you will not be allowed in unless you are staying at one of the camps. There is a public Linyanti campsite up to the north of Savute which is actually in Chobe National Park. This is quite a drive and you will need to take care in January as the depending on which way you go it will be mostly sand and dirt track and likely to be flooded in places. From Maun to the Linyanti Public campsite I would allow a good 8-9 hours. If you let me know exactly where you are heading in Linyanti then I can give you some more details.

Mark, Gondwana Tours & Safaris, Maun

Great Wyrley
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5. Re: Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

No fixed accomodation, just looking for suggestions never having bee on a self drive to this area

Maun
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6. Re: Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

ok - well most of what is generally regarded as the Linyanti region is private property with a few luxury private camps there. It is divided up into 3 main private concessions: Kwando concession which is owned by Kwando safaris with Lebala and Lagoon camps, Selinda Concession owned by Great Plains Conservation which has Selinda and Zarafa Camps and Linyanti Concession owned by Wilderness Safaris which has Kings Pool, Dumatau and Savuti Camps.

These camps are superb but from what you have said it does not sound like they are what you are looking for. Basically though you can not just drive into any of these areas as they are private. If you are staying at these camps then they can only be booked on an all inclusive basis and you have to do the game drives that the camp arranges - you can not drive your own vehicle around. I am not sure what the situation is in terms of driving your own car into these camps. I have only flown there and flying is the usual way of accessing them.

The only part of the Linyanti that is really accessible to self drives is the Linyanti Public Camp. As I said this is actually part of Chobe National Park. You may want to consider driving into Savute Camp or one of the Camps in the Moremi Game Reserve as these are going to be easier to get to and the game viewing round these areas is superb. I would recommend Third Bridge Camp in the Moremi as being one of the best areas to be based. Note that all these camps must be booked in advance - you can not just turn up. Have a look at the sites of the companies that operate them for more details:

www.sklcamps.com

www.xomaesites.com

Note that the roads into these places especially Savute is pretty rough and sandy and there is potential for some pretty big pools of water on them in January. I would take care and would strongly recommend having a satellite phone with you - there is absolutely no mobile reception out there. I don't know how much traffic there is likely to be out there in January as it is real low season- if you get stuck or breakdown it could be a long time before anyone else comes and without a sat phone you are really going to be in a lot of trouble as under no circumstances can you leave your vehicle to try and walk to a camp or get help.

i have just met a German couple at Gunns Camp who broke down last week near Savute and they had to wait nearly 2 days before another car came along who could help them and November is still pretty busy out there. January will be a lot quieter.

Mark, Gondwana Tours & Safaris, Maun

Great Wyrley
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7. Re: Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

Thank you for the update,it will help the planning

Pretoria, South...
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8. Re: Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

Hi Howard,

I would vouch for Mark's and Kurt's comments.

The only campsite in Linyanti that I know you can self-drive to is the Linyanti "public" campsite run by SKL. I wouldn't contemplate trying to drive Maun to Linyanti in one day in January, particularly with a single vehicle. The chances of getting stuck are very high and it's very likely that you might not see another vehicle for several days.

Last year around November, we encountered a couple that had been stuck for 24 hours in scorching heat and high humidity. They had no chance of getting out without some serious recovery work. We were the first vehicles to use that road from the other end in 4 days.

Another vehicle was stuck fast in Savuti earlier this year for 3 days before someone arrived to rescue them (not nice with ellies and lions around).

I'd count on 6 hours minimum from Maun to Savuti.

I'd agree with Mark that Savuti is a lot safer with more traffic around. Linyanti is simply too remote. An expensive rescue operation might ruin your holiday a tad. (Linyanti usually has a pretty high insect density in January).

The game viewing around Savuti should be unbelievable in January, and far more diverse than Linyanti.

Nxai Pan should also be most rewarding. However, be aware that Nxai turns to very slippery mud in the wet, and could be very challenging to a single vehicle. The sand on the entrance road is bad enough, but probably easier to handle than the clay roads on Nxai Pan (note that Nxai is very different to the salt pans).

Please be very careful if you venture near any salt pans (for example Baines Baobabs). Those pans can be extremely treacherous.

You should find the Hilux to be an acceptable vehicle for these conditions.

Enjoy the trip though. It's an awesome one.

Edited: 3:04 pm, November 28, 2011
Great Wyrley
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9. Re: Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

Thanks I think I will take your advice and reconsider my route

10. Re: Nxai Pan to Linyanti road

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