Mokoro Trail Safaris

Mokoro Trail Safaris in the Okavango Delta

The mokoro trail safaris are self catering safaris wherein participants provides their own camping equipment, cooking equipment, meals and drinks.

Fully catered mokoro trail safaris are also available on request.

Introduction

The Okavango Delta, a complex delicate ecosystem which traps the overflow of the Okavango River that rises in Angola, containing meandering papyrus fringed channels, tranquil lagoons and palm studded islands which make up this unique inland delta covering about 15,000 sq. kms. These waters eventually peter out into the desolate expanses of the Kalahari Desert.

The Okavango Delta is one of the most beautiful African safari areas, where everyone can find something to please them.

The best way to explore the myriad of lily-filled waterways is undoubtedly by Mokoro.

Using mekoro to navigate the channels and lagoons of the Okavango Delta offers visitors a chance to experience at first hand the wetlands of the Delta and also an opportunity to meet the Bayei peoples who call this stunning pristine wilderness area home.

The day mokoro safari offers a snapshot view of the traditional mode of transport utilized for hundreds of years by the Bayei tribes people living in the Okavango Delta.

A variety of game may be spotted in this pristine wilderness area including elephant, giraffe, kudu, impala and zebra for instance.

The Mokoro

The traditional dug-out canoe, or “Mokoro” (plural, Mekoro) was originally introduced into the Okavango Delta by the Bayei tribe who moved into the region from the Zambezi river area after the 1750’s.The presence of the tsetse fly meant that pastoralism was not possible and instead they relied on hunting and fishing for subsistence.

Trees that are favored by the Bayei people for the construction of mekoro were, the Kiaat (Pterocarpus Angolensis)or “mukwa”in Setswana, the Jackal Berry tree (Diospyros Mesopiliformis) or “Mokutshumo”and the sausage tree (Kigelia Africana) or “Moporota”. A tree might take well over a century to attain Mokoro size, but the lifespan of the Mokoro would typically only be about 5- 10 years.

In the interests of conservation and the protection of the trees and ecology of the Okavango Delta the recent policy of most communities in the area to use fiberglass canoes that are modelled on the traditional wooden Mokoro.

The pole or “ngashi” that is used to push the Mokoro along is commonly made from the Silver Terminalia tree (Terminalia Sericea) or “Mogonono”.The straight growth form of the young branches, coupled to the elasticity of the wood, make it ideally suited to the task.

The Okavango Delta

A complex delicate ecosystem containing magnificient meandering papyrus fringed channels, tranquil lagoons and palm studded islands which make up this unique inland delta covering about 15,000 sq. kms. (Roughly 6,000 sq. miles)

The Okavango Delta is one of the most beautiful African safari areas, where everyone can find something to please them.

The Okavango Delta can be experienced by way of mokoro safari utilizing self catering campsites.

The most rewarding and enjoyable way to explore and experience the beauty and serenity of this intricate system of lily filled channels and lagoons, which make up the Okavango Delta, is undoubtably by Mekoro, which glide quietly and effortlessly through the whispering papyrus of the shallow water channels.

Within this magnificient Okavango Delta, the visitor can see teeming birdlife, waterfowl and abundant herds of buffalo, red lechwe, elephants, giraffe, zebra, wildebeest, hippo, and countless other species of smaller game, fish and reptiles.