Botswana News
Tuesday, 06 November 2018 11:09

Its Happy Hour(s) at Verney's

Fiona from Ngoko Safaris didn't even have to leave Verney's Camp to see this incredible herd of ellies enjoying themselves.  Check it out on https://youtu.be/kM6eeF7lh30.  Apparently it went on like this from around 5pm until 3am the following morning - but nobody complained about the noise!  Machaba Safaris opened the brand new Verney's Camp in May this year - a it's a real undiscovered gem! (well - clearly the wildlife know it is there!).  Are you featuring it yet?  If not get in touch!
Published in News
Monday, 02 July 2018 12:54

Machaba's New Verney's Camp

Machaba Safaris opened their 4th safari camp in May 2018 - using the same tented camp format that is so popular in their 3 Okavango Delta Camps, but this time in Zimbabwe's Hwange National Park. Please get it touch if you need brochure copy, images or rates.  We hope to see you all featuring Verney's soon!  Read more on https://bit.ly/2KDDSHO
Published in News
Wednesday, 27 June 2018 10:41

Machaba Safaris Join Ethos' Portfolio

Machaba Safaris joined the Ethos' portfolio earlier this month.   Machaba is a family owned collection of 4 classical safari camps – 3 of which are in Botswana’s iconic Okavango Delta and a brand new Verney's Camp which opened in May 2-18 in Hwange, Zimbabwe.  Read more about Machaba Safaris as well as the brand new Verney's Camp. Please let us know if you would like a product update, brochure copy, images or staff training on info@ethosmarketing.co.uk.
Published in News
African carrier, fastjet, is looking at launching flights between Cape Town, South Africa, and Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe.

Richard Bodin, fastjet’s Chief Operating Officer, told Tourism Update the route was still in the early phases and flights would be launched in the fourth quarter of this year at the earliest, although a later date was foreseeable.

According to Bodin, the airline’s routes from Johannesburg to Zimbabwe continue to see growth, especially its flights to Victoria Falls. The airline flies a double-daily service to Harare and to Victoria Falls three times a week. It also services Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar in Tanzania.

However, Bodin pointed out that, despite strong passenger demand, a strong dollar has negatively affected the airline’s revenue. As a result, it had trimmed down frequencies on marginal routes and there would be little in the way of new routes until next year, said Bodin. He added that there were other destinations the airline was contemplating for new routes, but declined to give details on these.

Source: Tourism Update
Published in News
THE Kavango-Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area (Kaza) Uni-Visa between Zimbabwe and Zambia, which was suspended last year, is set to be re-introduced after the two neighbours agreed to revive it. The two Sadc countries are understood to be at an advanced stage of drafting a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that would lead the re-introduction of the “free trade” facility while offices of the Attorney Generals in the respective countries are working on the legal aspect of it.

This came out of a stakeholders’ meeting organised by the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority in Victoria Falls on Tuesday to deliberate on challenges facing the tourism industry especially in the resort town. Chief Immigration Officer Clemence Masango said 50,000 stickers have already been sourced for the re-introduction of the Kaza Uni-Visa.

“The Uni-Visa was suspended in December 2015 because of two reasons whereby the two countries had run out of stickers and also after the expiry of the MoU. The two countries have been deliberating on whether to continue with the facility and mobilise funding for stickers,” said Masango.

He said stickers had already been dispatched to various centres where the facility should be implemented. “We are happy to report that we have managed to source 50,000 stickers and the only outstanding issue is the signing of MoU so that there is a legal standing to it.

“The two countries are addressing these issues at Cabinet level while Attorney General’s Office will advise on the developments,” added Masango. He said a similar process was underway in neighbouring Zambia.

The Uni-Visa was launched in 2014 after being mooted at the 2013 United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNTWO) to ease movement between the two countries as a pilot projects towards a similar development in the Sadc region. The facility stopped last year owing to a number of reasons.

Meanwhile, the ZTA board led by its chairperson Chipo Mutasa, Ross Kennedy and ZTA chief executive officer Karikoga Kaseke are on a fact finding mission in the resort town to hear concerns of the industry from operators.

Source: The Chronicle
Published in News
Tuesday, 21 June 2016 10:52

Air Zimbabwe set to resume London route

Air Zimbabwe (AirZim) plans to resume flights on the Harare-London route this year after a four-year hiatus, management has said.

AirZim acting passenger and cargo general manager Christopher Kwenda said the company had initially anticipated to resume plying the lucrative route beginning of July, but had to contend with a later date due to licensing delays after London and the European Union (EU) introduced new aviation licensing requirements.

“We had targeted the 1st of July, but now there are new requirements from the UK and the EU. We will know the exact dates as soon as we satisfy those requirements because we also have to start selling the route once we get the green light,” Kwenda said in a telephone interview.

AirZim acting CE Edmund Makona said the national flag carrier had already submitted all the necessary paperwork required by British authorities.

“The airline has submitted all the necessary paperwork for the route licence as is required by London authorities and is still waiting their approval to commence operations. Once the route licence has been issued, we will then advise the exact date for the flights resumption,” Makona said in emailed responses this week.

Air Zim was forced to terminate the route in 2012 and is now negotiating to clear a US$2, 8 million debt owed to London navigation agency.

Makona said all creditors were engaged and arrangements are in place to service any outstanding amounts. He said creditors have been forthcoming in terms of payment arrangements.

He said flight resumption would depend on whether the licence is been issued. “We will also give adequate lead time to allow for marketing activities,” he said.

“Operating equipment and the crew are already in place. Once the route licence has been issued, we will be ready to commence operations.”

Makona said the airline plans to employ a robust cost-cutting strategy with a view to avoid plunging into debt again.

AirZim in 2014 resumed flights on the Harare-Johannesburg route after the airline cleared its debts with some South African creditors.

Two weeks ago the airline re-introduced flights on the Harare-Dar es Salaam route after a seven year absence, flying return flights on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

The airline will be scrambling for market share with fastjet. AirZim is pinning hopes on the growing trade between Tanzania and Zimbabwe where many cross border traders and business travelers frequent the two destinations.

It is offering a generous free luggage promotion of 40kg per passenger and a free ticket for every six people travelling together on the new route.

Kwenda said the market was so far responding positively to the new route amid growth potential indications.
“The new route is picking up, the response is quite encouraging, it will take time to achieve the load factors that we would like to have, but it’s quite positive so far,” he said.
Published in News
African Sun and Legacy Hospitality have signed an agreement to co-operate in the development of tourism in Zimbabwe. The agreement provides for the management, refurbishment and expansion of five of African Sun’s strategic assets- The Kingdom at Victoria Falls, Elephant Hills Resort, Hwange Safari Lodge, The Monomatapa Hotel and Troutbeck Hotel.Refurbishments at the Victoria Falls properties are already underway, with future expansion to Caribbea Bay and Fothergill Island planned.

The addition of Elephant Hills Resort and The Kingdom at Victoria Falls to the Talking Stick portfolio has unfortunately created a conflict with our marketingof Victoria Falls Safari Lodge, part of Africa Albida Tourism (AAT). Therefore, effective May 1,Talking StickMarketing will no longer berepresenting AAT (Victoria Falls Safari Lodge and Ngoma Safari Lodge) in the United Kingdom and Europe.This is certainly sad news for us as we have enjoyed eight years working closely with the team at AAT and wish them much success in the years to come. 

Ross Kennedy, CEO of Africa Albida Tourism states, “Weat Africa Albida Tourism have enjoyed a wonderfully successful and professional relationship with Talking Stick Marketing over the last eight years. They have grown our UK and Europeanmarket share significantly and established our products firmly in those markets. We are sad to bid them farewell, but circumstances sometimes dictate such decisions. As we move on to a new era, we are pleased to announce a smooth and efficient transition will take place, with the appointment of Zoe Carroll as our new representative in the United Kingdom and Ireland (ZMTC@hotmail.com+44 161 7880348).  Marc and the Talking Stick team will liaise with Zoe and our team in Zimbabwe, to ensure as seamless a handover as possible.”

In addition to the two Victoria Falls properties, this agreement will grow the Legacy presence in Zimbabwe. The 100-room Hwange Safari Lodge will be completely upgraded on a phased basis into a 4-5 Star lodge at affordable prices, including a new waterhole. The Monomotapa Hotel Harare is planned to undergo a face-lift to all its 240 rooms, with the addition of a new outdoor pool area and additional restaurant facilities. At the famous Troutbeck Hotel, Legacy intends to retain its unique character and atmosphere, whilst expanding the leisure activities.

“The past months of negotiations as well as our constructive interaction with the Government, has convinced us that Zimbabwe is on the road to recovery.  Whilst rebuilding confidence in any market takes time, we believe all the ingredients are in place to fast track this process”, remarked Legacy Group Chairman Bart Dorenstein.


For more information on Legacy Hotels & Resorts please contact Marc Reading marc@talkingstickmktg.co.uk or visit www.talkingstickmktg.com









Published in News
2015 saw plenty of developments within the African Bush Camps portfolio: Somalisa underwent an extensive rebuild and upgrade, Kanga Camp too enjoyed a refurbishment, whilst ‘Kanga Under the Stars’ – our sleep-out experience – was launched.

As interest in Zimbabwe grows, we feel the right time to invite members of the UK trade to come and experience what makes African Bush Camps so special.
Come and learn our ABC!

African Bush Camps is a small and independently owned company run by one of Africa’s top Safari guides, Beks Ndlovu. One of the founding principles is that the guides and hosts are part of the guest experience and are key to making a safari memorable and extraordinary. Providing guests with an intimate and unique view of the ‘Old Untouched Africa’, African Bush Camps has made it their quest to share the wildest and remote parts of Africa in a responsible and sustainable manner, ensuring an authentic experience, whilst cultures and wildlife areas are conserved for future generations.
African Bush Camps has a portfolio of properties in key safari destinations within Zimbabwe and Botswana.

The Itinerary
11th May
Safari Logistics flight from Harare to Mana Pools National Park.
Overnight accommodation at Kanga Camp.
12th May
Overnight at “Kanga Under the Stars”, Mana Pools National Park
13th May
Safari Logistics flight from Mana Pools to Hwange National Park.
Spend a final night at Somalisa Camp
14th May
Transfer to Victoria Falls Airport.

The trip will coincide with Indaba 2016 and spaces are limited to just 6 tour operators. the cost is USD700 per person on a twin sharing basis.
Covers all accommodation, meals, activities, internal transfer arrangements, and park fees. International and regional flights are for own expense.

To register your interest please contact UK representative Kirstine Vercoe.
E: kirstine@kameric.com T: 01664 823 750 / 07830 867 887






Published in News
Somalisa Camp and Somalisa Acacia located in Hwange NP become some of the most sustainable camps in Zimbabwe being accredited the Green Tourism Gold Award and nominated for the We Are Africa “Design Africa” Award
 
African Bush Camps, through its camps Somalisa and Somalisa Acacia, is continually working towards more sustainable methods to reduce their carbon footprint and ensure the long term conservation of Africa’s wildlife and habitats. Green Tourism, the world’s largest and most established sustainable tourism certification program, recognised African Bush Camps Somalisa and Somalisa Acacia with the Green Tourism Gold award.
 
To achieve this prestigious accreditation, Somalisa and Somalisa Acacia were recently graded on-site by qualified and independent environmental assessors against a rigorous set of criteria, covering a range of areas such as energy and water efficiency, waste management, biodiversity and social involvement and communication. Green Tourism has three grading levels (Bronze, Silver and Gold) awarded according to the assessments carried out. Achieving a Gold Certification Award means that Somalisa and Somalisa Acacia scored 80% and above and are recognised as “Outstanding / Inspirational” by the Green Tourism Team.
 
African Bush Camps is delighted with this award and they are committed to continuing to operate in accordance with recognised quality standards appropriate to both their customers’ needs and the long term well being and preservation of the areas in which they operate.
 
Somalisa and Somalisa Acacia were recently rebuilt ensuring that they are minimising their impact on the planet. We Are Africa Innovation Awards has recognised African Bush Camps environmental efforts nominating them for “Design Africa Awards”, the first time African Bush Camps has been short-listed for an award at this prestigious event.
 

ABOUT SOMALISA AND SOMALISA ACACIA:
Somalisa Camp
Somalisa Camp is set in the heart of Hwange National Park, known as the land of the giants for its large elephant herds. Nestled in a stunning location tucked away on an acacia island along the edge of an ancient seasonal flood plain, Somalisa provides guests with breathtaking views of the savannah plains across the famous Kennedy Vlei line. Recently re-built, Somalisa Camp has upgraded its level of accommodation to that of complete comfort and luxury whilst still maintaining its focus on the guiding and hosting of guests to ensure the ultimate guest experience.

 
Somalisa Acacia
Somalisa Acacia has recently under gone a complete rebuild and now comprises of 2 Family Units with inter-leading walkways between the parents and children’s rooms which are both en-suite, as well as 2 standard Sail Tents. Each tent includes gauze sliding doors, a wood-burner fireplace for the cold winter nights, and 
for the hot summer days, as well as en suite bathroom facilities including flush toilets, an indoor and outdoor shower, as well as a copper slipper-style bathtub. All the simple but luxurious tents are on slightly raised decks, under the dappled canopy of a grove of Acacias.

For futher information please contact:
Adele Cutler, Kameric PR

adele@kamageo.com  Tel: +44 (0)1664 823750   M: +44 (0) 7976 578988

Notes to the Editor
African Bush Camps website: 
www.africanbushcamps.com
Green Tourism website: www.green-tourism.com


Published in News
fastjet has announced it will commence flights to Victoria Falls from Johannesburg on March 25th, 2016, in response to strong passenger and tour operator demand from within the South African market.

Services between Johannesburg’s O.R. Tambo International Airport and Victoria Falls International Airport will operate using fastjet’s modern Airbus A319 jet aircraft with seating for up to 156 passengers.

Initially operating twice a week on Fridays and Sundays, fastjet’s flights will depart Victoria Falls at 12:40 and land in Johannesburg at 14:15, with a flight time of one hour 35 minutes.

The return flight from Johannesburg departs at 14:55 and lands in Victoria Falls at 16:35.

“fastjet believes that affordable air travel is key to the continued growth of tourism between Zimbabwe and South Africa, with Victoria Falls being long established as a tourism drawcard to the region,” said Richard Bodin, fastjet chief commercial officer.

“Launching this route between Victoria Falls and Johannesburg makes it more affordable for South Africans to visit the area’s many sights and attractions.”

Bodin added: “Prior to announcing these flights to Victoria Falls, fastjet had detailed discussions with South African and Zimbabwean tour operators in order to deliver suitable flight components to include in packaged tour offerings.

“We will rely on continued support from the travel agents and tour operators due to the destinations’ strong tourism attractions.”

The new route between Victoria Falls and Johannesburg follows closely on the success of fastjet’s route launches between Harare and Victoria Falls, and its first international route from Harare to Johannesburg.

fastjet increased the frequency of its flights from Harare to Johannesburg just two weeks after the first flight took to the skies, and now connects the two cities 12 times each week.

Source: Breaking Travel News


Published in News
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