Deception Valley Lodge is traditional and family-run. Its owners are very hands on and often guide guests themselves. The property has recently been refurbished and is looking better than ever. It’s situated on the north-eastern boundary of the Central Kalahari Game Reserve, in one of the largest private game reserves in Botswana. This location makes for more flexibility with activities than in the nearby national parks, allowing for night driving and walking. It’s a remote and arid region, with miles of bush stretching in every direction. Although many animals migrate here from the Okavango Delta between November and May, game can be a little scarce during the dry season of June to October. However, one of the main highlights is the opportunity to meet with the bushmen of the Naru-speaking San tribe, the oldest inhabitants of Southern Africa. Walking safaris under their stewardship are sensational!
ACCESS & LOCATION:
Deception Valley Lodge is located on 43,000 hectares of private reserve bordering the Central Kalahari Game Reserve in Botswana. It’s a wonderful area – there are designated waterholes, concealed viewing hides, vegetated dunes, natural pans, and an amazing valley, all offering game-viewing opportunities. To get to the lodge, it’s just a 30-minute flight from Maun into Deception Valley’s own private airstrip.
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES AT DECEPTION VALLEY LODGE:
The lodge sits in light acacia woodland and has been designed to blend in with the natural surroundings. The eight thatched chalets are raised on stilts and connected to the main lodge area by low wooden walkways. Six of the suites are twin bedded, with a spacious lounge and Victorian-style en-suite bathrooms. The other two chalets have interconnecting rooms that join to make ideal family suites. These also have their own lounge, with a shared outdoor deck and plunge pool.
The main area comprises a lounge, dining room, bar area, and small library, decorated in rich Kalahari colours and furnished with bushmen artefacts. For those inclined, there are even gym facilities and a curio shop. Outside, there is a deck where guests can watch wildlife come to the popular waterhole, and a swimming pool where guests can cool off in the heat of the midday sun between safari activities. Wi-Fi is available in the main area.
As Deception Valley is in the Bush Ways Lodges portfolio, your stay is booked on a full-inclusive basis, which includes accommodation, full-board meals, local drinks, and camp activities.
ACTIVITIES AT DECEPTION VALLEY LODGE:
Unlike the parks in the north of Botswana, this is not a game-rich area. However, Deception Valley Lodge makes up for this by offering a wider range of activities.
Expertly guided game drives- Morning, afternoon, and night game drives are available in the private reserve. These are taken in 4x4 vehicles by an experienced guide. You are likely to see Kalahari lion, cheetah, leopard as well as giraffe and kudu… and occasionally the rare brown hyena!
Nature walks with the San bushmen of the Nara tribe- Guests can head out on interesting and informative walks with bushmen from the local San tribe. These bushmen have survived for the past 20,000 years in this very arid region. Here, you’ll meet some of the local people and experience their tracking and survival techniques, as well as listening to their dialect (37 different clicks!) and hearing about their extraordinary knowledge of animal life and medicinal plants.
Birdwatching- The valley in which the lodge is located is a bird-lover’s paradise, with over 200 species, including martial eagle, kori bustard, crimson-breasted strike, and pale chanting goshawk.
Star gazing- As this area boasts some of the world’s clearest and unpolluted skies, a stay here should most certainly include a few hours of stargazing. Subject to availability, you can head out with the general manager, who is an astronomy enthusiast. Using the lodge’s professional telescope, on a typical winter’s night (June to September), guests can spot the red planet Mars, Jupiter and its four Galilean moons, Saturn and its beautiful rings, and stars such as Rigil Kentaurus, Albireo, and the red giant Antares.
*This property is unfenced and located in a wildlife area, so large and potentially dangerous animals do pass through. If you opt to stay here, always be alert when walking around the camp and request for a member of staff to escort you if you have any concerns. Any guest is escorted after dark as a matter of course.