Go eco-bos in Bots Okavango Delta

2018-07-26 08:45
Get your party on in the Okavango Delta! (Photo: iStock)

Get your party on in the Okavango Delta! (Photo: iStock)

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Rock out on an island in the Okavango Delta, Botswana at this funky music fest! 

The festival is set to be jam packed with musical acts as well as delicious food and drink offers on hand. 

The annual event is situated on a wondrous island that sits snug in the floodplains of the Delta swamps.

CHECK OUT THIS Quick Guide to Botswana: Visa-free travel for South Africans

Guests can enjoy three days of swaying to the sounds of live local and international bands, indulging in delicious food and drinks, admiring the vibrant eco-art installations on display all while camping it out in one of the most beautiful sceneries nature has to offer.

The festivities kick off on August 31 and run until September 2 and promises to be about more than just some good music, food and vibes.

Attendees, through their party-cipation, will be helping to uplift the Tsutsubega rural community. This beautiful village, of amazing Batswana, currently have no access to clean drinking water but hold the hope that the Festival will significantly improve their lives.

WATCH: Wading elephant charges and rocks safari boat in Botswana 

WHEN: August 31 (festivities begin @ 10:00) - September 2 (and run till late). The organisers will be on site from August 27 if any eager beavers wish to pull through earlier to set up camp. 

WHERE: The Okavango Delta Music Festival takes place on a beautiful ancient island, surrounded by floodplains. It is situated near a community called Tsutsubega. It isn’t that hard to reach the Festival Island – the closest town and airport is in Maun, in the north of Botswana.

COST: Ticket prices vary and fees for accommodation as well.

Tickets:

  • Adults over 16-years-old: R1 175 p/p
  • Children under 16-years-old: R500 p/p
  • Toddlers under three-years-old - fee to cover medical insurance and babysitting service: R200

See more ticketing fee information and book here.

Accommodation:

  • You can BYOT/E (Bring Your Own Tent or Everything) for free - you'll just have to let the organisers how many tents you'll be lugging along.
  • Booking a tent for the glamping experience ranges from a price of R3 950 to R12 000 - if you're keen to splurge for your own private toilet and hot bucket shower.

For more information on the accommodation available and what they include and to book, click here.

Community upliftment

Tsutsubega is a San name meaning 'Place of the Emerald Spotted Dove' - which is a sweet little bird that occurs in abundance in the region. 

On the edge of the Delta, in Tsutsubega, you'll find an exquisite complex of tree-lined islands surrounded by floodplains. 

This nook of Eden houses approximately 500 people who mostly belong to the ancient Bayei tribe.

The organisers of ths festival had consulted thoroughly with the community in a traditional gathering called a 'Kgotla' in order to garner the permission to host the annual Okavango Delta Music Festival three-day festival on 'Rockston Island' in Tsutsubega.

READ: Okavango Delta: When lions roar...

With the community's blessing the festival was approved, granted in return the organisers and event would play a role in assisting them to alleviate poverty in a sustainable way.

As mentioned, the locals in the region lack access to clean and safe drinking water and they only have access to dirty rain water pans or flood waters tainted with animal faeces and other dirt at present.

Some of the ways the Festival will help the community of Tsutsubega include:

  • helping them derive direct economic benefit from environmental tourism through the campsites,
  • promoting employment at the festival and
  • the Festival profits will provide them with a bore-hole for drinking water.

Other community projects in the area that the Festival is also implementing include:

  • a literacy programme and stimulation centre
  • and also setting up 'Feed a Child Botswana' in the area - to ensure the children in the community receive at least one nutritious meal a day

SEE: #AfriTravel: Why Botswana is the ultimate getaway for nature lovers

BYOCC - Bring Your Own Cutlery & Crockery

Other ways the festival hopes to promote sustainability is through imploring guests and attendees to bring your own re-usable mug, plate, cup, fork etc.

No chuck-away plastic cups, straws, plates, styrofoam take-away boxes, cutlery etc are allowed at the Festival.

The organisers don't want your waste in the precious Delta.

They urge attendees to bring along your own travel mug to be-refilled at the bars as well as your own plates, etc to be loaded with delicious food at the food stalls.

ALSO READ ABOUT THE #LastStraw: 100% compostable straws coming to a Marriott-Protea hotel near you

What you can expect...

As mentioned some of the highlights that will be going down at the stunning venue include live music and delicious treats, check out some key acts to look out for and other fun festival fun lined up below:

MUSIC 

Sway to the sounds of live local and international acts who are set to keep the festival buzzing for all three days.

Some of the bands you can keep an eye out for include:

  • Leisl Graham
  • So Kindly
  • The Kickstands
  • and so much more!

See the full band lineup here.

The DJ lineup isnt as lengthy, but the DJs you can expect to enjoy include:

  • Richard Marshall
  • Dan Tempo
  • Sarah Lambourne 
  • Matt Roberts and
  • Bruno Morphet

ALSO WATCH: Rare mating ritual sees giraffe trying hard to mate with female

CINEMATIC 

If you need a break from the music or shaking scene, kick back for a movie.

Be sure to unwind and take some time to chill on the cushions at the Sweet Love Cinema - which you can find tucked away in the forest.

Movies play all day and night to suit every taste and age group.

You can even indulge in their Gin & Whiskey bar on site.  

FOOD & DRINKS 

Get your appetite whet at one of the tasty vendors lined up. 

Keep your eyes and appetite peeled for one of the food and drink stalls on hand, which include:

  • Kwa Ga Ncinci
  • Drifter's Craft Beer Tent
  • Kam's Food - Braai
  • and so many more!

See the full foodie list here.

ALSO SEE: Bushmeat hunting threatens tourism in Okavango Delta

SAFARI PARTY

Get your safari on while you get your festival on!

If you would like to combine your Festival trip with a Safari in the Okavango Delta before or after the Festival, you should contact these safari and tour operators in advance to ensure you have a GREAT time and get the best prices for the most amazing experience:

Read more about the option here.

OTHER

There will be other fun things keeping the vibe alive during the three-day long bonanza, including:

  • drumming circles,
  • fire dancers,
  • theme camps,
  • swim spots
  • and more 

ALSO CHECK OUT: The Wilderness Explorer

Things to remember:

  • YOUR CASH - Make sure you bring some Pula cash with you to the Festival. Especially if you wish to buy local art, food, amazing cocktails, and, not to mention, an adrenaline-fuelling ride of helicopter flips over the Okavango Delta - which cost around P850pp. 
  • YOUR YOGA MAT - Bring your yoga mat and take part in the sunrise and sunset yoga sessions to the thumping beats of the Delta. Yoga instructors will be giving free sessions throughout the Festival offering Hatha, Vinyasa and even aerial yoga!
  • YOUR OUTFIT & SENSE OF FUN - Part of the fun is to dress up in the craziest clothes - think: glittery, feathery, super-colourful - which always works a treat. Those sequinned pants or bedazzled denim jacket you have hidden deep in the crevice of your closet and ALWAYS wanted to wear but never found the right time or reason? Well, this event is it. Go bos in Bots!

Recap Rundown: Event Details

WHEN: August 31 (festivities begin @ 10:00) - September 2 (and run till late). The organisers will be on site from August 27 if any eager beavers wish to pull through earlier to set up camp. 

WHERE: The Okavango Delta Music Festival takes place on a beautiful ancient island, surrounded by floodplains. It is situated near a community called Tsutsubega. It isn’t that hard to reach the Festival Island – the closest town and airport is in Maun, in the north of Botswana.

Ways to reach the island include:

  • By Air - You can hitch a flight on over to Maun International Airport. Airlink flies there from Cape Town and Johannesburg or you could try Air Botswana. Other airlines that do include: Air Namibia from Windhoek or from Gaborone on Air Botswana. There is a helicopter pad at the Festival island for those who wish to make use of it for transfer drop-offs and pick ups, and it will also be used in case of any emergencies.
  • By Road - shuttle service: If you arrive at the airport, but do not wish for further air travel, you can then get from the airport to the Festival Island via a 40 minute road transfer from Maun airport. You'll just have to inform the event organisers about your flight times and book tickets if you would like them to organise a shuttle from the airport to the Festival Island. The shuttles depart from Maun from the Tshilli Farmstall Cafe (5 mins walk from the airport, opposite the Nhabe Museum). Shuttles run on the hour every hour for all three festival days - Friday, August 31 to Sunday, September 2 - between: 09:00 till 19:00 on the hour every hour.
  • By Road - own vehicle: Maun is a 12 hour drive from Johannesburg in South Africa. The roads are good and a saloon car is acceptable to get to Maun. You can also drive from Gaborone (10 hours). The route from Maun airport to the Festival island will be clearly marked. Directions and GPS co-ordinates are given to ticket and pass-holders. From Maun, it takes approximately 40 mins along sand tracks. However, a 4×4 vehicle is essential as the route includes deep sand and possibly some shallow water-crossings.

For more information or to get in touch with the organisers, click here.

ICYMI: Airlink ups flight frequency between Cape Town and Maun, Botswana

COST: Ticket prices vary and fees for accommodation as well.

Tickets:

  • Adults over 16-years-old: R1 175 p/p
  • Children under 16-years-old: R500 p/p
  • Toddlers under three-years-old - fee to cover medical insurance and babysitting service: R200

See more ticketing fee information and book here.

Accommodation:

  • You can BYOT/E (Bring Your Own Tent or Everything) for free - you'll just have to let the organisers how many tents you'll be lugging along. 
  • Booking a tent for the glamping experience ranges from a price of R3 950 to R12 000 - if you're keen to splurge for your own private toilet and hot bucket shower.

For more information on the accommodation available and what they include and to book, click here.

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