Early Kingfisher Safari

5.0/5 – 21 Reviews

$1,980 pp (USD)

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Mr Samuel Mopalo has been working in the tourism

Mr Samuel Mopalo has been working in the tourism

Early Kingfisher Safari

(21 Reviews)
Office In:
Botswana Botswana
1-5 employees (Founded in 2017)
Member Of:
BOGA & Botswana Tourism
Tour Types:
Custom budget tours that can start every day
Botswana BW
Mr Samuel Mopalo has been working in the tourism

Mr Samuel Mopalo has been working in the tourism

Situated in Maun, Botswana, Our company takes pride in understanding the tourism clientele and taste of varous persona. performing iteneraries to fully meet customers expectation is our pride, ensuring that Botswana is well represted in the tourism industry is our priority. Our staff are well trained and had previous experiences that are second to none. Come to Botswana, experince this LOVE and let Botswana be incredible


The trip of a lifetime, all thanks to Early Kingfisher

Where to start...I had never gone on safari before, and felt quite overwhelmed with the choice on offer from different companies. Early Kingfisher stood out to me because the tour sizes were small, the costs were competitive, it was run by local people, and the reviews raved about Sam's passion for animals. Having completed a tour with them I can say confidently: if you book with them, you won't regret it.

The week was unforgettable, in large part to Sam & his staff. The animal spotting, knowledge I gained from Sam, the quality of the food we ate (3 course dinners every night), camping setup (practically luxurious), and travel arrangements (not a moment of stress during the course of the week). I am so, so glad that I overlooked more established companies in favour of Early Kingfisher, and I cannot recommend this company highly enough for what to me felt like a true safari experience. Some personal highlights are below...

Camping: the camping setup was perfect; spacious tents with a REAL BED, as close to a real (hot) shower/toilet as you'll find in the middle of nowhere, and even a turn down service twice a day (because why not). I haven't stayed in a lodge for a safari, but hearing deafining thunder, lions roaring and hyenas laughing during the night is simply unforgettable. And whilst most people might think camping and safari doesn't mix, I honestly felt no fear the entire week in the camp.

Staff: the staff on our tour were simply wonderful. I felt like I got to witness a group of friends cheerfully go about their jobs every day, and to such a high standard. Joan was our chef, who worked actual magic by preparing every single meal, including our 3 course dinners, each day, with only an open fire to work with. And it truly was delicious food. As I was on a week long tour, there were lots of pack downs to move location, all catered for by the staff, but the process ran like clockwork. And lastly, returning after an evening game drive to a song from the staff, was fantastic.

Game drives: I loved the twice-daily game drives, not just because I saw an abundance of animals, but because we had an awesome, passionate guide in Sam. His knowledge was second-to-none, always ready to answer our questions, but his ability to track animals was so impressive. As another reviewer has noted, many other guides came on the radio regularly to get his opinion, and we regularly found animals that no one else had, enjoying them in peace & quiet until other trucks invariably saw us and rolled in. Every detail was considered, from rugs in the morning when it was seriously cold, to 'Sam's Cafe' opening for business mid morning for a coffee break.

Photography: I went on safari for the photography, and Sam's understanding of light showed his experience not just of animal spotting, but how best to view them. He helped me get photos that I am extremely happy with by perfecting the angle. Our first night saw us spot a male lion with the setting sun right behind him, as just one example.

Learning: honestly, I learned so much from Sam during the week. For one example: over dinner one evening I asked if termites created their mounds from the earth as they dug down. In response we got a 15 minute reply detailing exactly how they function, and how they contributed to the formation of the Okavango delta. I don't think there was one animal or bird the entire week he couldn't identify.

Communication: before the tour, I found Sam to be very communicative over email in the run up to the trip, answering all my questions, and ensuring I had no concerns.

Recommendation: go for at least a week, if not longer, to ensure you're not spending full days travelling between locations. There were long journeys, but even on these, we were treated to seriously good food & animal sightings.

Exceptional Experience from an Exceptional Company

Just completed an amazing 7 day safari with Early Kingfisher, led by owner Sam. Every aspect of this camping expedition was exceptional and left breathtaking memories of the beautiful animal kingdom. I learned so much about the animals that roam Bush. I give 5 stars to animal spotting, knowledge of animal behavior, accommodations, and food service. Thank you for such a spectacular safari, it far exceeded my expectations.

If you have found Early Kingfisher, you have found the best safari to book with

I had no idea what to expect when going into my family’s safari with Sam. But by the end of our trip, I knew that we could not have had any better experience with any other company.
The level of expertise, dedication, and passion is what makes Early Kingfisher so uniquely fit to provide the most enjoyable and memorable experience.

Over the course of our trip we found ourselves repeatedly grateful for having Sam as our guide. Having someone so knowledgeable about the bush, animal behavior, and everything in between made each moment particularly special. The Early Kingfisher name rings true, but for good reason. Though we were awoken before sunrise (to a good breakfast might I add), it meant that we not only had the opportunity to witness some truly spectacular morning skies, but it also allowed Sam to utilize his skills in tracking. We had the chance to witness a pride of lions relaxing after a meal and wild dogs searching for packmates, before any of the other safari cars made it to the spot and crowded around. If anything was an indication of Sam’s skills and keen eye to find animals and understand their movements, it was the constant call of “Sam Sam” over the radio by OTHER guides looking for his expertise and finds. The moments we experienced in the bush were also so dependent on the level of understanding Sam had. We had the incredible chance to see multiple ‘ceremonies’ of meeting and hunting as Sam knew when to hold out beyond snapping a few photos.

I cannot overemphasize Sam’s knowledge. Every question I asked about the animals behavior, evolution, and more—often times unsure there would be an answer—would be answered expertly in turn. And if you are an ornithologist, Sam has got you covered with his specialty in bird identification (even those not particularly keen on bird watching will find themselves interested I guarantee!).

This utter commitment to craft extends to everyone in the Early Kingfisher team. I truly do not think I have had better food (seriously delicious), more comfortable sleeping arrangements while camping, and service than what Sam’s staff provided. Honestly, it is something you just need to experience firsthand. You will never for a moment worry about being hungry or tired, with hearty meals and tea-times well-timed.

Our safari lasted seven days, and I believe that is the bare minimum that you should go for. I cannot more highly recommend Early Kingfisher, in all aspects imaginable. The opportunity to encounter Botswana’s beauty in such a powerful, well-attended way should not be passed up.
I would love to give a massive thank you to Sam and his team for giving me and my family an experience that will not fade from our memories!


I set out to go on a budget safari with my family to explore the beauty of Botswana’s wildlife. What was advertised as budget camping turned out to be 5 star glamping with the most knowledgeable guide/tracker with expertise in animal behavior. Early Kingfisher Safari in Botswana provided a very personalized, once-in-a-lifetime 7-day adventure that surpassed all our expectations. Led by the exceptional owner/guide Sam and his team of dedicated passionate professionals, this safari was an experience that will forever hold a special place in our hearts.

Of the MANY standout aspects of this safari, the unparalleled knowledge and expertise of Sam was in a league of its own. His passion for the animals and their behaviors was infectious, and his ability to answer every question in-depth and with enthusiasm was remarkable. With Sam by our side, we were able to witness incredible wildlife encounters and gain a deeper understanding of the captivating animals that call this region home.
From the majestic elephants, the elusive big cats, to the endangered wild dogs, each sighting left us in awe. Sam's wealth of knowledge allowed us to appreciate the intricate dynamics of the animal kingdom, creating a profound connection with the wildlife around us. It was truly a privilege to witness these extraordinary creatures in their natural habitat while learning their unique behaviors.

Sam and his team truly set the bar high for exceptional service and hospitality. From the moment we arrived, their warm and welcoming demeanor made us feel like family. Their dedication and passion to ensuring our comfort and satisfaction was evident throughout the safari. An unexpected highlight of this budget safari was the multi-course meals we were served. Despite being in the heart of the wilderness, the expertise displayed by the camp's kitchen staff was astounding. Each day brought a new culinary delight, expertly prepared and beautifully presented. As I would mention to the small group at every meal, “I do not get food or service as good as this at home”.

While the focus of our trip was the wildlife, Sam and his staff also excelled in what is advertised as “budget camping”. I expected tents with sleeping bags. No sleeping bags, but a luxurious tent complete with carpeting and comfortable beds with daily service ensuring a restful night's sleep in the wilderness. The individual pop-up bathroom and shower area connected to each tent allowed for a comfortable private environment.

I cannot imagine a better safari experience even in a posh resort. This was truly a luxurious glamping experience provided at a budget rate. Every moment was filled with awe, wonder, and discovery. The opportunity to witness the incredible wildlife of Botswana in such an intimate and immersive manner was truly unforgettable. My family and I wholeheartedly recommend Early Kingfisher Safari to anyone seeking an exceptional safari experience that combines expert guidance, breathtaking wildlife encounters, and luxurious camping accommodations. This adventure has left us with new friends and spectacular memories to cherish for a lifetime!!!!

Trip of a Lifetime!

Other reviewers have already said it, but here it is in a nutshell. Everything about this trip was amazing! Sam and the crew provide a first-class experience in the wild. This photo safari far exceeded my expectations! I highly recommend EKS!!!

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  • This tour is offered by Early Kingfisher Safari, not SafariBookings.
  • This operator reserves the right to change rates advertised on SafariBookings.
  • This group tour requires a minimum of 2 people to run.
  • The exact order, contents and rates of this tour is subject to availability.
  • This tour is subject to the terms & conditions of Early Kingfisher Safari.