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Cats of the Kalahari Photography Tour



14 to 21 November 2019 (fully booked)

31 January to 7 February 2020

23 to 30 October 2020 (only 1 spot left)

8 days / 7 nights

minimum of 4, maximum of 6 people

Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park

Exclusive photography tour "Cats of the Kalahari"


This photography trip takes you to the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park at the border triangle of South Africa, Namibia and Botswana. This unique park awaits you with all of the Kalahari desert’s creatures, from majestic oryx antelopes to cute little meerkats. Famous for its high concentration of predators, this park offers you amazing opportunities to see the legendary Kalahari lions with their black manes. With a little luck you will also see cheetahs or even a leopard and not to forget about the smaller cats like the African wildcat and the caracal.

The park also beguiles you with its majestic landscape, casting a spell with its red, shimmering dunes. Spread under a never-ending, expansive sky, the Kgalagadi is a real haven of tranquillity. To experience the Kalahari is indeed balm for the soul.

During this trip, you will be accompanied by Hannes Lochner.. Hannes, a renowned and multiple award-winning professional photographer, lived in the park for 5 years and knows it better than anyone else.
Travel time August
In August, the tempratures are nice and cool. This means, that the lions and other cats are more active during the day.
Travel time November
At the beginning of the rainy season. This time of the year brings fantastic, colourful skies as well as thunderstorms and magical light.
This trip offers a number of extraordinary photographical highlights!
  • The Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park provides great opportunities to photograph the big cats such as black-maned lions, cheetahs and leopards as well as the smaller cats like the African wildcat and with a bit of luck the caracal.
  • The trip offers you countless photographic scenes featuring the creatures of the Kalahari desert. In addition to the big cats, you will have excellent opportunities to photograph meerkats, large herds of antelopes, birds of prey, owls, African wild cats and many other animals.
  • The red sand dunes form a spectacular background for photos of wildlife.
  • Sunrise and sunsets in the Kalahari are incomparable and immerse the photographic subject in a magical light.
  • The imposing star-spangled sky in the Kalahari is a very inspiring photographic subject and ideal for time-exposure photography.
  • Photographic support and tour guiding from Hannes Lochner and Noa Köfler. Hardly anyone knows the region better than Hannes Lochner. He lived in the park for five years and, among other things, published two absolutely riveting illustrated books on the Kalahari.
  • You will spend the night in two beautiful, comfortable lodges whose surroundings are also ideal for hunting for photographic subjects.
  • Small groups with a maximum of 6 participants

Itinerary

8-day photography tour "Cats of the Kalahari"
DAY 1
Arrival in the Kalahari
We will meet in late afternoon at the Kgalagadi Lodge, only a few kilometres from the gates of the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park. After an introduction we will have time to capture the first images of a Kalahari sunset and the starry sky. You have 2 options for travelling to the park:
  • An individual journey to Twee Rivieren in your own hire car.
  • An organised transfer from Upington (early in the morning on 3rd November).
  • On request, we would be pleased to book accommodation for you in Upington the night before and after the photography tour.
Lions in the rain
Thunderstorm
DAY 2
Driving to Polentswa
After your breakfast you will be transferred to the park entrance. The guides are already waiting for us and we will start our journey through the park. In an open Safari vehicle you will be exploring the Nossob valley and have the opportunity to photograph the first animal encounters. Around noon you’ll have a picnic lunch in the Park and in the late afternoon we will arrive at Polentswa lodge.
Leopard under the stars
Curious Cat
DAY 3 & 4
Days spent exploring the northen part of the Park
These two days, you will go on a game drive early in the morning and late in the afternoon. You will have plenty of time for taking pictures. Hannes and Noa will support you with tips and tricks. Learn from the professionals.

Depending on your requirements, Hannes will give short tutorials on subjects of your choice in the afternoons and be available for one-to-one support. Or take the time to just enjoy the beautiful lodge or have an extended siesta.

After the evening meal, Hannes will introduce you to the secrets of night-time photography. The starlit sky in the Kalahari offers a breath-taking vista.
DAY 5
The journey onward to Rooiputs
Today you will enjoy a long game drive. We will make our way to the southern part of the Park to Rooiputs. As every day you will have plenty of opportunities to photograph the abundant wildlife of the Kalahari. In the late afternoon you’ll arrive at the next lodge Rooiputs. This region is famous for its regular sightings of lions and cheetahs.
Lions in Leeudril
Thunderstorm in Polentswa
DAY 6 & 7
Days spent exploring the Rooiputs region
On both these days you will once again go on a game drive early in the morning and late in the afternoon. You will explore the southern part of the Nossob Valley. There will be plenty of time for taking pictures. Hannes and Noa will be there to share their knowledge and help with tips and tricks.

Depending on your needs, Hannes will give short tutorials on subjects of your choice in the afternoons and be available for one-on-one support. Of course, in your free time you can simply enjoy the lodge or have an extended siesta.

After the evening meal, night-time photography is once again part of the programme. Many of Hannes’ photographs were taken after sunset. Benefit from his great know-how.
Gnus in the Auob Valley
Kalahari Sky
DAY 8
End of the photography trip and the return journey to the Upington
After a final game drive in the early morning and a breakfast, you will leave the !Xaus Lodge and be driven back to the park entrance. The photography trip ends here. You continue your own journey in your hire car or start on the return journey to Upington as part of the organised transfer.

Accommodation

Comfortable and very beautiful accommodation in the desert
On this photography trip you will be staying overnight within the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park in very beautiful and comfortable lodges with full board.

Polentswa Lodge
Polentswa Lodge is a classic tented camp capturing the romance of a nostalgic bygone era. The camp comprises of six classic safari tents, one family unit and one luxury desert suite/honeymoon suite all built on raised wooden platforms and under huge canvas roofs that also encompass a private veranda. Each tent has a sleeping area, a desk, en-suite bathroom, and a surprising yet exhilarating outside shower open to the desert and to the stars.

A private concession area allows for exclusive game drives with sundowners although most game are found along the Nossob valley.
Ta-Shebube Rooiputs Lodge
This comfortable lodge is located in the park, circa 25km from the park entrance. The area is particularly known for regular sightings of lions. The lodge contains 9 chalets built on wooden platforms. Each chalet contains a double bed or a twin bed, a seating area, a bathroom, an outdoor shower and a large veranda. The main building contains a lounge, a bar, the dining room and a reading area. There is also a small souvenir shop and a plunge pool, and massages can be booked.

Photo Guide

Take pictures like a pro with Hannes
Hannes Lochner and Noa Köfler take responsibility for leading this scheduled photo tour, or if they are unavailable, another guide from our team will take over.

Hannes Lochner
Hannes Lochner is a renowned, award-winning wildlife photographer and has been taking pictures professionally since 2007. He has long been fascinated by the arid zones of southern Africa, which of course includes the Kalahari. His name is now synonymous with the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park and the leopards in the park in particular.

Noa Köfler
Noa discovered her passion for nature and adventure from an early age. Noa moved to southern Africa after completing her Bachelor of Arts in the Netherlands. There, she became qualified as a field guide and continued her training at the Wildlife Film Academy in South Africa. It was a film project about the African wildcat that finally led her and Hannes into the Kalahari.

learn more about Hannes & Noa
Photographic subjects on the photography safari
  • Personal support and assistance from professional photographers
  • Night-time photography, time lapses
  • Knowing and understanding the photographic subject: What should the photo say, what sort of story should it tell?
  • Understanding the functionalities and settings on your own camera equipment
  • Image composition and rule of thirds
  • Correct use of available light
  • Targeted use of flash photography during the day and at night
  • Taking photographs in manual mode
  • Photographing birds in flight
Who is this photo tour suitable for?
This photography trip is perfect for both beginners and advanced photographers. The small group sizes enable Hannes Lochner to attend to the varying needs of the photographers.

This trip will also be a unique experience in nature for partners who do not share your love of photography as they will get the chance to view animals.

This module can easily be combined with a trip to South Africa or Namibia.

Price

Included in the price
  • Photographic support from Hannes Lochner and Noa Köfler
  • 2 game drives a day
  • 1 overnight stay at Kgalagadi Lodge
  • 3 overnight stays in the Ta-Shehube Lodge, Polentswa
  • 3 overnight stays in the Ta-Shehube Lodge, Rooiputs
  • Full board at Polentswa and Rooiputs Lodge
  • Soft drinks during game drives
  • Admission to the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park
Not included in the price
  • Journey to and from Twee Rivieren / Kgalagadi Lodge
  • Drinks at the Ta Shebube Lodges
  • Drinks and meals at Kgalagadi Lodge
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips/gratuities
  • Travel insurance/cancellation cover
  • Any visa application fees
We reserve the right to change prices (especially due to exchange rate fluctuations)

Terms and Conditions
The Terms and Conditions of Amazing Views & Adventure Tours apply, as well as all other conditions which are listed in the descriptions for the respective trips.

Good to know
  • There is no (Polentswa) or only limited (Twee Rivieren / Rooiputs) wi-fi/internet or mobile phone reception in the park.
  • The months of November and December is the beginning of the Kalahari summer and is ideal for viewing wildlife. Temperatures can reach 40 degrees Celsius.
  • We strongly advise you to purchase insurance for cancellation and return journey costs, which will be needed in the event of a secluded region being evacuated, a local hospital stay or return travel costs to your home country in an emergency.

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