The Okavango Horse Safari is one of our exciting new horseback riding adventures we’re pleased to offer our clients. A few weeks ago we introduced you to Annie and Paul, guides of our Kenya riding safaris. Today we’re taking a look at our Okavango Horse Safari and the guides that lead them.
Why You Should Take an Okavango Horse Safari
Botswana’s Okavango Delta is the lifeblood of the country and home to large concentrations of game and bird life. The region can be explored by game vehicles and mokoros, but a horse safari offers an up close look at all the Delta has to offer. Our Okavango Horse Safari explores remote papyrus-lined waterways over five days on horseback. You’ll canter with herds of wildebeest and zebra and watch as families of giraffe and elephant graze nearby. The Okavango Horse Safari is available February through December. There’s no restriction on age, but riders should have intermediate to advanced riding skills and able to ride four to six hours a day. Our Okavango Horse Safaris are led by PJ and Barney Bestelink, Thabo, and Rodgers.
PJ Bestelink – Owner and Guide
PJ arrived in Botswana in 1970 by way of Namibia, where he spent his early years studying geology and researching mineral deposits in Botswana. Now a Motswana citizen, he has spent the last thirty years acquiring extensive knowledge of the flora and fauna of the Delta region. He is respected for his bush craft skills, is an avid fisherman, and accomplished bush pilot. He’s also had his hand in the development of the Okavango Horse Safaris camp and staff.
Barney Bestelink – Owner and Guide
At eleven she jockeyed the Arabian horses of the Arab Sheik Bin Suman Al Kanifa in the Bahrain desert races, forming a foundation for her extensive equine knowledge and outstanding riding ability. She learned to ride in Kenya, was formally trained at the British Horse Society in England, and has competed at international riding events. She has over thirty years experience of riding through the bush in Botswana, giving her extensive knowledge of the area. Barney provides most of the veterinary care for the horses at Okavango Horse Safaris and is also involved in the development of the horses and staff training.
Thabo – Guide and Stable Manager
Thabo grew up in a village on the panhandle of the Delta and spent his younger years helping his father and riding on their cattle post. He learned the ways of the bush from his father and how to track at an early age. In 202 he joined the Okavango Horse Safaris teams as a groom and trainee guide and passed his guiding exam in 2009. He has extensive birding knowledge and a quick wit. In addition to guiding, Thabo is the Stable Manager for Okavango Horse Safaris and assists with veterinary needs.
Rodgers – Head Guide
Rodgers came to Okavango Horse Safaris at just fourteen years old. He started as a groom and worked his way up to Head Guide. He has a comprehensive knowledge of the fauna, game, and bird life. He can identify bird species from great distances and spot wildlife before anyone else. Safaris with Rodgers are exciting and memorable because of his excellent bushcraft, level head, and his stories of close encounters he shares around the nightly campfire.
For more information on the Okavango Horse Safari, or to book it as your next Ker & Downey journey, contact your Travel Professional or visit us online at www.kerdowney.com. Stay up to date on all of our online content by following us on Facebook and Twitter.