Mashatu Game Reserve, Botswana is a vast wilderness area and home to ancient migratory elephant routes. For centuries these majestic animals have traversed these lands, passing down information from one generation to another. It’s no coincidence that many award-winning photos of elephants have been taken from Mashatu. General game and predators are also abundant in this semi-arid region providing diverse photographic opportunities. This workshop is an introduction to wildlife photography which is designed to get photographers into the best areas to ‘get the shots’. Here is where you take your wildlife photography from ‘good’ to ‘great’. By learning the tips, techniques and methods of taking great wildlife images with professional photographers, you will gain great insight and knowledge while improving your wildlife photography.
There is a little secret about Mashatu that not many people know: It looks it’s finest during the quietest tourist season; the month of January. The beginning of the year is when zebras give birth to the new generation, and Kudu start calving, the migration of large elephant herds into the area can be seen taking advantage of the new vegetation. Cheetahs normally make their appearance, drawn to the area by concentrations of impala moving from the woodlands into the open plains. The impala are lured out by the tender new grass shoots, which cover the plains in delicate shades of green, especially to the north and east of the Majale River. Expect verdant scenes of elephants walking through the grassy valleys, lion leopard and cheetah in green backdrops and water in the rivers for elephants top play in during the hot hours.
While many people come to Mashatu during the dry season to enjoy the predator action, it is the green and rainy season that the reserve looks immaculate- a vibrant and lush green that makes for beautiful backdrops in your images. The conditions in February are also similar to those in January with Kudus continuing to calve and there is also a good chance of seeing late impala fawns, tottering along on spindly, wobbly legs behind their mothers.
You will arrive at Mashatu at midday. Your professional photographer and host will open proceedings with a short talk on what we can expect over this workshop. You will be staying at Mashatu Tented Camp for 3 nights.
Drive 1 is about enjoying and relaxing. This drive is used to take photos ‘as you are used to’, so that it sets the benchmark to measure the images taken at the end of the weekend against. Before dinner, the photo guide will give a short presentation showing a variety of images and how, by using specific aspects, you can alter and change an image dramatically.
|05h30||Early morning Game drive/Photo Hide|
||Presentation on light and composition with regards to wildlife photography. Technical discussion on how to maximise your use of light with regards exposures.|
|13h00||Rest and own time|
|16h00||Game drive/Photo Hide|
|20h00||Dinner in the outdoor boma and then retire to bed for another day of more great photography!|
Over the next few days the daily activity will be the same as day 2
Aimed at beginner/intermediate as well as advanced photographers, this workshop brings like minded people together to enjoy nature and learn more about improving their photography.
Without stealing away any luxuries, accommodation is in a tented camp situated in the northern reaches of the reserve. Twin luxury safari tents offer you a luxurious rest in bush surrounds. Each tent has two large single beds, an en-suite bathroom with flushing W.C and its own private veranda to relax on. Breakfast and lunch are served in a main dining area whilst dinner is served in an out door boma overlooking an adjacent waterhole. There is a central lounge area to relax in, a plunge pool and a bar. A hide overlooks the waterhole next to the camp.
40% deposit confirms your booking. Balance payable 8 week before tour start date.
On all our tours and workshops we may ask participants to rotate seats in the vehicles, taking it in turn to sit in the more popular seats in the front and the less popular ones in the rear. The requirement applies to everyone. If there is some reason why you can't take your turn in the back of a vehicle (e.g. a bad back or travel sickness) please inform our office at the time of booking to see if we can accommodate you. We regret that anyone failing to inform us of such limitations before the tour will be expected to rotate seats in the same way as everyone else.
Park vehicles at secure area at border if self driving. A Ranger will meet you there and transfer you to camp. Arrival time 13h00.
Road transfer at 10h00 to border post on last morning.
1. Self-drive and rental car
You have the option to rent a car from various rental car companies. You can then drive yourself to the Pont Drift Border post. Directions to the Border post will be sent to you. The drive is approximately 6 hours.
2. Road transfer which C4 can arrange
C4 Photo Safaris can make arrangements for you to be transferred from O.R. Tambo International Airport to Pont Drift Border post. The road transfer is approx. 6 hours.
3a. Flight details which C4 can arrange
If you prefer to fly, we can make arrangements for a flight transfer from O.R. Tambo International Airport to the Limpopo Valley Airfield on Mashatu:
3b. Scheduled flights and road transfers option
There are also DAILY flights between O.R. Tambo International Airport (Johannesburg) and Polokwane Airport (approx. 1 hour) and the option of a road transfer from Polokwane to the Pont Drift Border post (approx. 2 hours).
If you would like to make use of any of the road or flight transfer options, please contact us and we can build it onto your workshop.
On arrival at the Pont Drift border post