Guest Services and Information

Getting here

You will be able to jump onboard the Pangolin Voyager Houseboat from Kasane waterfront immigration. Our transfer boat will collect you and take you through to Impalila Island for Namibia immigration formalities.

You’ll then have the opportunity to overview the area as you cruise to the Pangolin Voyager.

Kasane is easily accessed by tar road from Zimbabwe, Zambia, South Africa and Namibia. Daily flights are also in operation from Johannesburg and Victoria Falls. In addition, we will be happy to arrange ground transfers to Kasane immigration from Victoria Falls and Kasane airports respectively.

About the area

The Pangolin Voyager cruises its way through the wonderful Chobe waterways but settles itself in the town of Kasane in Botswana’s north-eastern region. The boat generally moves every second day in the Kasai Channel as well as Kasika and Serondela within Chobe National Park.

Frequently Asked Questions

Being a houseboat, we do not have access to “mains” electricity and rely on a combination of solar and generator supply. With this being the case, we cannot have the air-conditioning running at all times of the day and night as this is simply not feasible given the circumstances so the air-con will run when we have the generator working – this will cool the rooms during key times of the day.

During the evening there is a breeze that travels down the river, so we encourage you to open the windows at the front and rear of the cabin to allow a cross breeze to flow through. These windows have built in fly screens so you don’t have to worry about incursions of the insect variety!

The power is stored in battery banks and is unfortunately not powerful enough to run energy sapping appliances such as hair driers. This will cause the system to trip and the houseboat to go dark so please refrain from using them. The plugs in your cabin are connected to the battery bank for charging of devices such as laptops, mobile phones and cameras. This is available 24/7.

We have a zero-tolerance approach to baiting wildlife for photographic purposes. We are aware that some operators on the river regard such practices (e.g. enticing fish eagles with dead fish) as acceptable but we certainly do not. The crew are well aware of this policy so please don’t request it as they will be summarily dismissed should they do so. We hope you understand our position on this matter.

We have three dedicated mooring points along the river which are approximately 15-20km apart. Generally, we relocate the houseboat between the moorings on a daily basis while you are enjoying brunch and daytime relaxation in between the morning and afternoon activities.

Depending on the season and the condition of the river the cruising times may vary. Please also be aware that at certain times of the year accessing all three mooring sites may not be possible. On occasion sections of the river become impassable due to water levels being too low and seasonal invasions of large amounts of floating Kariba weed. We apologise if this is the situation while you are on board, but we hope that you can appreciate the forces of nature at play and that it does not detract from your overall experience of The Pangolin Voyager.

In the unlikely event of an emergency such as fire or flooding please pay attention to instructions from the crew as to what you should do to evacuate the houseboat. If there are no instructions forthcoming, please make your way to the front (bow) of the houseboat where you will be evacuated.

Each room is equipped with a fire extinguisher should you encounter a fire in your cabin. Please exercise extreme caution in such an event and rather notify a member of the crew to assist.

There is a first aid kit in the bridge should you require. For any more serious injuries or illnesses we will evacuate you to Kasane where there is a hospital. In emergencies the houseboat has a direct radio channel to the Pangolin Chobe Hotel in Kasane.

The Pangolin Voyager adheres to environmental best practices wherever possible to limit the impact we have on this beautiful ecosystem. All of the amenities such as shampoo, soaps and shower gels are 100% biodegradable and environmentally friendly.

Human waste is collected in storage tanks deep in the hull and regularly collected to be processed at our land-based sanitation plant. We use solar energy to supplement the generator for electricity supply to the kitchen, lights, air conditioners and refrigeration.

All your meals are lovingly prepared by our chefs Sabrina and Melody using locally sourced ingredients wherever possible. If you have any specific dietary requirements or particular likes and dislikes please let the crew know and we will do our best to accommodate you during your stay.

The mealtimes are as follows:

Summer – September to AprilWinter – May to August
Early Breakfast05:00 – 05:3006:00 – 06:30
Morning Activity (3-4 hours)05:4506:45
Brunch10:3011:00
Afternoon Coffee and Tea15:0014:30
Afternoon Activity (3-4 hours)16:0015:30
Dinner19:3019:00

The bar is open 24/7 and stocked with plenty of soft drinks, wine, beer, ciders and a selection of spirits. There is also a tea/coffee making station and there should be a thermos flask of hot water at all times. If you would like a pot of filter coffee made up then please ask a member of the crew and they will do so straight away.

Please ask a member of the crew to get you whatever you fancy or if you like please feel free to help yourselves. If you do so, please just note down what you took on the sheet on the bar alongside your cabin number as this will help us with stock control and replenishments. All meals and drinks are included in your stay on board.

Please note that we have a no-smoking policy in the rooms and the lounge. We encourage smokers to please do so on the viewing deck adjacent to the lounge at the rear of the middle deck. Ashtrays are provided there for you to make use of.

Many of our clients ask us for tipping guideline for the guides and crew and here is what we believe to be an accurate summary. Tips are not expected but always appreciated.

Guides – Please feel free to tip your guide, who took you out on the morning and afternoon activities, directly.

Crew – Here we refer to the chefs, cleaners and the night-watchman. If you would like to present them with a discretionary tip then please place it in the envelope provided and give it to the Chef on duty. This is then periodically divided equally among the crew.

How much? – An amount of US$10 per person per day onboard is customary divided between the guides and the crew at your discretion.

The weather in the Chobe is luckily very predictable. During the Summer months from October to April the days are warm and the chance of rain at its greatest. The rain tends to fall in the afternoons. If a downpour is imminent at the scheduled time for an afternoon activity, we may well wait it out on the houseboat. Don’t worry the rain rarely lasts very long. This is the advantage of being on the houseboat as we can be more flexible at these times of year.

In the winter months from May to September, it can get quite cold on the mornings and the evenings so layer up well with comfortable warm clothing that can be gradually discarded or added as the day warms up or cools down.

There is no WI-FI or Internet access on-board the houseboat, so we encourage you to embrace this digital detox. At certain points along the river you may be able to pick up a Namibian cell phone signal but please be careful when using data as roaming charges can be hellishly expensive.

What to bring

Once you have confirmed your booking, we will send extensive travel details.
In the meantime, however, these are certain items that you should consider bringing.

  • Binoculars
  • Sunglasses
  • Hats
  • Sunscreen / lip balm / moisturiser
  • Personal medication – including malaria prophylactics
  • Books – bird books / reading books
  • Notebook and pen
  • Photographic and / or video equipment
  • Foreign exchange, if applicable
  • Flashlight
  • International plug set
  • Prescription glasses – always recommended to carry two pairs, especially if required for driving

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