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Botswana Wilderness Survival Course

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Botswana Wilderness Survival Course

Experience raw, untamed Africa when you visit Botswana - the ideal travel destination for those with a passion for conserving wildlife and a desire to venture off the well trodden path.

Prices from $2,995

Experience raw, untamed Africa when you visit Botswana, an unpolished gem of a country - the ideal travel destination for those with a passion for conserving wildlife and a desire to venture off the well trodden path.

Botswana hosts a diverse array of ecosystems providing habitats for a wealth of African wildlife, including elephant, lion, leopard, cheetah, zebra, wildebeest, rhino, giraffe, hyena and the highly endangered spotted wild dogs. Join this project working in a wilderness reserve and enjoy the daily exposure to raw untamed nature. Each evening as the dust settles at the end of another clear and bright African day, you can see giraffes silhouetted against the warm glow of the setting sun.

Absorb the overwhelming scale and drama of Africa as you relax in the evening under an obsidian midnight sky witnessing the amazing constellations and listening to the calls of the roosting birds and settling wildlife. The primitive beauty of Botswana provides the backdrop for this exciting and worthwhile project which will teach you how to survive in the stunning but unforgiving landscapes which make Botswana one of the best countries for animal encounters. After gaining your new skills you will work alongside local staff as you carry out your various daily duties. If you want to help in the preservation and protection of some of the most impressive mammals in existence whilst learning bush survival skills then this is the project for you!


  • Make lifelong friendships
  • Come face to face with untamed African wildlife
  • Learn to survive in the majestic beauty of the Botswana wilderness


  • Minimum age 18 years


Location Botswana
Activities Wildlife conservation and survival skills
Learning wilderness survival skills
Animal monitoring
Surveying vegetation
Recording weather patterns
Updating records
Data collection
Report writing
Mapping wildlife patterns
Transport Airport pick-up on arrival and transfer to project
Accommodation Volunteer tented camp


Before you go Pre-departure support
Travel & medical advice & documentation
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt (UK only)
In-country 3 meals a day
Airport pick-up
Transfer to project 
Local orientation and training 
In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ back-up


A variety of qualifications are available on many of our projects. For example, BTEC certificates and diplomas on our Group conservation projects and TEFL certificates and BTECs on most of our teaching projects. You may also be able to gain a CoPE to support your university application. For more information on these qualifications, please see the qualifications section of our website or ask your volunteer advisor.


Botswana is incredibly special as it provides some of Africa's best game viewing, allowing access to sightings which are of a quality that is unique to the country. This project aims to give a real insight into the behaviour of some of the world's most beautiful animals and offers volunteers an opportunity to live and work in a true wilderness environment.

You will spend time learning how to survive in Botswana’s bush environment gaining important skills that will help you in the second part of your project and awaken your inner explorer. You will participate in hands on conservation work, helping to accumulate knowledge of the African bush and wildlife and the research you gather will help to develop the databases for the reserve.

The project focuses on elephant behaviour such as herd make-up, movements, parent/offspring behaviour, individual characteristics, feeding traits and so forrth, as well as predator activity, including species identification, territory utilisation, feeding and social behaviour.


The first two weeks of your project will see you learning all sorts of survival techniques used in order to live in the potentially unforgiving African wilderness. These may include bush navigation, medicinal uses of plants, important bush skills such as identifying animals and birds and their behaviour, tree and plant identification and the interrelation between all of these. The skills you learn will be dependent on the seasons and conditions during the time of your visit.

You will spend your final two weeks helping on a conservation programme, working with large wildlife. Your daily itinerary will vary according to the focus of the programme at the time of your visit but may include activities such as tracking the animals, in particular elephants and Botswana’s main predators, collecting data on general game, birds, vegetation and tree population and growth and mapping trends. More specific research may also be carried out by volunteers, depending on requests from academics, such as mapping a specific tree species or collecting information on the feeding habits of a particular animal species.


You can fly into Johannesburg airport and once there make your own way to Polokwane in the North of South Africa. Please aim to arrive on a Tuesday, as you will be picked up very early on the Wednesday morning. From Polokwane you will be transported to your project site in Botswana. Once there the local staff will introduce you to your project and the area. Your in-country coordinator will be more than happy to help you settle in and acclimatise and you'll feel at home in no time in this friendly, vibrant country.


Your first two weeks on the survival course will be spent moving between camps staying in tented satellite camps with bucket showers and long drop toilets. You will also get one night to spend sleeping under the stars around the camp fire, whilst you and your fellow volunteers take it in turns to keep watch. During your survival course you will really get a taste of living in the wild.

During the conservation part of your project you will be staying in traditional African wooden huts with thatched roofs (see photo gallery) and having a braai (BBQ) in the evening. The camp is unfenced and situated in the heart of the wilderness. Lions and elephants are seasonally regular visitors to the camp, along with many other mammal species. Volunteers live communally and will be expected to share their accommodation with other volunteers (same sex sharing).


All food is provided, with volunteers taking turns to cook the evening meals for the group. Breakfasts and lunches are on a self-serve basis, with fresh bread baked daily by camp staff. Food in Botswana is similar to that of other Southern African countries, but you will get the chance to try some of the uniquely Botswanan dishes, such as slow cooked beef or chicken, simmered in a three legged pot! Other common foods include sorghum, rice, pap, salads, cereals, eggs and beans - simple and nutritious dishes are key and vegetarians are welcome.

Ten Most Recent Reviews for This Project

Can't wait to return!  | 19 Nov 2019
I really miss Botswana, it was the most amazing place ever! I can't stop thinking about ...

Read more

How the experience influenced my future  | 17 Nov 2019
I still can't believe how great it was, definitely the best thing I've ever done! Also it...

Read more


In your spare time embrace this extremely well preserved and underdeveloped country by trying some of the sporting and adventure activities that are available, including horse safaris, wilderness walking trails, mountain biking, game drives and many more.

Botswana has a reputation for being a leader within Africa in high cost, low impact tourism, having successfully formulated and pioneered strategies for the preservation of species that are threatened elsewhere, such as leopards, which has minimised the degradation of its precious reserves and made it the perfect place to see a wealth of wildlife.


4 Weeks $2,995

Extra week $695





You can join this project for a minimum of 4 weeks


Nearest airport(s): Polokwane (PTG)


  • Flights
  • Visas
  • Insurance

For detailed information on flights, visas and insurance, click here.


Please read our legal statement regarding the running of NGO projects.

To apply for this placement, click on "Apply Now" below. Fill in the short application form and one of our advisers will then call you back to answer any questions and make sure this is the perfect placement for you. Applying doesn't cost a penny and you won't pay anything until you're completely happy and you're ready to reserve your place.

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