The name Maun is derived from the San word 'maung', meaning the place of short reeds. The village began as the tribal capital of the Batswana people. It grew as a rough and ready place of local cattle ranchers and professional hunters with a Wild West atmosphere. In 1920, Harry Riley built the first Riley's Hotel, which was then nothing more than a small bar catering to the men who arrived from Francistown - a gruelling 35-hour journey by horse and cart. But with the completion of the tar road from Nata and the growth of tourism, Maun has developed into a thriving town. Maun is also the gateway for the Okavango Delta and Moremi Game Reserve. Maun has spread along the Thamalakane River and is an eclectic mix of modern buildings and native huts.
Found on the northeast side of the Sekgoma Road, barely 2km from the centre of town, Maun Game Sanctuary is a small, fenced park, only about 3km long by 1km wide. It is a good, easy option for those who want to walk in a scenic area amongst non-dangerous game species and an impressive variety of birds. The sanctuary preserves the last of the natural habitat that used to be found in and around Maun – before goats and people wreaked havoc. In the sanctuary is real fan palms, various acacia thickets and riverine woodland. It's bordered by the Thamalakane River, which attracts many aquatic bird species, whilst there are also a few open, grassy areas where you'll find zebras, wildebeest and warthogs grazing.
Here are some popular itineraries for a trip to Maun
If you are planning a Maun holiday, have a look at some of the accommodation that we recommend. 'Our Rating' indicates how we feel each property rates according to normal Western hotel standards. 'Local Rating' indicates how the property is categorised/rated locally:
Mankwe Bush Lodge Maun
Mankwe Bush Lodge offers classic, tented chalets elevated to reveal a grand view of the mopani bush below. Each chalet has its own en-suite bathroom, as well as a private platform.
Royal Tree Lodge Maun
Located on the banks of the Thamalakane River and a 200 hectare game farm, Royal Tree Lodge tastefully combines luxurious accommodation and old world hospitality. Seven specially designed luxurious en suite tents on teak decks sit under a canopy of indigenous trees, sited in such a way as to ensure privacy and to heighten the feeling of being in the remote African bush. No day at the lodge is complete without a hot drink around the communal boma whilst comparing today's safari stories! The lodge is in a private game reserve located 20 minutes from Maun.
For all our tours and tailor-made holidays we provide you with a clear categorisation of all hotels we use. The REGIONAL CATEGORY indicates the local rating of each hotel in each respective country. We have also rated each hotel using OUR CATEGORY, which will be in line with generally accepted western hotel grading standards.
Basic hotels and simple accommodation is a no frills option with an adventurous authentic feel.
Standard accommodation equates to a Western 3-star standard, always featuring en-suite rooms and usually a restaurant.
Superior accommodation equates to a Western 4-star standard, featuring en-suite rooms and usually a restaurant and often a swimming pool and/or a fitness centre.
Deluxe accommodation equates to a Western 5-star standard, usually featuring spacious, en-suite rooms, a restaurant, swimming pool and fitness centre and an array of amenities, excellent service and customer care.
Lavish accommodation equates to a Western 5-star plus standard - the creme de la creme. Featuring spacious, en-suite rooms, a restaurant, swimming pool and fitness centre and an array of amenities, this accommodation is a cut above the rest. Sheer opulence!
Maun Tailor made suggestions
Here are some of the recent tailor made itineraries we have created for our clients which include a visit to Maun.