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Mike Gunn

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Mike’s Story

Mike GunnThe concept for Thobolo’s Bush Lodge is the brainchild of Mr Mike Gunn, who arrived in Botswana in 1981.

In those years, tourism in the country was based almost entirely on the hunting industry although there where signs of a gradual move occurring, away from hunting towards Eco tourism and Mike recognized this as the future and way forward. With a partner he obtained a lease on a piece of land against the northern boundary of the Moremi Game Reserve on the Kwaai River. Here they built the luxury Tsaro Photographic Lodge. Mike left after the lodge was completed and ventured out once again on his own. This resulted in the first commercial and now popular safaris’ by boat, through the length of the Okavango Delta. He obtained yet again a lease in the Okavango, where he built Gunn’s Camp and soon became involved in the formation of the Hotel and Tourism Association of Botswana, HATAB, where he served as an active committee member for seven years. This period saw the real expansion in the Eco Tourism sector in Botswana.


Although the tourism policy has always revolved around high cost low volume tourism, Mike recognized the real need to expand the client base by offering various options that not only applied to the more affluent of clients. As a result Gunn’s Camp had two options, Gunn’s Main Lodge and Gunn’s Bush Camp allowing access into the wonderful Okavango Delta to a much broader base of Eco loving tourists. He sold what became a landmark in 2008 because in his own words, “The Okavango is still a wonderful place, but had just become too busy for me”.


After a break for a couple of years, Mike identified again in his own words, “One of the last remaining pearls in Northern Botswana” and here after a number of years of negotiation and board meetings, the new lodge “Thobolo’s Bush Lodge” opens in August 2016.

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