Ancient Connection, Healing, Homecoming, Transformation, Remembering

  What people are saying 
What an extraordinary gift of opportunity it  has been to be part of this pilgrimage to South Africa led by Mbali. Mother Africa always touches deeply into my being but this trip was exceptional.  Mbali comes with and leads the group with unbroken, sacred relationship to life.  The depth of her integrity has built and holds genuine relationship with the true indigenous people of this land. The journey is a continuous ritual of honouring and being honoured.
Magi Whisson, (Australia) 
  March 2013

Our African journey was incredibly rich and has opened new worlds for me that were previously unseen. I developed a deep connection with the Natural world the animals and plants. The whole journey with its variety of interactions with Nature and its animals the ocean and its wild beings made me realize that we are part of  nature  not separate from,  and it's then we also feel deeply connected to each other. Danadasa,  Origin Journeyer, October 2015 USA
Walking in the tracks of Bushmen life was an experience of a life time.   The knowledge presented illuminated the journey,  bringing into focus the importance of ritual, ancestors and the spirit of wildness in all our lives.   Each day was an adventure finely tuned in every detail - always with an open end for spontaneity.
There was a profound individual awakening and honouring of who we/I really was.   A deep piercing experience where we were held and given permission and support to take our  experiences further, this encouraged me to dance with life - this is the music
Annie Noorgab August 2015 South Africa 
The Return to Origin journey 2016  was a true work of art and love, quite simply 'a masterpiece'.
As I walked hand in hand with my ancestors through the pristine 
landscapes of South Africa  and Botswana I felt a deep honour.
Mother Nature gave us our classroom for this journey. It was  a unique and full eco system, with untamed energy and spectacular wild animals.
While immersed in nature we had a rare oppertunity to re- connect and 'just be'.
I experienced deep healing vibrations and renewal of ones self, words will never be enough to describe my gratitude.
The return to origin team are truely hard working and inspirational people who have managed to shine a light towards the beautiful tapestry that 'is Life'
Lyndsey Mayhead October 2016. UK


Your Host and Facilitator 

Mbali Marais
Wisdom keeper

Born in South Africa, educated in London, and has lived in the US, as a teacher and mentor in Integrative medicine. She was one of the first to use ceremony in mainstream medicine.  She has facilitated journeys all over South Africa for the past 9 years building and nurturing relationships with indigenous peoples with integrity and respect. She is a master  group facilitator .
She is a trained HIV counsellor and has worked in St Quentins mens prison in the US. 
For over 30 years Mbali has been  a practitoner in the Healing Arts, her focus is traditional medicine.  
Mbali founded the organization Return To Origin that works with young people  in the South African underserved Communities to connect them to the natural world,  their origin, thereby providing tools and a space for healing self and community. 
She is an initiated stick diviner  in the West African tradition of the Dagara People and the Xhosa people of South Africa. She is a descendant of Khoi Khoi, Xhosa and San people. 
 She invites  people from all over the world to experience the connection and relationship  to the  insurmountable wildness, animals and  nature in the staggering land of South Africa and Botswana. This is  her deep passion. 

Your Host and Deep Nature Guide 

Alwyn Myburgh 
Master Tracker

Raised among the red sand dunes of the Southern Kalahari. As a child he spent endless days walking in the bush with the San who lived on the family's farm. He learned about the animals and nature from a very early age. The gentle and selfless way the San parted with their knowledge laid the foundation for him to become a safari guide. He now shares that knowledge with hundreds of people. Botany is also his speciality as well as a natural gift for tracking, reminiscent of the old Bushmen masters. Time in the wild with the wild ones and Alwyn is an honor and an opportunity not to be missed. 

The Ju/"hoansi Bushmen 

For Indigenous people, of course, there is no conception of "wildness" or indeed of "Nature." There is only the world, of which human beings are an integral part. - Carol Black
Journey includes:

Sit spots
Quiet time alone
Transport in open safari vehicles
Entrance fees to all nature reserves
Hotel -Maun 1 night double occupancy
Private, exclusive Ecolodge - in the Kalahari Wilderness -Double occupancy
Bushmen interactions and engagements 
Bush walks 
Mobile Camps, LARGE tent accomodation, 2 PER TENT  Botswana, Okavanga Delta
Wild animal encounters
Sumptious  meals   
Some gratuities 

Does not include:

ALL  flights 
Full Travel Insurance (Mandatory)
Full Medical Insurance (Mandatory) 
Special Foods (Bring with you)
Personal Gifts
Further Gratuities  
Please check your own country's VISA requirements for  Botswana.
Allow three months to apply for your visa if needed.  (Asia)

P lease note: 
Arrival City; Botswana, No Later than Sept 24, 2018  Departure City: Botswana, Oct 3rd, 2018

Any travel arrangements and accomodation made prior to and after the journey are made and paid for by you.

Our service providers need to be paid well in advance. There will be no exceptions on due dates, monies not received by due dates, will mean you lose your space.

We have just 9 spaces.  full packet of info will be sent when your place is confirmed. First come first basis. 

Return to Origin strives to keep the cost of the journey down despite soaring costs everywhere.
This is still one of the most valued priced journeys you will find.

Total Investment:  $ $3582
Deposit: $ 1000
Due: March 24, 2018     
Balance: $ 2582
Due: June 24, 2018

Sacred Reciprocity
percentage of the journey cost goes towards preservation and conservation. We also offer gratuties to the local people, and helpers who assist us along the way.  In gratitude.  Thanks for answering the call, listening to your intuition to connect with the  ancients. 
We are honored to be have you with us.   Mbali

 Please join us on a truly memorable journey to 
Botswana -including -3 days with the Ju/'hoansi Bushmen 
September 24- October 3rd 2018. 9 nights 10 days

'The traveler has to knock at every alien door to come to his own, and one has to wander through all the outer worlds to reach the innermost shrine at the end'  Rabindrath Tagore 

Mamahuto -Okavango Delta- 2016  Journey- photo  courtesy of Patricia Bates

Overview of our journey together

Embark on a deep nature immersion, into Botswana, a land rich in wildlife, culture and unrivaled mystery. It is quietly wild, quietly beautiful and peaceful. Our gift-remembering the ancient inside.
Tread Lightly 
Traditional culture remains strong here. We have been invited into the world of the San (Bushmen) first peoples. Here we are guests not only of mother nature but also the indigenous peoples of the land. They see in tourism a chance to celebrate their culture. Our gift -a re-connection into the heart of our indigenous soul in community with the first peoples.  
After three full days in the Kalahari wilderness we travel with our host and guide Alwyn Myburgh for immersion into a  deep nature safari like no other, in Kwai at the gateway to the Okavanga delta. Alwyn  has years of intimate knowledge of this area and his relationship with the land and animals is reminiscent of the old indigenous masters.  This area carries a staggering wildness, that takes us to a place of origin.   Already set up,  a tented camp awaits us, on the edge of the Kwai river where the  animals are still concentrated. At first it seems nothing is happening here. When we lean in and are still enough to listen, we will find the animals tread lightly too. Wildlife and mystery comes in abundance. The land is refuge to a diverse number of plant and mammal species. Our gift- a keener awareness of our own true nature and the natural world. 
The Feline Fields Trust (Our Eco Lodge) is a non-profit organisation supported by an ecotourism company Feline Fields to facilitate sustainable conservation through leadership development and education of rural children in Botswana. In addition the trust takes stressed and threatened environments and buffers them with compassionate protection and intelligent management. Our gift-sacred reciprocity- a chance to give back.  
Return To Origin strives to select our accomadation and guides with great care and attention
More than a bed, our ecolodge and tented camps are not only very comfortable, the environment is quietly stunning and peaceful. We are ever conscious of the importance of conservation. 
We will be in communion as we once were and still can be with our animals, indigenous people,  and nature itself. 
Join us on a Return to Origin journey of a lifetime -   a well deserved gift and investment.    Welcome Home! Mbali

And only then, when I have learned enough, I will go to watch the animals, and let something of their composure slowly guide into my limbs; will see my own existence deep in their eyes...
~ Rainer Maria Rilke

Day 1,  September 24, 2018.  Arrival Day, Maun, Botswana
We will be met at Maun airport, by our Guide Alwyn Myburgh, transferred to our hotel to rest. Later -gather, meet and greet over a sumptious dinner.  Overnight- Maun Hotel

Day 2, Sept 25  Kalahari Wilderness, Feline Fields Eco lodge and deep immersion with the Ju/"hoansi Bushmen (3 nights)
Slowly does it. After breakfast we head into the Kalahari  wilderness- Kogu. Settle into our private (secluded) ecolodge. You deserve it!   Greet the land and its co-inhabitants with a slow drive. Later we   join with the Ju/"hoansi Bushmen  and together we will open to the original ways of being with these gentle souls. These ancient ways are still kept alive within this group of people.They hold the key to unlocking the mystery of the ancients for us. 
This is a rare opportunity, as they relentlessly keep their culture (that has all but vanished) alive. Their secret to survival- they are masters in tracking, healing, doctors of plants, expert foragers and story tellers. We will explore what the Bushmen call Ropes To God.  In this environment, they astoundingly continue to live off the land for most of the seasons. Our ecolodge -Kalahari Wilderness 

Day 3,  Sept, 26   Morning bush walk with the Bushmen. 

Any time spent with the Bushmen is an opportunity for opening into ancient ways. Through a translated conversation with them, they will teach us about survival in the desert.  Tonight we  may be offered a dance for healing the community and our group.   I t is a deeply moving and special offering, as we immerse  into our own ancient being.  The trance dance transcends all tiers of Bushman cosmology. Elements from this ritual permeates everyday life. It is the central feature of Bushman culture; and  to enter into the dance literally or as an observer, is to enter into their cosmology. It is the Bushmen's primary expression of religion, medicine, and healing.

Day 4, Sept, 27  Work with the Bushmen

 Today we visit the Hyena dens. Often signs of the local porcupine population might spark the San's interest. 
Our days will focus around the old indigenous ways that are still kept alive.   The outline of this journey to the Ju/"hoansi Bushmen will be a thorough introduction to the people, a sharing of our stories. We share our last night around the fire.

Image courtesy of Alwyn Myburgh

Day 5, Sept, 28  Travel to the Okavanga Delta, Botswana 

From Feline Fields,  we travel with our host and guide, Alwyn Myburgh, in open Safari vehicles to  the banks of the Kwai river, to the Kwai Community Concession managed by a local tribe called the Bayei.  Our community will be waiting to greet us at our already set up  mobile camp.  Comfortable large tents, 2 to a tent.  (Washing and ablution facilities included and are separate from accomodation).  We will immerse in the deep magic of an African Bush. After dinner by candlelight we will regroup around the fire. 

Day 6, Sept, 29  Okavanga Delta 

We will be situated between the Chobe National Park and the Moremi Game reserve where elephants, hippos, lions and a variety of animals roam freely.  It has also become an important late dry spot where the animals stop to drink.
We awake at sunrise with the animals.  We learn to adapt to their habitat, connect with our own wildness, and true essence.  Our magnificent sunsets,  are spent with the animals, sharing an incredible language without words. Together we begin to map our environment.
Day 7, Sept, 30  Okavanga Delta

To walk into the bush is to enter into another world. Knowing the animals are close brings an exhilarating excitement. On foot, we will look for wild foods, medicines as well as the abundance of wild life in the area. No hunting is allowed here.
With deep listening and adaption to our environment, we will begin to understand  the nature of human and animal relationships. As we have tracked ourselves we will begin to understand the story of tracking. 

A member of our circle, 2016 journey. Image courtesy of Patricia Bates 

Day  8, Oct 1st   Okavanga Delta. Tracking 

We will be introduced to tracking through bird language ( Alwyns profound gift) between the animals. Tracking tells a deep story that unveils a life unknown to the human eye. Few people carry the gift the way the indigenous people did. We are fortunate to be in the company of one such person. Alwyn Myburgh will assist us  to begin to understand animal behaviours.  Watching the sunset over the Delta, a pristine landscape with the wild beings at the water hole is an experience that will remain etched in your bones.

Day  9, Oct 2nd  Okavango Delta 

We are weaving our sacred relationships with the natural world. 
 We understand how the ancients lived alongside the animals,  how we once were and can be again. 
We greet the sunrise and spend the day in a ceremony of gratitude and deep remembering of unsurpasable experiences.  Our last day with our guides, community and wild beings. We have lived the questions once bubbling. Our last fireside story telling. 
Day  10, Oct 3rd  Travel day fly home with Africa forever in our hearts.

Our last day is in Botswana. We leave Botswana and fly home. We have deepened in nature, we understand our "Ropes to God" in our connections, with the land, animals and people. 

 I f you wish to fly to other destinations after that,  cost is paid by you and not included in the price and all arrangements must be made by you. Thank YOU.