Splashing about – photo © Families Worldwide

The encounter: Get up close and personal with meerkats on safari in the Kalahari Desert, Botswana. The inquisitive creatures may even clamber onto your head to watch out for predators.

What’s involved: The meerkat experience forms part of a stay at Jack’s Camp, a palatial tented camp in Makgadikgadi Pans in the heart of the Kalahari. An ongoing habituation programme means the fascinating creatures have lost their fear of people, happily using them as lookout posts. Other activities at Jack’s include game walks with a bushman guide, quad bikes and tracking elusive brown hyena.

Do it: Owned and run by Botswana-based Uncharted Africa Safari Co, Jack’s Camp is featured by Aardvark Safaris, with three nights there costing from £2,920. www.aardvarksafaris.co.uk

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