The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency Tour

As seen in the film of the same name on BBC, visit Mochudi and Gaborone and see where Mma Ramotswe and Mr J.L.B. Matekoni live on the Mma Ramotswe Tour. This one or two day exploration gives a comprehensive look at the world of the No. 1 Ladies' Detective.




Alexander "Sandy" McCall Smith and the Rev. (now Bishop) Trevor Mwamba at a gathering in Dr. Moffet's garden

The tour is given by Tim Race, a friend of Alexander "Sandy" McCall Smith and son-in-law of the real-life Dr. Moffet (Tim is married to Dr. Moffet's daughter Claire, who is a Dr. Moffet as well.). Peter worked with Tim conducting the tour for foreign guests to Botswana. So, come have a cup of red bush tea on the veranda of the President's Hotel and watch Botswana's vibrant culture wander by. While in Botswana, we had the distinct pleasure of getting to know Sandy, who is as nice a man as Mma Ramotswe is a decent woman. Sandy's powers of speech-making are only rivaled by the Bishop Trevor Mwumba. Trevor is also a wonderful man whom we had the opportunity to spend quite a bit of time with while working on a fund raising event.

On the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency Tour (see itinerary below) you will get an indepth visit proving the charm of Botswana doesn't exist only in Sandy's works of fiction:

Day One

You'll be met at your hotel by your guide in a customized Land Rover (Tim and his father are Land Rover Enthusiast magazine's southern Africa correspondents).

Leave for Mochudi, Mma Ramotswe's ancestral home. Upon arriving in Mochudi, you will first visit the Kgotla or traditional court. Here, in keeping with Tswana traditions, you will pay your respects to the Kgosi (or Chief). Recently, Kgosi Mothele took over the responsiblities of the Kgotla from his uncle, Paramount Chief Linchwe. [Cecilia and I were fortunate enough to be granted an interview with Kgosi Mothele for a travel article she was writing. He is a former school teacher who has taken on his hereditary responsibilities. He said what troubled him the most is presiding over cases involving children staying in school. We found he had a quiet sense of greatness about him.]

You'll then visit the fascinating Phutadikobo Museum run by Sandy Grant. Sandy's photos have illustrated the covers of McCall Smith's Mma Ramotswe series and he gives a wonderfully illustrated background to where Mma Ramotswe comes from. Here you will also get a chance to purchase postcards, reading material and crafts from Botswana.

After the museum, you'll visit a traditional home much like the one Precious would have grown up in, then have lunch at a local restaurant. With vibrant music and a bustling atmosphere you'll sample traditional cooking, the usual fare being chicken or beef, rice, maize pap and salads. After lunch, you will visit the spot where McCall Smith 'met' Mma Ramotswe - more accurately, the lady who provided the inspiration for the character, and hear the story behind this…

Depart Mochudi for Gaborone where you see Kgale Hill where the detective agency office would have been, then pass by Mma Ramotswe's rambling house in Zebra Drive, and then sip red bush tea on the veranda of the President Hotel. Right in front of the hotel, on the Main Mall are a number of craft sellers. You won't want to miss them!

Drop off at your hotel.

Day Two (optional)

You'll again be met at your hotel by your guide.

After a hearty breakfast, call in at Mokolodi Nature Reserve where Peter and Cecilia hosted McCall Smith for a book signing that was attended by Dr. Masire, former President of Botswana. This reading and further filming around Mokolodi for a BBC special about McCall Smith gave Sandy an idea for a plot that is now incorporated into his 7th book in which Mma Ramotswe visits Mokolodi.. At Mokolodi we meet our tracker for 2 hours of light exercise practicing some bush detective work with giraffe or rhino tracking. This was a young Precious Ramotswe's favourite activity when out in the bush with her Daddy.

Leave Mokolodi and make our way out of the reserve after lunch and resume the trail of Mma Ramotswe around the bustling city streets of Gaborone. On this tour we have the opportunity of meeting real characters from the books, but please note that as none of these individuals is in our employ, we cannot guarantee their schedules..

The tour is priced at $125 for the one day tour and $400 for the two day tour (includes accomadates for 1 night). This includes lunches, dinner for Day One and breakfast on Day Two. We can also arrange for your transportation to Gaborone and your hotel.

For more information about Cecilia's project to help remote area dwellers and women in Botswana!

Womens Work Botswana


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