Reasons to Visit
The Okavango Delta is a labyrinth of waterways linking secret lagoons and marshlands, where hippo splash in the water and elephants drink at the shallows. Boat trips take you to inaccessible locations and hidden islands for a glorious spot of solitude and wildlife spotting, before a relaxing sundowner drink amongst the reeds.
On a game drive in the Delta, Linyanti or Chobe, you soon discover Botswana’s phenomenal array of wildlife. Lions are often on the prowl in the morning while night drives increase your chances of spotting leopard and other nocturnal species. As well as the cats there are thriving populations of elephant, hippo, giraffe, buffalo and even wild dog.
From the water birds of the Delta to the sand grouse of the Kalahari and flamingos on the Makgadikgadi Pans, Botswana is a twitcher’s paradise. Rare species like the Pel’s fishing owl, and African pygmy goose are commonly found, with a trip to Chobe, the Delta and the Kalahari offering an unrivalled level of ornithological interest.
Bushman history is an intrinsic element in the evolution of humanity, and nowhere is this more apparent than in Botswana. Bushman communities have survived on the Makgadikgadi Pans and in areas of western Botswana for centuries. A visit there now allows you to interact with them, experiencing first hand how they cook, hunt, eat and live.
Slipping through the Delta's mazy waterways and tall papyrus in a mokoro is the most relaxing way to view game. Serenely moving along with only the gurgle of the water passing under your craft, you encounter lechwe grazing in the shallows, kingfishers perched on overhanging branches and crocodiles lurking in dark corners.
On the Makgadikgadi Pans you experience an ethereal lunar landscape unlike anywhere else in Africa. It is possible to see the curvature of the earth, sleep out under the stars, and at some times of the year watch a great wildlife migration. Although more thickly vegetated, Nxai and Tau Pans also offer unique landscapes and habitats.
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Africa and The Indian Ocean
The Nxai Pan National Park is situated on the northern fringes of the ancient Makgadikgadi Lake basin. Being ancient salt lakes, the park itself is very flat with huge open grasslands and is most famous for Baine's Baobab trees.
The Nxai Pan National Park is situated on the northern fringes of the ancient Makgadikgadi Lake basin. The park covers a vast area, comprising Nxai Pan itself, Kgama-Kgama Pan to the northeast, and the Kudiakam Pans to the south.
The pans themselves are ancient salt lakes, ringed to the south and west with thick fossil dunes of wind-blown Kalahari sand. The park itself is very flat, huge open grasslands with the famous Baine's Baobabs being the most striking landmarks.
After good rains in the area, Nxai Pan is covered in lush green grass. This attracts huge concentrations of Burchell's zebra, blue wildebeest and springbok, while healthy numbers of other grazers include gemsbok, eland and red hartebeest. Large giraffe herds move across the pans between the acacia islands, which they prune into characteristic hourglass shapes.
The mopane woodland shelters browsers such as impala and kudu, which often venture out onto the pans for the permanent waterholes and rich mineral salts.
In summer, small herds of breeding elephant can sometimes be seen as well as the occasional tsessebe. In winter the great herds disperse from the pans, leaving few grazers except the hardy springbok, and a few timid steenbok that find shelter in the thickets.
Predators are well represented with lion, cheetah, hyena and wild dogs at sporadic intervals. A particular delight are all the smaller animals such as honey badgers, bat-eared foxes, African wildcats, banded mongoose, spring hare and porcupines.
The annual flooding of the Okavango Delta into the rippling sands of the Kalahari, disperses in a myriad of waterways and twinkling lagoons, creating a delicate web of life. Using interactive maps, find out the best time to visit and our recommended Okavango accommodation options.
91 miles away
98 miles away
110 miles away
112 miles away
Include a visit to Nxai Pan National Park on your tailor-made trip around Botswana by contacting one of our specialists...
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