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The Makgadikgadi Pans is a place like none other. Mile upon mile of shimmering white salt pan stretches endlessly to the horizon.

Around the fringes, coarse grasses blow in the wind, ancient baobabs reach to the sky and vultures soar on the thermals. There are prehistoric beaches, Stone Age ruins and salty whirlwinds spinning over cracked earth.

Wildlife of the Makgadikgadi Pans

MeerkatsThe pans are the relics of Africa's 'super-lake' that covered the Kalahari several million years ago and are littered with the fossils of the changing ecosystems that followed. Nowadays, the wildlife is both hardy and highly nomadic. Meerkats, mongooses, brown hyena, aardvark and aardwolf are present all year round. Secretary birds, ostrich and korhaans step through the grass and bateleurs soar overhead. When the rains arrive a dramatic change takes place. Pink clouds of flamingo come to feed, vast herds of zebra and wildebeest are found on the savannah and the sound of frogs fills the air.

Camps of the Makgadikgadi Pans

There are two small camps in the Makgadikgadi, and whether you stay in the dry or rainy season they both offer a unique Makgadikgadi experience You will have the opportunity to quad-bike across a saltpan with a kikoi on your head, lie on the desert floor looking for shooting stars and watch the earths shadow grow as the sun sets. A stay on the Makgadikgadi is always an experience you never forget.

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who's been there

Audley Travel specialist Georgie

Start planning your tailor-made trip to Makgadikgadi Pans, Kalahari by contacting one of our Botswana specialists

Suggested itineraries featuring Makgadikgadi Pans, Kalahari

This sample itinerary will give you an idea of what is possible when you travel in Makgadikgadi Pans, Kalahari, and showcases routes we know work particularly well. Treat this as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.

Map of Makgadikgadi Pans, Kalahari

Places & hotels on the map

    Places near Makgadikgadi Pans, Kalahari

    Accommodation choices for Makgadikgadi Pans, Kalahari

    We’ve selected a range of accommodation options for when you visit Makgadikgadi Pans, Kalahari. Our choices usually come recommended for their character, facilities and service or location. Our specialists always aim to suggest properties that match your preferences.

    • Each tent overlooks the Boteti River

      Meno A Kwena

      First Class

      Enjoying elevated views over the Boteti River, Meno A Kwena is a classic tented camp that harks back to early exploration. It offers a range of activities exploring the area’s wildlife, culture and landscape.

    • Camp Kalahari, Makgadikgadi Pans National Park

      Camp Kalahari

      Medium

      A simple bush camp filled with adventure, Camp Kalahari has a rustic, traditional feel reminiscent of the camps used by explorers of old. Staying in tented accommodation, you’ll have access to activities that make the most of the unique salt pan location.

    • Planet Baobab, Makgadikgadi Pans

      Planet Baobab

      Basic

      Planet Baobab has eight en suite Bakalanga mud huts which have been inspired by the traditional homes of Botswana. All of these huts are different in style and design and have their own private veranda decorated with local artwork.