Central Kalahari
Botswana Safari Guide

© Oryx and Imapala. The Kalahari may be semi-desert, but it teems with wildlife

For an African Safari with a difference there is no rival to Botswana's Central Kalahari Game Reserve, a place where you can still experience an ancient culture in natural surroundings.

Set aside for the use of the Bushmen to continue their traditional way of life the Central Kalahari Game Reserve is now been geared more towards tourism. At one time the park was the largest in the world and at more than 50 000 km2 it is still one of the largest protected areas.

A Desert of Wildlife

Lying in the heart of Botswana's vast central interior the Central Kalahari, with its well vegetated dunes and valleys, supports a surprising diversity of wildlife. With the coming of the rains the valleys green up, attracting thousands of grazers and predators.

The original ideals of the reserve have been forgotten over time. The Bushmen are still there but they have been moved into more manageable settlements and the mineral prospectors have moved in. As with the government policy of tourism development new concession areas have been allocated in certain areas of the park for the development of lodges.

Central Kalahari Highlights

  • Magnificent cloud formations during the summer rains
  • Thousands of grazing animals on the grass plains during February to April
  • Good numbers of ostrich and giraffe, herds of wildebeest, excellent cheetah and the Kalahari's famous black-maned lions
  • Fascinating reptiles, scorpions and insects
  • Spectacular African starry night skies
  • Bushman communities have survived in the area for centuries
  • Prime wildlife viewing areas such as Deception Valley and Sunday Pan

Best time to visit Central Kalahari: Good to visit all year round. During the rainy season the grass is lush and the wildlife concentrates in the ancient river beds. The birdlife is also spectacular at this time of the year.

The dry winter months have their own attractions although the wildlife may be spread out due to lack of water.

Central Kalahari Accommodation

There was a time when the only accommodation available in the Central Kalahari was rustic tented but in the last few years a number of lodges have been set up in the Game Reserve and on the surrounding properties, allowing for a wide choice for visitors today.
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