Central Kalahari Game Reserve, Botswana | Information on Kalahari | Map of Central Kalahari | Kalahari Accommodation
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explore the central kalahari, botswana
Go explore Africa's Central Kalahari
description - the central kalahari

The Central Kalahari Game Reserve was founded in 1961 and is the second largest conservation area in the world covering 51,800 square km. Its remoteness, unforgiving climate and harsh terrain have kept it pristine and untouched. Those who venture into this remote wilderness are rewarded with wild Africa at its best.

The reserve was created to provide a refuge for the San Bushmen. The Kalahari has been their home for over 30 000 years and their natural environment, the only place they were able to survive. Their traditional lifestyle is all but gone, but some bush survival knowledge is still passed down from generation to generation. Most of the lodges and camps in the area employ and involve people of Bushman origin to guide and teach visitors their ways of old. Their skills are now limited to tourism as their land has been taken over by diamond companies.

Although it has no permanent surface water, the Kalahari is made up of a wide variety of habitats including acacia trees and massive expanses of shimmering, flat grasslands. A variety of grasses, acacia trees and tough drought resistant vegetation cover most of the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. The main source of water for the animals during the dry season is tsamma melons and gemsbok cucumbers found in the shallow valleys of sand.

This is a place where you will find your soul...meet a true African wilderness with loads of open space and magnificent scenery!

map of the central kalahari

mammals of the cenral kalahari game reserve

When visiting the Central Kalahari, you should not expect large concentrations of wildlife although after good rains, herds of gemsbok, springbok and wildebeest can be found in large numbers at times. Plains game include gemsbok, eland, wildebeest, springbok, tsesebe and steenbok. Predators found in the Kalahari are lion, brwin hyena, cheetah, leopard and African wild cat. One predator to keep a look-out for is the majestic black-maned lion that roam these parts of Africa.

Many animals like the suricates (meerkat), mongoose, ground squirrel and even the brown hyena live underground in burrows. It protects them from the heat of the midday sun, and helps them to hide from predators.

Deception Valley is the most famous area, with brilliant game watching.

birds of the central kalahari game reserve
Birdlife is prolific. You'd think in this dry, arid landscape you would be hard pressed to find birds, but they are there in their hundreds! Species to look out for are the crimson breasted shrike, kori bustard, martial eagle and pale chanting goshawk. Redbilled queleas, francolins, chats, bee eaters, weavers and sandgrouse are just a few of the many seed eaters found here. Secretary birds are great to spot as they hunt for lizards, snakes and geckos on the open plains.
access to the central kalahari game reserve
The Central Kalahari has three entrance gates: in the north east Matswere, the western Xade and through Khutse in the south. This is strictly 4x4 only access and you have to be completely self sufficient. It is advisable to travel with two vehicles into the park, especially if venturing into the south of the park. SIngle vehicles should stick to the north of the park, but only in dry season.
reservations for central kalahari game reserve
All bookings must be made through the Botswana Wildlife reservations office or Botswana Tourism's office in Gaborone, and it has to be prebooked.There are a few lodges in the area and some safari operators will take you into this amazing destination.
traveler reviews & comments on the central kalahari game reserve
See what other travelers have to say about the Kalahari

Marcus E, Australia

05 May 2011
There is so much to say about the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. We traveled with a safari operator, so everything was taken care of. The place is wild! It really is very remote and you know you're in the middle of nowhere once camp is set up and you get to take in the isolation and beauty of the place. We saw magnificent wildlife - the black-maned lion was my highlight...read full review
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Central Kalahari Game Reserve, Botswana | Information on Kalahari | Map of Central Kalahari | Kalahari Accommodation
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