The Central Kalahari Game Reserve, which is the second largest game reserve in the world, lies in the Kalahari Desert in Central Botswana and covers over 20,000 square miles (52,000 sq. km). The reserve was initially set aside for the bushman to continue their hunting and gathering lifestyle which has changed little in the 30,000 years they have made this hauntingly beautiful land their home.
One of the more popular areas of the Kalahari is Deception Valley. The valley is all that remains of a sprawling riverbed that has long since dried up and is now covered with short grass, dotted with the occasional island of acacia trees. Some of the roots of the larger trees extend as far as 50m below the surface to the water table, enabling them to survive the dry winters here, providing shade to the lions and other wildlife.
There are very few permanent accommodations in the Kalahari, so while on safari to this area you will most likely overnight in a mobile camp, or at the luxurious and small Deception Valley Lodge.
Park Size: 20,390 sq. miles – 52,800 sq. kilometers
Ecosystems: Acacia Woodland, Acacia Scrub, Terminalia Sericea, Sand dunes
Wildlife: Springbok, gemsbok, wildebeest. Lion, cheetah, jackal, hartebeest, steenbok, giraffe, kudu, warthog, hyena, bat-eared fox, ostrich
When to go: Anytime is good. December – May during rainy season is best
Highlights: game drives, night game drives, walking, cultural encounters
Trips that Visit Central Kalahari Game Reserve:
Desert and Delta Safari