In the north-west corner of this otherwise dry country and covering some 16,000 square kilometres, is the maze of channels, lagoons and palm-covered islands that make up the Okavango Delta. This is the largest inland Delta in the world, and never fails to impress even the most jaded of travellers.
Water levels vary on a seasonal basis with the rains in the Angolan highlands actually contributing more water that the rains falling on the Delta during the November to March period. Thus the annual flooding of the delta, waited for with baited breath, usually, starts in April or May, and can continue for some months.
The Delta is fed by the Kavango River (renamed the Okavango in Botswana). The waters are crystal clear, and are best navigated by traditional mekoro (dug-out canoes), many of which are now made of fibre glass, to preserve the majestic trees in the Delta, that were traditionally used
These pans are the remnants of the once great Lake Makgadikgadi that certainly existed 2 million years ago, and is thought to have dried up around 1500 years ago. The lake was 80,000 square kilometres in extent, and up to 55 metres deep, this was the largest inland sea in Africa. Over the years both climatic changes and tectonic activity have drained the water completely.
The vast areas that were once the bottom of the lake are now hard, salt-saturated clay. Nothing grows on them – no plants, no grass, no trees. The ancient shoreline is clearly visible – irrefutable proof that the lake did exist.
The effect is both awesome and thought to provoke – 360º of absolutely nothing except a deep blue cloudless sky and a blindingly white salt surface. Exploring the Pans on 4×4 Quad motorcycles enables you to explore them without harming the fragile environment, and is enormous fun!
The largest of the Pans is Makgadikgadi Pan, which is made up of Ntwetwe and Sowa (Sua) Pans, both are huge – Sowa is over 100 km in length and 45 km wide.
Chobe National Park
The Chobe National Park, which is the second largest national park in Botswana and covers 10,566 square kilometres, it has one of the greatest concentrations of game found on the African continent.
Its uniqueness in the abundance of wildlife and the true African nature of the region offers a safari experience of a lifetime.
The Park is ideally located in the northeastern part of Botswana, a short 80km drive from the Victoria Falls.