The vast Kalahari has a magic all of its own, which guests experience at the Deception Valley Lodge in Botswana. This family-owned lodge set in a 15,000 ha. private reserve bordering on the Central Kalahari Game Reserve makes a comfortable base to encounter the majestic black-maned Kalahari lion, to experience the culture of the original Bushman inhabitants and to relax under the immense star-filled African skies. Easily accessible with its own airstrip, Deception Valley is beautifully positioned overlooking a waterhole and has a swimming pool for cooling off on hot afternoons in between game drives and bush walks.
The eight individual thatched suites are very spacious, with high ceilings, twin or king-sized beds draped in mosquito netting and cooled with ceiling fans, comfortable lounge area with mini-bar and an airy en-suite bathroom with Victorian bathtub and outdoor shower. Raised on wooden decks to minimise the impact on the environment, they each have a private verandah and are linked to the main lodge by wooden walkways.
The personal touch is what makes a stay here so special, owned and run by two generations of the family, who grew up in the Kalahari, are incredibly knowledgeable about the land and the wildlife, and are close friends with the San bushmen now resident on the reserve. Guests benefit from this closeness, taking a fascinating walk with a few of the San people and gaining remarkable insight into a way of life in harmony with this arid and beautiful landscape. Expert trackers accompany day and night drives with excellent lion sightings as well as a diverse amount of wildlife, including leopard, wildebeest, warthogs, oryx, honey badger and aardwolf. Porcupines even visit the lodge itself, often joining guests at dinners, which are memorable for the food as well as the wildlife, surpassing expectations of such a remote location and served with gracious hospitality and a wealth of stories.
Star-gazing in the boma around the fire, or setting out on a game drive at sunrise, the magic of this pristine corner of Africa slips into the soul, an introduction to the real Kalahari that is an essential part of a Botswana vacation.