In contrast to other regions in Botswana with their clay coloured landscapes the Makgadigadi Pans is a vast expanse of pristine, sugary white landscapes. The pans cover an area larger than Switzerland, making it one of the biggest salt flats in the world, and change drastically between the wet and dry seasons, playing host to one of nature’s greatest spectacles.
Once a large river-fed lake, the Makgadikgadi Pans now lie saline and empty during the dry season. An abundance of stone tools and artefacts can be found scattered amongst the salty fissures painting a tale of a time when water was more plentiful in the area. These artefacts are between 2,000 to 5000 years old with some predating the era of homo sapiens.
During the wet season, from April to November, some 35-75,000 Antelope, Zebra and Wildebeest migrate into the area. This is the last surviving Zebra and Wildebeest migration in southern Africa and following in their tracks are plenty of large predators such as lion and cheetah which makes for excellent game watching. The first rains replace a seemingly endless lifeless crust with algae covered pools that attract migratory birds such as the Great White Pelicans and one of only two breeding populations of Greater Flamingos in Southern Africa. Witness how a famous grove of baobabs called Baine’s Baobabs stand guard over the unbelievably flat land.
A great way to see the Makgadigadi Pans is by heading out an unforgettable quad bike trail through the endless vistas. This untouched area offers some of the best star gazing in the world. Meet with the San who have mastered survival in this inhospitable land.
The landscape provides a permanent haven for the captivating and engaging meerkats which are famous for semi tameness and human like mannerisms as well as the elusive brown hyaena, the third rarest carnivore in the world! We recommend the famous and stylish Jack’s Camp and excellently located San Camp.