Makgadikgadi Pans, Kalahari Desert, Botswana
Run by Uncharted Africa Safaris, the simple and rustic little Camp Kalahari is found in the incredible Makgadikgadi Pans, and offers guests the chance to explore the vast and ever-changing moonscape of the pans by vehicle, on horseback or on foot.
At a Glance
Explore the lunar landscape of the breathtaking Makgadikgadi Pans
The camp accepts children of all ages and is a perfect spot for families
Excellent cuisine - make sure you try the Pilli Pilli Ho Ho - a concoction of chillies in sherry and gin!
Come at the beginning of the wet season in November to see the landscape transform
Come in the dry season for some adrenaline-inducing quadbiking across the Pans
Did you know this was location for Taylor Swift’s Wildest Dreams music video?Scott Dunn team
The pool area is the perfect place to relax for your siesta as it is always lovely and cool. If you are lucky, you may also meet some ellies coming for a drink!Scott Dunn team
With ten well-spaced and en-suite meru tents, Camp Kalahari is an intimate camp, and part of the Uncharted Africa family which includes Jack's Camp and San Camp, both also in the Makgadkgadi Pans.
Camp Kalahari is Jack's and San's little brother; simple and authentic, with a traditional thatched lounge, a library and a dining area where guests meet in the evening for delicious hearty meals, prepared by the camps chefs. The tents are simple, dotted fairly far apart and each feature an en-suite, which opens to the stars. Camp Kalahari also offers the benefit of a family tent, Tent Ten; two merus with a shared en suite bathroom. As at Jack's and San, the camp prides itself on no electricity, instead being lit by spirit lamps at night, giving a wonderful and atmospheric feel! A recent addition is the plunge pool with its raised deck and thatched pavilion, a great place to base yourself during a hot Kalahari afternoon.
The main attraction here is the myriad of activities the camp offers both in the dry and wet seasons. Day and night game drives are on offer all year round. Highlights of the wet season include 4X4 safaris seeking Southern Africa's largest land migration of wildebeest and zebra, both within the concession and further into the Makgadikgadi National Park. In the dry season the vast Ntwetwe Pan becomes accessible and is best explored, true explorer style, by quad bike. The quads are light on the salt-crust of these fragile pans, and the views to the horizon are nothing short of breathtaking!
Throughout the year you can choose to visit a family of meerkats near the camp - spending a morning with them. This is a wonderful experience - through extended research the meerkats have been habituated to human presence and will, if you sit down long enough, scramble up you and perch on your head - all the better to see further! You can spend the entire morning with them, watching them as they forage for grubs and scorpions - their favorite food!
Nearby there is also the famous Chapman's Baobab - this is an incredible, historic sight - the baobab is estimated to be over 4,500 years old and can be seen for many miles around.
Camp Kalahari is used as the base for the Makgadikgadi section of our Saddle and Paddle trip - ask us for more details.
Camp Kalahari has 10 Meru tents. There is a choice of seven twin tents, two double tents and one family unit which comprises of two twin connecting tents. All the tents have en-suite outdoor bathrooms which feature flushing lavatories and hot showers. The interior of the tents are very classic in appearance with comfy beds, crisp sheets and stripy African blankets. During the colder months, hot water bottles are provided.
Children of all ages are welcomed at the camp. The family tent is a good choice of accommodation with its interconnecting rooms, sleeping up to 5, and inter-leading bathroom. Alternatively, for children below the age of 12 years, a rollaway bed can be put in their parents bedroom as it is not recommended that they stay alone.
Location & Directions
Makgadikgadi Pans, Kalahari Desert, Botswana
Camp Kalahari is situated in a remote part of the Central Kalahari Game Reserve (CKGR) and offers some of the best summer wildlife viewing opportunities in Africa. Located in the Kalahari Desert biome in the central part of Botswana, this reserve is the largest conservation area in this country and at 5 million hectares (12 million acres), one of the largest in the world.
When to go
Botswana’s winter is May to October when the weather is hot during the day (not stiflingly hot) and cold at night. Botswana's summer months (November to April) can be hot and humid and there is a chance of rain. Botswana has one rainy season which runs between mid-December and runs through to mid-March.