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The Central Kalahari



In the late 1970's, the now 'What to Pack on Safari' book, Cry of the Kalahari by Mark and Delia Owens, shed light on a world no-one knew about. They wrote with exaggerated truth the remoteness of this vast reserve, the Central Kalahari Game Reserve (CKGR), full of Lions who had never seen humans, a few remaining bands of Bushmen that ran at the sight of foreign people and herds upon herds of large ungulates that migrated across northern Botswana. The Central Kalahari they knew is surely different to the one few know now, but unlike many other wilderness areas on the continent, the CKGR is so remote and so far away from anything few dare to live anywhere near it and it's ancientness is still very present.




Recently, we spent a week with family enjoying an especially quiet reserve due to Covid. However, inspiringly, a few intrepid international travelers where scattered across the reserve and along with their very distant camping neighbors, enjoyed serenity in a usually very serene place.



The Kalahari is an extremely responsive environment and immediately after rain, especially after the heavy recent rains, life caked in months of dormancy explodes in many forms of color, sound and smell, thousands of tracks tell the tale. The nights are full of barking Geckos that you may struggle to ever see, Jackals call amongst healthy families fat from months of an abundant rodent diet and somewhere quietly, a Leopard walks along a white sandy road scent marking under either star or moonlight and very possibly approaching your campsite. Its a secretive place however, a hallmark of the Kalahari.



The CKGR is unlike many other destinations in Africa. Our industry bows (rightfully so) to the many beautiful savanna safari destinations across the continent alive with romance, the Big Five and beautifully fancy lodges. The CKGR unlike so many other reserves may not have the same 'love at first sight' magic as other destinations, but I have always said its a place that you must come with no expectations and leave with full reward. The experience is slow, that's the pace of the Kalahari, and it takes time for the ancient valleys to reveal the hidden secrets. The beauty is, when they do, it is all to yourself, alone, intimate, free...




Until we meet again, Love from Botswana ...

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