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National Game Parks Caprivi

National game parks in The Caprivi Strip region of northern Namibia, little know and a great african safari location for those who prefer solitude and game viewing

 

National parks within the Caprivi Strip: :

Map of Caprivi

Bwabwata (formerly Caprivi Game Reserve)

Mudumu

Mamili

Mahangu

Permits for park campsites can be obtained from the office in Katima Mulilo or from the field offices at Susuwe, Nakatwa and the northern gate of Mamili National Park

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Access

The easiest way to access this region is by scheduled flight to Victoria falls in Zimbabwe or Livingstone in Zambia followed by a road, or light aircraft transfer.

By houseboat on the Zambezi river is the slower but more romantic way

The highlight of a visit to this area is gently gliding on a river boat and watching a host of wildlife on the river banks that can include: lion, elephant, buffalo, crocodile and hippopotamus lazily sunning themselves on the river bank. There are few tourist facilities and the terrain is extremely sandy – a 4X4 vehicle is a pre-requisite.

Bwabwata Game Reserve (Caprivi G.R)

The Bwabwata - formerly Caprivi Game Park is 5715km2 and extends for about 180km from the Kavango River in the west to the Kwando River in the east. It is a region of swamps and flood plains.

Best time to visit: Throughout the year.

Wildlife: Elephant, buffalo, hippo crocs, roan antelope,kudu, buffalo occur towards the west and plenty of water fowl . As many as 339 bird species have been recorded in west Caprivi.

Access: Entrances to this reserve are at Bagani in the west and Kongola in the east. From Rundu follow the road east wards in the direction of Katima Mulilo. These roads pass through the game park.

There are several safari lodges in the area and activities include fishing, hiking, game-viewing safaris or a river trip in the traditional mokoro

Catch and release fishing is also offered by lodges, and is said to be some of the very best in Southern African fresh waters

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Mudumu National Park

The more northerly of the region's two new reserves, Mudumu, covers 850km² of riverine forest south of Kongola, either side of the D3511.

Mudumu National Park is a vast 100,959 hectare expanse of dense savannah and mopane woodland with the Kwando River at its western border. The park is home to small populations of sitatunga and red lechwe while spotted neck otter, hippo and crocodile inhabit the waterways

Together with Mamili and the Triangle, Mudumu is notable for its buffalo (otherwise uncommon in Namibia), roan and sable antelope (both generally uncommon species), the water-loving lechwe and sitatunga, and often large herds of elephant.

Mudumu can be explored on foot or by 4WD, though don't expect much organisation or many clearly marked game drives. To stay here, the choice is either an unfenced campsite with river water and basic sanitation, Nakatwa Nature Conservation Camp, or one of the lodges by the river. If you opt to camp, then follow the signs to the camp and note that the reserve, which is not fenced or clearly demarcated, borders onto hunting areas

Mudumu National park
Can be reached turning off B8 onto D3511 after Kongola bridge travelling east. Permits are obtainable in Katima Mulilo.

No accommodation or facilities are available from parks board. There are however several privately owned lodges

The park is located within high risk malaria area. Precautions are necessary.

Please remember that crocodiles and hippos are always present in the waterways and caution have to be exercised at all times.

The park is also a home to more than 400 bird species.

Mammals are represented by antelopes, elephants, Burchell's zebras, red lechwe, sable and roan antelopes and buffaloes

Mamili National Park

Mamili park is 32 000 ha and was established in 1990 (the same time as Mudumu park). The park is located 30 kilometres south of Mudumu along D3511.
PLEASE NOTE: DRIVING IN A MINIMUM OF TWO VEHICLES GROUPS ARE STRONGLY RECOMMENDED!

The wild and little visited Mamili National Park is Namibia's equivalent of the Okavango Delta, a watery wonderland of wildlife rich islands, river channels and wetlands. The focal points of the 320km2 national park are Nkasa and Lupala, two large islands in the Kwando/Linyati river. During the dry season the islands can be reached by road but after the rains 80% of the area becomes flooded, cutting them off from the mainland

For campers who like to rough it, Mamili offers basic camp sites, there are no facilities so visitors have to be completely self sufficient. Animals to be encountered are elephant, buffalo, roan, sable, kudu, impala, oribi, zebra, wild dog as well as some 430 species of birds

Floodplains provide ideal protection for swamp and floodplain mammals such as the sitatunga and red lechwe, buffalo, wild dog and it is the last stronghold of the remnant population of Puka. Wattled cranes have been recorded breeding here

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Popa Falls Rest Camp

Situated on the banks of the Okavango River offers good tiger fishing, with accommodation consisting of huts and campsites in a quiet and peaceful setting. Visitors are warned to be careful as crocodiles and hippos abound in the main stream of the river.

Mahangu Game Reserve

Some 12km to the south of Popa Falls is Mahangu Game Reserve which caters only for day visitors with four-wheel-drive vehicles. Elephants, buffalo and lechwe are quite common here

* Houseboats on the Zambezi and Okavango Rivers

Your Best Options for a relaxing holiday in the Caprivi Strip:

Mobile Camping Safaris - Most start at Victoria Falls and are affordable

Accommodation. Book through us and we will tell you which lodges offer pick ups from even Victoria Falls, which ones are accessible in a 2 wheel or 4x4 vehicle.

Some of the lodges offer excursions to the little known game reserves of Mamili and Mudumu and some offer overnight canoe trips sleeping on sand banks.

Activities and tourist attractions - Caprivi Strip

* Tiger fishing on the Zambezi and year round fishing for 93 different species

* Four national parks in the Caprivi. Map

Mamili National Park (320 km²) on the Kwando river is a winter park, being 80% underwater during the summer rains. Buffalo and elephant herds are good. 4x4 only.

Mudumu National Park (1 000 km²) is nearby and also on the Kwando river. It is higher and drier, rich in herbivores and predators. 4x4 only

Mahangu Game Reserve (245 km²) is en route to the Okavango delta from Divundu. It seldom disappoints and is also a good birding spot. It's also accessible in 2 wheel drive vehicles and the main road to Botswana passes through it.

Bwabwata - formerly Caprivi Game Reserve This 32km-wide caprivi park of 5 715km² extends for about 180 km from the Okavango River to the Kwando River. The main road goes straight through it and it is wiser to keep to the speed limit as elephants and game do cross unexpectedly. There are a number of camping sites and lodges (mainly near both rivers). This broad-leafed woodland is more of a game management area as the villagers who have lived here for the past thousand years still do. Buffalo Park section just before the Kavango river is the best place to view game.

Popa Game park is a tiny one on the Kavango near Divundu and the Popa Rapids

* Birding : With more than 450 species recorded in this small area, the Caprivi Strip is one of southern Africa's top birding spots

 

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