Kgalagadi is Africa’s first transfrontier park, the result of merging the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park in South Africa and the Gemsbok National Park in Botswana. The new park covers an area of approximately 38,000km2, with three quarters of the park lying in Botswana and the remaining quarter in South Africa.
With the park located mainly within the southern Kalahari Desert, it’s only fitting that the word Kgalagadi means “land of thirst” . The dry riverbeds of the Nossob and Auob rivers attest to this, although, after large thunderstorms, these two rivers do flow for a short while. On these occasions, there is a massive celebration as wildlife flock to the riverbeds en masse.
The landscape is characterised by red sand dunes and sparse vegetation and is home to black-maned Kalahari lions, leopards, cheetah, spotted hyaena, wild dog, black-backed jackal, gemsbok, blue wildebeest, eland, springbok, red hartebeest, duiker and steenbok. Some 215 bird species have been recorded.
The area also has significant archaeological importance and traces of Stone Age human activity have been found.
There are three lodges in the park, and they include amenities such as air conditioning and swimming pools. The park also contains six wilderness camps, but these camps only provide basics such as shelter and wash water. Visitors to the wilderness camps must supply their own food, drinking water, and firewood.