MENO A KWENA – MAKGADIKGADI PANS NATIONAL PARK

Meno a Kwena is perched on a cliff overlooking the Boteti River and Makgadikgadi Pans National Park – a completely contrasting location in terms of wildlife and habitat to the Okavango Delta regions.

Watch the wildlife at the river below from the comfort of your private veranda – in the dry season there is no other water around and the Boteti River becomes a magnet for wildlife. During April the arrival of the tens of thousands of zebra in a dazzle of black and white stripes is one of the many highlights. The position of the camp overlooking the Boteti is the best spot in the area for migration viewing and the sightings are astonishing.

Whilst staying at Meno a Kwena you can enjoy a wide range of thrilling activities and you can learn a little about the traditional Botswana way of life with a visit to the local village.

The camp is great value for money and an excellent choice for families – there’s a natural swimming pool and plenty of nooks and crannies for kids to explore and watch the action at the river below.

LOCATION

Meno a Kwena is located on tribal land on the western boundary of the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park overlooking the Boteti River in southern Botswana.

CAMP

Meno a Kwena is a simple but very comfortable camp with just 10 classic tents perched on a 100-foot high clifftop overlooking the river and offering some fantastic ‘armchair’ game viewing. The tents are classically-styled with a few eccentricities thrown in – think locally-woven fabrics mixed with colonial-style furniture and simple fittings brightened by snippets of colour. All have fully-equipped ensuite bathrooms and there are two family units which have inter-leading tents – one with three beds for children, one with 2 beds – pictured below.

The canvas lounge and dining tents are piled high with books and trinkets and decorated with old-world artefacts including a sculpted crocodile – Meno a Kwena literally translates as “teeth of the crocodile”.

The camp has a natural swimming pool overlooking the Boteti River – ideal for keeping cool whilst viewing game below in the river!

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ACTIVITIES

Meno a Kwena is located on tribal land on the western boundary of the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park overlooking the exceptionally beautiful Boteti River. In the desert water means life and the Boteti is the only permanent water source in the area attracting a rich array of resident game and migratory wildlife.

The camp is almost exactly halfway between the unique Okavango Delta region and the drier southern regions. Head into the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park where baobabs stand above the shimmering expanses of crusted salt or discover Nxai Pan National Park with its endless landscapes dotted with umbrella acacias and clumps of mopane woodland.

Over 30,000 zebra and wildebeest migrate across the Makgadikgadi Pans and as the pans dry from April onwards the zebra complete their journey at the Boteti River in an explosion of black and white stripes followed closely by predators: lion with their impressive black manes, leopard and cheetah, packs of wild dog, and jackal.

Meno a Kwena is open all year round and almost every month heralds a different highlight. During the dry season from April to October the Boteti River is the only source of water for miles around and hundreds of animals – predators and prey – assemble on the banks, making for truly remarkable game viewing. April is the culmination of the Africa’s second largest mammal migration, and the wildebeest and zebra join the resident wildlife at the river in their masses.

In the Makgadikgadi, the lunar-like salt flats glint in the sunlight and a haze shimmers above the ground. This is the desert in its most iconic state, and a jaw-droppingly magical sight.

As the clouds gather and the rains begin to fall in the wet season, the Makgadikgadi is transformed into a blanket of glittering, green grass and the migration begin their journey back to the salt pans lured by the promise of nutrients and to breed in the fertile environment.

Full Day Game Drive within the Makgadikgadi National Park – departing camp shortly after breakfast you can enjoy a full day of game viewing within the Makgadikgadi National Park. After a 90 min transfer to the Park gates you will spend the day searching for the plethora of species. Lunch and tea are taken in picturesque locations along the bank of the Boteti River – often with elephants and antelope for company.

Bushman Walking Experience – small families of Bushman from the Ju! Hoansi clan village of Xai Xai on the Botswana/Namibia border of the Kalahari Desert come to Meno a Kwena to share their knowledge of one of the last great nomadic tribes. This immensely interesting walking and cultural experience gives you an insight into their hunter/gatherer way of life as they have coexisted with wildlife for thousands of years. This gentle walk is very popular and appeals to all ages.

Floating Hide – the floating hide is an additional activity that enhances the wildlife viewing opportunities right in front of camp. The hide offers you a new perspective to the wildlife activity in and around the river.

Boat Safari – depending on the height of the Boteti River you can take a 2 hour cruise along the river spotting many interesting birds that are nesting in the banks as well as a closer view of any mega fauna that is at the water’s edge. Game drives into the National Park include a short boat transfer across the Boteti River.

Pans Sleep-out (June – October & subject to weather conditions) – the Pans Sleep Out requires a minimum 3 night stay and a minimum 2 guests. You will depart Meno a Kwena after breakfast following your first night’s stay and drive to the edge of the salt pans for a picnic lunch (approximately 3-4 hours’ drive). Following an open-air siesta, you continue to your campsite in time for sundowners. After a campfire dinner you will sleep under the vast skies with a myriad of spectacular stars to accompany you.

The following day you return to camp after a delicious breakfast at sunrise in time to join the Bushmen for a cultural walking experience and your final night with us. Please note that the sleep out must be booked in advance.

MENO A KWENA IS OPEN ALL YEAR ROUND

THE LODGE WELCOMES FAMILIES WITH CHILDREN OF ALL AGES. CHILDREN OF ALL AGES CAN JOIN THE BUSHMEN WALKS AND BOAT SAFARIS.

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Call +44 1386 830264 or Email [email protected]

Our expert staff are on-hand, happy to assist with any enquiry you have.

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