Exploring the Bwabwata National Park in Namibia

The Bwabwata National Park is in the far northeastern finger of Namibia that lies across the top of Botswana. The park covers an area of 2,422km2 creating the second largest national park in the country after Namib-Naukluft National Park.

This is one of five neighboring national parks located in the northeastern part of Namibia including Mangetti National Park, Khaudom National Park, Mudumu National Park, and Nkasa Rupara National Park. The Caprivi Game Park and the Mahango Game Reserve were combined in 2007 to establish the national park.

The park borders are defined by the Okavango River to the west, the border of Angola to the north, the Kwando River to the east, and the border of Botswana to the south. The ecosystem of the park comprises of Kalahari woodland, Caprivi mopane woodlands, riverine woodlands, shrub savanna biome, Caprivi floodplains, and the Okavango Valley.

Zambezi teak, wild seringa, and African teak are just some of the trees providing shelter for the wildlife of the park. Elephants serve as the backbone of the wildlife species.

Other common wildlife species that visitors often hope to see include lion, leopard, cheetah, hyena, crocodile, giraffe, buffalo, roan antelope, sable antelope, reedbuck, hippopotamus, wildebeest, and zebra.

Bwabwata is also a bird lover’s paradise; it is also recognised internationally as an Important Bird Area to support bird species that are endangered or threatened. Some of the highlight species include wattled crane, African pygmy goose, coppery-tailed coucal, southern ground hornbill, Bennett’s woodpecker, and the wood owl.

Visitors may drive on their own while exploring the national park, however, they are required to have a permit. They are also required to drive solely on designated roads. Four-wheel drive vehicles are able to take advantage of some of the sandy roads along the Kwando River and the Okavango River.

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