About Moremi Game reserve
Moremi Game reserve was the first game reserve in Botswana to be declared by a local tribe, in this case the BaTawana tribe. In 1963, the widow of Chief Moremi III set this land aside to protect it for future generations. The area was later enlarged to encompass a greater portion of the Okavango Delta. The present day park occupies an area of around 4,800km2and includes Chief’s Island, the largest island in the Okavango. It is home to large numbers of wildlife, major predators are lion, leopard, spotted hyena, wild dog and cheetah. Diverse habitats within the park include the semi-arid mopane scrub (a locally abundant tree species), in the wetter areas mixed woodland, tall mopane woodland (also known as cathedral mopane), mixed woodland, riparian woodland and large grassland areas ensure a diversity of game and birdlife. Activities within the Moremi Game Reserve include game drives, Mokoro (dug-out canoe) Excursions & Motor Boat Excursions
Facts abt Moremi Gare Reserve
- Moremi was designated as a Game Reserve, and not a National Park, when it was created. This designation meant local people, the BaSarwa or Bushmen that lived there were allowed to stay in the reserve
- The Moremi Game Reserve covers much of the eastern side of the Okavango Delta and combines permanent water with drier areas, which create some startling and unexpected contrasts
- Although just under 5,000 square kilometres (1,900 sq mi) in extent, it is a surprisingly diverse Reserve, combining mopane woodland and acacia forests, floodplains and lagoons.
- Only about 30% of the Reserve is mainland, with the bulk being within the Okavango Delta itself
- The Moremi Game Reserve, although not one of the largest parks, presents insights and views even for the most experienced of travelers. It is home to nearly 500 species of bird
Where to visit in Moremi Game Reserve
Despite what you might imagine, many areas within the Okavango Delta are largely dry. Chief's Island is huge and perhaps the Okavango's most famous island. It was once the royal hunting reserve of Chief Moremi, the traditional leader of the local tribes. He gave it to supplement Moremi Game Reserve in the 1970s, and it is now one of the region's best areas for game. Although part of the Moremi Game Reserve, Chief's Island is private. Though camps here do still abide by the national park's rules on walking and driving at night, you will have a very personal, undisturbed time here.
On the northeast tip of Moremi, Khwai River is a lovely area where tall evergreen trees line a wide floodplain. It boasts an excellent density and diversity of predator and prey species. In recent years there's been a large pride of lion here, hunting buffalo and elephant, while leopard sightings are consistently good. Saddle-billed storks, wattled cranes and many species of kingfishers and bee-eaters are common.
On the north side of the Khwai River, you can stay at the Khwai River Lodge, which overlooks Moremi Game Reserve in a particularly scenic area.
In the heart of Moremi, at the tip of the Mopane Tongue, lies Xakanaxa Lagoon. Here the mopane forests meet a patchwork of deep waterways and shallow flooded areas. It's unforgettably beautiful and packed with game. Leopard and cheetah are regularly seen and the density of antelope is amazing. The area's birdlife is exceptionally varied, from innumerable herons, egrets, storks and other waders to many species of harriers, buzzards and kites.
A short drive from Xakanaxa, in the heart of Moremi, Third Bridge stands on an island with plenty of thickets and several large, open plains. There are campsites for mobile safaris and lots of animals – a combination that has brought it fame for close encounters of the animal kind! Being on the boundary of the land and water areas of Moremi, mobile safaris will often organise boat trips from here, or sometimes excursions to sleep out on the islands.
At the southern entrance to Moremi, in quite a thickly forested area, is a campsite that is used by mobile safaris. The area south of here, just outside the game reserve, has more open areas and some attractive stands of acacia which attract surprisingly prolific game, often including herds of giraffe