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Kgalagadi: Botswana section

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Kgalagadi: Camping in Botswana camps and access

Unread postby KobusS » Sun Jan 13, 2008 7:24 pm

We intend visiting Kgalagadi in June 2008 from Cape Town. Due to a lack in availability of camping sites with SANPARKS we approached Botswana Parks and were told that they do have campsites available. Few questions:
1) Can one still enter from South Africa at Twee Rivieren or must a different entrance gate be used?
2) Does one have limited access in the Park when staying at a Botswana facility?
3) Are any of the Botswana camps recommended (we are 100% self sufficient)?
4) Can we still enter from the south and leave for Nam at Mata Mata gate?
and last one: 5) does anyone know if our Wild cards would be allowed
If even a few of the q's could be answered I will appreciate!!
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Re: Kgalagadi: Camping in Botswana camps and access

Unread postby Peter Betts » Sun Jan 13, 2008 9:00 pm

Hi Kobus..
-You have to book Botswana Campsites at Gaborone HQ
- Polentswa is the best (Campsite 1 but there are only 4 sites so take your luck. )
- Rooiputs is also great
- If you are staying at those camps then the normal Twee Rivieren entry is fine but if you are self sufficient and DONT have a trailer (Not allowed) then why not book a 3-4 day 4x4 from Nossob to Mabuasehube and back or the Fantastic Polentswa Trail starting at Polentswa Camp but then you come in at TR and nip across to the Botswana side to pay your money for the trail and collect your baton. You are not allowed on the trails without your baton. But if you are just staying at Polentswa then the only places you will be allowed to drive will be on the South African side say to Nossob or the other direction to Union End...Why are you going when its so is Mid Feb to when the first frosts come in mid May.
Its actually so sad to see the park so full I have had 43 trips since 1963 and up until 10 years ago or so we were literally the only campers at Nossob on many occassions once for a 10 day its chokkablok full and thers the 4x4 trails, Polentswa, Grootkolk etc which has increased the traffic terribly ...hence the road condition.
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Unread postby GeorgeH » Wed Jan 16, 2008 1:46 pm

Hi Kobus
You can still enter from South Africa at TR but you will have to check in at the Botswana offices at Two Rivers which are a couple of hundred metres inside the Twee Rivieren gates to the east. (Yes, confusing I know but you will understand when you get there)

You have full access to the park even when staying at a Botswana facility although certain of the 4x4 roads are reserved for people staying at the respective wilderness camps and the eco trails need to be pre-booked.

As to which Bots camps are recommended, depends on your personal taste. We spent 2 weeks in May 2007, 4 days @Rooiputs, 1 day @ Matopi, 3 days @ Bosobologo and 1 day on the Mosomane Wilderness trail before heading to Nossob and Mata Mata. The Bots camps where all very rustic some with "long drop" and no water, others with just a tree to pitch your tent under. Stunning bird life, great views over the pans, a fair amount of game, and amazing solitude. Once back in the SA camps, crowded, noisy and spotlights/flashlights all over the place although the bird life was just as good and the game was more plentiful.

As to leaving to Nam through Mata Mata, my understanding is that you have to spend at least 2 nights in the park, not sure if that includes both SA and Bots camps.

Your Wild card will only be valid if you are staying in an SA camp, Bots has there own conservation fee structure and you will have to pay that to the Bots authorities upon entry. I think it was about 20 Pula p/person p/day last May which can be paid in Pula or Rand at Two Rivers although exchange rate will be a bit higher if paying in Rand.
Hope this helps.

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Kgalagadi: Botswana section

Unread postby huibschut » Sun Jan 20, 2008 8:01 pm

On the download map of Gemsbok there are quite a few campingsite mentioned (accoording the legenda). I can not find a way to book them the thouhg. Tips?

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Unread postby gwendolen » Sun Jan 20, 2008 9:40 pm

Hoi Huibschut,

I think you refer to the campsites in the Botswana part of the KTP. This map?

As Foxy & Dreamer said, you can't book them via this website. You have to book them via Botswana. They are only accessible by 4x4 and for a party of at least 2 cars.

I'm afraid I don't have the info here at hand at the moment. Will try to find out, or maybe some other forumite will send you a PM.

Or maybe the Kgalagadi guru will beat us to it.

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camping Khalahari

Unread postby huibschut » Sun Jan 20, 2008 10:18 pm

Yes Gwendolin, thát's the map thnx.
On it you see camping site on the SA site as well like Rooipute, Witgat,Swartbas,Polentewa. I wonder how to book these.


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Unread postby madach » Sun Jan 20, 2008 11:52 pm


Polentswa and Rooiputs are in the Botswana part of the park. You can't book these camps through the South African National Parks website. You have to book through the Botswana Department of Wildlife and National Parks. For reservations contact:

Reservations Office, P.O. Box 131, Gaborone, Botswana. Tel: + 267 580774; Fax: + 267 580775;E-mail:

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Botswana Kgalagadi

Unread postby carolpaton » Thu Jan 24, 2008 4:51 pm

Can anyone give me some advice on camps in Botwsana?
Firstly, how does one book for them?
Secondly, any recommendations?

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Unread postby restio » Thu Jan 24, 2008 9:34 pm

Hi carolpaton, and welcome to the forums!

Here are the booking details:

madach wrote:You have to book through the Botswana Department of Wildlife and National Parks. For reservations contact:

Reservations Office, P.O. Box 131, Gaborone, Botswana. Tel: + 267 580774; Fax: + 267 580775;E-mail:

There is some advice on campsites in this thread.
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Unread postby discobob » Fri Jan 25, 2008 9:12 am


Those numbers are wrong, they are old - new numbers as follows:

Tel: Gaborone 00-267-3180774
Fax: Gaborone 00-267-3180775

Don't bother about e-mailing, you won't get a reply, and the phone line is almost constantly engaged. Best bet is to fax for attention Tshego, and they will reply within a day.


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Re: Botswana Kgalagadi

Unread postby TonyW » Sun Jan 27, 2008 3:00 pm

carolpaton wrote:Can anyone give me some advice on camps in Botswana?
Firstly, how does one book for them?
Secondly, any recommendations?

Hi there,
Four of us did a trip through Mabua (Botswana side) to KTP, the South African side in Sep 2007. Trip report soon. All camps in the Bots side are camping only. All there is in the camps is a A frame for shade, cold shower and tap and the loo is a long drop. There are no fences so keep a look out for Lion, Leopard, Hyena etc. From the camps I saw I can't give any recommendations as the facilities are basically the same. Some camps though have great views of the pans. We stayed in a camp with no view however the tree we camped under had a resident Scops Owl that kept us company day and night. Look out for our trip report soon!

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6 Day itinerary for Kgalagadi Botswana area

Unread postby KobusS » Sat Feb 02, 2008 3:26 pm

Still busy finalizing itinerary for 6 days in July. Could not get camping sites in SA camps but Botswana PB do have. Two vehicles - 4x4 - well equipped and self sufficient. One vehicle towing a trailer- wilderness routes apparently out. Any suggestions please.
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Unread postby luisbyter » Sun Feb 03, 2008 10:16 pm

Hi Kobus

Just posted a reply on your other thread as well.

We are going to the Mabushesuhube (?spelling) side of the KTP in April - have not been there but found out that the roads are not trailer friendly. Depends on who you speak to and some people do travel there with trailers. I wouldn't.

Anyway ... the 2 camps on the Botswana side (Polentswa & Rooiputs ) are very nice. No fences, water or power. We've been there a few times and enjoyed it everytime. Let me know if I must send you some pics or more info.

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Unread postby Jaco V » Sun Feb 03, 2008 10:30 pm

Hi Kobus, Luisbyter,

We were in Mbuasehube in April 2007. 3 vehicles in our group did tow trailers. We entered Botswana at Lobatse and left at MacCarthy's Rest border posts. The routes we traveled where heavy sand around Mabuasehube, and the vehicles with trailers had no issues.

Should you however want to do the Nossob Eco Trial, or the normal route from Mabuasehube to Nossob, a trailer is NOT advisable, there are quite a number of dunes on both routes that will be difficult for vehicles towing trailers.

I must state that I have not done either these routes, so I go on hearsay regarding the viability of towing a trailer on those routes.

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Unread postby KobusS » Mon Feb 04, 2008 5:28 pm

Thank you for the advise!! We are trying for Rooiputs, Matopi and then Polentswa before leaving for Keetmans and back home to Cape Town via the new pontoon at Sendelingsdrift (for the kick) and a day or two at Potjiespram. Luisbyter, I will appreciate a fiew pic's. Dankie!!
Kobus Swanepoel

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