Situated on the edge of a waterhole, Nxai Pan Camp is the perfect base to explore the pans. The camp itself is situated in the tree line with a waterhole in front, and the rooms are large and airy, and beautifully designed.
Nxai Pan National Park is a vast area of over 25,000 sq km which abuts the northern border of the Makgadikgadi National Park.
Activities from here are mainly game drives in open 4X4 vehicles, but guests can also take a trip to Baines’ Baobabs, or go walking along the Pandamatenga Cattle Trail with a guide.
Nxai Pan area
Once part of a “superlake” which covered the whole of central Botswana (encompassing Okavango Delta, Makgadikgadi and Lake Ngami among others), the pans are now a fossil lake-bed, covered in swathes of gently rippling grassland and dotted with stands of acacia trees. In the rainy season, the pans become covered in new young green shoots, which attracts a variety of plains game including zebra, springbok, wildebeest, gemsbok and giraffe (sometimes up to thirty in a group!). Also seen during the rains are elephant and occasionally rhino.
With the arrival of the plains game come the predators – lion, cheetah and leopard are seen, as well as the fluffily pretty brown hyena and packs of wild dog. The plains are a great area to see the bat-eared foxes, which feed on the reptiles and rodents found in the area.
Once painted by Prince Charles, a stunning group of trees on the southern side of the park are also well worth a visit. Visited in December 1861 by Thomas Baines, these are now known as the “Baines Baobabs” after his famous painting of them – and the trees have not changed since his visit!