The Bwabwata National Park, formerly known as the Caprivi National Park, has been expanded to contain the current Mudumu, Nkasa Lupala, Mahangu as well as the Khaudum National Parks.
For traveling purposes, the different areas have retained their names, and Bwabwata is referred to as the stretch of land between the Kavango and Kwando rivers.
At present visitors can visit the park on the 190 km section of the B8 highway between Kongola and Bagani, and for the ones with 4WD vehicles they can veer off the road to visit game-rich areas such as the “horse shoe bend” close to Kongola or the “buffalo park” along the Kavango River at Divundu.
Species found within the park consist of the Big 4 (no Rhinos are found here) as well as a rich diversity of rare antelope such as Roan, Sable, Water-buck, Reed-buck, Lechwe and Puku as well as a magnitude of bird species.
The deciduous woodlands are dominated by trees such as wild seringa, copal wood and Zambezi teak. While the park is sanctuary to 35 large and numerous small game species, visitors are not likely to see many of these animals, as unfortunately vehicles are restricted to the road between Kavango and Eastern Caprivi.
Animals likely to be seen though are elephant, roan and kudu; buffalo occur towards the west and as many as 339 bird species have been recorded in West Caprivi.
One of the best times in the year for excellent and reliable game watching is in October. It can be incredibly hot, but as it’s been months since any rainfall, game concentrates on the last remaining waterholes along the Kwando River.
A favorite is Horseshoe, as the name suggests, a large perennial oxbow lake with picturesque white-sand beaches, surrounded by Zambezi teak woodlands. Bwabwata is named after a village in the reserve and means ‘the sound of bubbling water.
Where to stay
Divava Okavango Lodge and Spa stands on the banks of the Okavango River. Built in and amongst the tall trees and bush overlooking the water, the lodge is just a few hundred metres from Popa Falls.
The area where the lodge is situated is known warmly by the local people as Paradishi Ghomumbiru, or Little Paradise.
Divava makes for an ideal base not just to visit the falls but to day trip into Bwabwata National Park and Mahango Game Reserve. Self-drive tourists can also prepare for their onward journey into the Okavango Delta or further west to Rundu
Hakusembe River Lodge enjoys a picturesque riverine setting ideal for self-drivers, families and those on a romantic honeymoon getaway in Namibia.
As it is only 15km west of the northern Namibian town of Rundu it provides an ideal stopover for a couple of nights on the way to the Zambezi Region from Etosha National Park or other areas in central / northern Namibia.
Guests can look forward to a warm and jolly welcome from their hosts after a hard, dusty day’s drive. The thatched main lodge area has a reception, restaurant and bar. Enjoy dinner on the large deck after a champagne ‘sunset’ cruise.
An English breakfast, light lunch, and the more traditional fare of fish, venison or game steaks are served for dinner. The lodge pride themselves on their ‘Gordon bleu’, specialty cooking, and a buffet style service will be introduced for larger groups. There is also disabled access, a laundry service and an Internet connection.
The Kaisosi River Lodge is situated 7kms East of the north-eastern Namibian town of Rundu. The lodge is set on the banks of the Okavango River, offering lovely views of the river, and is a convenient stopover for visitors on the way to the Popa Falls and the Zambezi Region (formerly the Caprivi Strip). Kaisosi River Lodge is set in large grounds and visitors will often be welcomed by one of the friendly peacocks.
The Rundu area itself has one of Namibia’s most beautiful landscapes, and its spectacular sunsets, and friendly people make it a popular destination for travelers.
This simple but well-equipped lodge has a thatched main building with a restaurant, lively bar and a guest lounge to relax and unwind, after a hard day’s drive. All meals are served from the chef’s ‘a la carte,’ menu.
There is a children’s playground and 2 swimming pools, overlooking the river, to take a dip and cool down from the hot afternoon sun. A laundry service and internet connection are also available.
Kavango River Lodge is situated in Rundu on the banks of the Okavango River, overlooking Southern Angola and the surrounding flood plains.
The lodge offers an ideal break when traveling through Namibia’s far northeast region, and is a welcome and comfortable stopover on the long journey between Windhoek, Botswana and the Victoria Falls.
The lodge is equally suitable for visiting business people. It provides a cool, comfortable, and tranquil environment to relax and re-charge a weary set of batteries.
Breakfast, lunch and a buffet dinner are served in the restaurant. Traditional country-style meals can be enjoyed in the here, as well as a thirst-quenching drink from the mini-bar.
Guests can wine and dine in the outdoor dining area as well, all whilst enjoying breath-taking views over the river and floodplains. Early starters or day trippers can order a breakfast and/or lunch pack.