Moremi Game Reserve
The Most Popular Game Reserve In Botswana For Wildlife And Birdlife
Moremi is one of the leading wildlife sanctuary and reserves in Africa and is popular for a good reason; it is one of the most beautiful wildlife reserves found anywhere in Africa. That combination of wildlife and birdlife with the waters of the Okavango Delta and the unique bushveld as a backdrop makes for an experience unmatched by anything else in Africa.
The game reserve is named after Chief Moremi of the BaTawana tribe, who lived in the area in the late 1800s. The story goes that Chief Moremi was a great hunter and warrior, but one day, he had a dream in which the animals of the forest spoke to him, asking for his help. They told him that if he helped them, they would help him. Chief Moremi took this dream to heart, and from that day on, he became their protector.
Moremi is located in the eastern part of the Okavango Delta in Botswana and covers an area of about 5 000 square kilometres. The reserve is a mix of dry land and water, with the Okavango Delta waterways making up about 60% of the reserve. Mopane forests make up most of the vegetation in the east of the reserve, it is within these mopane woodlands that one can view the mighty African elephants up close and personal.
The reserve is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including lions, leopards, elephants, buffalo, and antelope. Moremi is also one of the best birding spots in Africa, with over 500 species of birds found in the reserve - bird watching is outstanding in the summer months.
Combine with the Chobe National Park, Central Kalahari Game Reserve, Khwai river and reserve, Selinda, Savuti and maybe even Victoria Falls in Zambia or Zimbabwe, and one is in for a right royal game viewing treat.
Moremi Game Reserve Facts
- Size & Location: 5 000km²
- When to visit the park: Winter is best as the roads are drivable, summer rains cause complete havoc with the roads, and the accessible areas shrink dramatically
- Climate: Summer is hot and humid, while winter is mild and dry
- Rainfall: 525mm per annum varying
- Altitude: 930m - 1000m above sea level
- Location: in the east corner of the Okavango Delta in north-west Botswana
- Accommodation: Lodges In The Moremi Game Reserve
Where is Moremi Game Reserve located?
Moremi is located in the southeast corner of the famous Okavango Delta (and southwest of the Chobe National Park) and is easily accessible by either road or light aircraft transfer from Maun. However, once in the game reserve, it is highly recommended that one is in a proper 4x4 as roads turn into tracks once one enters through the gates.
The reserve, as with the Okavango lies in the heart of the Kalahari Desert sand system of Botswana
The closest access gate into Moremi is 'South Gate', which is approximately 93 kilometres away from Maun (a 2-hour drive if the roads are in good condition).
To view the Moremi Game Reserve location from a HERE Map, click here: HERE Maps - Moremi Game Reserve
Information On Moremi Game Reserve
Boasting dense concentrations of wildlife at any time of the year, the Moremi Reserve supports a wide range of habitats from riparian woodlands, floodplains, reed beds, and permanent wetland through mopane and acacia forests to dry savannahs and secluded lagoons.
Moremi occupies approximately 20% of the Okavango Delta landmass.
The Wildlife to be seen in the Moremi Game Reserve varies between large herds of buffalo, elephants (particularly during the dry season), giraffe, lion, leopard, cheetah, wild dog, spotted hyena, jackal and the full range of antelope, large and small, including the red lechwe.
As the mopane bush gives way to floodplains and riverine forests, other animals become abundantly visible, and the whole spectrum of Africa's wildlife can be seen.
Birdlife is prolific and varied in the Okavango Delta, ranging from water birds to shy forest dwellers. There are many species of ducks and geese, as well as an amazing variety of herons.
Visitors must take special precautions against malaria. DO NOT SWIM in any of the rivers or lakes within the reserve; crocodiles will get you.
Best Time to Visit Moremi Game Reserve?
As with most game reserves and national parks within Southern Africa, winter is the preferred time for game viewing safaris to Moremi, in other words, high season (most expensive). But as Moremi has a permanent water source (the waters of the Okavango Delta), the wildlife does not disappear deeper into the bushveld when the summer rains arrive; they remain in the same areas as they would in the dry season.
This is what makes the Moremi Game Reserve so popular for those looking for the best in a safari experience; it offers excellent year-round game viewing sightings.
The only real difference between the summer and winter months (other than the heat) is the rainfall. The rainfall can make the tracks (roads) within the reserve a lot more tricky to navigate if one is on a self-drive safari.
When looking to visit the Moremi Game Reserve, a top tip is to figure out what you are looking for first. Is it a lodge that offers more land-based safari activities, or is it a lodge that offers more water-based safari activities? The waters of the Okavango are highest in winter (best for water based activities) and lowest in summer (best for land-based activities).
As with any desert in the world, the Kalahari Desert can get really cold in winter; please take this into account when packing.
Main Attractions Of Moremi Game Reserve
- Poling in a dugout canoe (mokoro) excursions
- Motorboat excursions (we would suggest a sunset option)
- Morning and afternoon game drives
- Wildlife sightings year round are excellent
- Abundant Moremi birdlife
- Xakanaxa lagoon with accommodation options that include; Camp Xakanaxa and Camp Moremi
- Amazing game viewing, including; lions, leopards, wild dogs, elephants and hippos, to mention only a few
- 'Chief's Island' and 'Mboma Island'
- A stay at any of the lodges and camps with the National Park
- A fly-in transfer over the Okavango Delta is also highly recommended
- Not far from the Chobe National Park and Savuti
The Moremi Game Reserve is one of the most popular game reserves in Southern Africa, and for a good reason. The game viewing is excellent year-round, and there are a variety of activities to choose from - including both land-based and water-based safari experiences.
If you're looking to experience some of the best African wildlife viewing that the continent has to offer, the Moremi Game Reserve should definitely be at the top of your list!