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Caprivi / Zambezi region


The Caprivi is a narrow strip of land in the far northeast of Namibia, about 400 kilometres long. Germany exchanged the area - together with Helgoland - with the United Kingdom for Zanzibar in 1890. It was named after the German chancellor of the time, Graf von Caprivi, who signed the contract with the British.

The tarred Caprivi Highway was built to replace the corrugated dirt road, which was hardly passable during the rainy season. Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe and Chobe National Park in Botswana, both popular tourist destinations in the north, are now easily accessible.

The Caprivi belongs to the tropical climate zone and receives high rainfalls during the rainy season (December to March). This, together with the high temperatures, results in a high humidity factor. Malaria prophylactic is strongly recommended for the Caprivi.

The Caprivi recently renamed to Zambezi region is the wettest region in Namibia with its high rainfall and a number of major rivers like the Okavango, Kwando and Zambezi; all of them originating from Angola and draining an enormous area. There are also some smaller rivers like the Linyanti and the Chobe.

The abundance of water in the Caprivi sustains a large variety of animal and bird species. Especially numerous are the elephants, though not easily spotted through the dense vegetation. The wildlife is being protected in a couple of reserves (Bwabwata, Mudumu, Lizauli, Mamili). There are no fences, so the animals can roam freely across the borders of the neighbouring countries of Botswana and Zambia. The Chobe National Park in Botswana, bordering the Caprivi in the south, is especially excellent for game viewing.

Some 200 kilometres east of Rundu lay one of the scenic highlights of Namibia in the western part of the Caprivi, the Popa Falls. Actually, they are rapids rather than waterfalls. Here, the Okavango breaks through a four metre high rocky intrusion in its riverbed. The falls lie amidst enthrallingly beautiful nature. Here you also find the most scenic campground in the north of Namibia.

The service centre of the Caprivi is the small town of Katima Mulilo at the eastern tip. Katima lies directly on the banks of the Zambesi River and offers some attractive lodges at the river. It also has an airport, a hospital, some petrol stations, grocery stores and a street market with arts crafts, traditional baskets woven from grass, woodcarvings, jewellery and clothes.

There is a border post to Zambia in Katima nowadays, which, due to the new Zambezi Bridge at Wanella, has become more and more attractive for tourists. If you are heading for Botswana or Zimbabwe, follow the B8 to Ngoma Bridge.

  caprivi   zambezi region  

Other Namibian Destinations:

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The Fish River canyon, situated along the lower reaches of the Fish River, is one of the most impressive...more   Located in the far north-west, Kaokoland (also called Kaokoveld) is one of the relatively untouched regions in Namibia. The...more
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Caprivi   Kalahari Gemsbok National Park
The Caprivi is a narrow strip of land in the far northeast of Namibia, about 400 kilometres long. Germany exchanged the area...more   The Kalahari Gemsbok National Park is located between the borders of Namibia and Botswana. The park covers an area of...more
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In 1908, Luderitz was plunged into diamond fever. People rushed into the Namib Desert hoping to make an...more   Mariental lies 260 kilometres south of Windhoek on the B1. The little town provides for the...more
Maltahöhe   Keetmanshoop
Maltahöhe lies 110 kilometres west of Mariental atthe end of the tarred part of the C19 Pad, quite easily...more   Keetmanshoop lies on the B4, 500 km south of Windhoek. It is the traffic junction and the economic centre for the...more
Kalahari Desert    
Stretching to 360,000 square miles, the Kalahari Desert extends beyond the borders of three countries in Africa... more    


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