Caprivi Budget Travel

One of Namibia's best kept secrets, the Caprivi region is more lush than the rest of this arid country and remains relatively free of mass tourism. This region is a good destination to get close to unspoilt nature, offering a remote and less conventional safari experience.

Where is the Caprivi Strip?

Stretching about 450 km's (280 miles) from the far northeastern corner of Namibia, the Caprivi Strip is a narrow finger of land extending north-eastwards towards Zimbabwe. Caprivi lies between Botswana to the south and Angola and Zambia to the north, tapering out where the Chobe and Zambezi Rivers join. This narrow protrusion of Namibian territory starts in the Okavango Region of Namibia and ends at the southwestern corner of Zambia, where Zambia, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Namibia meet.

The region lies on the northern outskirts of the Kalahari swamplands, nestled between the Zambezi River on the northeast and the Kwando–Linyandi–Chobe river system on the south and southwest.

Caprivi Quick Facts

  • The Caprivi is between 20 to 65 miles (32 to 105 km's) wide
  • Geography is dominated by a flat plain at about 3100 feet (950 meters) above sea level
  • Caprivi is also called Caprivi Panhandle, Okavango Strip, or Okavango Panhandle
  • The formal name of Caprivi or the Caprivi Strip is Itenge
  • Caprivi is bordered by 4 rivers - the Okavango, Kwando (Linyanti), Chobe and Zambezi rivers
  • The largest settlement in Caprivi is Katima Mulilo town, on the banks of the Zambezi River
  • The Caprivi hosts 6 ethnic tribes – Subia, Yeyi, Mafwe, San, Tortela and Mbukushu
  • The only region of Namibia to border 4 countries – Angola, Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe
  • This fertile region is rich in wildlife, birds and mineral resources
  • The Caprivi Strip is Namibia's wettest area, known for its large rivers

Caprivi Wildlife, Birds & Vegetation

The Caprivi features some excellent national parks, which are less crowded and touristy than the most popular parks in neighbouring Botswana.

Wildlife populations in the region have recovered after years of occupation by the South African army, and it's a prime bird-watching region. In some of the game parks the wild animals move freely across unfenced borders with wildlife areas in Botswana and Zambia. Wildlife found in Caprivi is similar to that inhabiting the Okavango Delta in Botswana, as these marshy regions are similar. Vegetation in this region includes riverine and teak forests, acacia woodlands and open grasslands.

The riverine forests, wetlands and game parks of the Caprivi host:

  • Over 600 species of birds, including Carmine Bee-eaters, African Fish Eagles and Open-billed Storks
  • Four of the Big 5 of Africa - lion, leopard, elephant and buffalo
  • 450 animal species including African wild dogs, hyenas, zebras, hippos, crocodiles, snakes and giraffes
  • Antelopes - impala, kudu, sable, roan, red lechwe, tsessebe, sitatunga, reedbuck, waterbuck, puku and more

Caprivi is important to elephants as a migratory corridor and provides a significant habitat for critically endangered African Wild Dogs.

Caprivi's National Parks

Bwabwata National Park (includes Caprivi and Mahango Game Reserves), Mamili National Park, Mudumu National Park. 

Caprivi Geography & Climate

This tropical stretch of land is the wettest region of Namibia and receives over 600mm (more than 24 inches) of mean annual rainfall.

Humidity levels are high from November to February, bringing an increase in insect activity, both making travel uncomfortable at times. Caprivi experiences periodic floods, especially during the rainy summer season (December to March) when rivers swell, flowing onto the floodplains. 

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Google Map of Caprivi

Use the Google map to explore Caprivi. Feel free to Print the Street Map when you're ready.

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