As you leave central Namibia and the Etosha region you will traverse a ‘triangle’ of towns, namely Grootfontein, Tsumeb and Otavi, set around the Otavi Mountains and one of the country’s most important agricultural zones. The town of Rundu is the gateway to the Caprivi Strip, which has a distinctly rural African feel, where livestock roam.
There is great scope for birdwatchers with a variety of species and this is also the only part of Namibia where you can see buffalo.
There are a total of five national parks here: Mahango, Popa Falls Reserve, Bwabwata, Mudumu and Mamili. Mahango borders the Okavango River to the east and is the best park in Namibia for spotting a wide variety of birds. Mudumu covers riverine forest bordering Kwando River, whilst Bwabwata is highly undeveloped with less tourism infrastructure and roads for game viewing. Popa Falls are a series of rapids that give rise to the Okavango, which then spreads out across the Kalahari.
One possibility for those looking to explore this area is to fly into Katima Mulilo Airport after finishing in other areas of Namibia, which is the main airport serving the strip. From here you can head down into Botswana and the excellent Kwando Lagoon Camp, to create a unique itinerary that showcases the best of this region.
Due to the high number of waterholes, the wildlife of the Caprivi Strip is abundant, with antelope in large numbers along with elephant, wild dog, hippos and lion.