Lodges

Haina Kalahari Lodge

Desert destination harnessing the best of Kalahari wildlife and culture

Haina Kalahari Lodge

Bordering the iconic Central Kalahari Game Reserve, Haina Kalahari sits at the threshold of a harsh and storied landscape. The first reserve in Botswana to be set aside for its rich cultural heritage, the Central Kalahari is the historic home to the San Bushmen, a people group expertly adapted to the severe desert environment. Few places on earth allow such an authentic cultural interaction alongside a truly wild game experience. The desert wildlife ranges from the majestic black-maned Kalahari lion to the truly bizarre brown hyena, the black-backed jackal, and the elegant oryx antelope. This totally off-the-grid camp still manages luxury with its back-to-basics approach.

At the lodge

The hotel

Nothing beats a classic safari camp on the ground. The textures and design keep with the integrity of the landscape, from the pitched thatch and timber lounge and leather sofas, to the natural bar - everything is rustic and well-crafted. Meals transition between the communal dining area and large open outdoor boma. The sun deck and swimming pool is an absolute necessity during the summer months. But what makes Haina so special is the contrast of its forsaken surrounds.

The rooms

Together the six luxury and three superior tents sleep a maximum of twenty guests. Cleverly designed slatted canopies and thatch roofs shade the nine tents, giving them a classic bush charm. These simple but well-appointed tents provide necessary reprieve after a full day of adventuring in the Kalahari sun. All tents have en-suite bathrooms; luxury tents are outfitted with indoor and outdoor showers, while superior tents are equipped with a deep bathtub and an indoor shower. A family tent is simply two luxury tents joined by a common deck. You can brew your own cup-a on a small gas burner, then sit out on your large, raised verandah to watch the desert birdlife flit past. The conscientious traveller will be delighted that solar panels heat the water and power the light bulbs.

On safari

Experiences

Drive in an open Land Rover to explore the reaches of this private reserve that neighbours the famous Central Kalahari Game Reserve. A walk with a local San Bushman is a must - watch as he digs up critters, hunts for water and ties a spring trap - learn from generations of desert existence. If you're feeling the need to power through the landscape at your own speed, do a guided quad bike safari (ages 16 and older, please).

When to go

Central Kalahari by month

January

Season: Wet
  • Day and night temperatures are high with moderate humidity, rainfall is at its peak for this desert environment.
  • January welcomes in the birth of the next generation towards the end of the month.
  • A time of high activity amongst the predators as they take full advantage of the walking buffet.
  • Vegetation is green, wild flowers are in bloom and birds are in their breeding plumage.

February

Season: Wet
  • Day and night temperatures are high with moderate humidity, rainfall is at its peak for this desert environment.
  • The perfect time to view the newborns, as they find their wobbly feet.
  • A time of high activity amongst the predators as they take full advantage of the naive newborns.
  • Vegetation is green, wild flowers are in bloom and birds are in their breeding plumage.
  • During the green season there are more insects and mosquitoes around, luring out a host of unique insectivores.

March

Season: Wet
  • There is low humidity with high temperatures, rainfall begins to drop with shorter periods of bad weather.
  • The ideal time to visit the Central Kalahari, plenty of game to view with high predator activities.
  • Wildlife is in pristine condition, migratory birds are present and enjoying the lush green vegetation.
  • Unique desert flowering species, barking gecko's and the chirping rain locusts make an unusual but fascinating change to the more traditional safari.
  • During the green season there are more insects and mosquitoes around, luring out a host of unique insectivores.

April

Season: Wet
  • Temperatures are still high in April, with rain taking the form of irregular afternoon showers.
  • The end of the wet season has arrived, as long as there is grazing and water available, wildlife will remain in the area.
  • Vegetation dries and thins, providing the perfect conditions and opportunities to view the area's wildlife.
  • Clarity improves for photography, showcasing the breath-taking landscapes of this wonderfully different wilderness.

May

Season: Dry
  • May is a transition month, temperatures begin to drop from the extremes and rain is almost nonexistent.
  • Water sources begin to dry, animal densities drop but there are still interesting encounters with the unique resident species.
  • Great time to enjoy the bushman experience, with an arid landscape, clear blue skies and moderate temperatures.
  • Clarity improves for photography, showcasing the breath-taking landscapes of this true wilderness.

June

Season: Dry
  • Temperatures are comfortable but have dropped considerably at night, with morning frost on occasion, rainfall dry's up.
  • The animals are spread out over large areas, but this is a good month to view the many unique desert species not often seen elsewhere in Botswana.
  • Great time to enjoy the bushman experience with clear blue skies and moderate temperatures.
  • The air is thin and still, creating the perfect time to photograph the unique local species, as well as the inspiring landscapes.
  • The night sky is at its most impressive, with shooting stars and the Milky Way taking centre stage.
  • Dont forget to pack a warm jacket for this time of year.

July

Season: Dry
  • Nights are cold with occasional frost, day temperatures are comfortable and rainfall dry's up.
  • The animals are spread out over large areas, but this is a good month to view the many unique desert species not often seen elsewhere in Botswana.
  • Great time to enjoy the bushman experience with clear blue skies and moderate temperatures.
  • The air is thin and still, creating the perfect time to photograph the unique local species, as well as the inspiring landscapes.
  • The night sky is at its most impressive, with shooting stars and the Milky Way taking centre stage.
  • Pack a warm jacket for the chilly early mornings and night time.

August

Season: Dry
  • The coldest night temperatures have passed, with the daylight hours warming considerably, rain is still very unlikely.
  • The animals are spread out over large areas, but this is a good month to view the many unique desert species not often seen elsewhere in Botswana.
  • There are very few insects and mosquitoes around during this time of year.
  • The air is thin and still, creating the perfect time to photograph the unique local species, as well as the inspiring landscapes.
  • The night sky is at its most impressive, with shooting stars and the Milky Way taking centre stage.
  • Don't forget to pack a warm jacket for this time of year.

September

Season: Dry
  • Temperatures start to climb, with rain being unlikely in the month of September.
  • The animals are spread out over large areas, but this is a good month to view the many unique desert species not often seen elsewhere in Botswana.
  • There are very few insects and mosquitoes around during this time of year.
  • The air is thin and still, creating the perfect time to photograph the unique local species, as well as the inspiring landscapes.
  • The night sky is at its most impressive, with shooting stars and the Milky Way taking centre stage.
  • Pack a warm jacket for the chilly early mornings and night time.

October

Season: Dry
  • Temperatures reach their peak with humidity starting to climb towards the end of the month, it is unlikely that the rains will fall in October over the Kalahari.
  • The dry landscape will burst into life should the first rains arrive, animals move back into the area as it becomes more hospitable.
  • Wildlife is in need of rain after the dry season, spread over large distances, survival is an everyday struggle.
  • An interesting month for photography, there is high humidity, with the landscape at its most extreme before the arrival of the first rains.

November

Season: Wet
  • Temperatures are hot and relatively humid with the first rains of the year falling in the form of afternoon showers.
  • This can be difficult to predict as weather can come early or late depending on the year.
  • This is the start of the 'green season' with wildlife migrating back into the game reserve to feed on the newly shooting grasses.
  • Insects become more prevalent at this time of year but remain lower than other parts of Botswana.
  • Known for interesting cloud formations and spectacular electrical storms illuminate the nights sky.

December

Season: Wet
  • Temperatures are hot and relatively humid with rain falling in the form of afternoon showers.
  • This is the start of the 'green season' with wildlife migrating back into the game reserve to feed on the newly shooting grasses.
  • Migratory birds have returned, creating a hive of activity as they display for the opposite sex.
  • Insects become more prevalent at this time of year but remain lower than other parts of Botswana.
  • Known for interesting cloud formations and spectacular electrical storms illuminate the nights sky.

Wildlife


The iconic Kalahari is a semi-arid desert ecosystem known for its extreme environment, with the light seasonal rains attracting wildlife to feed on the lush savannah grasses. Herds of springbok and gemsbok converge on the plains with cheetah and huge black-maned lion ready in waiting. Throughout the year, encounter unique desert species such as meerkat, porcupine, aardvark and the shy brown hyena.

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