ETOSHA NATIONAL PARK                            

Etosha National Park is one of Southern Africa's finest and most important Game Reserves. Etosha Game park was declared a National Park in 1907 and covering an area of 55,000 square acres, it is home to 114 mammal species, 340 bird species, 110 reptile species, 16 amphibian species and, surprisingly, one species of fish.

Believed to have originated over 12 million years ago as a shallow lake, Etosha is said to have the tallest Elephants in Africa, (up to 12 feet the shoulder), Etosha is recognised as being one of the last wild sanctuaries of the endangered Black Rhino.

A San (Bushman) legend about the formation of the Etosha Pan tells of how a village was raided and everyone but the women slaughtered. One woman was so upset about the death of her family she cried until her tears formed a massive lake. When the lake dried up nothing was left apart from a huge white pan.

Etosha is undoubtedly the feather in Namibia’s safari cap. It’s a unique and dramatic destination that may spoil you for life with its fascinating smorgasbord of wildlife – and its unique way of viewing them.

Etosha National Park is largely flat with vast grasslands surrounding its famous Etosha Pan. The bush is scanty and the animals that call this area home have adapted to these arid conditions. Most of the year, they have to rely on the numerous waterholes (some natural, some man-made) that are dotted throughout this vast reserve.

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Etosha, meaning "Great White Place", is dominated by a massive mineral pan. The pan is part of the Kalahari Basin, the floor of which was formed around 1000 million years ago. The Etosha Pan covers around 25% of the National Park. The pan was originally a lake fed by the Kunene River. However the course of the river changed thousands of years ago and the lake dried up. The pan now is a large dusty depression of salt and dusty clay which fills only if the rains are heavy and even then only holds water for a short time. This temporary water in the Etosha Pan attracts thousands of wading birds including impressive flocks of flamingos. The perennial springs along the edges of the Etosha Pan draw large concentrations of wildlife and birds.

 

Etosha Game park was declared a National Park in 1907, spanning a vast 22,300 km² (8,610 square miles).

The game viewing in Etosha National Park is excellent! Etosha hosts a vast array of animals, including the Big Five, as well as giraffes, and rare and unusual species like the black-faced impala, Hartmann’s mountain zebra or the smallest antelope in the world, the Damara dik-dik. More fortunate visitors will see leopard and cheetah. A series of waterholes along the southern edge of the pan guarantee rewarding and often spectacular viewing!Home to 114 mammal species, 340 bird species, 110 reptile species, 16 amphibian species and, surprisingly, one species of fish. The grassy plains around a huge salt pan, becomes a beautiful lake after heavy rains and attracts large flocks of pink candy-floss colored flamingo.

A San legend about the formation of the Etosha Pan tells of how a village was raided and everyone but the women slaughtered. One woman was so upset about the death of her family she cried until her tears formed a massive lake. When the lake dried up nothing was left apart from a huge white pan.

The game viewing in Etosha National Park is excellent, the best time being from May to September - the cooler months in Namibia. Visitors to Etosha Game Reserve can expect to see many buck species, elephant, giraffe, rhino and lions. More fortunate visitors will see leopard and cheetah. There is a network of roads linking the five camps and subsidiary roads lead to various waterholes.

When it was originally proclaimed at the turn of the century the Etosha Park consisted of an area of 100,000 square kilometres. This was the largest reserve on earth but in the 1960's political pressure resulted in the Park being reduced to its current size.