The Okavango Swamp, also known as the Okavango Delta, is one of the world’s largest inland river deltas, and probably its most famous. Fed by the Okavango River, the delta is famously absorbed into the surrounding landscape, essentially ending in the middle of nowhere. This makes the area very fertile and supports an amazing variety of wildlife. The Okavango Swamp is partially located in the Moremi Game Reserve, and the entire delta is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Humans first migrated to the area of the Okavango perhaps over a hundred thousand years ago. The fertile landscape and plentiful game led to long-term inhabitation of the area, a culture passed down to the local bushman tribes of the present day. The Okavango Swamp is currently under the threat of domesticated cattle as well as the possible construction of a hydroelectric dam, both of which are being fought by conservationists.
The Okavango Swamp is located at the termination of the Okavango River. Once part of Lake Makgadikgadi, which receded over ten thousand years ago, the delta is a wildlife enthusiast’s dream. As many as two hundred thousand large mammals inhabit the area throughout the year, including elephants, rhinos, hippos, cheetahs and lions, not to mention many reptiles and amphibeans, over seventy species of fish and four hundred species of birds.
The Okavango Swamp is one of southern Africa’s better kept secrets. While tourists swarm to much better known parks, the protected delta is much less visited. Many visitors come through the Moremi Game Reserve. Web: www.okavangodelta.com (official website).