Okavango Delta
Botswana, Okavango Delta

The Okavango Delta, the world's largest inland water system with no runoff to the oceans, is located in northwestern Botswana. The Okavango River flows from the highlands of Angola, crosses Namibia and ends in Botswana, on the territory of the Kalahari Desert, where the river forms a delta, consisting of seasonally flooded plains and permanent marshes with thickets of papyrus and reed, small islands, a system of canals and lagoons. The area of wetlands is 600,000 hectares, most of the territory in 2014 was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List, part of the Okavango Delta is part of the Moremi Game Reserve. The uniqueness of the Okavango Delta ecosystem, called the Kalahari Gem, is that the annual Okavango River floods occur during the dry season, as a result of which plants and animals synchronize their biological cycles with seasonal floods. During the spill of the river there is a rapid vegetation of plants, all nature comes to life. At this time, herds of elephants, buffaloes, antelopes, zebras, kudu and Red Lychee wander through the sands of the Kalahari desert into the Okavango Delta. The Delta is the "home" for 1061 species of plants, 89 species of fish, 64 species of reptiles, 482 species of birds, including 24 species - under the threat of extinction, and 130 species of mammals. These places are inhabited by lions, leopards, cheetahs, a hyena-like dog, black and white rhinos (the white rhinoceros has almost disappeared from the face of the Earth), giraffes, hippos, warthogs, baboons, crocodiles. The beauty of unspoiled wildlife and the enormous species diversity of representatives of Flora and Fauna attract thousands of tourists from all over the world to the Okavango Delta. The government of Botswana and the local tribes living in the delta region, in order to preserve the integrity of the ecosystem, prevent uncontrolled hunting and, as a result, reduce the number of wild animals, have taken a number of steps to protect this territory. The Moremi Game Reserve was created, the development of eco-tourism is under strict state control. Among the activities offered to tourists by licensed operators and staff of camps and campsites that have permission to conduct safari in the Okavango Delta are photo tours, walking and boat safaris, horseback riding, flying over the delta in a light airplane. Experienced travelers can go on an independent tour, planning and coordinating their trip with the authorities in advance.