Imagine – if you will – an area the size of Portugal largely uninhabited by humans. Its stark, flat featureless terrain stretches – it would seem – to eternity , meeting and fusing with a milky – blue horizon . This is the Makgadikgadi – an area of 1200 sq km, part of the Kalahari Basin yet unique to it- one of the largest salt pans in the world.
Africa’s most famous explorer, Dr David Livingstone , crossed these pans in the 19th century guided by a masive baobab , Chapmans tree - believed to be 300 to 400 years old, and the only landmark for hundreds of miles around. Seeing this amazing tree today , you are given entry to an era when much of the continent was uncharted and explorers often risked their lives navigating the wilderness on oxcarts through rough and grueling terrain.
Humans have inhabited areas of the pans since the Stone Age, and have adapted to geographical and climatic changes as they have occurred. Archaeological sites on the pans are rich with Early Man’s tools and the bones of the fish and animals he ate