Tswalu is a vast, magical land of infinite possibility, with sweeping vistas and a liberating sense of space.
No two Tswalu experiences are the same. That’s because the way you see this magical place will be shaped by your specific interests, at your own pace.
Tswalu is a dreamlike landscape in its intensity and scale. As the sun rises above the Korannaberg mountains each morning, new opportunities for guests to learn, play and explore come to life.
The Motse and Tarkuni serve as focal points for your Kalahari experience, and as launchpads for your safari adventures. Built from organic materials and outfitted to the highest standards, they manifest the warmth and hospitality of the people of the Kalahari.
Designed and sited to make the best of Tswalu’s dramatic and expansive views, The Motse and Tarkuni provide exclusivity, privacy, and unfettered access to one of southern Africa’s last true wildernesses.
Iconic Kalahari Species
At Tswalu you’ll encounter species you may have seen elsewhere, along with drier area specialist species that you probably haven’t. While zebra, buffalo, and giraffe will be familiar if you’ve been on safari before, many of the species found at Tswalu are of particular significance to the San people. This is written on the wall, in ancient galleries of rock art.
There is a timeless quality to the Kalahari – it’s a place where humans have wandered since the dawn of creation. We stay true to this feeling by letting you shape your days and spending as long as you wish on each activity.
Just like the sands of the Kalahari, we understand that your priorities can shift during your time at Tswalu. That’s why we’ll never try and shoehorn your experience into a fixed schedule.
Dry Savannah Species
Tswalu is unquestionably one of the best places in southern Africa to see cheetah in the wild. The vast open spaces and antelope herds of the Kalahari readily lend themselves to high-speed pursuits. Visiting Tswalu also gives you front-row seats for sightings of species that prove elusive elsewhere, from aardvark and pangolin to Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra.
Walking with Meerkats
Their gregarious nature and amusing antics (think early morning sunbathing and playing chicken with scorpions) have made meerkats extremely popular as subjects of wildlife documentaries. The two habituated colonies have accepted the presence of humans without letting it disrupt the important business of grooming and foraging.
Visit With The Seasons
The mercury begins to climb during September and October, although evenings can still be a little bracing, so come prepared.
Thorn bushes are softened by blossoms, and the night echoes to the calls of amorous barking geckos (the quintessential sound of the Kalahari). Meerkat pups venture outside their dens for the first time, and there is a palpable sense of anticipation as we await the summer rains.
Summer is Tswalu’s longest and most important season. Between November and March, hotter days are punctuated by delightfully mild evenings and spectacular afternoon thunderstorms.
While rain may be a regular inconvenience elsewhere, at Tswalu it is both unpredictable and near miraculous. Consider yourself fortunate if it rains during your time here as you’ll witness the almost instantaneous eruption of colour as the Kalahari transforms into a carpet of golden flowers.
Many species coordinate their reproductive cycles with the reappearance of the rains. New life is evident everywhere, from wobbly young antelope to irrepressibly curious jackal pups. Flocks of migrating birds descend on Tswalu to enjoy summer’s bounty.
In the southern Kalahari, the autumn months of April and May are marked by milder days and cooler evenings, as the last of the summer rains peter out.
The savannah remains at its greenest and shimmers as the breeze carries seeds aloft. The sounds of clashing horns carry across the landscape as the impala rut reaches its peak, while tortoises and other reptiles prepare to hibernate through the winter.
Between June and August, temperatures can dip below freezing overnight (although the days remain pleasantly warm). The contrast between the red earth and white early morning frost is a visual treat.
Winter is our driest season at Tswalu, with dust devils dancing across the dunes and exceptional stargazing on cloudless nights. Nocturnal species change their daily routines, tempted above ground by afternoon sunshine. This makes winter a wonderful time and looks for aardvark, aardwolf, and pangolin.
Situated in the Savannah Biome, Tswalu lies in a transition zone between the true Kalahari ecotype and arid savannah. The undulating dunes are punctuated by the Korannaberg hills which contribute to greater habitat diversity than elsewhere in the Kalahari.
Tswalu Kalahari offers daily scheduled flights from both Johannesburg and Cape Town. We typically use modern and reliable Pilatus PC12.
Tswalu can be reached by road, and we can supply recommended route information on request. If you intend to drive to Tswalu, please contact us for details and advice well in advance of your journey.
Whether you choose to travel to Tswalu by land or air, your journey will take you into both a fascinating past and an uplifting vision of the future.
Speak to our team:
Monday – Friday: 9am – 5:30pm
Saturday: 10am – 4:30pm
1 Market Place Mews,
Henley-on-Thames, OXON RG9 2AH