Latest News4 February 2011
Joint access facility
The tourism access facility at Two Rivers / Twee Rivieren is jointly manned by customs officials from Botswana and South Africa. → read more…
Kgalagadi is Africa's first peace park - officially opened by the presidents of Botswana and South Africa in May 2000. To date it is still the only peace park that is open in the true sense of the word - where tourists can move freely across the international border within the boundaries of the park. Kgalagadi has become a popular destination for tourists and lovers of its 4×4 wilderness trails wishing to experience the Kalahari's tranquillity. At 37 256 km2, it represents a large ecosystem relatively free of human interference - an increasingly rare phenomenon in Africa. The name Kgalagadi is derived from the San language and means ‘place of thirst'.
The vastness of the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park allows the nomadic ungulate populations and their predators to stay in balance with their environment, consequently there is little need for extensive management intervention.
The Twee Rivieren Joint Access Facility has removed the last vestiges of two separate national parks, and tourists now enter at a single facility to visit the entire park spanning the border between Botswana and South Africa. The Mata-Mata Tourist Access Facility allows access via Namibia.
As Africa's first transfrontier park, Kgalagadi was opened on 12 May 2000 by the heads of state of the partner countries and has become a popular destination for tourists and 4x4 traillists wishing to experience the Kalahari's tranquillity.
In May 2002 the ‡Khomani San and Mier communities reached an historic land settlement agreement with the government of South Africa and South African National Parks (SANParks) which restored a large tract of land to the communities that had once roamed or farmed this area. Named the !Ae!Hai Kalahari Heritage Park Agreement, its outcome resulted in the transfer of ownership of 50 000 hectares of land within the boundaries of Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park from SANParks to the two communities, who then leased the land back to SANParks. A fully catered luxury lodge, owned by the ‡Khomani San and Mier communities, opened its doors in 2007, shortly before the Mata-Mata Tourist Access Facility between Namibia and South Africa was opened by the heads of state of Botswana, Namibia and South Africa.
The Joint Access Facility at Two Rivers / Twee Rivieren is jointly manned by customs officials from Botswana and South Africa. Access to Kgalagadi can thus be gained through four access facilities in three different countries: from Botswana through Two Rivers / Twee Rivieren, Mabuasehube and Kaa; from Namibia through Mata-Mata, and from South Africa through Two Rivers / Twee Rivieren. Passports are not required for entry, unless departure is planned through a different gate into another country, in which case a two-day stay in the park is compulsory.
Peace Parks Foundation is assisting the partner countries to update the Transfrontier Park’s joint management plan that guides the operational aspects of park management.
Thanks to a major donation by South Africa’s National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund, the !Ae!Hai Kalahari Heritage Park is being developed.