The cluster of millennia-old baobab trees in the Nxai Pan National Parkin Botswana owes its name to the man known to have discovered them. Thomas Baines, artist and fellow explorer to John Chapman, captured in paint the scene in 1862 on a trip through the expansive salt pans, en route to the Victoria Falls. Baines’ Baobabs, as they are known today, are a sight sought by many travellers venturing into the untamed terrain of Botswana.
The horse-drawn event of the 1800s, an era buried in history, took Baines and Chapman through wild Botswana and across the bare Makgadikgadi Salt Pans and eventually, to the oasis of ancient baobab trees. This pit stop was painted; a wagon-filled campsite beneath 7 towering ‘upside-down trees’. The appearance of the broad, gnarled trees has barely changed over 150 years and what visitors see today is almost identical to the sight depicted by Baines on a pioneer mission through Africa in the 19th century.
The Okavango Delta is a vast inland river delta in northern Botswana. It’s known for its sprawling grassy plains, which flood seasonally, becoming a lush animal habitat. The Moremi Game Reserve occupies the east and central areas of the region. Here, dugout canoes are used to navigate past hippos, elephants and crocodiles. On dry land, wildlife includes lions, leopards, giraffes and rhinos. However, the bird life in these regions are equally rich in diversity.
I took this photo while on my first Botswana Delta photo safari trip. April 2019.