Sunrise behind Baobab trees(Adansonia digitata) Kubu Island, Botswana


The sheer scale of the Kalahari is breathtaking. Its vast plains blend into a sea of gently undulating sand ridges, and are broken only by the occasional flat-topped acacia. Home to incredible night skies, desolate pans and, after the wet season, a hive of activity for large herds of plains game such as springbok and gemsbok.


The already lunar-like landscape of the Makgadikgadi is the perfect spot to turn your gaze skywards. Leave camp under an inky sky to join an astronomy expert on an evening of star gazing. Dubbed one of the darkest places on the planet, the Makgadikgadi has a glorious view of the star-spangled sky. Hear all about the legends of the constellations and spot the Big Five of the Southern Hemisphere. These include the most dazzling formations from each type of deep-sky class, from nebulas to galaxies! You’ll find the clearest nights between April and October when stargazing is out of this world.

Camping Under the Stars

Reasons to travel to Kalahari

  • The breathtaking vistas of Makgadikgadi Pans
  • Horseback safaris through the wilderness
  • The unbeatable night skies

Scintilla’s Delights

Treat yourself to the best experiences Kalahari has to offer.


Sleep under the stars on the Makgadikgadi Pans

A 5-night adventure of epic proportions. Spend your first two nights at the iconic Jack’s Camp and soak up the magic of the Kalahari Desert, before hopping aboard your quad bike and barrelling across the expanse of scorched, white earth of the Makgadikgadi Pans. Travelling in convoy, Indian-fashion, ensures a low-impact trespass and you’ll leave no trace of your existence behind as you zoom towards fabled Kubu Island and the open-air fly camp. While it may not be surrounded by water (though it once was in the middle of a lake), the island is filled with baobabs larger than buses and older than Christ. Walk beneath the towering limbs of these upside-down trees, a holy secret of the Bushmen and a place of ancient power and ritual.

Meet the Meerkats
Meet the Meerkats

In the surreal Makgadikgadi Pans, you'll be escorted by a guide to the sandy home of habituated meerkats.

Botswana Living Art & Design Tour
Botswana Living Art & Design Tour

Join a guide on an insightful and informative journey around Xigera Lodge

Other destinations in Botswana

This country of desert and Delta has an incredible bounty of riches. These places are our best of the best.

Okavango Delta

Okavango Delta




Guest Testimonials

Discover why our guests select Scintilla for their travel to Southern Africa.

Hi Cuan.  Just wanted you to know we have had an amazing time in Namibia!  What an experience!  Yesterday we stopped off at a bar in a very remote village after tracking elephants and had beers and danced with the locals which was fantastic.  Between the orphanage, stops in many villages, the kids we’ve gotten to meet, the Himba village and of course all the animals it has just been incredible.  You organized quite a trip for us!  And now, Botswana!!!

The Soloman Family, USA

My week in Namibia was sensational and went seamlessly. From the welcoming pickup from the airport to the beautiful accommodations and fascinating road-trip across much of the country, I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Of particular note, the food at Hoodia Desert Lodge was impeccable and the al fresco lunch prepared by the guide after the visit to Deadvlei and Sossusvlei was simply magical. The sundowners at both Hoodia and Onduli Ridge were top-notch, each offering breathtaking views and fabulous Namibian gin cocktails and bites. What made the entire journey so easily enjoyable was the daily itineraries and maps presented to me upon arrival and the overall organization and attention to detail. My solo sojourn was truly flawless, and I will recommend it widely!

Sarah Scott, ZA

Cuan, everything going to plan so far with stunning weather and excellent service and amazing wildlife in Etosha!! Thanks again for your professionalism. Everything has been magical, and we have definitely brought some luck with us being the first group to find the elephants only after 10 minutes of looking !! Really appreciate your help, and I will be recommending you to our friends back home.

Tom Last, AU

Our guide Charlene was out of this world. She was charming, intelligent, and fun and she showed us the best of Cape Town while also educating us on the journey Cape Town has taken from Apartheid through today. We were fascinated, engaged, and overjoyed to spend our final days in Africa with her. She is truly outstanding.

Paul & Wendy, UK

The trip was FANTASTIC, and our guide Marcus was absolutely superb! We took all of his recommendations for our last free day in the city and can’t thank him enough for the stellar suggestions.

Thomas & Mary Louise, Canada

Please convey my thanks to the Cape Town guiding teams! Without a doubt our most memorable moment of the trip was our visit to the Cape Peninsula with our guide, Chizzy. A major positive, thrilling time. The penguins, picnic and swim at the reservoir, continual birthday celebrations for Jack’s 18th Birthday were all home runs.

Suzanne, Jack & Family, USA

The most important thing for me to tell you is that we had a fabulous time with James exploring the Peninsula of Cape Town! Along with our visit to the Zeitz Museum, our day with James was a highlight of the time we spent in South Africa. He was friendly and open about discussing his experiences growing up with apartheid which I really appreciated. I enjoyed the towns we visited, the restaurant where we had lunch, our visit with the penguins, and our hike out to the shipwreck. Thank you!!

Emma & Lori, USA

Well, we finished up Cape Town this evening, heading to safari tomorrow. We loved the country tour and winery tour, absolutely amazing. Also, our guide for both days, was one of the best we have ever had. We couldn’t imagine a better time and she couldn’t be more flexible. Thank you for setting up this first part of the vacation and setting us up with the tours.

Cory & Heather, USA

It was great! Everything worked out perfectly! We absolutely loved the Sidecar experience – wow, was that fun! We loved our guide in Cape Town, Josh, he was the BEST! He was so fun. We took him for dinners and played golf with him! We just thought Cape Town was fantastic. Wine Country was great. Fantastic.

Joseph, Marsha & Family, USA

On Saturday, we met our guide, Charlene, who was OUTSTANDING. We had missed the Zeitz Museum, and she was happy to let us rearrange our schedule so that we could tour it as well as taking me to a beautiful craft market to buy gifts.  On arriving in the wine country, we enjoyed an amazing lunch at La Motte.  With Charlene's background in wines, she was able to recommend the best wineries to visit on the winetram, as well as several good restaurants in the area.

William & Constance, USA

Cape Town was so scenic and beautiful.  Had an interesting visit around town and to the houses of parliament with a very accommodating guide James.  James made that whole experience everything it was and deserves a lot of credit. What a great place to visit!  What phenomenal food!  What masters of hospitality they all are in Africa!

Jeffery & Barbara, Canada
Local Knowledge

Local Knowledge

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Responsible Travel

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Boutique Focus

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Immersive Experiences

Immersive Experiences

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Exceptional Locations

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Bespoke Trips

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