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Overview of Travels in the Kalahari

Roxanne Reid’s ebook on the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park and its surrounds acts as an ode to the beauty and subtleties of the rugged wilderness of Kruger’s quieter cousin, as well as sharing the insider’s wisdom of an experienced Kalahari campaigner. It’s easy to read from cover to cover, and just as comfortable to dip into chapter by chapter as each works independently of one another. Reid’s book offers a combination of anecdotal storytelling and critical discussion. The 24 short chapters combine well to communicate both the ‘spirit of the thirstland’ and the special connection with the place which is felt by those who visit it on a regular basis. The last of these chapters is a need-to-know section which is both concise and informative, complimenting the tidbits of insider information given by Reid in the rest of the book.


Why you should read it

The first thing that strikes you when reading Travels in the Kalahari is that it has been written by someone with a real and deep connection to the place. Reid is successful in communicating the sense of belonging and somehow personal attachment to the bush which is felt by those of us who make regular pilgrimages – whether to the Kgalagadi, Kruger or any other beautiful, wild destination. This connection is also presented as it should be – as a somewhat complicated one. Reid combines descriptions of the beauty of the landscape and accounts of amazing game sights with considered discussions of frustrations with infrastructure and planning, seemingly inevitable in an environment not-conducive to human habitation. She thus relates the way in which one has to take the not-so-good with the good, which keeps one coming back year after year.

Having been to the Kgalagadi only twice myself ( many years ago at that), Reid’s description of sociable weaver nests resulted, for me, in the absolute truth of this statement of hers: ‘One day – perhaps long after you have left it behind – you’ll . . . realize it has wormed its way into your heart.’ The book is not, however, only for those familiar with the Kgalagadi. Prospective bushveld holiday first-timers or even those looking for a closer, quieter alternative to Kruger could gain valuable insight into the particularly laid-back pace of life and the ‘humbling silence’ of the Kgalagadi. You could also stand to learn a lot about how to plan your holiday in the park by taking a careful look at the need-to-know section.



Anecdotes of interactions with a local tracker left me chuckling, as well as jealous of Reid’s particularly special experiences of the Kgalagadi and its surrounding areas. Her descriptions of the ever-changing physical beauty of the place are complimented by the portraits she paints of the people who live and work in the Kalahari, from grinning guides and bashful camp attendants to professors rehabilitating meerkat pups. As a bit of a sucker for bush trivia I also enjoyed the bush facts which she has dotted throughout the book.



Travels in the Kalahari is available on as an ebook. It will cost you R70 at the current exchange rate and can be downloaded straight to your kindle. If you don’t have a Kindle, don’t worry, you can download a free app for most smartphones, computers and tablets which will allow you to read the book on whatever device you prefer.

Has Travels in the Kgalagadi sparked an interest?

Have a look at these 5 reasons why you have to visit the Kgalagadi at least once, or if you’ve read Travels in the Kalahari, and can’t wait for a Kgalagadi adventure of your own, check out this Kgalagadi self-drive expedition package.


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  • Mandy Lowings

    After reading such a great write up, I can’t wait to read the ebook!

  • Allison Mackenzie

    It’s not often one’s family holiday gets retold on the pages of a book and I have to say that reading about my family’s disastrous start to our Kgalagadi adventure brought those terrifying memories flooding back. Roxanne Reid has a way with words which enables her reader to go on a magical trip, in a part of Africa that grabs you by the heart, never to let go. For those of us lucky enough to have spent time amongst the red dunes, this book serves as a reminder of this truly special place. For those who haven’t made the trip, I guarantee after reading this book, you will be reaching for your tent and packing your 4X4. My only criticism, it was far too short. Roxanne, I am sure there are more Kgalagadi stories to be told!

    • Indeed there are more stories, Allison, and I’m busily collecting them! Thanks for your kind words

  • Gerhard Smit

    If you enjoy nature, specifically the Kalahari and have a bit of time; this is the book for you.

  • Roxanne brings the Kgalagadi to life. So many travel books do not do justice to the area written about – Roxanne not only does justice to the Kalahari but her humor and way of expressing the experience brings a sense of reality of the situation into your own home. If you haven’t read Travels in the Kalahari – do yourself a favor and get it as soon as possible.

  • David

    After reading the review I was so intrigued that I went online and bought the book. I am thoroughly enjoying it. Now want to go to the Kalahari!

  • This is a fantastic book about one of the most gorgeous areas in the world. Perfect for armchair travellers as well as those who prefer the real thing. Roxanne is a fantastic writer who makes readers feel as though they are right there with her sharing the journey.

  • Sonia Bowers

    We read it whilst we were travelling around the Kalahari and it was a lovely companion. I recommend it to people who still haven’t been there yet and are thinking of going. And for those of you that have been there, done that, you can still learn something new about this amazing place.

  • Wow, Paul and all of you, thanks so much for the supportive comments here. It inspires me to hit the keyboard with renewed vigour. I love the experiences and writing, no matter what, but it’s also wonderful to get feedback from readers.

  • Roxanne great book from someone who understands the soul of the Kalahari! keep it up girl and hope to see you on your next visit.

    • Thanks Hannetjie. I’m glad to see the Kalahari Sands Guesthouse is still in business.

  • Josephine Saggerson

    Unable to Travel ,Roxanne’s books on travel and especially the Kalahari are a means of escape for me .Her descriptions and humor make the pages come alive and when I can travel again they will be a good refrance for me .

    • Candice Chisholm

      Random question, are you ballet teacher Jo? If so please respond. Candy Jacobs

  • Mohammed Jinnah

    Looks like a great read, Will get the Ebook

    • Hope you enjoy it, Mohammed.

  • Vincent

    This looks awesome,thanks. Been wanting to go to Kalahari for ever so maybe if I read this book it will put a boot to my bum!