Tuli Block, a hidden gem

The Tuli Block, historically known as the Tuli enclave is a 250km long, thin fringe of land demarcating Botswana’s Southern Eastern border (see map below).  It reaches from the Northeast corner of Botswana down to the Ngotwane River North of Olifants Drift (~100km from Gaborone).  It consists mainly of relatively small privately owned game farms offering excellent wildlife safaris. Limpopo-Lipadi game reserve (LL) is one of the largest ones, situated just east of the road to Selebi-Phikwe (100km from LL), right on the Zanzibar border post on the Limpopo River, that is around 450km North of Pretoria.  A point of note is that the Tuli Block is also an exception in Botswana: property owners enjoy freehold rights (only 3% of Botswana).  This is maybe the reason for this region being the best kept secret.

Eastern Botswana
Click image to enlarge

(The Tuli Block on Google Maps)

LL Cameleon
Cameleon

The Tuli Block contains an ABUNDANCE of diverse wildlife, a PROFUSION of birds and curious geographical features including Solomon’s Wall – an area of sheer basalt cliffs reaching 30 metres in height which once formed a natural dam across the Motloutse River and the Tswapong and Lepokole Hills – rocky outcrops dotted with gaunt sesame trees where the ancestors of the San people left traces of rock paintings.  It was in the sands high up in the Motloutse River that the first alluvial diamonds were found in Botswana, an indication of the wealth that was to come.  The red sand and yellow barked fever trees that grow along the banks of the Limpopo River, the savannah plains, open marshlands and boulder strewn rocky outcrops (also named “koppies”) are unforgettable sights.

The Easternmost section of the Tuli has been declared a game reserve known as the Northern Tuli Game Reserve (NOTUGRE).  Much of the area is unfenced and the animals flourish in this wild terrain.  Wildebeest, impala, kudu, eland and waterbuck migrate through the area and cheetah, wild dog, leopard and lion follow the game, mingling with huge herds of elephants.  Thanks to the bordering Limpopo River, the bird life is diverse and over 350 species have been recorded including boulder chats, shrikes, cormorants, kingfishers and rock thrushes.

Daley’s Koppie is a perfect example of the Tuli, yet in a more developed environment, with many kilometres of tracks, ensuring quality game drives and an exceptional diversity of sight-seeing and game-viewing.