Khutse Game Reserve | Travel guide

The Khutse Game Reserve is the Kalahari’s most compact public reserve at 965 square miles and an extension of the southern boundary of the Central Kalahari Game Reserve

It is one of the lesser known parks and reserves, located 150 miles from the capital Gaborone in central Botswana. Khutse Game Reserve (GR) is renowned for combining most types of Kalahari habitat – rolling grasslands, river beds, fossil dunes and bare pans. 

Khutse meaning “where one kneels to drink” is part of an ancient river system that once flowed northeast to fill the prehistoric Lake Makgadikgadi. Khutse’s Pans and dry river valleys are remnants of this river system.

Why visit the Khutse Game Reserve?

Safari at the Khutse Game Reserve

Visitors can expect several wildlife driving loops throughout the reserve. The shorter drive is the northern loop around Sekhushwe and Mohurusile pans, approximately 15 miles from the reserve headquarters. 

The longer drive is to Moreswa Pan, about 40 miles from the headquarters, or a 75 mile loop.

Animals

Animals commonly sighted include plentiful springbok and gemsbok, giraffes, wildebeest, hartebeest, kudus, black-backed jackal, steenbok, duikers and the accompanying predators lions, leopards, cheetahs, smaller cats and the endangered brown hyena.

The Khutse Pan waterhole and Molose waterholes are excellent locations to view wildlife. 

Birds

Visitors will see raptors, bustards, ostriches and the black-shouldered kite. 

Other activities at Khutse GR

Khutse GR offers visitors various options when it comes to experiencing the beauty and wilderness of this area. 

View the picturesque pans

Explore the large number of pans where wildlife often congregate including the Motailane, Moreswa and Molose pans. 

Sometimes water is pumped at artificial waterholes at Moreswa and Molose, making for good game viewing year round.

Walking safaris 

Walks with the San and Bakgalagadi peoples, the Kgalagadi’s original inhabitants can be arranged. These inhabitants live in small villages on the periphery of the reserve. 

How to get to the Khutse GR?

By Plane 

Most visitors fly into Botswana’s main airport, Sir Seretse Khama International Airport (GBE), located 7 miles north of Gaborone. Tour operators will meet visitors there for pick-up.

Visitors can arrange a 4×4, recommended for the deep sand if on a self-drive safari.

By Road

Located just 150 miles from the capital Gaborone, the park is a popular weekend retreat from the city. 

Tariffs & Regulations 

Entrance fee to the Khutse Game Reserve 

Please note the entrance fee for the Khutse GR is USD $10 for non-residents. 

Vehicle fees cost $1 per day for Botswanan plates and $4.20 for non-Botswanan plates. 

Regulations 

When visitors enter the reserve, they must follow common sense rules including picking up waste, respecting the reserve schedules and staying in the vehicle when required. 

Accommodation at Khutse Game Reserve

There is no accommodation in or near the park, but there are several campsites with limited facilities inside the park. Self-drive visitors need to be self-sufficient and bring enough fuel and water among other supplies.

Campsites

The KGR hosts 25 campsites, all of them offering only very little shade and no water. 

  • Mahurushele has 4 Campsites
  • Khankhe pan has 4 Campsites
  • Moloswe Pan has 4 Campsites
  • Moreswe has 4 Campsites

The Khutse, Molose and Moreswe Pans have basic latrines and shower facilities without water though.  Visitors have to bring water, fuel, etc. as there is no possibility to buy supplies in the reserve.  

Pricing from $30 for non-residents per person per night.

Lodges

There are no lodges to be found within the KGR. The Khutse Kalahari Lodge, 10 km outside the entrance gate into the Khutse Game Reserve, has partly burned down and is currently closed. 

Useful information  

Geography

Located in central Botswana adjacent 150 miles from Gaborone. Visitors looking to explore the neighbouring Central Kalahari Game Reserve should head north. 

Weather 

A hot, desert climate awaits visitors to Khutse, which is also subject to distinct Dry and Wet seasons. 

April and May are the beginning of the Dry season whilst the rainy season begins in October or November.

Best time to visit Khutse GR

During the wet months, from December to March, when animals congregate around the pans. 

Health 

Khutse GR is considered a low-risk malaria area, however prophylactics are advised. Visitors entering the area should consult their doctors regarding anti-malarial medicines. 

FAQs

Where is the Khutse Game Reserve located?

150 miles from the capital Gaborone in central Botswana with a travel time of 4 hours. 

How much is the park entrance fee?

The entrance fee for the Khutse GR is USD $10 for non-residents. Vehicle fees cost $1 per day for Botswanan plates and $4.20 for non-Botswanan plates. 

What animals will visitors see?

Animals include springbok, gemsbok, giraffes, wildebeest, hartebeest, kudus, black-backed jackal, steenbok, duikers, lions, leopards, cheetahs, smaller cats and the brown hyena.