The park was first proclaimed as the Caprivi Game Reserve in 1966 and upgraded to the Caprivi Game Park in 1968. It was gazetted as the Bwabwata National Park in 2007 and incorporated the former Mahango Game Reserve. The park has had a chequered history as it was declared a military area by the South African Defence Force during Namibia’s war of liberation. It was not until after Independence in 1990 that the park could be properly run as a conservation area.
Covering an area of about 6 100 km², the park is dominated by Low vegetated sand dunes with old drainage lines (omurambas) in between with the Okavango River in the west and the Kwando River in the east. The park’s vegetation is Broad-leafed Kalahari woodland with trees such as Zambezi teak and false mopane on the sandy areas, and camelthorn and leadwood in the marimbas. Reeds and papyrus on the floodplains, which are lined with trees such as Jackal-berry, mangosteen, knob thorn and makalani palm.
In terms of wildlife, there are Large concentrations of elephant and buffalo, also sable and roan antelope. Main predators such as lion, leopard, cheetah and hyaena. One of the last refuges of the wild dog in Namibia. Common reedbuck, red lechwe, sitatunga and hippo along the rivers.
Birds include Wattled Crane, African Skimmer Western- banded Snake Eagle, Wood Owl, Pel’s Fishing Owl, Narina Trogon, Cape Parrot, and both Red-billed and Yellow-billed Oxpeckers.