In 1962 the local BaTawana people set aside a third of the Okavango Delta to protect it for the future.
They called this the Moremi Game Reserve, and it now forms the core of the region's reserves. Moremi encompasses a large area of the Delta's wetlands and the main dry peninsula that juts into the Delta, known as the Mopane Tongue.
Moremi is lush and varied – a patchwork of lagoons, shallow flooded pans, plains and forests. It is one of Africa's finest areas for wildlife, with particularly high game densities. The animals found here are numerous and relaxed, often allowing vehicles to approach closely.
Moremi's finest area is probably Chief's Island, where you'll find several of Botswana's top safari camps. However, there are several prime areas on the edge of the Mopane Tongue, where the land meets the Okavango's permanent waters, which can also be reached with a mobile safari, including the Khwai River (or North Gate) area, Xakanaxa Lagoon and Third Bridge.
Moremi Game Reserve covers approximately 50,00km2 and must be rated as one of the most beautiful reserves in Africa. It is named after Chief Moremi who was instrumental in getting his people to set aside the land in 1963.The reserve has been extended twice since its inception, once to incorporate chiefs island in 1976 and again in 1992 to fall in line with the new land use plan for Ngamiland – thereby increasing the area of the Okavango Delta to nearly 30%.
Moremi, hunted by the Bushman as long as 10,000 years ago, was initiated by the Batawana tribe and covers some 4,871 km, as the eastern section of the Okavango Delta. Moremi is mostly described as one of the most beautiful wildlife reserves in Africa.
It combines mopane woodland and acacia forests, floodplains and lagoons. It is the great diversity of plant and animal life that makes Moremi so well known. The idea to create a game reserve first originated in 1961 and was approved by the Batawana at a kgotla in 1963. The area was then officially designated as a game reserve in April 1965 and was initially run by the Fauna Conservation Society of Ngamiland. Moremi was then extended to include Chiefs Island in 1976. In August 1979 the reserve was taken over by the Department of Wildlife and National Parks. A further extension was added as recently as 1992 and now the reserve contains within its boundaries approximately twenty percent of the Okavango Delta.