This small village, situated 180km north of Francistown, is a popular stop-over destination on the way to or from Maun and Kasane further north. The climate is hot and dry with seasonal rains each year. Nata is the best place from which to explore the eastern section of the famous Makgadikgadi Pans. The salt pans are some of the largest in the World, with many pans surrounded by sandy desert. The pans are all that remains of Lake Makgadikgadi, which originally covered an area larger than Switzerland, but this dried up thousands of years ago. Nata Sanctuary is only 10km away from the town, the sanctuary is home to a large breeding population of greater flamingos and a large population of pelicans. During the wet season, the pans become an important habitat for migrating animals including wildebeest and zebra, and the large predators that follow them. The rains also bring a variety of migratory birds such as ducks and geese. The Nata River is the main water source to the pans. Nata is a real bird lover’s paradise and a guided tour of the pans is an excellent excursion to allow you to not only see and enjoy the fabulous birds but learn more about the geology of the area.
Nata Lodge is an oasis located on the edge of the pans and close to the entrance of the Nata Sanctuary. Nata Lodge is set amongst the trees which creates a cool and calming ambience and at the same time attracting many bird species. The lodge has a famous bird feeding station that attracts a variety of birds by day and a number of cute bush babies by night. Species you can expect to see from the comfort of your pool lounger include the Paradise Wydah, Crested Francolin and Meyers Parrot. The lodge has an onsite restaurant where guests can enjoy tasty filling meals. The en-suite chalets are built on platforms overlooking the Didibakwe River and in the shade of Ilala palm trees. Nata Lodge offers guided tours in open safari vehicles into the sanctuary, which is the highlight of any stay. Your guide will be able to point out many of the over 165 bird species recorded in the sanctuary and tell you all about the other wildlife and the pans history. Children of all ages are welcome at Nata Lodge.