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Town Small Mata Mata (South Africa)

ID: w189319 View large map

Located in Botswana :: Northern Cape (Kgalagadi)  :: Mata Mata (South Africa)
Category: Places :: Town Small


Mata Mata Rest camp is one of the original facilities of the Kalahari Gemsbok NP and is situated on the bank of the Auob Riverbed, against the Namibian border. There is no border facility on the South African side; you can enter or exit Namibia at the border post on the Namibian side. For clearing Immigration and Customs for South Africa or Botswana, you will have to go to Twee Rivieren. The only facilities on the Namibian side of the border are a police station, the border post and some nearby lodging and camping.

Traveller Description

Mata Mata is a popular rest camp within the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park and offers campsites and chalets. The surrounding vegetation is mainly thorny Kalahari Dune Bushveld, a favourite of giraffes. Cheetahs are often spotted on the open grasslands south of the camp.

Address :  Kgalagadi, Botswana
Cellphone Reception :  Nothing

Destination Information
Police Petrol Diesel Lodging Camping Liquor Towing Service
Towing Service Telephone :  +264(0)81 129 7490 (Polka 24hr services)
Petrol Type :  LRP/ULP
Diesel Type :  50ppm

Game Viewing Game Drives 4WD Trails Hiking Trails Guided Walks Swimming Bird Watching
Night Drives

Travelling Information

Self Drive Access :  Yes
Vehicle Type :  ALL

Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park is a popular destination with South Africans so accommodation here is usually booked out well in advance for Easter and the June / July school holidays. Mata Mata accommodation on the South African side options include campsites and self-catering chalets.

Electricity is provided via generator from 04:30 to 22:00 daily. Times vary according to the seasons.

Generator hours - updated January 2022:
November, December & January: 04:30 - 23:00;
February & March: 05:00 - 22:00;
April, May, June & July: 06:00 - 22:00;
August & September: 05:30 - 22:00;
October: 05:00 - 22:00.

Campsite power points at the three main rest camps (Twee Rivieren, Nossob and Mata Mata) have been converted to the caravan-type plug, so a blue converter is required to fit the standard South African three-pronged plug.

There is no fuel on the Namibia side of Mata Mata - but you will find fuel at Mata Mata on the South African side of the border here supplying petrol and diesel (subject to availability).

Take note: Garage or Petrol cards will no longer be accepted as a legal tender for purchase of fuel, spares or repairs in Namibia.
Cash, Debit and Credit cards are legal payment instruments, but many fuel stations choose NOT to accept Debit and/or Credit cards. But generally credit cards are accepted at garages in bigger and touristy towns. Take extra cash with still in case!

The border post at Mata Mata is open between 08:00 and 16:30 (no after-hours travel allowed) and operates independently of the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park rest camp gates and park entry gates which are shown below:
January / February: 05:30 -18:30
March: 05:30-18:00
April: 06:00-18:00
May / July: 06:00-17:30
August / September: 06:00-18:00
October: 05:30-18:00
November / December: 05:30-18:30

In January, November and December, the camp gates open an hour earlier.

While the camp accepts Master and Visa cards, such transactions are dependent on Wi-Fi reception so may not always be accessible.

The park’s rough, sandy and corrugated roads aren’t suitable for sedan vehicles. The speed limit inside the park is 50 km/h and the recommended tyre pressures are: Vehicles - 1.6 bar; Trailers - 1.2 bar; and, Caravans - 2 bar.

Travelling from Mata Mata to Tweerivieren is about 2.5 hours.

From Mata Mata to Nossob, via the Kamqua dune road is about 3.5 hours.

From Mata Mata to Bitterpan is about 2 hours.

From Mata Mata to the Kalahari Tented Camp is about 10min or 3.4km.

Travel from Mata Mata to Gharagab: Is possible to do in a day, will be about an 8 hour trip, you won't have much time for game viewing, so best to start early. Take into consideration that the speed limit in the park is 50km per hour, and if viewing game you will average about 30 km/h.

On the South African side there’s a park shop selling curios, alcohol, firewood and basic commodities like fresh meat, milk, cheese, eggs, wine, beer and spirits.
You’ll find a swimming pool to cool down in during the long hot summer days. The Mata Mata interpretation centre focuses on the owl species of the Kgalagadi. There’s no restaurant at Mata Mata, only at Twee Rivieren.

Mata Mata Rest Camp: +27(0)54 561 0907.
Twee Rivieren Border Post - South Africa: +27(0)54 561 0914.
Mata Mata Border - Namibia: +264(0)63 25 2055.
Polka 24-hr towing services are based in Okahandja, they service Namibia: +264(0)81 129 7490.
Towing services for Kgalagadi Park are available from Upington. Enquire at Mata Rest Camp reception for details: +27(0)54 561 0907.

Wi-fi is available at Mata Mata but it’s not reliable (Wi-fi vouchers can be purchased at the park shop).
A good tip from the local police is to buy a Namibian sim card at the border post with some air time and use this for internet access. Namibian cellphone reception is very good at Mata Mata, but no South African networks are available.

 Travel Tip!

If you enter the park from one country and exit into a different country, you have to spend a minimum of two nights in the park. You have to show proof of such an accommodation booking. Note that you can only clear Immigration and Customs for both Botswana and South Africa at the Twee Rivieren entrance gate. The two border posts, Twee Rivieren (SA) and Two Rivers (Botswana) share the same building. This means that, if you enter the park at Mabuasehube or Kaa gates and you want to exit the park at Mata Mata, you first have to get your exit stamp for Botswana at Two Rivers. The same goes for if you enter at Mata Mata and want to exit the park at Mabuasehube or Kaa.

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