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Dirt Bikes on the Moon!

We’re all fascinated by the moon and imagine you had the opportunity to actually visit the moon, even more so, taking your dirt bike or bicycle for a ride on the moon! Sounds very far fetched, but we have something that is damn near close to riding a bike on the moon, the Makgadikgadi Moonlight Adventure.

Located in the north-east if the Central Kalahari Game Reserve and south-east of the Okavango Delta lies the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans, spanning over 30 000km2 and identified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the home of the Makgadikgadi Moonlight Adventure.

An adventure for all outdoor enthusiasts, cyclists and dirt bike lovers. The event was created around the concept of being able to safely ride your bike at night, never did we imagine the beauty we would see when the full moon is out. The pans turn a crystal blue with the reflection of the moon and we’re sure Neil Armstrong would have a bit of de ja vu should he visit the pans whilst the moon is full and bright! Now that you have a picture in your mind, imagine taking your bike for a ride around a 20-25km loop that takes you into the pans so that you can experience the view without any artificial lights…you have a SHADOW, and that’s at 12am in the morning, not something you’ll find on your average trip or holiday! For most it is the best full moon experience you’ll have, where you can view the spectacular Milky Way from horizon to horizon with a blue undertone of the salt pans.

In 2019 we created several new aspects to the event, the JAM IN THE PAN and ADVENTURE TRAILS. In 2020 we're going even bigger and bolder by adding KIDS TRACK BUILDING COMPETITIONS, an amazing STUNTS SHOW brought to you by a freestyle motocross team bringing BACKFLIPS and WHIPS galore, along with INTERACTIVE DRUMMING and FIRE DANCING - Jeepers we're excited to bring all this to you, and boy is it going to be a fun-filled weekend!





WHAT'S GOING ON!

STUNTS SHOW

Catch the uniquely amazing daredevils at Moonlight this year. These crazy guys led by Nick de Wit, Red Bull FMX Athlete will perform their awesome line-up of back-flips, whips, heel clickers, switchblades, cliffhangers, lazy boys and so so so much more. Get this - we will have TWO shows, so you gotta make sure you’re at this year’s event, or you will miss out!

GLOW-IN-THE-DARK MOONLIGHT LOOP

We feel that this is the part that people LOVE the most! Take you dirt bike, quad or bicycle out into the great unknown that is the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans and experience the shadow of the moon. The best way we know how to explain it, is “This is how it must have been for Neil Armstrong when he went to the moon!”

We have separate loops for the bikes and the bicycles, each with an adults loop which is 20-30km and a kids loop approximately 5km for the cyclists and 10km for motorcycles. These loops are marked with glow sticks and all you gotta do is go from one glow stick to the other, for an experience of a lifetime.

INTERACTIVE DRUMMING

Have you ever beaten an African Drum and felt its glorious rhythm. It takes some hectic practice and is quite an art, but we can guarantee you that by the end of Moonlight 2020 you will be buying an African Drum for your home. To open the fun and games of Friday night, guests will be given a drum and Lewis Ndlovu and his team will lead you in creating a rhythm unique to Moonlight, something you go home remembering and talking about for years to come. This is great fun for the kids and adults alike, don't miss it!

JAM IN THE PAN

The Jam in the Pan is a live jam in the middle of the pan, a party under the mystic moon at its best alongside fabulous music and a full on fire dance show to capture your eyes! Jordan MoOzy was the highlight of 2019's Jam in the Pan alongside the brilliant fire dancing performance put on by The Magic Bean Theatre Company from Maun. In 2020 Jordan MoOzy will join us again along with other popular local artists.

ADVENTURE TRAILS

The edition of 2020 will include a guided adventure trail to Kaitshe Escarpment, showing off its aerial view of the salt pans like no other, it also has various ancient archeology artefacts dating back to the Stone Age including a stone wall and pottery pieces. The route up to Kaitshe is rocky and quite technical and should only be done by a 4x4 or with bikes, but once you reach the top, the view is breath-taking and well worth the trek.

There will be one guided trail on Friday 3 July at 1pm and 3 guided trails on Saturday at 6am, 9am and 12pm. Book your time slot through our registration and booking form.

CYCLE ADVENTURE

We've gone the extra mile for the cyclists this year, incorporating a cycle adventure that trails along the salt pan and a little off the beaten track. The longer loop will be approximately 20km and a short easy 5km loop for the kiddies and those that are just out to enjoy the romance of the pan. This adventure trail will leave at approximately 7am while the pan is still cool and fresh.

We must not forget about the fun to be had by hanging out on the pan - experiencing the vastness, learning how ride for those who have never ridden a motorcycle, interacting with other outdoor enthusiasts and enjoying the uniqueness of your surroundings. This is actually the highlight of the whole weekend.

KIDDIES TRACK BUILDING COMPETITION

Oh this is so much fun and we cannot wait to see what the kids do with this! The junior riders will be split into groups and they will need to come up with a name for their team and then get building! Each group will chose their track site and then start to mould the track into their vision of a fun, twisty, turny track. On Saturday afternoon the tracks will be judged by some of our top off road and motocross riders in Botswana as well as the kids themselves. We are so excited about this element and we feel that it gives the kids great purpose for the weekend and they are kept very busy building, building, building...
To add to the day time activities, we host a simple oval track race for bikes and quads, during this race we raise money for a local non-profit organisation ELEPHANTS FOR AFRICA - riders are auctioned off and all the proceeds given to EfA. In 2019 we raised just over P4000.00 and will again run this event in 2020. Great Plains Conservation are once again on board as a sponsor of this event with an amazing prize of 2 nights stay for 2 people at any of their exploration camps, FULLY INCLUSIVE! This year the prize was won by Duane Nel from Maun, riding his quad. There will be a junior version of this race with some wicked prizes for the kids.

AFTER DARK ACTIVITIES

Opening the night-time activities is the House of the Rising Sun - Night Enduro-Cross event, here riders go head to head to win a 7 day holiday for 8 people in Mozambique at the House of the Rising Sun! The course is for two-wheelers only and is very technical, fast, short and loved by the spectators and riders. It an ALL OR NOTHING RACE! The race was won by Mike Wilkinson, also from Maun and his KTM 250 2 stroke. It was a close contention between him and Francistown’s rider, Cole Millman, providing the crowds with high adrenaline entertainment.

We love a good after party and this year Jordan MoOzy Live will once again open the dance floor. Once the dance floor is open so to the Moonlight loops. These take riders on a 20km loop on the fabulous pan to experience the freedom of the pans and brightness of the full moon. Riders can ride these loops for as long as they want, as many times as they want, we just ask that they RIDE SAFE, without alcohol.
House of the Rising Sun Mozambique
Check out their Facebook page

ACCOMMODATION AVAILABLE

This year we have gone out of our way to give our guests an option of "glamping" type accommodation...and boy have we found something awesome! You can book a 2 or 4 sleeper CABIN with us for the weekend. The 2 sleeper cabin has two beds, with mattresses, along with sheets, comforters, blankets and pillows, the 4 sleeper has the same but with 2 bunk beds (great for a family)! The cabins will be put up for you before you arrive and all you have to do is put your clothes in.....how FABULOUS!

There will be a communal area for the guests staying in the cabins for sitting, relaxing and charging their phones, which we are SUPER excited about.

WHAT TO EXPECT AT THIS EVENT

The logistics of this event are intense as there is absolutely nothing out there and our team literally have to build the entire “mini city” from scratch. Trucking in water for showers, food and drinks for whole weekend, tents for people to hire as well as tents for the main arena. Electricity is provided from generators and this runs the entire main arena with lights, sound and refrigeration. Other facilities available at the event are:

WHAT PEOPLE LOVE ABOUT MOONLIGHT

• It is an event for the adventurous, with wild open spaces and where dust turns to slick.
• The event is family orientated and we loved the bonding and interacting with fellow campers and riders, making friends for life.
• We loved that we could ride all day long and all night long, without any race pressure.
• The adventure treks were character building and fun.
• Our kids were able to ride in a safe environment, they were free to build their own turn tracks and they too spent hours and hours riding and sharing their creations with their family and friends.
• We came to enjoy the relaxing atmosphere away from racing pressures and LOVED every moment.

Thank You to All Our Partners of This Event