Kalimari Desert

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This article is about the race course from Mario Kart 64. For information about the recurring location with the same Japanese name, see Dry Dry Desert. For the race course from Mario Kart: Double Dash!!, see here.
Kalimari Desert
Appearance(s) Mario Kart 64
Mario Kart 7
Cup(s) it Appears in Mushroom Cup (MK64)
Leaf Cup (MK7)
Staff Ghost Nin★Nishim (2:01.932) (MK7)
Expert Staff Ghost Nin★KOZ★ (1:48.707) (MK7)
Distance 527 m
Wi-Fi Available (3DS)
N64 Kalimari Desert.ogg
Mario Kart 64
Course Map
N64 Map
3DS Map
64 Karakara Desert.png

Kalimari Desert is a race course in Mario Kart 64. It is the fourth and final race of the Mushroom Cup. The name of the course is a pun of the real life desert, Kalahari in Southern Africa. The course's most notable feature is the two trains that go through a mesa. The trains constantly move around the track, often crossing through the racers' path. Depending on what mode is being played, the trains may or may not have coaches attached to it. If the player runs into one of them, the player will be thrown in the air. It is possible to drive on the train's track, however this will cost the racer time. It is possible, but very difficult, to cross the train track while the train is there by driving through the gap between the coaches. If a player travels through the train tunnel, the player will typically bypass the finish line, not moving on to the next lap as the other racers. However, if the player has a Star and activates it just before entering the tunnel, the player will move on to the next lap, effectively shortcutting ahead of the others. This trick will only work on the first and second laps.

The race starts out next to a large cliff formation, upon the first turn racers see how empty the desert really is. At the end of the turn the racers encounter the train for the first time. After passing the tracks the players race alongside the track of the train (though it is in a cave and not visible) eventually running into it a second time. After this encounter the racers race along the edge of the map and eventually advance back to the finish line.

Mario Kart 7[edit]

Kalimari Desert returns as the first course of the Leaf Cup of Mario Kart 7. There are now two shortcut ramps near the end of the first corner and before the third corner of the track to accommodate the new glide feature, allowing them to glide over the trains. The players can also use mushrooms to gain easy access to these ramps. Several wooden ramps also litter the inside and outside of the track, and as always, can be tricked to gain a small boost. However, the train tunnel can no longer be entered because it is now an out-of-bounds area. The trains are also shorter: they have three wagons while they had five in the original version of the track.

Much like in Mario Kart 64, two trains are present, but only one train will be present when doing online multiplayer races.

Instruction manual description[edit]

The trick is to time it so that the steam locomotive that crosses the course won't block you. If the train is crossing in front of you, you should temporarily stop. It's very dangerous to enter the train tunnel, even if it is a shortcut...


N64 Version[edit]

3DS Version[edit]

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese カラカラさばく
Kara Kara Sabaku
Crispy Desert
Spanish Desierto Kalimari Kalimari Desert
French Désert Kalimari Kalimari Desert
Dutch Wildwestwoestijn Wild West Desert
German Kalimari-Wüste Kalimari Desert
Italian Deserto Kalimari Kalimari Desert
Portuguese Deserto Kalimari Kalimari Desert
Russian Пустыня Калимари
Pustynya Kalimari
Kalimari Desert
Korean 바싹바싹 사막
Bassak-bassak Samak
Crispy Desert
Chinese 乾燥沙漠
Gānzào Shāmò
Dry Desert


  • The music used on this course was later used in Paper Mario for the train ride on the K64, which greatly resembles the train featured in this course.
  • In the Virtual Console release of the game, the train's wheels are colored black instead of red. The reason for this change is unknown.
  • Although the instruction manual states that going through the train tunnel is a shortcut, it takes longer to go through the tunnel to the other end of the course than it does to go on the main road.
  • The railroad crossing sounds in Mario Kart 64 were taken from real Japanese National Railway railroad crossings. They sound out of place in the North American version, as they use different electronic bells as well as mechanical bells. The Mario Kart 7 version has more appropriate American crossing sounds.
  • In Mario Kart 64, the railroad crossing signs' lettering appears to be mirrored. The signs in the Mario Kart 7 iteration are unlettered.
  • If the player driving on the railroad drives in the same direction as the train, Lakitu holding the REVERSE sign will appear.