A visitor on a Botswana safari holiday will soon realise why the Tswana word for rain – ‘Pula’ – is also the name of the national currency: this is a sun-baked, arid land where water is as precious as the diamonds upon which its wealth has been built. It’s also home to some of the world’s greatest wildlife destinations: the incomparable Okavango Delta, a great green oasis in the heart of the Kalahari and the Chobe National Park, where the ground literally rumbles beneath the feet of thousands of elephants.
There’s a wide choice of Botswana safari holiday accommodation to match your wildlife experience – including our selection of best Botswana luxury lodges – but availability is often limited so you need to book in advance.
You’ll also need to think about when to go to Botswana as there are 2 simple but distinctive seasons each with their own personality.
Peak season falls during the dry winter months between May and October, offering great game viewing as the wildlife becomes increasingly concentrated around water sources. Don’t discount the rainy summer months between November and April though: the green season offers fantastic bird watching, lots of new-born animals and a whole load of special deals from lodges.
What makes Botswana such a special destination is that it offers travellers a wonderfully varied range of natural, unspoilt environments and classic safari adventures that will convince you that there really are wild places still left in the world today.
Areas like Chobe’s Savuti, the Linyanti/Kwando Swamps and the unpolished Kalahari gems of the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park, Central Kalahari Game Reserve and Nxai Pan National Park will delight the safari holiday-goer with their rugged, yet accessible, remoteness and are creaking at the seams with wildlife.
A safe, clean and sunshine-filled country, landlocked Botswana has been described as “Africa’s success story” since its independence in 1966 – and is a peaceful, well-tempered country.
It is also a land of the starkest contrasts.
Modern, technology-driven urban areas are a short flight from the bows and arrows of San Bushmen hunting parties deep in the burning Kalahari; crystal-clear floodwaters attract massive concentrations of wildlife in parched, bone-dry savannas and woodlands; simple starlight reflects off the cut crystal of candle-lit dining tables.
Most of Botswana’s tiny population is concentrated in the kinder, more fertile southeast, leaving enormous tracts of uninhabited central and northern wilderness for you to experience a safari holiday that will live on in your memory long after you’ve shaken the Kalahari sand out of your boots.