A landlocked jewel in southern Africa, Botswana is a captivating destination that offers a unique opportunity to connect with the wild heart of Africa. The country’s safari experiences are defined by low-impact and sustainable tourism practices, ensuring the preservation of its pristine ecosystems and incredible wilderness. From the vast Kalahari Desert where rolling dunes stretch as far as the eye can see, to the lush and fertile Okavango Delta, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, a Botswana safari offers breathtaking wildlife encounters.
The lush wetlands, floodplains and water channels from the Okavango Delta create a unique ecosystem, making it one of the world’s largest inland deltas. Mokoro safaris allow you to glide through the tranquil waters, offering a close-up view of the region’s aquatic life and countless bird species. Game drives and guided walks provide opportunities to encounter elephants, buffalo, lions and various antelope species.
Located within the Okavango Delta, Moremi Game Reserve is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts who are on a Botswana safari, offering some of the best game viewing in the country. The reserve is known for its diverse landscapes and is famous for its high concentration of big cats, including lions, leopards and cheetahs, as well as other species like wild dogs and hippos. Bird lovers will delight in the countless species.
The Khwai Concession is a private reserve situated on the eastern border of the Moremi Game Reserve. Offering an exclusive safari experience, safari-goers can explore the area through game drives and night drives, offering chances to spot nocturnal wildlife. These include elusive species like porcupines and aardvarks.
The otherworldly vast salt pans of the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park, are a highlight on a Botswana safari. During the rainy season, the pans fill with water and attract thousands of flamingos, creating a breathtaking spectacle. The area is also known for its meerkat populations, allowing for up-close encounters with these charming creatures.
Next to the Makgadikgadi Pans, Nxai Pan National Park is known for its large baobab trees and the migration of zebras and other herbivores during the rainy season. The area offers excellent game viewing and birdwatching opportunities.
A visit to Chobe National Park to marvel at its massive elephant herds, some of the largest in Africa, should be included on any Botswana safari itinerary. The park is also home to predators like lions and leopards, making it a well-rounded wilderness destination. Boat safaris on the Chobe River offer excellent opportunities to witness elephants bathing and playing in the water, along with other animals like buffalos, giraffes and various antelope species.
There are a multitude of activities to participate in on a Botswana safari. Game drives conducted in open 4×4 vehicles allow for close encounters with wildlife while gliding through the Okavango Delta in traditional mokoros or cruising on the Chobe River in a boat brings a different perspective. Safari-goers can also explore the bush on foot with experienced guides to learn more about the smaller creatures while night drives provide excellent opportunities to observe nocturnal animals on the prowl.
The dry winter season between May and October is the most popular time for a Botswana safari as wildlife congregates around water sources. The wet season is between November and April, with the surrounding bush lush and green. It can however be a challenging time for game viewing due to thick vegetation and flooded areas.