inatafuta...
Truelionkingsafaris... Please Wait...

Botswana Safari

Choose a Botswana vacation package and experience a traditional big game wildlife safari in one of Africa’s top destinations

Botswana Safari Vacation

Choose a Botswana vacation package and experience a traditional big game wildlife safari in one of Africa’s top destinations. The evergreen jewel of the Okavango Delta is at the heart of Botswana’s safari attractions, flanked in the east by the rolling savannah of the Savuti and the teeming elephant paradise of the Chobe.

South of the delta lie the far-flung stretches of the Makgadikgadi saltpans and the semi-desert grasslands of the Kalahari. Go on guided game drives, nature walks, river cruises, canoe trips or explore on the backs of elephants and horses to make the most of Botswana's legendary wildlife. The Chobe is home to Africa's largest elephant population as well as huge herds of buffalo, zebra and many antelope species, and with such abundant plains game, Botswana has plenty of Africa's top predators – lion, leopard, hyenas and rare wild dogs. Even the bird watching is exceptional.

The saltpans and Kalahari scrubland south of the delta are home to unique experiences like quad biking safaris and authentic cultural encounters with Africa’s first people, the San. This is also the setting for Botswana’s green season migration, which happens between January and March (depending on seasonal rainfall). After the summer rains fill the desert waterholes, thousands of zebra and antelope migrate into the area to feast on the sweet, new grasses. This in turn leads to dramatic predator-prey interactions as the resident lion prides make the most of the visiting herds.

Our African Safari Experts make planning your Botswana vacation super simple. Tours and safari packages range from exceptional luxury to rugged adventure, specialist safaris for keen photographers and intimate honeymoons. It’s a great destination for multi-generational family vacations, but we don’t recommend it for young children and toddlers.

Quick links to travel advice

Best Time to Visit Botswana

Cape Town

What is the best time of the year to visit Cape Town?

The question of when to go to Botswana is best answered by thinking about what you want to experience. Game viewing is at its peak during the dry winter months of May to October when animals are concentrated in ever increasing numbers at water sources as the dry season wears on. Many experts regard the cooler months of June to August as the best time of year for a Botswana safari - the game viewing is consistently excellent, there's virtually no rain and the risk of malaria is at its lowest.

Reaching peak concentrations during the hot and dry September/October months, wildlife tends to disperse during the rainy January to April summer but several destinations such as Chobe's Savute region and the Kalahari offer excellent summer game viewing, not least because they lie on the path of migrating animals - particularly zebra. Indeed, Botswana's three Kalahari parks are arguably at their best in early summer - December is a particularly good month as many antelope give birth then which means more predators.

year-round birding destination, bird watchers will nevertheless find the the migrant-filled summer months of the "Green Season" the best time to visit Botswana for both numbers and diversity of species.

Where to Go in Botswana

There's plenty of variation on a Botswana safari: huge wetlands and wide rivers are havens of biodiversity in the country's northern woodland environments while the surprisingly rewarding Kalahari is where to go in Botswana for game-covered grasslands and sun-baked salt pans. Each destination offers something different but combining these places of interest is simple to arrange - light aircraft charters serve each destination and you can even enjoy some bird's eye game viewing on the way.

Okavango Delta: the Kalahari's green oasis

An emerald-green paradise in the middle of the red Kalahari, the Okavango Delta forms the centrepiece of most Botswana safaris. One of the world's most mesmerising natural destinations, its labyrinthine channels, open floodplains and tangled woodlands really do teem with wildlife and it offers a wide range of safari activities including game drives, nature walks, boat rides and canoe safaris. Much of the Okavango Delta is protected by the legendary Moremi Game Reserve; privately managed conservation concessions take care of much of the rest.

Chobe National Park: elephants & predators

Botswana's heavyweight big game reserve, the Chobe National Park is where to go in Botswana for elephants and at no time more so than between June and October when enormous herds congregate on the Chobe River. Further south is Chobe's Savuti region - raw, wild and the legendary setting for savage interactions between lions and hyenas.

Read more about a Chobe safari.

The Kalahari: unique parks & thriving wildlife

A far cry from the popular imagery of a sandy wasteland, the beautiful wooded grasslands and seasonally flooded pans of Botswana's three Kalahari parks are home to an astonishing variety of animals, quite different from Botswana's more famous destinations, and are ideal for seasoned travellers looking for a unique safari experience.

Linyanti, Selinda & Kwando: exclusive wetland reserves

If it's an Okavango Delta-type experience you want but with an air of exclusivity then travel to the private reserves of Linyanti, Selinda and Kwando. Bordering the Caprivi Strip, these wild wetlands have only recently opened up to visitors and the game viewing, particularly in the June to October dry season, is superb.

Read more about a Linyanti safari.

Tuli Block: safari in the Land of Giants

Tucked away in eastern Botswana, the Tuli Block is one of Botswana's least known places of interest but offers a very different safari experience to the rest of the country. Set around the Limpopo River, this is a country of dramatic rocky landscapes, huge baobab trees and elephants, protected by private reserves.

Read more about a Tuli Block safari.

Botswana Travel Advice

There's nothing like up-to-date, relevant travel information direct from the experts - get True Lion King Safari's essential Botswana travel advice before you go.

Money & Spending

The national currency of Botswana is the Pula - a regionally strong currency - but the US dollar is widely accepted at lodges and hotels throughout the country. Major hotels have foreign exchange desks and most shops, lodges and travel agencies will accept traveller's cheques. All major credit cards are accepted at hotels, lodges, shops and restaurants. However, some establishments do not accept payment by Diners or American Express.

Full banking services are only available in Botswana’s major towns, but ATMs are becoming increasingly more common.

Banking hours: 8:30am to 3:30pm Monday to Friday and 8:30am to 11am on Saturday.

Tipping

Provided the service is good, it is customary to tip lodge staff and guides in either Pula or any hard currency on your Botswana safari. The amount that you tip varies depending on the staff member’s role and the size of your group.

In city restaurants and bars, a 10% tip is customary when the service charge is not included.

For in-depth tipping guidelines, enquire with one of our Africa Safari Experts - they'd be happy to share their knowledge with you.

Climate

Average summer temperatures: 18°C to 38°C

Average winter temperatures: 6°C to 27°C

Rainy season: October/November to March/April

Refer to “best time to visit Botswana” for climate charts and details on the best wildlife-viewing times.

What to Pack

When packing for a Botswana safari, practicality is key. In the summer months, daytime temperatures can exceed 40°C, so shorts and t-shirts are best, with a longer shirt for protection against the sun if you burn easily. Choose clothing in neutral colours (try to avoid white) and wear lightweight long-sleeved clothing at night and in the early mornings to protect against mosquitoes.

During the cooler months it is best to layer up as the days are still warm and sunny but the night time temperatures can drop close to freezing point. Be sure to pack a thick fleece or jacket for early morning and evening game drives, which can be very cold.

Gaborone: you can fly to Sir Seretse Khama - Botswana's main international airport - from Johannesburg but most safari-bound travellers skip it and fly directly to one of the two airports below.

Maun: daily flights from Johannesburg and Cape Town mean easy access to the Okavango Delta's gateway airport. You'll transfer to light charter aircraft for your flight into the Delta.

Kasane: fly to Chobe's gateway from Johannesburg, Gaborone or Maun. You'll transfer by road to lodges in the Chobe River area or smaller aircraft for safaris in Savute or Linyanti. Victoria Falls is less than 100km away by road.

Charter flights on small aircraft are the norm for getting from place to place in Botswana with transfers and game drives conducted in open-sided 4X4 vehicles. Transfers and game viewing by motor boat and mokoro (dug-out canoe) are common in the Okavango Delta.

Visa & Passport Requirements

Every visitor to Botswana must be in possession of a passport that is valid until six months after the initial date of travel; however, no visas are required by citizens of EU countries, most Commonwealth countries, the USA, South Africa, Switzerland, Israel and Norway.

Upon arrival you will receive a 30-day entrance stamp and, for those who plan on travelling onwards to Botswana’s neighbouring countries, visas for Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe can be obtained in Gaborone.

 

About Botswana

History & Economy

A model working democracy since its independence in 1966, Botswana is one of Africa's true success stories. Long associated with the San Bushmen, this France-sized country was settled by Iron Age African farmers - the predecessors of today's Tswana - but was subsequently colonised by the British. Once something of a colonial backwater, Botswana's peaceful transition to freedom was led by Sir Seretse Khama - a highly revered figure in the country - and the discovery of enormous diamond fields quickly transformed the country.

Lying landlocked at the dry heart of the Southern African subcontinent, Botswana has used its limited resources wisely, and for thirty years it enjoyed the highest average economic growth rate in the world. The wealth derived from Botswana's three major industries of cattle, diamonds and tourism has resulted in country-wide infrastructure and - by continental standards - a high standard of living.

People & Culture

With a population of barely over two million, Botswana has a mostly homogenous culture with strong religious beliefs. Most people are Christian and Tswana-speaking (English is widely spoken), though many San Bushmen still follow their traditional way of life in the Kalahari. Most of the population however lives in the more urbanised south-east, especially in the ever-expanding capital city of Gaborone, leaving much of the country completely wild and uninhabited.

Landscape & Wildlife

Virtually synonymous with the Kalahari Desert, much of Botswana is flat and dry, covered in thorny acacia trees and home to enormous salt pans and rolling grasslands. Rainfall is highest in northern Botswana where vast open woodlands dominate the environment and several globally important wetland habitats - the Okavango Delta, the Linyanti Swamps and the Chobe River - support huge numbers of animals.

With over 17% of its land surface turned over to conservation and a ban on virtually all hunting effective from 2013, Botswana is a haven for wildlife and several of its protected areas - the Chobe National Park, the Okavango Delta and the Moremi Game Reserve in particular - rank among Africa's best game viewing destinations. Botswana's Kalahari parks are some of the wildest and least developed in the region but offer excellent opportunities for game viewing, especially in early summer when several local zebra migrations occur.

Botswana's wildlife highlights include Africa's greatest concentrations of elephant, fantastic bird watching, abundant predators and the continent's largest population of African wild dog. Botswana's lions are particularly notorious for their size and their ability to prey on large animals such as hippo, buffalo and even young elephants.

Book your Botswana safari package with us, the Africa Safari Experts. We’ll tailor your vacation to make sure it’s shaped around your preferences and interests.

All our Botswana travel advice is based on firsthand experience and regular travel to Botswana’s top tour attractions – we know how to get the most out of this destination for your family and how to plan to most romantic safari adventure for the two of you. We’ll do much more than deliver the best Big 5 thrills in the unforgettable Okavango Delta, game-rich Chobe National Park and far-flung Kalahari: We’ll deliver a Botswana safari tour that features clever combinations and seamless logistics to make the most of your holiday time and budget. Want to add on a visit to the Victoria FallsKruger or Cape Town?

Talk to an Africa Safari Expert today and make the most of your Botswana safari tour package.


Recommended Botswana Tours & Safari Holidays


Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

7Days Bigfive Botswana Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed: Start in Chobe National Park and end in Okavango Delta! With the safari tour 7 Days Big Five

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

5Days Tented Bush & Okavango Delta

Activities travellers enjoyed:Explore the Okavango Delta with this 5 days tour beginning in a private concession

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

7Days Ultimate Botswana Tented Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:7Days Ultimate Botswana Tented Safari tour visiting the Okavango Delta and Chobe

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

15Days Romantic Chobe - Delta & Mozambique Island

Activities travellers enjoyed:Spend 15 days enjoying the best of both worlds: a

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

7Days Ultimate Botswana Family Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:Visiting the Okavango Delta and Chobe National Park. This tour operates in remote wilderness

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

5Days Okavango Delta Botswana Family Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:Explore the Okavango Delta with this 5 days tour

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

7Days Botswana Luxury Family Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:7Days Botswana Luxury Safari tour visiting the Okavango Delta and Chobe National Park

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

15Days Romantic Honeymoon Chobe-Delta & Mozambique Holiday

Activities travellers enjoyed:A classic big game safari in Botswana and a private

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

12Days Exodus Travel Camping Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:One of the highlights of this Botswana guided tour is a Mokoro trip on the Okavango Delta

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

11Days Victoria Falls & Botswana Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:This is an ideal safari for those who wish to explore the magic of Victoria Falls combined with

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

10Days Chobe Okavango Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:From your arrival in Chobe to your final views of the Moremi Game Reserve, your 10 day retreat

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

10Days Bushman Trail Kalahari Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:Your Botswana safari journey starts in Maun and ends in Victoria Falls. passing through

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

10Days Botswana Camping Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:Trek through the Okavango Delta as you adopt a nomad lifestyle for 10 days and live

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

9Days Ultimate Family Safari in Botswana

Activities travellers enjoyed:Explore Botswana's wilderness and create

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

9Days Botswana Chobe Okavango & Makgadikgadi

Activities travellers enjoyed:Experience the fabulous scenery and abundant

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

9Days Botswana Buffalo Trail Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:Your Botswana safari journey starts in Maun and ends in Victoria Falls. passing throug

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

8Days Botswana Africa Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:Explore Botswana’s 3 contrasting areas in the Okavango and Linyanti and finish with

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

7Days Romantic & Luxury Botswana

Activities travellers enjoyed:With some of the world's largest National Parks and vast unspoiled landscapes, Botswana is a

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

7Days Delta to Desert Romantic Botswana Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:Spend a week hidden away in an abyss of

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

7Days Botswana Lodge Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:A 7 day lodge safari combining the thundering Victoria Falls and two of the world's finest

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

7Days Botswana Honeymoon Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:One week African safari for newly married couples seeking luxury vacation in one of the most

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

6Days Okavango Delta & Chobe Luxury Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:Experience the best of Botswana – the Okavango

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

5Days Romantic Botswana Luxury Safari

Activities travellers enjoyed:Day one of your 5 day Adventure Safari in Botswana

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

5Days Okavango Unforgetable Botswana Safarii

Activities travellers enjoyed:Explore the diverse range of habitats of the Okavango

from/

$500

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

4Days Savuti & Chobe Explore

Destinations visited:You can explore the two parks in an easy days meet with clients then have the boat and have a

from/

$8,895

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

3Days Best of Moremi Game Reserve

Destinations visited:For those who have limited time but want to explore Moremi Game Reserve it is the best package. We

from/

$8,895

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

9Days Northern Botswana Birding

Destinations visited: The Okavango Delta and Greater Chobe River areas of Northern Botswana offer some of the best

from/

$8,895

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

5Days Linyanti Botswana Walking

Destinations visited: This is a 5 days safari in Botswana. The ‘Linyanti Walking Safaris’ is classified as an adventure safari

from/

$8,895

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

4Days Botwana Selinda Walking Trail

Top reasons to visit: This is a 4 days Selinda Walking Trail Safari. Selinda is a special area has been set aside in the

from/

$8,895

Card image cap

Tours & Safaris

4Days Explore Botswana Family Safari

Top reasons to visit: This 4-day child-friendly tour of the Okavango is perfect for families who want to experience

from/

$8,895

Best Botswana Safari Lodges

The iconic destinations of the Chobe National Park, Moremi Game Reserve and the Okavango Delta are where you'll find the best accommodation in Botswana. Set in prime game viewing areas and ranging from luxury safari lodges to rugged bush camps and romantic tented suites, Botswana accommodation is professionally run and places a firm emphasis on delivering a matchless safari experience. The standards of dining, guiding and service are very high and several lodges in Botswana are among the most luxurious in Southern Africa.

Our selection of top Botswana lodges includes popular land-based safari lodges in Chobe and Moremi as well as water-based lodges in the Okavango Delta and remote camps in the Kalahari. Browse our list of recommendations or simply contact us for advice on choosing the most suitable accommodation for your Botswana safari.