One of the best travel destinations in Africa is Botswana, a politically stable country with high standards of living. The locals in Botswana are inviting and so are the exciting attractions that draw travelers from all over the world.
Safaris are certainly one of the most popular and exhilarating things you can do in most African countries, but Botswana has taken this adventure to the next level.
There are more elephants in this country than any other in the world, and Botswana is home to many different species, from exotic birds and rhinos to endangered aquatic antelopes and wild dogs. With all this incredible wildlife combined with breathtaking landscapes, you will realize that Botswana is truly a travel destination that should not be missed.
So, read on as we have compiled a list for you of the top ten things you can do when you find yourself in Botswana.
Top Things to Do in Botswana
The Central Kalahari can be considered to be one of the most romantic landscapes on the whole planet. If you opt for visiting the Kalahari you may believe that you will see only tons and tons of sand, but do not think that this is all the desert has to offer. If you time your journey right, you will be able to see one of Mother Nature’s most stunning phenomena, the Zebra Migration. Every year, thousands of zebras cross the rolling planes, providing you with one of the most memorable sights you will experience in your life. The ideal time to visit the Central Kalahari is between December and April, as this is when the migration is in full swing.
Chobe National Park Safari
One of the most amazing wildlife destinations in Africa is the Chobe National Park. It covers an area of 11 000 sq. km, and is home to an enormous population of elephants. It was one of the first national parks of Botswana and is considered to be a major epicenter of safaris in the country. You have the option of choosing three wildlife watching areas in Chobe, Linyanti Marshes, Chobe Riverfront and Savuti.
Liyanti Marshes is famous for the rich concentration of predators, where Chobe Riverfront has the largest concentration of wildlife. Savuti is a more soulful and remote watching area, and is perfect for those who want safaris with nothing more than plants, animals and a clear sky filled with stars to keep them company.
Kubu Island is an island filled with rocks and baobabs and surrounded by an entire sea of salt. The island got its name after the enormous population of hippos that once lived in that area. This interesting fact may surprise you, but at one time this island was also inhabited by humans. The island is now a protected national monument and it is famous for having a mysterious crescent-shaped stone wall, plenty of natural beauty and countless historical artefacts.
This lake is famous for being one of the most mysterious lakes on the whole planet because, at one point, it had suddenly disappeared right after it was discovered by Dr. David Livingstone in 1849, and then reappeared at the end of the 19th century. The lake repeated this pattern over the years and has reappeared once again in 2000.
The Lake Ngami is home to different species of exotic birds like pelicans, gulls, ibises, flamingos, kingfishers, storks and eagles, and is perhaps the ultimate destination for any bird lover who wants to see the beauties of Botswana. Make sure to visit it as soon as you can, because the lake has a will of its own and it may soon decide to disappear again.
Okavango Delta Canoe Ride
By renting a traditional canoe and floating along the Okavango Delta, you will have a chance to see some of the daily drama in the wildlife of Botswana. This is a great way to come close to all that crazy action that happens daily in the jungles of Africa from the frightening roars of lions to the hysterical hyena laughter.
Here you will find different kinds of luxury lodges, which make the delta one of the most exclusive safari destinations on the whole continent. We recommend that you spend one night in the inner delta, because we believe that you will have an experience you are going to cherish for the rest of your life.
Tsodilo Hills is a place that is considered to be sacred by the local Bushmen and is also known as the Louvre of the Desert. These hills have been home to humans for more than 100 000 years and you can see all kinds of decorative rock paintings that describe the history of this place. You will have the chance to see beautiful artworks on display, which will leave you spellbound, as some of these rock paintings found in Tsodilo Hills are more than 20 000 years old.
You will have the opportunity to see 4 500 different paintings on more than 400 sites, where most of the paintings depict hunting scenes, traditional dances and animals. By just taking a peek at these amazing artworks you will simply forget about Matisse and Picasso.
Moremi Wildlife Reserve
The largest inland delta on the whole planet is the Moremi Wildlife Reserve, which is located in the center of Okavango Delta. Spread across an area of 3 000 sq. km, this reserve has a great range of habitats like wetlands, reed beds, savannah woodlands and floodplains. This wildlife reserve is rich in exotic birds, wildebeests, hippos, giraffes and with a great number of lagoons that will provide you with perfect wildlife-watching opportunities.
Mountain Biking at the Mashatu Game Reserve
If you are looking for a place where you can experience the ultimate mountain biking experience, the Mashatu Game Reserve is the ideal place for you. Set apart some time to explore the beautiful landscape, where you can watch the elephants pass by and use your camera to take some of the most breathtaking photographs. You will have the opportunity to visit Serowe, a remote village that will give you a fascinating insight into the beautiful local culture.
We also recommend to enjoy a helicopter tour if you can, which will provide you with a bird’s eye view of the Mashatu Game Reserve.
The Gcwihaba Caverns are found among the never ending sand dunes of the Kalahari Desert and present a perfect destination for all those adrenaline-junkies who find themselves in Botswana. The Caverns are in a very remote part of the country and it is not that easy to reach them, but believe us, they are going to make it worth your while. This site tells two stories of the caves that are linked by passageways, and the site is home to some of the most breathtaking stalagmites and stalactites.
Two of the main attractions you will have the chance to see are large populations of big cats and elephants. The Linyanti Wetlands provide a home for some of the best African wildlife experiences, and is an ideal place for travelers who want to spend a couple of nights just camping in the desert amongst the exotic wildlife. To fully experience the beauty of Linyanti Wetlands it is best to visit them in the months of July to October, because this is when the weather is drier.
Botswana has so many things to offer and it is easy to feel lost while you are planning your trip to this breathtaking country. We recommend that you base your trip around the amazing wildlife and beautiful national parks, but make sure to add a few cities and towns into your itinerary, so that you can learn more about the culture and the lifestyle of the locals.
Perhaps an ideal vacation will be the one that will provide the best of both worlds, so plan with care.