Discover Botswana, the best-kept wildlife secret in Africa, with its breathtaking beauty, unfathomable expanse, remoteness, and otherworldliness.
Travelers may choose from a variety of lodging alternatives in Botswana, including high-end hotels, opulent lodges, safari camps, and inexpensive guesthouses and campgrounds.
One of the few places in Africa still offers a real safari experience in Botswana. Its vast game parks and game reserves, which are still mainly unexplored and untamed, are home to a very varied diversity of animals.
Combine big-game viewing in Chobe National Park, Moremi, or Savuti Game Reserve with the memorable experience of traveling across the Okavango Delta on mokoros, or dug-out canoes, when you visit. The Okavango River forms the biggest inland river delta in the world when it flows into the Kalahari deserts.
Note that while having fewer large game animals than other parts of Botswana, the Okavango Delta is home to an incredible variety of birds, flora, and smaller animal species because of its clean waterways and numerous tiny islands.
Here is our selection of the top Botswana safari tours, all of which have been thoroughly tested and can be customized to suit your travel needs. They range from luxurious Botswana safari tours to rugged experiences and multigenerational family vacations.
Best Luxury Botswana Safari Tours
1. Chobe National Park Safari
The greatest number of elephants in the world may be found in Chobe National Park, which is in Botswana’s northeastern region. Chobe National Park can be reached through either air or road transfers, both of which provide breathtaking bush vistas. This reserve’s boundary is formed by the famed Chobe River.
One of the greatest national parks in the world for seeing wildlife is Chobe National Park. Every day, thrilling Chobe safari game drives are held to witness the vast animals of Chobe. The Chobe River offers great chances for tiger fishing.
The region is ideal for family activities, romantic getaways, and Botswana safari vacations. Given that Victoria Falls and Livingstone are both 100 kilometers from the northeast entry gate of Chobe National Park, it may be a fantastic starting point for African safaris.
2. Kalahari Desert
The Tswana word “Kgalagadi,” which means “the vast thirst,” is the source of the name “Kalahari Desert” in Africa. This name is suitable for the arid region that stretches from northern South Africa to Namibia, Angola, and the DRC.
As the plains, salt pans, and dry riverbeds are all covered in lush vegetation, the Kalahari Desert is not truly a desert. As there is no permanent surface water and the rainfall is irregular, the wildlife and flora have developed some unique adaptations to the harsh and unpredictable weather.
The Kalahari has stayed in pristine form because of its isolation, severe temperature, and lack of accessibility until lately.
This fly-in safari offers an incredible array of wildlife, birds, and natural vistas, including Botswana’s two major biomes, the desert, and delta. The journey begins with a direct flight into the Kalahari’s center, landing on the magnificent grasslands of the Makgadikgadi Pans and a tent camp among thorn trees.
3. Safari in Kasane
Near the Four Corners of Africa, where four African nations — Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe — meet, Kasane is situated in Botswana on the south bank of the Chobe River. Transfers by land and air to Kasane are simple. Regular flights from Johannesburg service the airport at Kasane, making it simple for visitors from various nations to get to Africa for a safari.
For those who desire to visit Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Namibia, Kasane is the ideal starting point.
The starting point for trips to Chobe National Park is Kasane. The ideal times of day to see wildlife at this Botswana safari location are early in the morning and late in the afternoon; it is recommended to go on a morning game drive and an afternoon boat cruise. You may visit this town in a variety of ways, including fishing, boat excursions, and village tours.
Attractions in Kasane include the Lake Liambezi, the Lesoma Memorial Monument, the Kasane Hot Springs, the Soboba River Rapids and Recreational Park, the Crocodile Farm, the Maikaelelo Forest Reserve, the Sibuyu Forest Reserve, the Kazungula Ferry, and the Kasane Forest Reserve.
4. Central Kalahari Game Reserve
The largest conservation area in the area is the Central Kalahari Game Reserve, which is situated in the middle of Botswana’s Kalahari desert. The Central Kalahari Game Reserve’s gorgeous sceneries are made up of golden grasslands, miniature trees, and bushes.
During safaris in Botswana, it’s possible to see giraffes, hyenas, warthogs, cheetahs, leopards, lions, wildebeest, elands, gemsbok kudus, and red hartebeest. A knowledgeable guide can help you locate the Central Kalahari Game Reserve’s species, which are dispersed equally over the area.
A select group of visitors can go inside the reserve in action-packed Botswana safari vehicles for wildlife drives. The greatest way to explore the Kalahari desert in Botswana is on foot with a traditional Bushman tracker.
A night spent outside under the stars is a magnificent occasion. Stargazing is made even more magical by the pure skies and lack of artificial lighting in the region.
5. Moremi Reserve Safari
The Moremi Game Reserve, the first reserve in Africa founded by locals, is situated on the eastern slopes of the Okavango Delta in Botswana. The Moremi Game Reserve’s unspoiled environs include floodplains, mopane woodlands, lagoons, and acacia trees. It is accessible by air or road transport.
The Moremi Game Reserve is home to a variety of wildlife. The Big Five, which are the leopard, lion, buffalo, elephant, and rhino, as well as hyenas, warthogs, hippopotamuses, and crocodiles, are just a few of the amazing animals that can be seen there.
The Moremi Reserve is also home to a spectacular bird population, which includes, to name a few, waterbirds and species that live in forests. The Moremi Game Reserve Botswana safari experience includes daily game drives, bush walking safaris, and motorboat excursions.
An astonishing variety of local species can find something to eat thanks to this diversity of habitats, making game viewing in Moremi rewarding all year long. Yet, during the dry winter months of June through September, floods from the faraway Angolan highlands arrive and augment the Okavango Delta’s rivers at a time when the rest of Botswana is fast drying up.
Because of this, Moremi attracts tens of thousands of thirsty animals. The Moremi Game Reserve is at its busiest during this period when game concentrations are at their peak, the weather is cool and dry, and malaria danger is minimal.
6. Savute Safari
South of the Chobe River, in the remote area of Botswana’s Chobe National Park, is Savute. The Savute Channel, a dry dustpan that transforms into a series of ponds surrounded by lush greenery as a result of the periodic rain, is one of Savute’s remarkable features. Savute is another hidden treasure of Botswana.
A significant number of lions can be seen in Savute, along with hyenas, elephant bulls, wildebeest, zebra, tsessebe, leopard, cheetah, and African wild dogs. The Savute pans fill with water during the enchanted summer rains, attracting a wide variety of species.
Unique Botswana safari lodging in Savute is available at game lodges that provide amazing game-watching excursions including boat cruises, game drives, and exploration of the Savute channel.
7. The Okavango Delta
The impressive Xakanaxa land and water safari experience in the Okavango Delta is famous for its large lagoons and reputedly great animals. It is located in the Moremi Game Reserve’s central region, which is regarded as a prime spot for observing wildlife.
Permanent occupants of the area include the lion, leopard, elephant, and buffalo. The wildlife drives in this area of Moremi lead you down curving roads, past mopane woods, and across beautiful meadows.
Boating excursions and thrilling 4×4 drives into superb wildlife countries are both available year-round at Xakanaxa. The Moremi Reserve, which provides refuge to large herds of Elephant, Sable, Giraffe, Tsessebe, Lechwe, Wildebeest, Impala, and Waterbuck, is regarded as one of Africa’s best game-viewing sites. Also visible are lions, leopards, cheetahs, wild dogs, and hyenas.
It’s fun to observe birds, especially in the spring and summer when they breed. The famed heronries to the north of the lodge are a magnet for breeding storks and herons.
Additional birds that may be seen include two varieties of jacanas, seven varieties of herons, including spoonbills, storks, holy ibis, and button quails, as well as chats, blue-cheeked, and carmine bee-eaters.
Xakanaxa Camp is located in the Moremi Wildlife Reserve, Okavango Delta, Northern Botswana, 50 kilometers west of the Khwai River.
8. National Park of Makgadikgadi and Nxai Pan
A wide region that encompasses Ntwetwe Pan, Kudi Akam Pan, Nxai Pan, and Makgadikgadi Pan, the largest of them all, is the less well-known Makgadikgadi and Nxai Pan National Park. The old big central Botswana lake, which once filled the Kalahari and was all that was left of it, is now only these salt pans.
In the dry season, the national park’s plains are desolate. All that is left of the dried-up Boteti River are the animal gatherings for drinking, and the local hippos wallow in the vast pools of water.
Quad riding is common at this time of year, and the endless, ethereal lunar vista of shimmering salt pans is breathtaking. As it rains, the landscape undergoes a dramatic transformation as it comes to life. Grasslands grow and water fills the pans, drawing a wide variety of water-birds and inspiring wildebeest and zebra to make magnificent migrations.
9. Safari in Maun
The Okavango Delta’s southern edge is where Maun, also known as the tourism hub of Botswana, is situated. It is simple to go to Maun by both air and road. Those who want to take a Botswana safari and see the Okavango Delta and Moremi Game Reserve frequently base themselves on Maun.
The thriving town of Maun is home to stores, petrol stations, clinics, hospitals, banks, and ATMs. In one of Maun’s many eateries, one may sample the distinctive cuisine of Botswana.
Beautiful resorts in Maun offer lodging options, while the region also offers activities like game drives through the Maun Game Reserve, specialized birding safaris, day tours to the crocodile farm, and athletic events at the Maun Sports Complex.
Best Time For Botswana Safari Tours
Peak safari season is often from May to September during Africa’s dry, chilly winter, however, ironically, October is frequently the warmest month of the year in Botswana. That’s how Africa is.
When it doesn’t rain during high or peak season, the vegetation withers, and water supplies dry up. Although this is bad news for wildlife, it makes your guide’s job considerably simpler because it is much simpler to discover and view the creatures.
The summers in Botswana are hot and rainy; starting in October, both temperature and precipitation gauges climb sharply. It requires rain in Angola throughout the summer for the Okavango River to gently trickle down and overflow into the Okavango Delta.
Because of this, Delta performs best in the winter, which is still another contradiction. Because the water levels are too low in the summer, several camps are unable to provide summertime water activities like mokoro tours or sunset cruises.
It will cost more the more flights you do. Light planes are used for flights, so if you want to see the pans, the desert, and the Delta on your ambitious schedule, you’ll either need money to fly or a lot of time to be driven by a driver-guide.
Think about going on a personal overlanding adventure. Operators have increased the conveniences offered to them, making them more accessible to those other than backpackers and students.
Always follow your guide’s advice. They have extensive training and expertise, and their top priority is always your safety.
Overall, Botswana is an opportunity-rich country, offering everything from outdoor adventures to wildlife safaris to magnificent landscapes. Everyone who appreciates either nature or adventure must travel to Botswana.