An African safari in Botswana means exceptional game drives, river cruises, and bird watching. The country is home to the highest concentration of wildlife in Africa. The animal sightings, large salt pans, and Kalahari desert ensure that your safari in Botswana will be a memorable one. Choose from camping, tented camps, and luxury lodges in the most incredible setting.
If you can afford it, a luxury safari in Botswana is highly recommended. The incredible lodges and high-quality experiences ensure your holiday is relaxing and memorable. Game drives visit wild landscapes where large numbers of elephants, buffalo and plenty of Africa’s top predators can be spotted.
Take to the sky for a birds-eye view of the Okavango Delta. This freshwater wetland is a world heritage site and lies at the heart of the arid Kalahari Desert. Being guided on the water in a Makoro (a traditional dugout canoe) makes the safari experience in Botswana uniquely different from the neighboring Namibian Safaris.
Read on for a breakdown of the safaris, luxury lodges, and camps offered in Botswana.
Best Time for a Safari in Botswana
Botswana’s climate is semi-arid. The rainfall is unpredictable and highly regional leaving most of the country hot and dry. Strong sunshine usually follows the rain, evaporating most of the surface water. You can expect high temperatures of 95° F (35° C) during the hot summer months.
The summer season is from November to March with rainfall bringing relief from the hot temperatures. Almost all the rainfall occurs in the summer months with the highest average rainfall over January and February. The north-eastern areas receive over 25 inches (650mm) of rain, while the south-western areas receive only 10 inches (250mm).
The winter season starts in May and ends in August. You can expect dry and sunny weather with cool to warm temperatures. Pack warmly as night time temperatures can drop below freezing point in the south-western areas of Botswana. We recommend visiting from April to October for the best weather and incredible game viewing.
How Much Does a Botswana Safari Cost?
When traveling to one of Africa’s best safari locations, you can expect a luxurious package to cost a small fortune. On average, a luxury safari including light aircraft transfers, morning and afternoon game drives, luxury accommodation, and mouth watering meals will cost 600 USD per day (BWP 6600). Enhance the experience further with a helicopter flight over the Delta.
Botswana camping options are more affordable and favor renting a self-drive 4×4 rig. Transfers or a rental 4×4 will make up 50% of the cost of your trip when arranging a safari in and beyond Botswana. A self-drive trip or affordable commercial alterative will cost on average 250 USD per day (BWP 2750) for two people.
Botswana Safari Camps
Staying at a campsite during your Botswana safari is a more affordable alternative to tented camps and lodges. Camps within the National Parks offer you game viewing before the gates open. Department of Wildlife and National Parks (DWNP) campsites host larger numbers of guests than the private campsite alternatives.
Find a quiet campsite for a romantic setting in one of Botswana’s game reserves. The self-catering sites require visitors to bring their own food and camping equipment. Each site usually offers an outdoor shower, braai area, and bathrooms.
Chobe National Park
Chobe National Park hosts the largest single congregation of elephants in Botswana and Africa. Enjoy morning and afternoon game drives with professionally trained guides offering wildlife sightings and interpretive behavior explanations. The unique setting lets you spot wildlife from the water during a riverboat cruise on the still water of the Chobe River.
Moremi Game Reserve
Renowned for its birdlife, the Moremi Game Reserve is a magical wildlife area of the Okavango Delta. Keep an eye out for Botswana’s National Bird, the African Fish-Eagle. It is most commonly sighted along waterways or perched on branches overlooking the water. Kori Bustards are the heaviest bird species capable of flight and are a favorite sighting for visitors.
Makgadikgadi Pans National Park
The salt pans that make up the Makgadikgadi Pans are connected by the desert. Very few plants exist in the area, supporting little wildlife. Following rain, the pan becomes an important habitat for migrating animals. Wildebeest and large populations of zebras move through the area with predators hot on their tails.
Botswana Safari Lodges
Botswana’s lodges are known to be luxurious while cherishing a wild element. Despite lodges in the Delta needing to be impermanent the accommodation is anything but thrown together. All structures need to be able to be disassembled and leave no trace behind. Remote lodges within the Delta are even accessed by air to protect the surrounding environment.
Luxury Lodges Botswana
Sandibe Okavango Safari Lodge in Botswana has exclusive traversing rights to 22,500 hectares of wildlife land bordering the Moremi Game Reserve. Inspired by organic design principles, the structure melts into the surroundings and resembles a pangolin at rest. The lodge boasts a private massage sala, private plunge pool, and a small gym.
Meno A Kwena lodge overlooks the Boteti River and offers excellent views of the wildlife below. Located in the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park, the lodge offers 8 en-suite rooms. You can either spend your afternoon game viewing from the accommodation’s deck or join a walk with Bushmen for an insight into an ancient culture shaped by these arid lands and beyond.
Botswana Luxury Safari
Botswana luxury safaris are an incredible setting for a romantic proposal or a private honeymoon. The privacy afforded by the remote location sets your mind at ease, while well-planned itineraries ensure you receive a rich experience. A trip in a light aircraft elevates your experience while reducing traveling time between locations.
Having won numerous World Travel Awards and most recently awarded the ‘Leading Safari Company’ And Beyond Safaris offers an immersive experience. The &Beyond Botswana camp in Chobe National Park is called Savute and is made from wooden platforms with canvas tents. Visit the nearby Savute Channel which flows and dries up seemingly unrelated to rainfall.
Explore the Chobe National Park during game drives or photograph wildlife aboard a safari boat. This award-winning travel outfit offers al fresco dining for meals prepared over an open fire. If you enjoyed your stay with &Beyond on safari, consider visiting the Kirkman Kamp or Tengile River Lodge at the Sabi Sand Game Reserve in South Africa.
Last thoughts on Botswana Safaris
The best Botswana Safaris provide you and your family with world-class wildlife sightings in a spectacular setting. The dry Kalahari desert, semi-arid savannah and Okavango Delta all have incredible luxury lodges, tented camps and campsites on offer.
When flying into one of the main airports or privately chartering a plane between reserves, you will get a birds-eye view of Botswana’s diverse landscape. The adventurous traveler will be glad to know that 4×4 self-drive safaris are possible with vehicles and camping kits available to rent.
Travel on safari in Botswana for an unforgettable wildlife experience!