Often referred to as the very best part of Africa. Botswana, a country better known for peace and tranquillity, diamonds and beef, holds a lot of surprises for you. Come and explore the diverse cultures of its people and nature at its best. If there’s a place where one wishes time could stand still, it is the beautiful country.
Botswana is a land-locked country dominated in geographical terms by the Kalahari Desert – a sand-filled basin averaging 1,100 meters above sea level. ‘Desert’, however, is a misnomer: its earliest travelers defined it as a ‘thirstland’. Most of the Kalahari (or Kgalagadi, which is its Setswana name) is covered with vegetation including stunted thorn and scrub bush, trees and grasslands.
The largely unchanging flat terrain is occasionally interrupted by gently descending valleys, sand dunes, large numbers of pans and, in the extreme northwest, isolated hills, such as Aha, Tsodilo, Koanaka and Gcwihaba. Many of the pans have dune systems on the southwest side, which vary in size and complexity. The pans fill with water during the rainy season and their hard surface layer ensures that the water remains in the pans and is not immediately absorbed. These pans are of great importance to wildlife, which obtain valuable nutrients from the salts and the grasses of the pans.
The Chobe River runs along part of its northern boundary; the Nossob River at its southwestern boundary; the Molopo River at its southern boundary; and the Marico, Limpopo and Shashe Rivers at its eastern boundaries. With the exceptions of the Okavango and Chobe areas in the north, the country has little permanent surface water.
November and December – the calving months – are an excellent time to witness nature’s own timetable of regeneration. The rainy season, from January to March, sees the migration of large numbers of game into the summer grazing areas, while the delta comes alive with sounds of hundreds of bird species. In March and April thousands of zebras and other animals migrate towards the Savuti area of Chobe National Park. Summers (particularly from December through to February) can become exceptionally hot. During the rainy summer season, animals in many game areas disperse, while in the dry winter season they congregate around water sources, making for good game viewing. This does not mean, however, that game viewing is impossible during the summer season.