Botswana is an ideal destination for walking safaris if you want to have an unique experience in unmatched style. The best time to visit Botswana is during the winter months when the bush is more sparse and dry, this is generally from May to September.
The land is breathtakingly beautiful and features everything from the scorching desert of the Kalahari to the vibrant and lush waterways of the Okavango Delta.
Experience our Tailor-made Walking Safaris in Botswana
What You Need To Know
If you’re interested in a Botswana safari – here’s our collective choices for where to find Botswana’s most beautiful places and landscapes.
Makgadikgadi Salt Pans
The Makgadikgadi Salt Pans is located in the middle of the dry savanna of northern Botswana. The salt pans restrict anything from growing during certain seasons appear to be completely devoid of anything living. However, during the wet season, the lands become an entirely new place. The barren desert becomes lush and green as well as a vast sheet of water appear.
The wet oasis becomes a destination for thousands of animals – which trample through in search of fresh water and food – making it an ideal location for game spotting.
Okavango Delta is actually the world’s largest inland delta and one of the most beautiful places to visit in Africa. It’s oasis of island, wildlife and lush green vegetation is located in the middle of the dry unforgiving Kalahari Desert.
However, the Moremi Game Reserve is in the heart of the Okavango Delta. It is also one of the most diverse habitats in Botswana and is home to wild dogs, cheetah, lion, elephants, buffalo, hippo and the rare sitatunga. All of the classic African safari animals can be find in this reserve. Make sure you don’t miss the mokoro experience in the Okavango Delta.
Chobe National Park
Chobe National Park is located in the north-east of Botswana and is one of the three largest parks in Botswana. The park is also one of the most population areas for elephants.
The Chobe River is one of Africa’s most beautiful rivers and is responsible for keeping the park well-watered.
In the southern banks of the Linyanti River is the Linyanti Wildlife Reserve – arguably one of the best game viewing area in Botswana. Whether you are hoping for buffalo, zebra or elephant – you’re sure to spot your favourite here. There is also a wide variety of predators that roam through the area, making for an exciting viewing experience. This location is especially popular during the winter months when the water is scarce. However, during this season, large groups of animals can be seen congregating at the river.
The Kalahari Desert is a large semi-arid savannah that’s both vast and beautiful. The desert covers much of Botswana and stretches into Namibia as well as South Africa. The name of the desert Kalahari means “large thirst” in the Tswana language.
The desert is home to Big Cats including cheetah, leopard and the Kalahari famous black mane lions. However, the desert is home to three parks and reserves – one of which happens to be a reserve for rare and endangered species such as lion, Africa hyena, wild dogs and cheetahs.
Camping in the Kalahari Game Reserve – you will be overwhelmed by its vastness. Listening to nothing but the sounds of roaring lions, hyenas and other wildlife is an experience that’s truly remarkable.
The Tsodilo Hills
The Tsodilo Hills is located in the north-west of Botswana near the Namibian Border and is an UNESCO World Heritage Site consisting of rock art and caves.
There are approximately over 4500 rock painting at the site as well as an estimated 500 individual sites which represent thousands of year of human habitation. However, it is believed that the San people or bushmen created the rock art.
· The local language is Setswana, a Bantu language for the Tswana people.
· Always move around with about two copies of your travel documents
· Don’t use your left hand in greeting people or pointing at them. It is regarded as disrespect. Botswana is a culture driven country.
The peak periods of August to October are the best times to go, but it should also be noted that this is considered the peak season and rates cary accordingly.
At the peak safari periods, the weather is really dry. It is advised to take items that can shield you from the elements. Apart from your main clothing, other items to pack may include a skin lotion, lip balm, hair conditional, binoculars, flashlight and a jacket or fleece to combat the early morning cold.
The dry season in Botswana is from April to October, while the rainy season is from November to March, making safaris in the dry season more enjoyable. The exception to this rule is the Kalahari ecosystem where game and safari are best during the wet seasons.
Botswana is a temperate region, meaning that the temperatures don’t fluctuate to much, this is especially true from April to September. The weather is mostly fresh and cool from May to August.
A walking safari holiday.
There are much standard accommodation, lodges and hotels in Botswana with some of them offering a luxurious experience. There are also locations where you can enjoy mobile camping facilities. Below are examples some of the top-rated lodges in Botswana.
Abu Camp: as far as a safari is concerned, Abu Camp is one of the best locations. You get a uniquely African perspective of the Okavango Delta in one of six canvas en-suite guest rooms with a luxurious elegance.
Camp Moremi: located in the Okavango Delta, consisting of comfortable tented accommodation. Here, you have an unparalleled experience in game viewing and birding. The staff is also very professional and accommodating.
Kalahari Plains Camp: ideally located in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve, you can enjoy your safari during the day and feel at home with a thirst quenching sundowner towards the evening time.
Chobe Camp: located in Kasane, there are 46 luxury safari rooms, 22 luxury river room and 8 standard rondavels for a memorable safari experience.
Popular Walking Safaris in Botswana
Each of our popular itineraries can be tailor-made to suit your budget as well as your specific interests.
Because of the slower tempo and lower angle of being on foot, minor elements that are neglected on game drives become more evident.
No, but you would need an experienced safari guide for your walk. It is not recommended to walk out on your own on a walking safari in Africa.
Yes, all guides have intensive wilderness and safety training, and they are equipped wherever a potential threat may exist.
Safari/bucket showers are common in mobile or tented camps where there is no permanent plumbing. They are an effective yet environmentally friendly way to shower where water is at a premium and provide plenty of hot water to wash comfortably.
Generally, there is an en-suite private shower stall within your tent with a “rainfall” style shower head at which you can control the water flow. Outside the tent, there is a large waterproof bag or bucket which is filled with about 10 to 15 litres (5 US gallons) of hot water before being raised with a pully/rope system to either connect to the shower pipe or fill a cistern.
The water is delivered at the ideal temperature so it is best to use it as soon as it arrives. Staff typically fill the showers at a pre-arranged time of day, or you simply need to give them a few minutes notice so they can get it ready.
If you’re travelling to Botswana, you will need vaccinations for hepatitis A, typhoid fever, polio as well as medications for travellers diarrhea.
Malaria prophylaxis is recommended when you're travelling to the northern part of Botswana. Other immunizations may be necessary depending upon the circumstances of the trip and the medical history of the traveller.
Insect repellents are recommended, in conjunction with other measures to prevent mosquito bites.
All travellers should visit either a travel clinic or their personal physician four to eight weeks before departure. Malaria - Prophylaxis with Lariam (mefloquine), Malarone (atovaquone/proguanil) or doxycycline is recommended for the northern part of the country.
January to March is the best time to witness the Makgadikgadi zebra migration as well as the wildebeest.