"All I wanted to do now was get back to Africa. We had not left it yet, but when I would wake in the night, I would lie, listening, homesick for it already." - Ernest Hemingway. A sentiment shared by most who visit Botswana.
One is never quite sure which element of Botswana is responsible for this …
Welcome to Botswana!!!
Botswana is one of the most popular safari destinations in Africa. The vast untamed wilderness of this land-locked country with miles of open space attracts the minds of those who want an exclusive and unmatched safari experience in close quarters with nature. There are few places that offer a similar kind of experience especially if we consider the famous Okavango Delta in the north-west part of the country and the Chobe National Park with the highest density of elephants in Africa.
Botswana offers a lot as a country- safaris by vehicle, nature walks, horse-back or motor-boat game drives, river cruises and so much more! There is plenty of game like buffalo, zebra, hippo, antelope and rhino (recently reintroduced) and the resultant population of predators is therefore good. You might be lucky to see lions, hyenas, leopards and wild dogs. Not only is the wildlife good but the bird-watching is a truly captivating experience.
The most popular safari destination in Botswana is the Okavango Deta, which is an amazing and one of the world's largest natural inland water deltas. The game-viewing here is best during the dry season when the place is teeming with wildlife and birds and a variety of different animal life. In addition to this truly spectacular place to go to for wildlife watching, The Moremi Game Reserve (part of the delta), Linyati region and Chobe National Park towards the north are the other truly engaging places to visit. The game-turner is that these places are fed by 4 rivers- Okavango, Kwando, Linyati and Chobe that have turned this region into a rich wetland with an ecosystem most varied and beautiful. The Chobe has a very high density of wildlife and is popular for its proximity to the Victoria Falls.
As you travel towards the south, the landscape changes into a semi-desert Kalahari desert region for miles together only occasioned by a village and a farmland. You can also see the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans, the 1000th World Heritage Site, stretch south of the delta. Here is where you can experience some exciting quad-biking safaris and the seasonal migration that happens after the rains when scores of zebra, wildebeest and antelope visit to feed on the newly grown grasses.
Taking advantage of these thousands of prey are the predators, especially the lions who do not miss any opportunity to feed! This presents some good photo ops for wildlife enthusiasts who in turn make most of these interactions between prey and predators.
You can also meet with the San for a believably real cultural exchange in the fine desert and also enjoy the Tsodilo Hills, where rock paintings date back thousands of years.
The type of safari that can be booked depends on the requirement of the tourist. Botswana has on offer fine photographic safaris exclusive for eager photographers but can also be a purely exploratory safari experience for the enthusiastic wild lifer. There are also exclusive honeymoon safaris included in few lodges.
Botswana safaris are generally quite exclusive and the game lodges are classy and luxurious. Visitor numbers are usually limited. The high standards maintained by the lodges in their service and also the guides are one of the best across the continent.
A superb migration takes place in the dry season and the rains also offer some truly exciting opportunities to see the residents, especially birds who breed in this season.
Botswana offers best-for-value holidays and hence it is becoming a must-see destination for serious safari enthusiasts.