Judith KamauJudith Kamau 18 AUGUST 2020 76 views 6 min. read

13 reasons why you should travel to Botswana right now

76 views 6 min. read
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Where is Botswana?

Botswana is a landlocked country in southern Africa bordered by four countries; South Africa, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. The country has a relatively sparse population, with a tenth of its population residing in Gaborone's Botswana capital city. With its economy mostly relying on mining and tourism, Botswana boasts as a country with the highest human development index in Sub Saharan Africa. Botswana is your ultimate destination for those who want to experience the true essence of an African safari.

As a country with a unique topography and a vast wildlife territory, tourism is a key attraction to visitors and travelers. It is a fascinating world with well-known landmarks such as the Kalahari Desert, Okavango Delta, and Chobe National Park. The Botswana people, also known as Batswana, make it an easy call to visit the Southern African country. Their way of life is quite intriguing, and their courteous African spirit is always inviting.  The notable prominent tribes include the Tswana, who make almost three-quarters of the whole population, the Kalanga, Basarwa and the San and Khoikhoi of Botswana. There is a lot of what to see in Botswana, and below is a compilation of various tourist spots and critical wildlife sites that should make you travel to Botswana.

1. The Birding Experience

Birding Experience

Botswana is a haven for avid birdwatchers. With a total confirmed population of over 500 bird species, birdwatching is critical among the other experiences in the country's vast wildlife habitats. The migration of birds to the rivers and lakes near makgdgadi during the rainy seasons adds to the beautiful view of birdwatching in an open view compared to such an experience in a thick forest where vegetation blocks the sighting. You want to watch the Slaty Egret and Wattled Crane, and Pels Fishing Owl; then look no further than Botswana.  The lilac-breasted roller, dubbed as Botswana's national bird, is another rare bird species that should make you travel to Botswana.

2. The Okavango Delta

Okavango River

If you are a geography enthusiast, then Okavango delta needs no introduction to you. It’s far most one of the notable geographical features and tourist attraction in the country. The Okavango is known for its extensive grassy plains, which flood in different seasons. It is one of the few unspoiled wilderness areas on the African continent, making it a natural animal habitat. Animals such as the Elephants are present here, swimming from island to island searching for lush vegetation.

On top of that, Okavango has beautiful palm-fringed channels and lagoons. The delta is best explored by a guide, in a locally made dugout canoe that even spices up the experience in the meandering papyrus filled waterways. In 2014, Okavango was named 1000th on UNESCO'S world heritage list.

3. Chobe National Park and the Elephants

Elephant in Botswana

Chobe National Park is Botswana's first national park, sitting on approximately 11700 sq. Meters of land. The park has swamps, floodplains, and a woodland. However, its most fascinating site is the large elephant herds traversing within its territories. Chobe National Park serves as one of the most frequently visited big game sites in Botswana, home to the most massive continuous surviving crowds of elephant population on Earth. The elephants converge upon the rivers to drink in the winter months, which guarantees you a lifetime's unforgettable sighting. Their towering stature as they bathe and play around will make you want to visit Chobe even more. Apart from the Elephants, Chobe also has big buffaloes, lions, antelopes, and hippos in the shallows of river Chobe. Just tie your boots and pick some binoculars, Botswana's Chobe will grant you a surreal elephant spotting experience of a lifetime.

4. The Beauty of Kalahari Desert

Kalahari Desert

The Kalahari Desert can never go unmentioned when you want to travel to Botswana. There is a lot on what to see while touring Kalahari, which covers most parts of the country. Its breathtaking dunes are a sight worth beholding, with many wonders. The desert has the Gcwihaba caverns, with phreatic caves housing stunning stalactites and stalagmites. The Kalahari also has the Tsodilo, described by UNESCO as the 'louvre of the desert.' It has the most extensive presence of rock art than anywhere else in the world.

5. The Makgadikgadi Pans

The Makgadikgadi Pans

The Makgadikgadi pans are found to the East of Botswana. The pans, formerly lake Makgadikgadi before its eventual dry up, cover almost 3900 sq. Km. The Pan is one of the world's largest salt flat, and Botswana's biggest salt mine. You'll find Zebras, bushbucks, ostriches, and giraffes within the pans, among other animals. When you are in the Makgadikgadi, there are a lot of activities to involve yourself into. They include bush walks, safari rides, and the game drives.

6. The Bushmen People of Botswana

Botswana people

The rural part of Botswana makes up of all its tribal groups, with fascinating cultural diversities. The San Bushmen, found along the Okavango Delta, are among the sought after Botswana people, given their exciting lifestyles. When you travel to Botswana, you'll want to interact with these local bushmen, and learn about their survival in the harsh conditions. Their knowledge of different plants, animal tracking instincts, and a language saturated with click sounds should make you travel to Botswana and have a one-on-one interaction with them. Visitors camping near Kalahari and Makgadikgadi are often given a chance to interact with them freely and finally learn a thing or two.

7. The Zebra Migration

Zebras in Botswana

During November, at the onset of rains, thousands of Zebras make a migration through the Makgadikgadi pans, making it the second-largest mass movement of animals in Africa. The sight of migrating Zebras is always beautiful, with a surrounding scenery well suited for photography. The Zebra migration is arguably Botswana's best-kept secret as not so many people know about it. However, you should travel to Botswana and enjoy as these beautiful animals move in search of lush vegetation, with the stalking lions and hyenas ready to devour them.

8. The Mokoro Trips

Giraffe in Botswana

These trips are intriguing when you travel to Botswana. You don't have to move around in-game vehicles to enjoy your wildlife experience. The Mokoro safaris are one of the experiences not to be missed on your trip to Botswana. It offers you the joy of meandering around in a dugout canoe(mokoro), exploring the incredible watery paradise. There is a guarantee of a superb expedition, both in the Okavango Delta and the Okavango River.

9. Lake Ngami Mystery

Otjikoto Lake

The mystery of Lake Ngami is one thing about Botswana that you shouldn't miss on. This remote lake's tale makes it irresistible to go by and learn more about its appearances and disappearances. The lake disappeared right after it was discovered and again reappeared close to a century later on. This pattern has been its norm since then. This mystery, coupled with a massive population of birds, makes it an ultimate destination for you, and a reason enough to travel to Botswana.

10. Commitment to Conservation

Elephant

The country of Botswana has put in place many measures towards ensuring the conservancy of its wildlife. Close to 40 percent of the land is protected for wildlife and conservation of nature. This great feat is a benchmark for conservation enthusiasts worldwide and to all people seeking to learn about the country's extraordinary efforts in ensuring protection for game reserves. Among other measures, these make it the country with the largest elephant populations in the African continent.

11. The Luxury and Exclusivity

Tourists in Botswana

Perhaps one reason you should travel to Botswana right now is the luxury and the exclusively available high standards for its tourists. The country has invested in its tourism industry, ready to attract discerning travelers from all walks of life. The Okavango has lodges only accessible by small planes, which is worth inviting to those travelers seeking a holiday out in Botswana. The lodges are stylish enough, uniquely blending into the ecosystem in an environmentally friendly way.

12. The Adventure Safaris and Mountain Biking

Mountain Biking

Botswana epitomizes the real adventure for safaris and other biking experiences. The Mashatu game reserves offer exciting baking safaris, and there are also big game mountain biking safaris and some four-wheel-drive outings. Some safari operators and lodges like Raw Botswana have a specialty in horseback riding, where you are provided with an experienced rider to guide you through. The excellent helicopter tours also offer you a bird's eye view when enjoying your adventures.

13. Peace and Tranquility

Girl in Botswana

Botswana is a country known for its relatively low population density. On its various wildlife distribution, there is an experience of an authentic sense of true African wilderness. The location of lodges that are not easily accessible will make you appreciate the tranquility as modern technology struggles to keep up with natures' offering. The noise you should only get used to is the elephants' rumbling and the birds' chirping as they fly over. These sounds are not constant, hence gifting you some moments of sheer tranquility and ultimate peace.

Conclusion

Visiting Botswana gives you a chance for an adventure, a chance you shouldn't miss out on. Botswana alone stands out as an ultimate destination that offers travelers an experience unmatched by another country on the African continent. There is a lot of what to see in Botswana, apart from the wildlife alone. These are but a few reasons you should travel to Botswana right now and enjoy its breathtaking tourist attraction experiences.

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Judith Kamau Writer

Judith is a Kenya based writer. Writing is her passion. She is the consummate professional with boundless enthusiasm. 
With a style that is spare and to the point, she delights in presenting facts accurately but also strives to lead readers into unknown worlds, worlds filled with ideas to explore and information to digest. 
Impossible meets the achievable, as she takes any challenge presented and makes sure that nothing is left to chance.

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