Going on Safari in Botswana? We Answer Your FAQs.

Famed for its abundant big game, scores of predators and rare species of bird, Botswana most certainly offers its visitors the opportunity to observe a spectacle of wildlife in a pristine location. The country is home to a diverse eco-system and unique biome, brimming with water wonderlands such as the Chobe River and Okavango Delta and authentic desert location such as the semi-arid Kalahari desert. Botswana is hemmed in by 4 countries, which means it enjoys contrasting scenes and a range of remarkable habitats. Lest we not forget the forests, salt pans and national parks dotted across the flat country! Sparse, lush, mysterious and exciting – Botswana is a world in one!

Armed with the knowledge that this is an exceptional destination, you’ve now set your sights on going on safari in Botswana. And we’re pretty sure you have plenty of questions. We’ve extracted the most commonly asked FAQs, and answered them as best we can.

When can you visit Okavango Delta?

The Okavango Delta is a permanent body of water and is a year-round safari destination. During the drier months (May-Sep) the tributaries have less water and the vegetation is thinner. This does make it easier to spot game on the banks of the Delta, and it’s also the time of year when the temperatures are more moderate. June – August provide the best opportunities for boating and canoe safaris  – this is when the water level is higher.

Aerial View of Okavango Delta Motswiri Okavango Delta

Do I need shots to go to Botswana?

The most common vaccinations that travellers get prior to travelling to Botswana is Typhoid and Hepatitis A.  Typhoid injections are recommended, but not a necessity. Just make sure you’re up to date with all of your standard shots. You could also invest in getting a tetanus booster prior to travelling. Malaria is prevalent in most safari regions in Africa, so we recommend you take precautions. Chat to your local GP about the various preventative measures on offer.

Do I need a yellow fever certificate for Botswana?

Botswana does not require a yellow fever certificate. However – if you are travelling from a country that has a high risk of yellow fever (Uganda for example), then you will need to produce your certificate upon arrival. If you arrive from international destinations such as the UK and US, you most certainly won’t need a certificate.

Do I need a visa for Botswana from the UK?

It’s always best to consult with your embassy to confirm what entry visa you will need when travelling to another country. The current entry regulations state that British nationals do not need a visa to enter Botswana for stays of up to 90 days.

What should I wear on safari in Botswana?

Throughout the year, lightweight neutral-coloured clothing (khaki, olive and beige) is recommended, as well as suitable walking shoes. Try to wear long sleeves and light fabric during the evening. Mosquitoes are drawn to red, black, and bright floral will lead to a mosquito attack – this is why neutral colours are encouraged. It can get extremely hot so try to purchase Climacool gear. Pack hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, sarongs, and flip flops for around camp.

By the same token, it can get freezing cold. Bring warm jackets, beanies, scarves and gloves. Be prepared for a variety of seasons, but pack light – and lightweight!

What animals can you see in Botswana?

Where do we begin ?! The thing about Botswana is not necessarily the species diversity, but rather the high concentrations of wildlife. You’re not just spotting 6 elephants, you’re spotting herds numbering in the 100s. In terms of actual species, there are 589 species of bird in Botswana, with 100 falling into the rarely seen category.  There are 164 mammals, with 1 falling into the critically endangered category. In terms of predators, there are wild dogs, lions, cheetah, leopard, hyena and more.

Commonly spotted animals include: Nile crocodile, hippo, elephant, lion, leopard, and wading birds.

What is the national animal of Botswana?

The kori bustard is Botswana’s national bird.

Lions in the Moremi

Hippo in the Delta

Xaxaba Island, Okavango Delta Xaxaba Island, Okavango Delta

Red Lechwe

Author: Carolynne Higgins

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