Botswana Travel Facts

By | March 22, 2022

Botswana is a landlocked country in southern Africa, bordering South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Zambia. The country impresses with diverse nature, beautiful landscapes and its great biodiversity. It is one of the most sparsely populated countries on earth.

Capital City Gaborone
Size 581,730 km²
Resident 2,025,000
Official Language Setswana, English
Currency Pula
Time Zone UTC+2
Telephone Area Code +267

Source: Destination Explorer

Fast facts to know

  • Unlike neighboring countries, Botswana has been at peace for over 50 years.
  • One of the ten largest diamond suppliers in the world.
  • Low population density with 3 people per km².
  • The largest herds of elephants in Africa live along the banks of the Chobe National Park.
  • Central Kalahari is the largest game reserve in the world.
  • ATMs are available in almost all major cities.
  • Overland journeys after dark should be avoided at all costs.
  • Travel documents must be valid for at least six months upon entry and should have at least four free pages.
  • Children under 18 need original or certified copy of birth certificate.
  • Effective June 1, 2017, Botswana will levy a visitor tax of USD 30 per person.
  • It is forbidden to photograph military and security-related installations such as the Parliament building.
  • Botswana’s criminal law criminalizes homosexual acts.
  • There is a low risk of malaria in almost the entire country, and there is a high risk in the north during the rainy season from November to May.
  • About 22% of adults between the ages of 15 and 49 are HIV positive.
  • Tap water is not drinkable, only use water from a safe source, peel fruit etc.

Exciting cities and places in Botswana

  • francistown
  • Gaborone
  • maun
  • Kasane

History of Botswana

  • A million years ago, the first Early Stone Age settlement is detectable.
  • 3000 BC B.C. Great migration of Bantu peoples from West Africa.
  • Around the year 650 the state of Toutswe was formed.
  • Toutswe existed until the 15th century.
  • Several small kingdoms of the Batswana in pre-colonial times.
  • Boer immigration.
  • Protection treaties with Great Britain and Ireland.
  • From 1885 to 1966 under the name Bechuanaland the largest British protectorate in southern Africa.
  • 1961 limited autonomy.
  • In 1966 it gained independence from the United Kingdom and became a member of the Commonwealth.
  • Botswana has been a member of UNESCO since 1980.

Climate & travel weather in Botswana

  • Hot and dry savanna and semi-desert climate.
  • Temperature differences of more than 20 °C between day and night normal.
  • Very long drying time (6 – 9 months).
  • Brief but heavy downpours and thunderstorms from December to March.
  • Recommended travel time:
    • June to October.
    • Rainy season not recommended.

Ideas for excursions in Botswana

  • Wild animals in the national parks.
  • the san
  • Jack’s camp.
  • Guided walk in the Makgadikgadi Salt Pan.
  • National Museum in Gaborone.
  • River trips with the traditional mokoro.
  • Helicopter bush flights.
  • Rock paintings in the Tsodilo Hills.
  • Matsieng Footprints.
  • Tswapong Hills.
  • Visit Bahurutshe Cultural Village.
  • Okavango Bird Watching.
  • Horse Riding in Tuli.
  • Marvel at the blooming Kalahari.

Food & Drink in Botswana

  • Botswana’s cuisine is very diverse.
  • A wide range of different types of vegetables and good meats.
  • 5 cm long black mopane worms are considered a delicacy.
  • Beef, goat, chicken and lamb often offered.
  • In Botswana almost only maize, melons and peanuts are grown.
  • It is often eaten hot and spicy.
  • Heavily spiced curries popular.
  • Fresh fish such as bream and catfish are plentiful in the Okavango Delta and Panhandle.
  • Popular drinks: South African wines, local beers, imported beer brands such as Amstel, Lion, Castle or Windhoek.
  • Popular non-alcoholic soft drink: Rock Shandy (soda water, lime juice, slightly bitter angostura).
  • Also recommended juices made from fresh citrus fruits.
  • National drink of the country: tea.
  • Typical dishes:
    • Palesthe (maize porridge).
    • Mabele (millet porridge).
    • Bogobe (sorghum porridge).
    • Vetkoek (doughnut-like fat cake).
    • Braiivleis (Boer-style and seasoned grilled meat).
    • Boshebo (sauce made from cashew nuts served with fish, rice or yams).
    • Serobe (offal and intestines of goat, sheep or cattle).

Particularly scenic

  • Victoria Falls.
  • Okavango Delta.
  • Chobe National Park.
  • Kalahari Gemsbok National Park.
  • Makgadikgadi Pans National Park.
  • Central Kalahari Game Reserve.
  • Moremi Game Reserve.

Botswana Travel Facts