Botswana is Africa’s shining light. Democracy, peaceful people, positive GDP growth and money in the bank are some of the reasons why Botswana is a successful nation. Botswana is virtually the same size as France or Texas. Situated in the center of Southern Africa, it is a landlocked country, with Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe as its immediate neighbors. With the exception of the eastern part of Botswana where the great majority of Batswana live, three quarters of Botswana is technically a desert. There are 3 main regions of game viewing and safaris; the Okavango Delta, Chobe National Park & Linyanti Game Reserve, and the Kalahari and Makgadikgadi Pans.
Chobe National Park/Linyanti Game Reserve
To the northeast of the Okavango Delta are the Chobe and Linyanti Game Reserves. These areas are renowned for their predators and large concentrations of game, particularly elephants. There are many varied habitats within the Chobe and Linyanti parks, marshes, waterways, riverine forests, dry woodlands, and the world famous Savuti Channel. The Savuti Channel is a “waterway” that connects the Linyanti River from Zibadianja Lagoon, with the interior of the Chobe National Park at the Savuti Marsh. Today the Savuti Channel is an open grassland and home to a variety of different animals.
Located in Northern Botswana, the Okavango Delta has to be Africa’s most unique wildlife and wilderness sanctuary. What makes the Okavango most remarkable is that it is a wetland paradise located within the arid Kalahari Desert. Each year floodwater from the moist central African highlands, over 600 miles away, flows into the Okavango Delta. These floodwaters create a unique wetland that supports and sustains a huge diversity of wildlife.
The Kalahari and Makgadikgadi Pans
The grasslands of the Kalahari with the expanse of the Makgadikgadi salt pans complete the third safari option in Botswana. The Kalahari and Makgadikgadi Pans are in total contrast to the verdant, game-rich Okavango and Linyanti regions and are a must-see for all visitors to Botswana who are interested in the country’s diversity. The desert experience focuses on species unique to the area such as Brown Hyena, Meerkats (Suricate), Gemsbok (Oryx), Springbok, and the great black-maned Kalahari Lion as well as the geology, archaeology and anthropology of the Kalahari and Makgadikgadi. The Makgadikgadi is a relic of an ancient super lake that covered much of southern Africa, which dried up thousands of years ago.