Best Time to go: April – October
Best For: Safari
Extremely dramatic, Botswana`s landscape features striking salt pans, diamond-rich deserts and fertile flood plains which teem with game. The north, in particular, offers superb wildlife-watching opportunities, making this one of southern Africa`s top safari destinations.
The jewel in Botswana`s crown is, without a doubt, the Okavango Delta – the largest inland delta in the world. Its seasonal lagoons and waterways are crammed with hovering birds, while zebras and giraffes amble across vast grass flats. Northeast of here is Chobe National Park, home to gigantic elephant herds, some of them 400-strong. Watch antelopes in the Gaborone Game Reserve and the Mokolodi Nature Reserve, and giraffes striding through the Khutse Game Reserve. Be dazzled by flamingoes on the Makgadikgadi Plains.
Search for lions and leopards stalking their prey or just lazing around in the shade in the Moremi Game Reserve.
For up to date Health & Visa information click here
Capital: Gaborone (GBE)
Currency: Pula (BWP)
Language: English and Setswana. Kalanga and Sekgalagadi are also spoken.
Dialling code from SA: +267
Time Zone: UTC / GMT +2 (same time as South Africa)
Side of the Road: Left. South African drivers` licences are recognised in SADC countries (Angola, Botswana, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe). It is recommended that a letter of verification be obtained from the South African Department of Transport.
Plugs: 220-240 volts AC, 50Hz. 15- and 13-amp plug sockets are in use. Plugs used are British-style with two flat blades and one flat grounding blade, or South African/Indian-style with two circular metal pins above a large circular grounding pin.
Drinking Water: Mains water in hotels and towns is safe to drink. Outside of the main towns, water may be contaminated. Bottled water is available in most tourist areas.
Health: There are adequate and well-equipped medical facilities, however visitors are required to pay for these services. Comprehensive health insurance is recommended. Medical facilities outside of the main towns may be limited.
Customs: Traditional values prevail and should be respected. Outside of urban and tourist areas, visitors may be viewed with apprehension. Permission should be sought before photographing people.
Local Offences / Laws: Homosexuality is illegal. Avoid taking pictures of government and military installations.
Travel Tips / Warnings: Travellers should be cautious about driving at night due to cattle and wildlife.
Duty Free: The following goods may be imported into Botswana without incurring customs duty:
• 200 cigarettes and 20 cigars and 250g of tobacco.
• 2L of wine and 1L of spirits.
• 50ml of perfume and 250ml of eau de toilette.
• Goods up to the value of R500 (South African Rand) from within the SACU zone (Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa and Swaziland) and to the value of R3,000 from outside the zone.
Prohibited Imports: Prohibited imports include firearms and ammunition, narcotics and pornography. You may bring in small amounts of fresh food, but you require an import licence for larger amounts. Note that the import regulations on importing meat change regularly according to disease outbreaks in different countries.
Cross Border Charges:
Road Transport Permit: P50.00 for vehicles up to 3 tons variable for heavier vehicles
Motor Vehicle Insurance: P50.00 for vehicles and variable for mini buses and buses
National Road safety: P50.00 and valid for a calender year (up to 31 Dec) (P20 for a trailer)
Botswana / South Africa:
Pont Drift (Tuli): 07h30 – 16h30
Martin’s Drift: 06h00 – 22h00
Zanzibar: 07h00 – 18h30
Platjan: 08h00 – 16h00
Sikwane: 07h30 – 16h30
Tlokweng: 06h00 – 00h00
Ramotswa (Bridge): 07h00 – 18h00
Pioneer Gate: 06h00 – 00h00
Ramatlabama: 06h00 – 22h00
Phitshane Molopo: 07h30 – 18h00
Hereford/ Bray: 07h00 – 16h30
Makopong: 07h30 – 16h30
Bokspits: 08h00 – 16h00
McCarthy Rust/Tshabong: 08h00 – 18h00
Middlepits: 08h00 – 16h00
Two Rivers: 07h30 – 16h00
Parr’s Halt: 08h00 – 16h00
Botswana / Namibia:
Mamuno: 07h00 – 00h00
Ngoma: 07h00 – 18h00
Mohembo: 06h00 – 18h00
Botswana / Zimbabwe:
Ramokgwebana: 06h00 – 22h00
Maitengwe: 07h00 – 16h30
Pandamatenga: 08h00 – 17h00
Matsiloje: 07h00 – 16h30
Kazungula Road: 06h00 – 20h00
Botswana / Zambia:
Kazungula Ferry: 06h00 – 18h30