Best time to go on safari in Botswana

Stifling October sees Botswana at its driest; animals flock to sparse waterholes in thirsty abundance.
The "green" season, from November to March, is pleasant. Thunderstorms tend to occur in the late afternoon, dulling the heat yet leaving time for sunshine. Migratory birds and baby antelope are best seen now. However, rainy skies don’t match what flows on the ground: the water takes six months to filter through the sprawling Delta, meaning it’s at its fullest during the driest months. Arid May and June can be extremely chilly, and the heat peaks in October, with cloudless skies providing little respite from the African sun. This is the prime game season, as wildlife heads to the Delta.

Botswana Weather Chart

 
MIN °C
MAX °C
RAIN (mm)
JAN
21
32
158
FEB
20
31
133
MAR
20
32
80
APR
18
31
17
MAY
14
30
1
JUN
11
27
1
JUL
10
27
0
AUG
13
30
0
SEP
17
34
0
OCT
21
35
22
NOV
21
34
63
DEC
21
32
151

Botswana safari travel advice

Photography advice

Dereck and Beverly Joubert are internationally renowned filmmakers, conservationists and National Geographic Explorers-in-Residence. Here is their advice for taking better photographs in Botswana:
"The problem is that when people arrive with short lenses, they push to get closer to the animals. But with digital cameras today, you don’t have to be as close as you think. You can always crop later on. The key is really to get natural behaviour by standing back a little bit and letting these things pan out. If you push too hard you will destroy the animals’ natural behaviour and your opportunities as a photographer."
Family safari advice

Botswana family safari advice

Louise de Waal, from our supplier Baobab Travel, shares her advice for a family safari in Botswana:

“Some lodges offer special “bush school” programmes for children. Guides are experienced in working with kids, and will show them how to recognise the spoor – tracks and droppings – as well as plants and small creatures. It’s fun, very hands-on – and totally safe. Plus it gives parents the chance to enjoy their own game drives.”
Arabella is a Botswana specialist for our supplier, Natural World Safaris. Here are her tips for those travelling in Botswana with kids:

“Make sure you book with an operator that has experience with family tours, as some camps have family facilities but no dedicated programmes. Others have guides who are trained to work with children, and there are safe walks around the camp. In the evening there are books they can colour in, and they can even help cook camp meals with the chef. It’s the best outdoor education they can get.”
Meeting the locals

Meeting the locals

Bruce Taylor, from our supplier Sunway Safaris, highly recommends taking a walk in the Kalahari with a native San guide: "Going on a walk with these guys is amazing. They'll look at a twig – literally a twig – and stop. Somebody will dig up the tuber below it, scrape the skin off, squeeze the pulp and drink from it. Then they put the skin back, pat the mud back onto it and bury it again so that the plant can continue to grow. Later, they’ll make a fire. Hard wood, soft wood, hand roll, bit of bark... and suddenly they’re all huddled round a fire while you’re freezing in your jacket. It's really impressive."

Our top Botswana safari Holiday

Botswana camping safaris

Botswana camping safaris

Botswana's premier game parks, Okavango Moremi Savuti Chobe

From €1850 to €1890 14 days ex flights
Small group travel:
2018: 16 Dec, 23 Dec, 30 Dec
2019: 13 Jan, 20 Jan, 27 Jan, 3 Feb, 10 Feb, 24 Feb, 3 Mar, 10 Mar, 17 Mar, 24 Mar, 31 Mar, 7 Apr, 14 Apr, 21 Apr, 28 Apr, 5 May, 12 May, 19 May, 26 May, 2 Jun, 9 Jun, 16 Jun, 23 Jun, 30 Jun, 7 Jul, 14 Jul, 21 Jul, 28 Jul, 4 Aug, 11 Aug, 18 Aug, 25 Aug, 1 Sep, 8 Sep, 15 Sep, 22 Sep, 29 Sep, 6 Oct, 13 Oct, 20 Oct, 27 Oct, 3 Nov, 10 Nov, 17 Nov, 24 Nov, 1 Dec, 15 Dec, 22 Dec, 29 Dec
Helpdesk
Hello. If you'd like to chat about Botswana safari or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help. Rosy & team.

Botswana safari travel advice

At Responsible Travel, we think the best people to advise our travellers are often... other travellers. They always return from our tours with packing tips, weather reports, ideas about what to do - and opinions about what not to.

We have selected some of the most useful safari holidays in Botswana travel advice that our guests have provided over the years to help you make the very most of your holiday - and the space inside your suitcase.
Take thermal underwear with your when going on this trip in Africa's winter. The temperature at night was sub zero and morning/evenings were cold as well.
- Sigrid Pach
"Don't take too many clothes - you can rinse clothes out easily overnight or use lodge laundry services. I could easily have had just 2 sets and alternated and taken one set of something else for a night out. Torch very useful and a small powerful binoculars a must - so much to see." - Rachel Guinee

"We took 30 tennis balls and 4 Frisbees to give to the children we met. Better for them than sweets and much more fun than pencils. To see the huge grins on their faces was wonderful. Travel with an open mind. It was a bit primitive but well worth it to be so close to the wildlife." - Janet Hammond

Warm layers for the cool evenings. Take lots of memory cards for your camera. Don't forget your anti malerials. Go with the flow and enjoy Africa time. Enjoy the camping - it's the best way to be close to it all.
- Colin Pilkington
"Remember that this is Africa and everything does not work all the time. Be patient and positive and make friends along the way." - Louis Carroll

"The holiday can benefit locals but you have to eat locally, shop locally and do little things like taking your washing to the local ladies (sometimes their only income is doing tourists washing, so don’t be ashamed to hand your smalls over!). There’s loads of food stored on the truck, so it can be tempting to just eat group meals, but the local food is wicked and definitely worth a try." - Judith Wrennall
Written by Vicki Brown
Photo credits: [Page banner: 2630ben] [Temp chart: Brian Lauer] [Photography tips : Copyright Wildlife Films] [Family advice1: Justin Hall] [Family advice2: Walter Schärer] [Meeting the locals: Mario Micklisch] [Review intro: Amaryllis Liampoti] [Review 1 - Sigrid Pach: Justin Hall] [Review 2 - Colin Pilkington: Brian Lauer]
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