Botswana Safaris, Holidays & Travel - Botswana Safari Packages

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Beyond the narrow eastern corridor where the majority of the population is concentrated, Botswana is a largely road-less wilderness of savannas, deserts, wetlands and salt pans. Travel around Botswana is almost invariably in small charter planes.

A number of years ago the Botswana Government decided to reduce the tourist footprint but maintain the same income – this has had the result of dramatically increasing the cost of a Botswana visit, making it by far the most expensive of all Southern African safari destinations (albeit quite unique.)

Botswana has the distinction of being the most stable of all the African countries. It is home to the Okavango Delta, a vast wetland in the midst of the Kalahari Desert, the Savute which is known as the elephant capital of the World as well as the Makgadikgadi Pans, which are almost devoid of human habitation and become inaccessible during the rainy season (November to March) other than to flamingos.

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Travel Information

Autumn and winter (April through August) are good times to visit Botswana, as the days are generally pleasant and the wildlife never wanders far from water sources. Bear in mind, however, that this is also the time of European, North American and South African school holidays, so things can get a bit crowded. In general, June, early July and mid to late September are the least crowded times to visit. Summer isn’t the best time to hit the back roads, enjoy wildlife viewing or explore the Okavango, as prolonged rains may render sandy roads uncrossable, and animals disperse when water is abundant. From December to March it is very difficult to get around Chobe and Moremi national parks due to heavy rains, and many lodges actually close.

Botswana has a mainly temperate climate. Rain falls during the summer months from November – March and varies from 8″ (200mm) in the arid south, to 24″ (600mm) in the north. The rainy season peaks in December and January. Generally speaking, the rain tends to fall in short, thundershowers. The best time to visit Botswana is from April – September when the days are generally cloudless and sunny with mild to warm temperatures (25°C). Evening temperatures however, drop sharply (minimum can be down to – 3°C). Best game viewing is between June and October and best birding between December and May. During the summer months daytime temperatures can rise to 40°C and drop to 25°C in the evenings.

Please note that all charter transfers are in light aircraft that carry between five and seven passengers. These planes are limited with regards to the weight that they can safely carry. It is therefore vital that all passengers adhere to the luggage restriction of fifteen (15) kilogram’s per person in a soft bag with NO wheels. This excludes a reasonable amount of camera equipment and carry on luggage (20 kilogram’s in total). In addition, please let us know if you are over 1.82 meters (6’2”) tall or weigh over 100kg (220lbs). Tickets are generally not issued tickets for charter flights; you will however, receive a voucher.

The unit of currency is the Pula (BWP), which is divided into 100 Thebe. Three commercial banks operate in Botswana. The Bank of Botswana, a government subsidiary, allocates generous foreign currency allowances out of Botswana.
Bank hours are Mondays – Fridays 09:00 – 15:30 and on Saturdays 09:00 – 11:30. Major hotels have foreign currency facilities and accept Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Diners Club. Most shops, lodges and travel agencies will accept traveller’s cheques. Many lodges however, will NOT accept credit cards. Foreign currency can be used at the lodges, but change will be given in Pula.

No Vaccinations are currently required for entry into Botswana when arrival is directly from North America or Europe. It is recommended that boosters of tetanus for children and adults are up to date. Courses or boosters that are usually advised are diphtheria, tetanus, hepatitis A and typhoid. Consult your doctor or specialist travel clinic for advice.
A yellow fever certificate is required if the visitor is over one year old and entering from or been in transit through an infected area or a country where yellow fever is endemic (such as Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia or Zaire). Yellow fever vaccinations must be administered at least ten days before arrival (or re-entry) into Botswana.

Malaria precautions are essential in most of the country from November to June. There are several safe and effective options for adults and children alike. Avoid mosquito bites by covering up with clothing such as long sleeves and long trousers especially after sunset. You are advised to use insect repellents on exposed skin and, when necessary, sleep under a mosquito net. Prompt investigation of fever or flu like symptoms anytime within six weeks of travel is essential.

As with all travel to remote places in developing countries, it is worth spending a little time to make sure you are well prepared. Have a small supply of any medicines you might need to treat minor ailments and carry a course of emergency ‘standby’ treatment for malaria.

Citizens of the following countries do NOT require visas: nationals of all commonwealth countries, Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Federal Republic of Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, San Marino, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Uruguay and USA. Citizens of countries not mentioned must apply for visas. Please check with your embassy for up to date information as requirements can change.

All travellers, except holders of United Nations Convention Travel documents, require passports. Please ensure that your passport is valid for at least six months after the date of your holiday, and that you have at least two blank pages for visas and entry/departure stamps.

FOR SECURITY PURPOSES, WE SUGGEST THAT YOU CARRY A PHOTOCOPY OF THE RELEVANT PAGES OF YOUR PASSPORT AND ANY OTHER IMPORTANT TRAVEL DOCUMENTS WITH YOU. WE ALSO RECOMMEND THAT IN ADDITION, YOU LEAVE COPIES WITH SOMEONE AT HOME.

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