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A-z Of Botswana Safari Holidays (Almost)

Apr 25, 2008
If you're heading off on a Botswana safari, there's plenty to explore in this rich area of Southern Africa. From art to wildlife, here's an (almost) A-Z of Botswana safari holidays.


There is a world-renowned tribal art and craft tradition in Botswana, as well as a wealth of ancient rock art. The Tsodilo Hills, west of the Okavango delta, are the richest rock art site in southern Africa with over 4,000 catalogued paintings. A sacred site in Botswana, the local Stone Age San people say that the gods of old are still strong at Tsodilo, and there are many legends associated with the area.


With almost 600 species of birds, including many unique and rare specimens, a Botswana safari holiday would not be complete without an appreciation of its wonderful bird life. When the Makgadikgadi fills with the annual rains, hundreds of thousands of waterbirds migrate to Botswana, adding to the colourful spectacle. Botswana not only offers a countless number of migratory and resident birds, but also boasts a bewildering array of raptors and other spectacular species.


Chobe National Park is a superb wildlife reserve with the largest elephant population in the world. Chobe is also blessed with tropical vegetation and greater rainfall than usually found in this dry country.


Botswana has a rich cultural history, including the stone wall ruins, patterned pottery and Stone Age tools that litter the countryside. Botswana preserves its local traditions and has carefully protected its ancient human culture, such as the Stone Age artefacts of the saltpan areas.


The Kalahari desert, which covers most of Botswana, is the largest stretch of wind-blown sand on the planet, and hides many remarkably adapted creatures which can be found in its striking, stark landscapes. Central Kalahari, typical of the semi-desert conditions that dominate most of Botswana, shows a variety of game in their natural setting. Kalahari Gemsbok National Park is wild and remote (and difficult access except for the well equipped), an excellent location for those who seek the true wilderness.


The flat salt-baked expanse of the Makgadikgadi pans which, with the adjacent national park, covers an area as large as Portugal, is the bed of a once massive super-lake that covered much of central and northern Botswana. In the rainy season this unique landscape is filled with water and remarkable bird and wildlife. As the last remnants of a lake that was once the largest in Africa, the various salt pans of this area, dotted with islands and ancient baobab trees, are a reminder of how transient environments and the life that depends on them can be.

Okavango Delta

The most popular area for Botswana safari holidays, the Okavango Delta, has a unique ecology and plenty of wildlife and bird species, which can be viewed at close-range from a mokoro (primitive dugout canoe). The Okavango Delta is a labyrinth of lagoons, lakes and hidden channels covering an area of over 17,000 square kilometres and the world's largest inland delta. Okavango is trapped in the parched Kalahari sands and is a magnet for wildlife that depend on the permanent its waters.


Unlike trips to much of Africa, Botswana safari holidays are safe and secure, with little crime in the area and no political unrest. The people are passive and content, and with a growing number of successful community based tourism initiatives, there is a widespread appreciation of tourists and the revenue Botswana safaris bring to the country. Only normal precautions need to be taken with valuables.

Tuli Block

A region that is close to the capital but often neglected on Botswana safari holidays, the Tuli Block is a fascinating study in geology and ecology as well as one of the prime areas for the mineral wealth of the country.


Botswana has one of the lowest population densities in the world, and with it's exclusive tourism policies, the wilderness attractions are largely unspoilt and uncrowded, promising an unparalleled African adventure experience.


Herds of wildlife can be found throughout the country, both in and outside the national parks, with growing concentrations in the northern tourist areas. Botswana has the largest population of elephants in the world and is home to a migrant population of over 120,000 of these massive creatures.
About the Author
Kieron Sellens is the marketing manager of the Association of Independent Tour Operators (AiTO). With an Aito safari you can choose from a tailor-made safari in Kenya, Botswana safari holiday, South African adventure and much more.
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