How to plan your ideal Botswana safari whatever your budget!
A Botswana safari is at the top of many travellers ‘wish list’ when it comes to the ultimate African safari. Famous for its wildlife and ‘low visitor numbers’ approach to its famous game reserves; Botswana has managed to encourage more high end and luxury safari goers to its national parks, while establishing impressive park management and anti-poaching patrols to ensure a long term, sustainable future for Botswana wildlife and the safari industry. However, don’t be put off by Botswana safari prices; there really is something for everyone and in this blog we will answer all your questions about how to organise a Botswana safari, which suits your personal budget and aspirations.
Best time to visit Botswana for wildlife?
Many visitors automatically book their Botswana safari in the high season, which runs from late June to October, without fully considering the pro and cons of visiting Botswana in either the green or mid-season. The green season which runs from November to March, see the much needed arrival of the rains, which completely transform the brown parched landscape, into vibrant greens. The fresh grasses attract huge herds of antelope and these in turn attract some of Botswana top predators; such as Lion, Leopard, Cheetah and Wild Dog. Wildlife photography in Botswana at this time of year is superb, as you see animals at their most vibrant and fit; with their glossy coats ‘punching’ out of the lush green background.
The rains peter out by March and some of Botswana best safaris are planned for the mid-season months of April, May and June. African wild dogs found in northern Botswana start to den and it is not uncommon to see family groups with young cubs. Discounts are still available for this season, so why not pick one of your favourite iconic Botswana wildlife lodges, save some money and still enjoy some superb game viewing in reserves such as Moremi, Khwai, Savuti and Chobe.
It's true that the high season can produce some stunning big cat safaris in Botswana, as the reduced water sources bring both prey and Africa’s top predators into direct contact. You may have the opportunity to follow the daily routine of one of Botswana lion prides or spot the elusive leopard
Best Botswana safaris?
One of the problems with a Botswana safari is cost and without stating the obvious fact that Botswana wildlife tours are expensive, you can also see how this has affected the way that Botswana safaris are marketed. Despite the fact that is takes well over 15 hours to reach Maun – the main entry port for Botswana – you see many Botswana safari packages on the internet which only last 7 days. Why come all that way to Botswana for just a one week wildlife holiday? So, we feel the best Botswana safaris, not only visit the best game reserves for wildlife viewing, but they also last between 10 to 14 days and spend 2 to 3 nights at the best wildlife locations.
Best value Botswana safaris?
Unless you are in a position to book some of Botswana’s best private and public campsites for game viewing more than a year in advance – South Africans have a lot of expertise in doing this – if you want an affordable Botswana safari, you really need to look at booking a small group Botswana wildlife tour. This does not mean sacrificing the quality of your Botswana safari; it simply means cherry picking the very best small group Botswana wildlife holidays out there, which do not have too many clients per jeep and visit the best Botswana game reserves as part of an unrushed, wildlife focused itinerary. If it has 2 nights in Chobe and 4 nights in Victoria Falls, it is probably not the best Botswana safari out there for a genuine wildlife enthusiast!
Best Botswana safari camps?
This is just a brief summary of what you should be considering when looking for the best Botswana safari camps. If you like one company to take care of all your arrangements throughout your stay in Botswana, then there are several excellent family owned Botswana safari lodge specialists, who will link their fabulous lodges and camps with exciting bush flights; often starting in Maun and finishing in Kasane. Some of our favourite Botswana safari camps are ‘Kwando safaris’, ‘African Bush Camps’ and ‘Ker & Downey’.
We then have more affordable Botswana safari camps that still deliver and excellent experience and have their wildlife lodges and camps located in some of the best game reserves in Botswana. Examples of such companies are ‘Under one Botswana Sky’ and ‘Desert and Delta’
However, if luxury Botswana safari camps don’t interest you and you are happy to put up your own tent – or have it put up for you – and sleep under canvas in some of the best campsites in Botswana for wildlife viewing; such as third bridge in Moremi Game Reserve and the Savute campsites. We have an amazing small group Botswana safari in August 2018, which visits such campsites to ensure you have the best Botswana safari at an affordable price.