When to go to Botswana? Climate, weather… Best time for a safari by region

Equal to an adventure destination, Botswana lends itself perfectly to safaris if you prefer the best time of the year to observe the animals of the Big Five and more. Discover our tips for choosing the right travel dates and regions according to the country’s climate.

With a semi-arid subtropical climate, Botswana, one of the temples of safari, experiences a slightly dry winter season from May to October and a wet summer season extending from November to April. During the dry season, the thermometer shows an average of 25°C while the temperature fluctuates between 20°C and 35°C during the wet season. The south-west of the country is drier than the north-east where rain falls in the form of strong thunderstorms in the afternoon.

When is the best time for an Okavango Delta Safari?

During the summer, the Okavango Delta is home to birds and wildlife, including large herds of elephants. Sheila Haddad/Danita Delimont

The Okavango Delta is composed of permanent lagoons and channels that flood each year during the dry season, following previous summer rains in the adjacent Angolan highlands. This rainfall causes swells of water to travel 1200 km along the Okavango River over the course of a month, spreading across Botswana’s sedimentary delta rather than heading to the sea.

Between June and August, the 15,000 km² delta is characterized by an abundance of birds and wildlife, including large herds of elephants, buffaloes and hunters that travel for days to reach this wetland paradise. The dry season is perfect for boating and gliding over the calm waters of the delta mokoro. From April to November, tiger fishing is in full swing while the rainfall between November and April turns the delta into a bird-watching paradise. The Moremi Reserve, at the extreme east of the delta, is distinguished by its terrain of mixed forest, floodplains, lagoons and waterways interspersed with water lilies. The dry and wet regions offer stunning contrasts and are home to a huge variety of wildlife, from Cape buffalo to giraffes, hippos, zebras, antelopes and nearly 500 species of birds.

When is the best time for a safari in Chobe National Park?

Covering an area of ​​11,000 km2, Chobe National Park is one of the top safari destinations in the country. Stephen Rogers

Chobe National Park, Botswana’s oldest, is named for the raging river that runs through it. Located near Kasane, Livingstone and Victoria Falls, it is known to be home to the largest elephant population in the world. During the dry winter months, the northeast section of the Chobe River attracts several of Africa’s largest mammals to the region, making it one of the country’s top safari destinations.

Linyanti and Savuti, two areas within the park, embody the true essence of Botswana’s biodiversity. Linyanti in the north-west provides an opportunity to observe the great seasonal migration of zebras that occurs after the summer rains, while the Savuti wetlands in the west are ideal for zebra viewing during the dry season. Located in the northeastern part of Botswana, the Makgadikgadi pans are a thriving destination all year round. During the wet season, the flooded salt marshes attract flocks of thousands of flamingos and zebras. The dry crust of salt and clay that covers the pans during the dry season is perfect for quad excursions and night game drives.

When is the best time for a Kalahari safari?

Despite its arid climate, the Kalahari Desert is home to a dense and diverse fauna, including oryx, ostrich and meerkat. Ondrejprosicki

The Kalahari is a dry savanna home to a great diversity of wildlife. During the green season, from November to April, wildlife is more concentrated due to the availability of water. The desert landscape turns green and thousands of animals head down the slopes from the south to enjoy the abundant grazing in the grassy plains: wildebeest, giraffe and of course their predators including cheetah and the famous black-maned Kalahari lion. Rain forms shallow lakes in the salt marshes, which also attract abundant birdlife, including flamingos and pelicans.

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