Botswana is the leader in low-impact, upmarket tourism. This eco-friendly approach promotes a true wilderness experience in this unspoiled country. The beauty of the Okavango Delta is best discovered by mokoro canoe, while abundant wildlife can be encountered in Chobe and Moremi parks.
Botswana has an abundance of big African animals such as elephant, giraffe, hippo, buffalo and zebra. Big cats aren’t as prevalent, but there are still plenty of lions to spot. Rhino is also making a comeback here. If you’re keen on seeing rarer animals, you can find endangered antelopes and African wild dogs in some of the country’s northern parks.
More about the wildlife
Humidity won’t trouble you in Botswana, but there are big changes in temperature from day to night. Winter (May to October) is a very dry period that starts off cool and gets very hot towards the end. From June to August you’ll need to rug up at night, when it can be freezing. Summer (November to April) is wet and hot, with the rain pouring down in January and February. The Kalahari is where you can expect temperature extremes to be at their greatest.
More about the weather and climate
Botswana has a subtropical desert climate characterized by great differences in day and night temperatures, and low humidity overall. It receives virtually no rainfall for six months of the year, with the wettest months being December to March. Winter and summer is at opposite times of the year as Europe and North America, and they correspond to the Dry and Wet season respectively.
Maun’s climate compared to Botswana’s parks
The climate of Botswana’s northern parks is similar to Maun, but in the Okavango temperatures are slightly more moderate due to the abundance of water. Parks located in the drier Kalahari environment will be more extreme – hotter during the day and colder or freezing at night. The south and west experiences slightly less rainfall.
Dry season –May to October – Winter
There is little to no rain during the entire winter and humidity is low, typically 20-40%. Animals will concentrate around waterholes and rivers when other water sources dry up.
Wet season –November to April – Summer
The Okavango Delta, Moremi and Chobe are Botswana’s most popular parks. The best time to visit them is from May to September, during the Dry season and winter, resulting in more moderate temperatures. In addition, the Okavango is flooded from June to October. Wildlife viewing is good year-round, but this can differ for some parks. See below to learn when to visit which park.
Best Time June to September (Okavango, Moremi, Chobe) March to May (Other, drier parks)
High Season July to October (Will not feel too crowded, except for Chobe)
Low Season December to April (Some lodges and camps close down)
Best Weather April and May (Moderate temperatures, little to no rainfall, and few clouds)
Worst Weather October and November (Very hot) January and February (Peak of Wet season)
May to October –Dry Season – Winter
November to April –Wet Season – Summer
Best Time to go to Botswana by Major Park
Moremi, Okavango and Chobe are most popular and offer year-round wildlife viewing. They are at their best during the Dry season when wildlife is easier to spot, and the Okavango is flooded. The other, drier parks are best to visit during, or just after, the Wet season when fresh grasses attract wildlife.