The 10 best places to visit in Botswana

 

Completed in 2005 in the countries capital city, Gaborone, are a set of three 5.4 metre (17.5 ft) bronze statues known as the Three Dikgosi Monument. The cities most visited attraction, the monument depicts and pays tribute to the three tribal chiefs that played an important role in gaining Botswana's independence. Built by North Korean contractors, the monument bears more than just a striking resemblance to the bronze statues in Pyongyang.

10. Three Dikgosi Monument

 

North east of the capital, Gaborone, along the south eastern border with South Africa is the Tswapong Hills Mountain Range, rising high above the surrounding plateau it has an elevation of some 1,390 metres (4,560 ft) above sea level. The steep rocky cliffs interspersed with permanent cascading pools has become a favourite among hikers, with the main attraction in the hills being the spectacular Moremi Gorge.

9. Tswapong Hills

 

In the extreme north west of the country close to the border with Namibia are the Tsodilo Hills, famed for their rock art. With over 500 unique sites showcasing more than 4,500 individual rock paintings depicting a unique record of human settlement over many millennia, this area of great cultural and spiritual importance to the local San People has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

8. Tsodilo Hills

 

In the centre of the country covering a vast area of some 52,800 square kilometres (20,400 square miles) is the protected national park of the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. Mostly flat with grass and bush covering sand dunes, the reserve accounts for 1/11 of the countries land area and is the second largest game reserve on the planet. Visitors to the park will have a chance to glimpse a whole array of wildlife, including the South African cheetah, African leopard, Kalahari lion, plains zebra, South African giraffe, bush elephant, white rhino, cape buffalo, meerkat, blue wildebeest, chacma baboon and even an ostrich, as well as a whole heap more.

Pictured is a group of Gemsbok.

7. Central Kalahari Game Reserve

 

In the northern centre of the country is a protected area of land known as the Nxai Pan National Park, covering an area of some 2,578 square kilometres (995 square miles). Named after the 40 square kilometre (15 square mile) fossil lake bed, this beautiful landscape is also home to an array of wonderful wildlife, these include elephant, lion, leopard, cheetah, springbok, impala, ostrich, giraffe, zebra, wildebeest, hyena, honey badger and a whole host more.

6. Nxai Pan National Park

 

In the north east of the country straddling the borders of Zimbabwe and Namibia is the 11,700 square kilometre (4,500 square mile) protected area of Chobe National Park. Botswana's third largest national park is it's most diverse, with four distinct ecosystems. From lush floodplains to dense woodland, savannahs, rolling grasslands, marshes and dry hinterland it is another of the countries rich wildlife hot spots. Animals that can be seen in the park include lions, cheetahs, zebras, leopards, hippos and of course a whole host more. What Chobe National Park is most famous for though is the largest concentration of elephants in Africa, with an estimated 50,000 Kalahari elephants in the park.

5. Chobe National Park

 

In the extreme south west of the country encompassing an area of 38,000 square kilometres (15,000 square miles) of protected land is the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park. Straddling the border between Botswana and South Africa, the park is actually comprised of two adjoining national parks with two thirds of the land within Botswana's borders. In a landscape consisting of red sand dunes, sparse vegetation, few trees and dry riverbeds it's a great place for visitors to see such wildlife as the southern African lion, cheetah, and leopard, large herbivores such as wildebeest and large predatory birds that include the vulture and eagle, among an array of other creatures.

4. Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park

 

In the north east of the country, situated in the middle of a dry savannah is the Makgadikgadi Pan, at 16,000 square kilometres (6,177 square miles) it is one of the largest salt flats on the planet. Made up from several large salt pans interspersed with areas of desert, this enormous inhospitable area makes for a truly spectacular scene.

3. Makgadikgadi Pan

 

Within the enormous Makgadikgadi Salt Pan is the dry granite desert rock island known as Kubu Island. Once surrounded by lake waters the outcrop rises around 10 metres (33 ft) from the surrounding ground level and measures approximately a kilometre in length. Topped by ancient, gnarled Baobabs and surrounded by a vast emptiness it is one of the most astonishing locations in southern Africa. Considered a sacred site by the indigenous people the entire island is also a national monument.

2. Kubu Island

 

In the northern centre of country is truly one of our planets most incredible natural sights, the Okavango Delta. Every year during the dry season approximately 11 cubic kilometres of water from the Okavango River covers an enormous area of tectonic trough creating a wetland system in the Kalahari Desert. The permanent marshland is home to some of the worlds most endangered species, with the seasonal waters bringing the greatest concentration of wildlife anywhere on Earth. Officially declared one of the Seven Natural Wonders Of Africa, the Okavango Delta has been inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site of insurmountable universal importance.

1. Okavango Delta

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