One of my biggest dreams was to see a Giraffe. I think they are very noble, calm-looking creatures that will regret the opposite recipe when they get angry. This makes them wonderful beings. Elephants, lions, hippos, buffaloes and dozens of other creatures I can’t count; to visit in their homes, nests. It is not possible for me to forget my feelings in Botswana. In my Botswana Travel Guide article, I will tell you the third and last part of our trip that covers three countries. Let’s travel Africa!
- When to Go to Botswana?
- Is Zambia & Zimbabwe & Botswana Dangerous?
- Is Botswana Cheap?
How Many Days To Visit Botswana?
We reserved 3 nights for Botswana on our trip to Africa, which included three countries. Because our main goal is to do safari in Botswana and we want to do it more than once because each safari is different experience. For this reason, we needed at least 3 nights. The first day passed with the road, arrival and rest. We did 3 different safaris in the remaining 2 days. The feelings of all three were completely different. I will explain it in detail below.
Transportation to Botswana
If you are not going to include other countries on this trip, if your goal is to go only to Botswana or if you start our route in reverse, the place you need to fly is the airport of the city of Kasane. Since Botswana is visa-free for most countries, flights are usually one click expensive compared to Zambia Livingstone. However, of course, it may change periodically, it is useful to check.
Download the offline application of Xe Currency, which you can use even when there is no internet, to calculate how many USD is worth of Exchange Pulas. You will also be more comfortable if you download the offline version of the maps.me map.
Where to Stay in Botswana? Botswana Hotel Suggestion
Actually, our aim was to stay in Chobe Safari Lodge, the most famous hotel in Botswana Chobe, but as a result of a reservation mistake, my dear companion chose Chobe River Cottages and we spent three nights in this villa. I have no regrets, it was a good choice. We already paid USD 340 for 3 nights here while paying in the band 80 – 90 USD for 2 nights accommodation in two other countries. So it is understood from the price that we are staying in a nice and central place.
The biggest advantage was that it was 2 minutes walking distance to the city center, where you can find an ATM and KFC. We were very comfortable here as there is also a SPAR brand market and a shop like Duty Free where you can find all kinds of drinks. We did our shopping and had a very pleasant time in our villa in the evenings and talked about the delicious experiences we had on safari.
Another suggestion in terms of eating & drinking can be Pizza Plus Coffee & Curry very close to our hotel. One evening we bought a take away pizza from here, we liked it and paid 7 USD for it.
One evening we ate at the restaurant of the hotel named Chobe Bush Lodge. The food we ate here was delicious. Our main goal was to have dinner at Chobe Safari Lodge, where we could not stay. Because there is a wonderful view of the river. However, when we went to the hotel, we learned that there was only an open buffet option for dinner and it started at 18:30. Since we were too hungry to wait, we went to the next hotel and discovered this place. We paid 30 USD for 2 people for a Kallavi dinner.
One evening we ate at the hotel named Chobe Game Lodge, but this was the place we liked least among the options. We paid 19 USD for 2 people dinner.
While we paid 10 USD for two menus at KFC, we paid 40 USD for our drinks from SPAR.
We usually walked because the distances we traveled were short, but when we had to take a taxi, we negotiated and paid 3 USD for one way.
Activities to be Done in Botswana
Safari in Chobe National Park
Safari is all about luck. Since you visit the creatures in their own nature, what you will see and experience is entirely up to you. For this reason, on a safari trip, do at least 2-3 games so that you don’t have to return without seeing anything or reaching your dream. I think the safari price in Botswana was very suitable to achieve this.
There are two safaris that start every day at sunrise and around 15:00 in the afternoon. Both are $ 25 per person. It takes 3 hours and you tour the national park under the guidance of your driver in a 9-person safari vehicle. Normally, in different parts of Africa, there may be another person besides the driver, watching and guiding the right and left with binoculars, but this was not the case when we joined in Botswana. We did not feel much missing. There are other safari vehicles like you in the park. The downside to Botswana was that they weren’t very creative, they all followed a similar route. To do this, you can squeeze your driver into telling you which animals you want to see because they have guesses, for example, “where the lions hang out between what time and when. Because we were very lucky, we were the only two people in the vehicle in both safaris we did in Chobe National Park. So we officially made a private safari!
Make sure you do safari at sunrise, let that be your priority. The landscapes we saw in the first lights of the day moved our minds. Just take a jacket with you considering that you may get cold. Of course, dress in the colors of nature, suitable for safari, so that it would be perfect. It would be great if you even take a hat and binoculars.
Water and cold drinks are served during the safari, as I said every game is 3 hours. We arranged all our safaris through our hotel and we were very pleased. Interestingly, when we got to the bazaar, we entered an agency and asked for the price and it was much more expensive than what the hotel directed. I think we made a good choice.
The main goal in safari is to complete the big five. These are: lion, rhino, buffalo, elephant and leopard. The most delusional, hard-to-catch leopard because they are very shy and always hide and camouflage themselves on the tops of trees. Leopards are somewhat permeated because the lion is the ruler of the forest. Rhinos, on the other hand, are being slaughtered day by day and their species are decreasing day by day because the drug obtained from their horns increases sexual power. That’s why you may not be able to see it everywhere. But my friend came across the birth of a rhino on a safari! It must have been a great moment. As I said, every safari is a completely different experience. You don’t know what you will witness. What did we witness?
On the first day, we were able to see the king of the jungle lion very, very closely, and we were officially exposed to his roar in our face. If he ran and jumped, he could come to the vehicle, actually, we are so close. But the lions were incredibly lazy, our driver said. He said that he would be lazy and would not come. We believed, but I think it’s stupid. Thank God we are alive.
We saw countless antelopes, buffaloes, and hippos. And of course elephants. We saw a lot of elephants. Elephants are incredibly alive, very emotional. They love to stick together and they are very protective against others.
While we are at safari; I felt that we belong to mother nature as plants, trees, animals and humans. I understood the great balance between living things much better. I perceived our similarities and differences. You think you know some things until you live and realize that you don’t know anything.
Going a River Safari
Another activity you can do in Botswana is river safari. You get on a boat, cruise the river, which will make your eyes a feast, and observe the creatures. This activity is 25 USD per person. I suggest you do this in the afternoon session and sink the day here. Do not forget to take food and drink with you, it will be more enjoyable. Officially we’re taking a ride on the Chobe river up to the shores of Namibia!
And that magical moment! I WANTED TO SEE YOU THAT SO MUCH, GİRAFFE! I knew I wouldn’t be back without seeing it. I attracted you to myself with my energy. Won’t he come with all his dignity from behind the trees? There are also birds on his back. I think we live in heaven on earth.
Then suddenly the elephant herd showed up to us. What more could I want? My face is like a potato with a laugh at the sweetness of baby elephants. Everything that passes through my heart has come true in this safari adventure. It was good if we saw the leopard, so what should we do for the next trip.