• Male lion close up, Botswana

botswana wildlife on safari

Putting it bluntly, Botswana wildlife delivers.

Botswana is home to an array of wildlife in some extreme wildlife habitats, from the arid salt pans of the south to the wetland ‘swamps’ of the Okavango Delta and Moremi Reserve and the luscious flood plains of the Chobe River. These areas provide unique ecosystems in which some dramatic wildlife sightings can be experienced. 

There may be the odd naysayer out there that complains about Botswana’s high safari prices, however, those prices pretty much guarantee exclusivity, which in turn ensures that the sheer quality of wildlife sightings you encounter is better than almost anywhere else on the African continent. Yes, it may not have the drama of the free-flowing migrating herds of East Africa, but the quality and quantity of what you can see in Botswana is second to none.

Exclusive concessions mean a limited number of people in the concessions to start with, fewer people in the concession mean fewer people on each wildlife sighting, fewer people on a wildlife sighting results in an all-round higher quality wildlife experience. At the end of the day, let’s face it, the quality of the wildlife viewing is exactly what we judge a safari experience on.

Leopard, Botswana
Botswana wildlife safari: Lion cub

Botswana Wildlife Highlights

Whilst we cannot do Botswana’s wildlife justice via one short page, some of our favourites are outlined below.

Big cats are a highlight of any wildlife safari and Botswana has plenty. Lion, leopard and cheetah can be found throughout a variety of parks and reserves with some of our favourites including Selinda, Khwai, and the well-known Chobe National Park.

Chobe National Park – whilst open to a higher number of visitors – plays host to some of the largest herds of elephants in Botswana. Whilst this is an amazing feat to see, especially as they cross the mighty Chobe River, it is also evident the vast destruction they can do to the surrounding environs.

Wild dogs, whilst often not at the top of a safari-goers list, are often a pleasant surprise. Some of the most intelligent social hunters in the wild, if you get the chance, take the time to experience these guys in the wild. They move at immense speeds, hunt incredibly intelligently, and when on their prey, can shred the unfortunate subject in a matter of minutes. A traditionally matriarchal society, the social interactions and hierarchy of a wild dog pack is fascinating.

It’s not just the huge animals for which Botswana is famed, spend some time at Makgadikgadi Pans and you are likely to come across some inquisitive meerkats, known to – on occasion – use humans as look outposts. Here you might even spot the elusive Aardwolf or brown hyena.

Whilst the above lists out the ‘big hitters’ don’t forget other wildlife highlights such as the herds of zebra, giraffe, hippos wallowing and crocs basking along the banks of the rivers.

African elephant


Contact one of our Destination Specialists to start planning your journey to Botswana. Please note we recommend a budget of from £7,000 / $10,000 USD per person for our style of trip to this destination.

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