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When to Visit Botswana

What to expect during the different times of year in Botswana and descriptions of the four seasons of Botswana. The best time top visit Botswana will depend on the activities that interest you most.

Best and Worst Time to Visit

Most Extreme Weather
- October-November: Hottest Temperatures
- January-February: Most Rain

Best Wildlife Viewing Months
Botswana's dry season from April to October is generally the best time for wildlife viewing safaris because as the pans and other water supplies shrink in size, the animals congregate around the water sources that remain. Note that while there is always water in the northern Okavango Delta area, many of the game reserves and the southern delta area are brown and dry during this time of year. Botswana's winter is part of the dry season.

Best Okavango Delta Safari Months
The best time to visit the Okavango Delta is in July and August because by then the flood waters from the wet months have made their way to the southern Okavango Delta, attracting large herds of elephant, buffalo, and other animals from the dry interior of Botswana to the Okavango Delta wetlands.

Worst Wildlife Viewing Months
Botswana's wet season from October to March or April is not the best time for game viewing safaris because heavy rains can make the roads difficult to drive even in four wheel drive vehicles. Some lodges and camps close during the wet season because they are so difficult to reach. Botswana's summer is part of the wet season. Note that the wet season can be the best time to book a safari if saving money is important to you because many of safari tours and the lodges and camps that remain open during the wet season offer lower rates during what they call the "green season".

Best Bird Viewing Months
Botswana's wet season from November through March can be a good time for viewing birds because Flamingo and many other migratory birds are visiting. Bird watching during the cry months can also be satisfying because birds congregate around the shrinking water sources during the dry season.

The Four Seasons in Botswana

Botswana is in the Southern Hemisphere so its summer-fall-winter-spring seasons are opposite those in the Northern Hemisphere.

Southern Hemisphere Seasons (includes Botswana)
SUMMER: December 21 - March 20 (wet season)
FALL: March 20 - June 21 (transition from wet to dry)
WINTER: June 21 - September 22 (dry season)
SPRING: September 22 - Dececmber 21 (transition from dry to wet)

Northern Hemisphere Seasons
SUMMER: June 21 - September 22
FALL: September 22 - Dececber 21
WINTER: December 21 - March 20
SPRING: March 20 - June 21

Botswana Seasons by Month

April and May
Typically clear sky and still green but there may be some rain because are transitional months between the wet and dry season. Night temperatures begin to cool down in April and May, especially in Kahalari Desert.

June through August
Cool and dry season and the best safari season in most parts of Botswana because animals begin to congregate around the shrinking water sources. You can expect clear skies and sun most days but cold nights and early mornings (nights can be close to freezing but days are typically warm). Not the best time for birdwatching because there are few migratory birds.

September and October
Dry and hot. Best big game safari season in some areas. Temperature can be very hot, above 100 degrees F at times. African and Eurasian migratory birds beging to arrive and some of them breed during these months. Chobe National Park in Northeast Botswana and the Moremi Game Reserve in the Okavango Delta look dry and desolate during these months. Wildlife congregates around the few remaining water sources.

Unpredictable weather. Shoulder month between the hot-dry and hot-wet seasons.

December through March
Wet, hot, season and the most humid time of year. Expect some sunny days, some gray days, and some thunderstorm days. Starts to cool down in March. Late in the wet season, when the rain starts to decline and the pans start to dry up, the game starts to arrive again to congregate around the water sources. The pans typically fill up by December, attracting many birds, making this the best birdwatching season, especially in the northern part of Chobe National Park. Wet roads can be a challenge, even in a 4 wheel drive vehicle. Insect life is highest during the rainy season Some lodges and camps offer lower wet season rates Nov-March

Articles About Botswana's Seasons

More About Botswana

Botswana Travel Guide

Southern Africa Travel Guide

See also
Destinations in Africa
Pictures of Africa
Travel Guides International

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