We could all do with a few travel guidelines, whether we’re pro explorers or first-timers. One thing is certain; there’s no time for rookie errors because rookie errors could turn into painful nightmares, and ruin the entire trip! Of course, we want to avoid that at all costs, so may want to pay extra attention to these useful travel tips for Botswana.
Travel Tips for Botswana
There is something so magical about the sunsets in the Okavango Delta, with wide skies above and the reflections from the water below.The thing about Botswana is that it’s unlike any place in the world, and you can’t expect that the same travel guidelines you use for the rest of the world, will be useful in this unique part of the globe.Traveling in small planes, spending hours outdoors and getting up close and personal with wild animals, demands distinctive tactics, to further optimize your experience.If you still needing to plan your safari adventure in Botswana then here is a great guide to the top destinations and best time to visit Botswana.
Invest in a Soft Luggage Bag
It is always a good idea to travel with a soft bag if you plan to visit remote destinations that are only accessible by light aircraft.If you’re embarking on a safari adventure, you’ll definitely fly out from the main cities of Botswana to the desolate areas of the African bush. This means you’ll either be traveling by small plane, such as a Cessna, or a helicopter, to get to your luxury lodge. Small aircraft such as these, don’t allow hard luggage bags, but rather soft bags that can easily fit into the small luggage compartments of the aircraft. These small charter planes and helicopters, also have luggage weight restrictions; therefore, only pack the necessities! So, invest in a soft travel bag, that’s also fairly light, otherwise, you may need to leave your belongings on the runway!
Roll Your Clothing
Most lodges in Botswana offer a laundry service and will happily iron items that have creased in your bag.Seeing as you’ll be using a soft travel bag, you won’t be able to pack your clothes as neatly as you could if you were using a hard luggage bag. Throughout your travels, your clothes are going to wind up falling around inside the bag-which means a heightened chance of them creasing; really badly! To avoid this issue, our hack for you is to roll your clothes, instead of folding them. This will keep them compact, will take up a lot less space and will help in avoiding heavy creasing. Trust me, this comes in handy, especially if you’re tenting and have no iron, to sort the creases out!
Pack in Ear Muffs
It gets seriously chilly out on the open plains of Botswana, especially in the evenings and the early mornings. When you’re out on a game drive, you want to be fully prepared for the slight breezes, and you don’t want to ruin the spectacle, by getting cold ears, or an earache! Earmuffs or an ear-covering beanie will make all the difference!
Pack Winter and Summer Clothes
With strict luggage restrictions, it is advisable to pack only the essentials and make use of the laundry service at the lodges and camps.As mentioned above, the early mornings and evenings can get quite chilly, however, the midday heat can be quite overwhelming. So, of course, with two ‘extremes’, you’ll need to pack in both winter and summer clothes. But, remember to pack summer clothes that still cover your skin, as you want to shield yourself from the sun, as much as possible.
Sturdy Shoes are a Must
Sturdy, and perhaps even water-proof shoes will be of great help when you’re out in the bush. Most lodges offer walking safari tours, which will take you through different types of terrain and maybe a few water puddles here and there. Shoes that offer ankle support will be even better, so that you can trot around, in comfort!
Take Moisturizer Lip Balm and Sunscreen
Botswana experiences a dry climate, which means your skin will need a little extra attention. Throw in skin moisturizer and lip balm, for extra comfort and nourished skin, and stock up on at least a 30 SPF sunscreen to avoid the harsh African sun.
Take a Medicine Kit with You
Although lodges are equipped with basic first aid kits, it is a good idea to take along a small kit for your own convenience, as well as any chronic medications.When you are wondering deep in the desolate African plains, we can assure you, you’ll not find a quick shop to buy simple medical supplies. Even if you think you won’t need certain medication, rather pack it in, just in case. Safari guides always carry a first aid kit with them, so no need to bother with bringing your first aid kit along, but personal medication is a different story! As they say, you always want to rather be ‘safe, than sorry.’
Don’t Forget your Binoculars!
Most of the time you’ll get up close and personal, with the wildlife that call Botswana home. However, there are a few feisty fellas that won’t allow you to get too close to them, and thus, you’ll need a pair of binoculars to get a better look. Botswana is also known for its awe-inspiring bird life, and you don’t want to miss the incredible sightings of world-renowned birds, such as the world’s heaviest flying bird; the Kori Bustard, or the beauty of the Cape Glossy Starling.
Don’t forget your Camera!
It is important to capture those special moments whilst on safari in Botswana, so be sure to take a good camera and binoculars. Private lodges conduct safaris in open-sided game vehicles, affording you incredible photographic opportunities.Last but not least, (almost) the most important item-your camera! You are going to be surrounded by unimaginable beauty, which you’ll want to document! Rare wildlife sightings, bird life, open grasslands and exquisite sunsets, are just some of the snaps you’ll definitely be getting!The only thing left to do now is to get out your passport, print off your flight tickets and booking confirmations, and start your journey of a lifetime!