The pinnacle of all bucket-list destinations, Botswana in southern Africa presents the dream opportunity to get up close and personal with the King of the Jungle and many other colossal mammals.

Holidays in Botswana are all about safaris. Whether you head to the spectacular Okavango Delta, the popular Central Kalahari Game Reserve, the romantic Chobe National Park, or one of the country’s other equally stunning parks and reserves, you’re in for a real treat.

Botswana’s vast and diverse landscape creates homes for some of the world’s most beautiful and majestic wildlife and, through careful, sustainable travel, they’ve invited you in. Jaw-dropping luxury lodges are aplenty across the country, but for a more rugged experience, you can also opt to go back to nature by sleeping under canvas, surrounded by the hawks and squawks of the local residents.

Botswana holidays also provide the opportunity to explore the vast Kalahari Desert, which in fact isn’t a desert at all – at least not in the way storybooks would have you believe. There’s sand, of course, but also fossil river valleys, stretches of golden grasses and salt pans, making it as diverse as it is huge.

The Makgadikgadi Salt Pans are nothing but salt. Sheer white expanses stretching tens of thousands of kilometres. But they really come to life in the wet season, between January and March. Following the heavy rains, the pans flood, attracting wildlife including zebras, wildebeest and flamingos, making for a breath-taking sight.

A lesser-known treat can be uncovered in the Tsodilo Hills in the north-west of the country, where one of the world’s largest concentrations of rock art can be seen. It’s believed the earliest of these stems from the Stone Age and the paintings are a great way to learn of past inhabitants’ experiences, as they document the relationships between local tribes and the surrounding harsh natural environment.

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