THE WEATHER & SEASONS

“When is the best time to go to Botswana?" is a question we are frequently asked and the answer depends on many things including your interests, exactly where you want to visit and why you're travelling. One person's best time can be another's worst! Essentially, Botswana is a year-round destination, there isn't a bad season and if you have the chance to visit you should take it!

Below is a rough guide to the weather patterns of Botswana, based on historical data and our own observations. As you know weather around the world is in a state of change.

 

JANUARY (Green Season)

The height of rainy season; hot and humid with thunderstorms. Low water in the Delta. Lots of young animals around and while game does disperse, select areas are very productive. Everything is beautifully green and excellent for birding.

 

Good green season specials available. Book at short notice except around New Years.

 

FEBRUARY (Green Season )

Also the rainy season; hot and humid with thunderstorms. Low water in the Delta. Not the best for game viewing but still good in select areas, beautifully green and great for birding.

 

Excellent low season specials, book at short notice.

 

MARCH (Green Season) 

Game viewing is OK, grass levels can be high but the rains ease and animals return to more accessible dry season areas. Vegetation is  thick and temperatures are hot though not as bad as earlier in the year. Lots of bodies of water everywhere although delta not in flood yet.

 

Book at short notice.

 

APRIL (Shoulder or Mid Season)

End of rainy season. April and May are the best months to visit Botswana as rates are still lower and there are fewer visitors than peak season. Most days are warm and nights cool as the rain disappears for the next four months. Landscape still green but seasonal waterholes are rapidly drying up and animals are arriving at permanent water sources like the Chobe River, Okavango Delta and Moremi Game Reserve. The game viewing is often as good as prime time.

 

Book 3 – 6 Months in advance (Easter period busy 08 – 12 months in advance).

 

MAY (Shoulder Season)

Same as above. Water reaches the panhandle of the Okavango Delta and starts flooding. Game viewing is at its peak.

 

Book 3 – 6 Months in advance.

 

JUNE (High and Mid Season)

Okavango in full flood. Warm days and cold nights. Night time temperatures can dip below freezing. No rain and very few mosquitoes. Game viewing in most areas is excellent.

 

Book 8 – 10 Months in advance.

 

JULY (High Season) 

Okavango in full flood. Warm days and cold nights. Night time temperatures can dip below freezing. No rain and very few mosquitoes. Game viewing in most areas is excellent.

 

Book 8 – 10 Months in advance.

 

AUGUST (High Season)

Temperatures rise as do visitor numbers. Peak game viewing season. Vegetation is thinner, grass turns yellow and less lush for better viewing. Big herds of antelope, elephants and buffalo begin to crowd the banks of rivers and permanent waterholes. Land-only camps and Okavango Delta camps on the dry-land fringes such as Moremi and adjoining private reserves are very good for game viewing. 

 

Book 8 – 10 Months in advance.

 

SEPTEMBER (High Season) 

End of Botswana's cool dry winter. September and October deliver some of the hottest weather of the year. It's classic dry season: baked and leaf-stripped landscapes; hot days. Food and water becomes harder to find so animals concentrate around watering holes and along rivers. Game viewing is excellent. Best time to visit Chobe (massive herds along the river) and Linyanti, Kwando and Selinda reserves.

 

Book 8 – 10 Months in advance.

 

OCTOBER (High Season)

End of Botswana's cool dry winter. September and October deliver some of the hottest weather of the year. It's classic dry season: baked and leaf-stripped landscapes; hot days. Food and water becomes harder to find so animals concentrate around watering holes and along rivers. Game viewing is excellent, migratory birds begin to arrive. Best time to visit Chobe (massive herds along the river) and Linyanti, Kwando and Selinda reserves.

 

Book 8 – 10 Months in advance.

 

NOVEMBER (Start of Green Season) 

Unpredictable month. Could be wet or dry, depending on the timing of the rains but it will be hot. A dry November makes for excellent waterhole game viewing. If there is early rain, many animals disappear en masse into the back country. Game viewing still good but concentrations of animals may be lower. Green season specials start.

 

Book 3 – 6 Months in advance.

 

DECEMBER (Green Season  except 20 Dec – 10 Jan)

Summer time and raining season starts in earnest. Botswana turns green and impalas and springboks all drop their lambs. Lots of baby animals around. Best month for bird watching. Spectacular thunder storms. Prettiest time to be there but not necessarily the best for game viewing.

 

Book anytime until 20 December. For 20 Dec – 10 Jan: 8 – 12 months in advance.

 

TEMPERATURE CHART

& WEATHER STATS [Maun]

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Many of the images on this website are supplied by the lodges featured and the copyright belongs to them, we have used them with kind permission of; Wilderness Safaris, AndBeyond, Great Plains, Desert & Delta, Uncharted Africa, Desert & Delta and Kwando and others.

 

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