Celebrating Botswana: 50 Years of Independence

Botswana achieved independence from Britain on 30 September 1966 and in the ensuing years, this small landlocked country has been regarded as a role model for success in Africa.  It has achieved political stability, a democratic government, and remarkable economic growth.  That’s no mean feat when you consider Botswana was one of the weakest countries to ever gain freedom from colonial rule.  Tiny and landlocked, its position was daunting!  But succeed they did and today Botswana is recognised for a number of remarkable achievements but especially for being one of the most prosperous countries in Africa.


Did You Know?

baby-elephant_botswana_54180169Botswana is home to the largest population of African elephants…..on the PLANET!


botswana-white-rhino_404383186Facts and figures vary but close to half the country is protected giving rise to a healthy abundance of wildlife including lions, leopards, cheetahs, elephants, giraffes, zebras, hippos, rhinos, African buffalo, hyenas, and 22 species of antelope.


okavango-delta-botswana_298951286Botswana is home to one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa…..the Okavango Delta.


salt-pans_botswana_371402593The Makgadikgadi Pan is a salt pan situated in the middle of the dry savanna of north-eastern Botswana.  It is one of the largest, salt flats in the world!  Once a lake (Lake Makgadikgadi), the pan is all that remains of the lake today.


The Chobe River serves as the international border between Botswana and Namibia and provides guests a wonderfully unique way to experience the Chobe wildlife.



If you’re looking for something new and unique in Botswana, Belmond Eagle Island Lodge has introduced the first ‘Helicopter and Horseback Safari’. 

Combining an aerial safari by private helicopter with a horse-ride through one of the world’s last true remaining wildernesses, the excursion offers a new way to explore the UNESCO world heritage site and its magnificent inhabitants.

helicopterhorses2This unique sky and earth safari begins at dawn as the open-sided helicopter safari takes flight offering uninterrupted aerial views across the delta. Guests can enjoy aerial views of the game rich landscape which is abundant with roaming elephants, buffalo, giraffe and zebra as the sun rises and the wildlife begins a new day in the oasis of the Okavango Delta.

horses4horsesFollowing the helicopter flight, the safari continues on horse-back accompanied by a specialist guide who will give a safety briefing before leading a trail through the bush, traversing palm-lined islands, grassy flood plains, mopane forests and clear streams.

horses1horses3This activity will bring the total of number of safari activities offered at Belmond Eagle Island Lodge to nine season dependent activities.

These include:

* Mokoro safaris

* Motorboat safaris

* Walking safaris

* Helicopter safaris

* Cultural Village experience

* Fishing

* Barge cruise safaris

* Open vehicle safaris (both day and evening during dry months)


…and now Helicopter & Horseback safari.  Ask a Thompsons Africa Travel Expert for assistance.


Need some suggestions and inspiration for Botswana packages available NOW for booking?


A Royal Affair

– Cape Town – Botswana – Victoria Falls –


Voted Number 1 City in the World, Cape Town is home to Table Mountain, one of the 7 Wonders of the World and can be seen as far as 200 kilometres out to sea. Affectionately known as the Mother City, Cape Town is historically, culturally and visually, the most diverse, breathtakingly scenic and vibrant city you’ll have had the pleasure to visit! From its achingly beautiful natural attributes to its colourful culture; from decadent wine farms to captivating history and architecture – it’s tourist heaven.

One of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa, the Delta is unlike anything else you’ll have seen or experienced.  This legendary inland waterway slices sinuously through a large part of Botswana, creating an area of unimaginable natural splendour. Millions of litres of water reach miraculously into this part of the Kalahari Desert, infinitely enriching an environment that supports an incredible diversity of mammal, fish and bird life.  Meander slowly through the watery courses in a traditional canoe or Mokoro, or travel over land in an open safari vehicle.

One of the original natural wonders of the world, the Victoria Falls is a World Heritage Site and an extremely popular tourism attraction. Known locally as ‘The Smoke that Thunders’ this spectacle is accessible from both Zambia and Zimbabwe and it is an ideal place to combine a game viewing and water sports. There is excellent fishing, a terrifying bungee jump and arguably the best commercial white water rafting in the world.



Into the Delta

– Khwai – Linyanti –


The Delta is unlike anything you will have seen or experienced.  This legendary inland waterway slices sinuously through a large part of Botswana, creating an area of unimaginable natural splendour.

If engaging with the local people is a must, then this package is just for you.  Located on a community run concession, your stay includes a visit to the local Khwai community where you have the opportunity to interact with the local Khwai people.


For these and other package suggestions, visit our Customer Zone Tailor-Made section http://zone.thompsonsafrica.com/tailor-made-packages.


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