Photo by Toro Tseleng


Botswana is a landlocked country located in Southern Africa. It is bordered by Namibia to the west and north, Zimbabwe to the northeast, Zambia to the north, and Angola to the northwest. To the south and southeast, it shares a border with South Africa. The country is known for its flat landscapes, the Kalahari Desert covering much of its territory, and the Okavango Delta, one of the world’s largest inland deltas.

Gaborone is the capital and largest city of Botswana. It is situated in the southeastern part of the country, near the border with South Africa. English is the official language of Botswana, and it is used in government and education. Setswana (Tswana) is the national language and is spoken by the majority of the population.

Botswana has a relatively low population density, with much of its land characterised by sparse human settlement. The country gained independence from British colonial rule on September 30, 1966. It was previously known as the British Protectorate of Bechuanaland.

Botswana operates as a democratic republic. It has a multi-party political system, and the President is both the head of state and head of government.

It has a stable and relatively prosperous economy. It is known for its prudent economic policies and good governance. The country’s economy has been buoyed by diamond mining, which is a major contributor to its GDP. Efforts have been made to diversify the economy into sectors like tourism and manufacturing.

Botswana is one of the world’s leading producers of diamonds. The discovery and responsible management of diamond resources have played a crucial role in the country’s economic development.

The Okavango Delta is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the largest inland deltas in the world. It is a unique ecosystem that supports a rich diversity of wildlife, including elephants, hippos, and a variety of bird species.

Botswana’s commitment to conservation, its unique ecosystems, and its thriving wildlife make it a sought-after destination for nature enthusiasts and safari-goers.

Chobe National Park, located in the northern part of Botswana, is renowned for its large elephant herds. The park is also home to a wide range of wildlife, and the Chobe River provides opportunities for boat safaris.

Hidden Insights: Uncovering Botswana

1. Bushmen (San) Communities: Botswana is home to Bushmen, also known as the San people, who are among the oldest inhabitants of Southern Africa. Some communities still practice traditional hunting and gathering lifestyles and are known for their intricate rock art.

2. Community-Based Tourism: Botswana is recognised for its successful community-based tourism initiatives. Many lodges and safari camps in wildlife-rich areas are operated in collaboration with local communities, ensuring that residents benefit from tourism and contribute to conservation efforts.

3. Kasane: The town of Kasane, situated in the northeastern part of Botswana, serves as a gateway to Chobe National Park. It is at the meeting point of four countries: Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe, making it a strategic location for regional travel.

4. Dikgosi Monument: The Dikgosi Monument in Gaborone honours the traditional leaders (dikgosi) who played a crucial role in the country’s independence. It consists of bronze statues representing the first four presidents of Botswana and celebrates the peaceful and democratic transition to independence.

Photo by Mohau Mannathoko

Photo by Toro Tseleng

Capital City: Gaborone

Population: 2,417,596 (2023 est.)

Nationality: Motswana (singular), Batswana (plural)

Location: Southern Africa, north of South Africa

Languages: Setswana 77.3%, Sekalanga 7.4%, Shekgalagadi 3.4%, English (official) 2.8%, Zezuru/Shona 2%, Sesarwa 1.7%, Sembukushu 1.6%, Ndebele 1%, other 2.8% (2011 est.)

Religion: Christian 79.1%, Badimo 4.1%, other 1.4% (includes Baha’i, Hindu, Muslim, Rastafarian), none 15.2%, unspecified 0.3% (2011 est.)

Area Total: 581,730 sq km 

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