Botswana is a land-locked country north of South Africa, south of Zambia and bordered by Namibia and Zimbabwe. • It is 581 730 sqkm, with the Kalahari Desert covering 84% of the country - a semi-desert of grass and acacia thorn scrub. • The Okavango River empties into the Kalahari sands from the northwest, creating the largest inland river delta in the world. • Over 80% of Botswana’s population lives on the eastern borders, particularly around Gaborone and Francistown. • Botswana is hot and dry, with an annual rainfall of 200-400mm. However, rain tends to be erratic and unpredictable. Pula, meaning rain, is the name of Botswana’s currency, but in contrast to the rainfall, is a steady constant for the economy. • Winter is from May to August, with nights often reaching freezing. Possibly the best time to travel is in Autumn, between September and October, when the days and nights are pleasant. • Setswana is Botswana’s national language, but in the more built up areas and national parks, English is spoken widely.
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