With an area of almost 600,000 sq kms, Botswana is virtually the same size as France or Texas. Situated in the centre of southern Africa, it is a landlocked country, with Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe as its immediate neighbours.
Outstandingly dramatic, Botswana encompasses striking salt pans, diamond-rich deserts and fertile flood plains which teem with game. A sizable proportion of the country, over 40%, is given over to National Parks, reserves and private concessions and Botswana's policy of favouring low-impact luxury tourism ensures that even the most famous game-viewing areas rarely feel crowded.
The most striking features of the country are its flatness and aridity. With the exception of the eastern part of Botswana where the summer rainfall is slightly higher, three-quarters of Botswana is technically a desert. This is what makes the Okavango Delta even more remarkable. The largest inland delta in the world, it is a wonderful wetland within a desert, with its waters arriving from rain falling in Angola, 1,000 kms away.
In the northeast the Chobe National Park is home to gigantic elephant herds, some 500 strong. The Linyanti Reserve is characterised by open grassland, riverine forest and mopane savannas where predators such as lion, leopard, cheetah and wild dog are regularly seen.
In stark contrast to the wetlands of the Delta, the Kalahari and the Makgadikgadi salt pans offer magnificent solitude. Home to the San people, more commonly known as 'The Bushmen of the Kalahari', guests have the opportunity to learn about their ways, quad bike across arid pans, or witness the little-known migration of wildebeest and zebra when the pans fill with water in the rainy season.