Botswana

Transportation

Transportation - Get In


By plane

Botswana's main airport is Sir Seretse Khama in Gaborone. International flights are to Zimbabwe, South Africa, Namibia, Kenya and Ethiopia. The airport in Maun can also be reached via Johannesburg, Cape Town, or Gaborone and, once a day (in summer 2009), from Windhoek, Namibia. The distance between Gaborone and Maun is more than 1,000 km. Maun is very much a tourist attraction spot.

Airlines that fly to Gaborone are.

  • Air Botswana. Harare, Victoria Falls, Lusaka, Johannesburg, Cape Town.
  • Airlink. Johannesburg.
  • Ethiopian airlines. via Addis Ababa. to Europe, Asia, Africa.
  • Kenya airways. Via Nairobi to Europe. Asia, Africa.
  • TAAG Angola airlines. Luanda.
  • South African express. Johannesburg.

By train

Trains to/from South Africa have been withdrawn since 1999. For domestic train service, see #Get around.


By car

There are several entry points by road to Botswana: In the south at Gaborone, providing access from Johannesburg; in the west providing access from Namibia; the north providing access from Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe; and at Francistown in the east, providing access from Harare. All road access is good and the primary roads within Botswana are paved and well maintained.

Possibly the busiest border crossing from South Africa is the Kopfontein/Tlokweng border crossing, as it is only a few minutes from the capital of Botswana. As a result, it is open for a long period of time, and has a large amount of trucks travelling through.

Coming from Namibia, you can either go north to Maun, or south along the Trans-Kalahari Highway to Lobatse.


By international bus

There is regular bus service from Johannesburg to Gaborone, which takes six hours. Intercape Mainliner is one of the bus lines from Gaborone to Johannesburg.

there are also buses from Gaborone to Zimbabwe. and from Gaborone to Windhoek Namibia.

  • Monnakgotla travel have buses two times a week from Gaborone to Windhoek Namibia.
  • Metrolyn bus lines have buses from Gaborone to Harare Zimbabwe.
  • T J Motlogelwa Expess have buses from Gaborone to Johannesburg two times per day.

By ferry

From Kazungula in Zambia you can cross the Zambezi River with ferry to the eponymous town in Botswana.

Transportation - Get Around

Very few locals know street names and addresses, and you are likely to have to get directions in terms of landmarks. Botswana doesn't have a postal delivery system to addresses (just to centralised mail collection points), so even when streets are well-marked, the names may be unfamiliar to residents.

Through a combination of coaches and combies (minivans), you can get anywhere in Botswana without any trouble, though public transport is spotty away from big cities and major routes but hitchhiking is popular and very easy. However, hitchhiking should only be done in desperate circumstances, as Botswana driving is often very erratic and it can be a harrowing experience to have a stranger drive you somewhere. It is advisable to arrive at the bus station quite early, as the buses do fill up quickly, and it is not uncommon to spend several hours standing in the aisle waiting for a seat to free up (remember to bring water, as the buses are often not air conditioned).


By car

The roads are paved and well maintained, so travel by car is also not a problem, provided that one keeps a close eye out for the cows, donkeys and goats that spend much time in the middle of the road.

The Trans-Kalahari Highway is an old cattle route, now newly paved and easily drivable with a 2-wheel drive. It runs from Lobatse to Ghanzi in Botswana, making the connection from Windhoek, Namibia to Gaborone, Botswana. It is a long and uneventful drive, but you get a good feel for the Kalahari Desert. Fuel is available in Kang at the Kang Ultra Shop, which also offers a respectable selection of food, overnight chalets, and inexpensive camping.


By bus

There are many bus companies in Botswana. One of the biggest is Seabelo. From Gaborone you can travel by bus to any bigger city in Botswana.


By train

Botswana Railways operates all trains in the country. The main line goes from Lobatse, near the South African border, via Gaborone to Francistown at the Zimbabwean border. After having been canceled in 2009, train service was reintroduced in 2016.

 

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Botswana - Travel guide

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