The rains in Botswana tend to start falling in November or December, and almost as soon as they do the green shoots of the wet season growth appear and turn the dry and dusty bush into a verdant carpet of vegetation. The rains will continue to fall through January and February, often causing flooding along the Chobe and Linyanti Rivers. This would seem to be an odd choice of time to visit Botswana, but for those in the know it can be a magical season that reveals a very different picture of the Botswana countryside.
As the rivers are so high, all of the temporary lodges and bush camps are broken down well in advance of the rains, leaving just the few hardy permanent lodges open to visitors. In the Okavango Delta, many lodges remain open year-round as they are designed to be open during periods of high flood. The rainy season doesn't correspond with the highest water levels in the Okavango, which occur later in the year. [cont.]
With all the trees and shrubs blooming with fresh growth, the bush does indeed take on a distinctly green colour - a world away from the browns and yellows of the late dry season. This is particularly noticeable in the Central Kalahari Desert lodges, when the new greenery encourages plenty of game onto the normally dry plains.
Some refer to it not as the Green Season but the Emerald Season, which poetically captures the depth of colours you will see. Wildlife does tend to be harder to spot as they have plenty of places to hide and no shortage of water, and so can move where they want, but the reflections from the water and clear air make for great photography, and this is the time of year that many young will emerge, together with many migrant bird species.
An added bonus is that lodges will offer green-season rates which represent a good saving on visiting in peak time, and many will offer great long-stay deals, which are popular so make sure you book early. For those that have already been on safari a green season safari in Botswana would make for a different and exciting option.
The second largest game reserve in the world, the Central Kalahari is a remote and unique destination.
A large Park in northern Botswana, Chobe is famous for large amounts of game, and, in places, large amounts of tourists.
An area northwest of the Okavango Delta, rich with wildlife and benefitting from private reserve status.
A large game reserve that occupies a third of the area of the Okavango Delta - fantastic game and scenery is guaranteed.