Fast Facts

Gaborone; 199,000
581,730 square kilometers (224,607 square miles)
English, Setswana
Indigenous beliefs, Christian
Life Expectancy:
GDP per Capita:
U.S. $8,500
Literacy Percent:
Flag: Botswana
Map: Botswana

A landlocked country in southern Africa, Botswana enjoys a mild climate in the east; the Kalahari Desert dominates the west and south. The Okavango Delta and Chobe National Park in the north are areas of outstanding natural beauty, rich in animal life. Elephants at Chobe are the largest in body size of all living elephants; they number about 120,000. Stable and prosperous, Botswana has blossomed since independence from Britain in 1966. It is Africa's longest continuous democracy and one of the world's biggest diamond producers.


  • Industry: Diamonds, copper, nickel, salt, soda ash, potash, livestock processing, textiles
  • Agriculture: Sorghum, maize, millet; livestock
  • Exports: Diamonds, copper, nickel, soda ash, meat

—Text From National Geographic Atlas of the World, Eighth Edition

Related Features

  • Video: Okavango Delta

    A river delta usually leads to the open sea. But in Botswana the Okavango River empties onto open land and floods the savannah.

  • Photo: Kenya safari giraffe sunset

    The New African Safari

    Beyond the game drive, here are new ways to experience the classic trip.

  • Photo: A mother leopard and cub

    Raising a Leopard

    Teaching a spirited cub to survive in the wilds of Botswana takes all the skill and patience a mother leopard can muster.

Take a Nat Geo Trip

Select a destination or trip type to find a trip:

See All Trips »

Travel Photos From Your Shot

See More Your Shot Galleries »