Cycling in Botswana
Cycling through Botswana takes tourists to the different parts of the country while enjoying the serene beauty that is provided by the landscape that can easily be seen while cycling. The country’s flat nature has enabled tourists to easily cycle through the different parts of the country with ease and since we know now that Botswana experiences to seasons that is the dry and wet season, it is only advisable that find out the best time when you should head into the country for cycling which is in most cases the dry season. The dry season is the best when it comes to cycling within the country because during this time irrelevant of the fact that the heat sometimes unbearable, the roads are easily accessible and camping is also easy after a day of cycling unlike during the wet season which is also known as the green season where most of the cycling routes are always flooded.
As you head down to Botswana for a cycling experience, there are some safety gears that you are supposed to have and these include a helmet, knee and elbow caps to keep you safe in case you fall off your bicycle, lots of drinking water since cycling is carried out during the dry season, ask around for appropriate clothes and shoes to put on while cycling and do not forget to buy yourself a cycling map even when you have a tour guide with you.
There are several reasons as to why you should go for a cycling safari in Botswana and some of these include the following:
- Botswana is a country that is filled with National Parks almost 80% of its land and with its small population, cycling can easily be done and it offers tourists with an exciting view of its landscape and the wild life.
- The other main reason as to why you should cycle through the country is the fact that the tourist destinations alone have enough to offer and you should not miss out on enjoying most of them while cycling around Botswana.
The main reason as to why you should get a map before heading out for cycling in Botswana is that not all the cycling destinations in the country are going to be mentioned here but if you have a map for yourself, you can go cycling to other interesting places in the country and while on your cycling safari still in Botswana, check your bicycles to make sure that they are in good shape before taking them out because you will be covering long distances on those bicycles.
Cycling through Maun
Maun is the third largest city in Botswana and it is best known to be a stop-over for many tourists before they head out to the different tourist destinations in the country. Your cycling safari through Maun will take you to the different destinations both within the city itself and outside the city. Within Maun you can cycle to the ostrich farm which set up to cater for the largest birds in the world, the museum before heading out to the Okavango delta.
The Okavango delta is a home to the Moremi game reserve and the Okavango delta National park and all these offer cyclists the best views when it comes to landscape and wild life that habitates within these two reserves. You might not be able to cycle within the delta itself but as you cycle by, you will be rewarded with a sight of a few animals like elephants, baboons, monkeys, lions, hyenas, zebras, buffalos and many more others.
Cycling through the Tuli block
The Tuli block is located in the south eastern part of Botswana and is considered to be one of the best wild life reserves in the country. It was previously owned by the San Bushmen but after many ethnic groups fighting over its ownership, it was turned into a reserve so that the wild life in the country was preserved. The Tuli block is filled with many game reserves from where you can go and enjoy a cycling experience and these include:
- The Tuli block nature reserve
The Northern Tuli block nature reserve is a privately owned reserve which is located within the Tuli block. There are cycle routes within the Tuli nature reserve that tourists can when it comes to cycling and there is also a cycling club here which helps tourists procure the bicycles.
- The Mashatu game reserve
This is also located in the Tuli block and covers about 40% of the area making it a big reserve in the area. It is called the lad of giants due to the high presence of elephants in the reserve. The reserve has a lot of interesting things that you get to see while cycling through like the many animals, birds, vegetation and meeting the locals who live around the reserve.
Most of the cycling routes that are located within the Tuli block are clearly mapped out and they can go over 40 kilometers which means that you will be able to cycle through one route per day. The tour guide normally sets the pace of cycling for most of the time and the pace that you set will highly determine the time that you will spend in the Tuli block cycling.
Cycling through the Tuli block is carried out between the months of March and October because during this time the heat is a little bit bearable as compared to the rest of the months and the roads are also easily accessible during this time. Now before you go for cycling in the Tuli block, you might want to know what to expect and what the trip is all about.
- The cycle trip normally takes a group of people amounting to eight people although individuals are also accepted and it is only done by those that are sixteen years and above.
- You will be rewarded with the sight of wild life which includes elephants, leopards, hyenas, warthogs, zebras, giraffe, wild dogs, bat eared fox, ostriches, elands, kingfishers, the green winged Pytilia, the Verraux’s eagle fox and many more others.
- You will also be provided with accommodation in form of camps where you get to rest before continuing with your cycling safari to other parts of the country.
Cycling through Kasane town
Kasane town is located in the Northern part of Botswana and it is commonly referred to as the gateway of the Chobe National park. The town might not have clearly marked out routes for cycling but you will b able to view the crocodile farm where many crocodiles are kept before being sold out to other farms, cycle through the town where you will be able to see the many Kasane forest, the hot springs and the monuments before heading out to the Chobe National Park for an adventure. There is a market in Kasane which is just a few meters away from Chobe National park and you might as well cycle through it as you get yourself some of the best souvenirs from the different shops in the market. Even though you are not allowed to cycle through the Chobe National park its self, you will be able to see some of the best wild life species as you cycle around it and some of them include giraffes, elephants, hyenas, zebras and many more other species.
Cycling to the Victoria Falls
This is not an easy fit to be done due to the fact that the water spreads out and can splash around making it hard for the cyclists to get close to it. But you can still cycle around the Victoria Falls or view them from a distance and these can easily be reached through Chobe National Park. After cycling to the Victoria Falls, you can also head out to chobe where you also get to see many wild life species moving around like the elephants and zebras.
A cycling trip through Botswana can be planned easily only if you get the right tour operator to help you out because this trip is in the category of one of the most difficult trips to organize since most of the cycling is done in the rural areas and not the urban Centres. And since it is carried out during the dry season, get ready for the heat and the dust on most of the cycling routes in the country.
Although cycling around Botswana is not welcomed by most of the locals and some places cannot easily be penetrated by cyclists, it will be quite an adventure for you as you will get a chance to get close to most of the tourist destinations and if you want to enjoy your cycling trip in Botswana to the fullest you should follow all what the tour guides tell you and if you are on a solo cycling safari, then you should listen to what the locals tell you especially when it comes to camping.