The Okavango is, without any doubt, the most widely known area in Botswana. The Delta is an area of tranquil, lily covered lagoons and narrow channels hemmed in by papyrus Reeds, and teeming with animal and bird life. Probably the most precious wetland in the world, The Okavango is a river delta that feeds into dry land instead of the sea. It is the only one of its kind.The Okavango Delta is a unique oasis at the northern edge of the sands of the Kalahari Desert. Flood rainwaters from the Angolan highlands are carried by the Okavango River into the delta where it spreads out creating countless waterways and lagoons over an area of approximately 10 000 square km. Papyrus and Phoenix palms flourish here on the edge of the desert, and the waters provide an ecosystem for Fish Eagles and Kingfishers, Hippopotami, Crocodiles and Tiger fish.
During the peak of the flooding, the deltas area can expand to over 16,000 square km, shrinking to less than 9,000 square km in the low period. As the water travels through the delta, the wildlife starts to move back into the region. The areas surrounding the delta are beginning to dry out (the rains in Botswana occur approximately the same time as in Angola) and the wildlife starts to congregate on the edge of the newly flooded areas, May through October.
The best time to visit this beautiful area is from May through to October, when the Okavango River floods the delta. December to February is the wet season and is not recommended.The best time for game viewing in the delta is during the May-October period, as the animal life is concentrated along the flooded areas and the vegetation has dried out. Birding and vegetation is wonderful to experience during the rainy season (Nov – April) as the migrant bird populations are returning and the plants are flowering and green.