Gaborone, the capital of Botswana, by Night

Things to Do in Gaborone, The Prequel

A few years ago, I had the pleasure of visiting Botswana for the first time. I didn’t visit the Okavango Delta or Chobe National Park (the big safari destinations in Botswana). Rather, my trip took me to the capital of Botswana: Gaborone.

I was very busy right before the trip; I therefore wasn’t able to do much more than a perfunctory online search of what there was to do in Gaborone.

The search didn’t yield much.

I tried not to worry about it, sure that I’d figure it out once my trip began.

On the appointed day, I hopped onto a Fastjet flight to Johannesburg (I would connect to Gaborone with Air Botswana), and off I went to discover what the capital of Botswana and the country at large had to offer.

Fastjet aircraft

At O. R. Tambo International Airport (in Johannesburg), which I knew had its share of bookstores, I bought a Lonely Planet Botswana & Namibia travel guide and spent as much of my layover as possible, as well as the one-hour Air Botswana flight to Gaborone, reading up on what there was to do in the capital of Botswana and its environs.

Turning to Lonely Planet for Things to Do in Gaborone

It was the first time I was buying a travel guide that covered two countries.

This had me a little worried since the book was not particularly big.

In hindsight, I understand why Lonely Planet chose to package the guide this way. Botswana and Namibia share similar ecosystems and it’s fairly easy to travel across the two countries.

The travel guide had a lot of information about what to do around Botswana outside of Gaborone—think self-drives in the Kalahari and lots of information about Botswana’s many national parks.

Nonetheless, I couldn’t quite get a grasp of what there was to do in the capital of Botswana itself.

Lonely Planet Botswana & Namibia

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Consulting Other Sources

I consulted as many other resources as I could.

First, I searched the internet again.

Then, I asked locals. I visited The Botswana Tourism Organisation (who were not at all helpful). Somehow, I was able to come up with enough interesting activities to fill my days while I was in Botswana.

Aerial view of Gaborone
Aerial view of Gaborone

I have since spoken to some Batswana (that’s what the amazingly friendly and well-mannered people of Botswana are called) who I know online or who are spouses of friends (why didn’t I tap into that resource earlier?!), and they seemed impressed with how much I did while I was in Gaborone.

So that you don’t have to go through what I did, to get this information, I thought I’d share some of the things that I enjoyed doing while visiting the capital of Botswana in case you are ever travelling there and looking for things to do.

Without further ado, here goes!

Photo Credits: Skift, Sawubona, Amazon,

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