Botswana, presently with a population of around 1.8 million inhabitants, gained its independence from Great Britain in 1966. Its capital is Gaborone, in the southeast. English is the official and Setswana the national language of the country. Botswana prides itself on its democratic traditions and its robust economy (largely generated by its huge diamond mining industry and fast developing tourism).

Botswana is a landlocked country slightly larger than France, situated in the centre of Southern Africa.

Its neighbours are South Africa, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe. It is a generally flat country with an average elevation of about 1 000 metres (around 3000 feet).  Most of the country lies north of the tropic of Capricorn.

Botswana has a summer (November to April) rainfall pattern, with the amount of rain varying considerably from year to year. Throughout the country the evaporation rate (annually around 2000 mm from an open water surface) exceeds the amount of rainfall. Rainfall is highest in the northeast (600 –675 mm per annum) and is least in the southwest (around 150 – 200 mm p.a.).

The table below shows the mean maximum and minimum temperatures in four locations in Botswana.
Gaborone28/12C, 82/54F22/2C, 72/36F32/16C, 90/61F32/18C, 90/64F
Francistown    28/14C, 82/57F24/5C, 75/41F32/18C, 90/64F31/18C, 8/64F
Maun      30/15C, 86/59F26/6C, 79/43F34/20C, 93/68F30/19C, 86/66F
Kasane   30/15C, 86/59F25/8C, 77/46F33/19C, 91/66F30/19C, 86/66F

These figures represent averages and it should be noted that the maximum and  minimum temperatures recorded on certain days can be significantly different. For example, it may freeze at night in the Kalahari winter, and at 14h00 in the same area in October or November the temperature may soar to over 40° C (104° F). There may be a very big difference between daily maximum and minimum temperatures: in August, e.g., the temperature may be around freezing at 05h00 and over 30 °C in the early afternoon.
Botswana - general information
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