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Health in Botswana: Malaria and compulsory vaccines



Not long ago, we were informing you about health and malaria in Namibia, let me follow up with information about another country in Southern Africa that is one of our dream destinations, Botswana!

South African Travellers with years of experience in South Africa, Mozambique, eSwatini, Namibia and Botswana, gives you the best advice and precautions to take before, during and after your stay in one or more of these country.


What is malaria?

The term malaria comes from the Latin palus (swamp), the term malaria from the Italian mal’aria (bad air).

Malaria is a potentially fatal infectious disease caused by several species of parasites belonging to the genus Plasmodium. The parasite is transmitted to humans through the bite of infected mosquitoes. These mosquitoes “vectors” of malaria all belong to the genus Anopheles.

The risk of malaria or malaria

The risk of malaria varies with the seasons and regions.

In any case, I recommend that you protect yourself well against mosquito bites.

Whatever region or regions you choose, carefully prepare your medical kit.

With the help of the small table above, you should see more clearly.

What areas is malaria in Botswana?

Malaria risk:

High risk

All year round in areas north of Maun and Pits including the Okavango Delta and Chobe, Moremi, Sibuyu National Parks.

From September to May in the remaining northern half of the country below Maun.

Low risk

June to August in the remaining northern half of the country below Maun.

Upper southern half of the country.

No malaria

Lower southern half of the country, Gaborone.

Minimal risk

South central half of the country.

How to avoid malaria

In all cases, it is advisable to protect yourself against mosquito bites.

If you are staying in high risk areas, it is absolutely essential to take medication (chemoprophylaxis) before, during and after your stay.

For a stay in a low-risk area, an individual assessment is required according to remote regions, pregnant women, children, the elderly, chronic diseases, or other.

It is obvious that I cannot replace the judgment of your doctor, I strongly recommend that you consult. I don’t want to alarm you, just help you make the trip of your dreams with confidence.

How to avoid it?

By using suitable repellents that you will find in all pharmacies, sports shops, camping and other surfaces devoted to travel.

I advise you to read my article on our blog “ Going on safari, what to put in your suitcase? »Where I recommend covering clothing and impregnated mosquito nets.

You will supplement these protections with the medication prescribed by your doctor.

Other risks

Food risks are minimal, avoid raw foods except fruits and vegetables which can be peeled. The water is drinkable only in Gaborone, I advise you to consume capsulated bottled water.

And… wash your hands often, before meals, before touching food and after using the toilet.

Do not try to swim in the river or in the crystal clear waters of the Okawango Delta, the presence of parasitoses is great.


The following vaccines are recommended for everyone:

Diphtheria, tetanus, measles, polio, hepatitis A and B, typhoid and rabies.

With regard to yellow fever, vaccination is compulsory if you arrive within 6 days from an endemic area.

What to take in your pharmacy kit?

At a minimum, an antiseptic in a pod, a pain reliever, fever, anti-diarrhea and intestinal antiseptic.

A broad spectrum antibiotic, an antiallergic, an anti-inflammatory, an eye drops in pod, an ointment for burns, mosquito repellent, and your sunscreen , some bandages and plasters, your personal treatments .

What are the right reflexes?

The symptoms of malaria can appear a few days, weeks or even months after your return from Botswana, they are similar to those of the flu, I urge you to consult your doctor as soon as possible.

Obviously the purpose of my article is to warn you of possible small health problems that could happen to you but these should in no way prevent you from discovering this wonderful country that is Botswana!

We have been a Cape Town based travel agency for over thirteen years, specializing in tailor-made destinations in Southern Africa. Our rangers will be happy to advise you.

See you soon,


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