Kasane – The name Kasane is derived from the Subiya word ‘masane’ meaning the waterberry tree.
Population approximately 24,688 (based on Chobe District)
*Kasane population estimated at just over 9,000 (2016) Central Statistics Office, Republic of Botswana
Location lies in the far North Eastern corner of Botswana
Airports 1- approximately 7 kilometres South East of the town along the Kasane–Kachikau Road
Kasane lies in the far North Eastern corner of Botswana and is situated on the banks of the Chobe River. Kasane is both the administrative centre of Chobe District and gateway to the infamous Chobe National Park. The Chobe River meanders from its junction with the Zambezi and Kasane nestles in one of its loops.
Kasane also is an important point of debarkation for the nearby Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe and Livingstone in Zambia, as well as Namibia’s Caprivi Strip.
At Kazungula, a few kilometres away, there is a ferry crossing between Botswana and Zambia. On the main road that runs along the river, and further inland, there are numerous lodges and guesthouses. There are a number of lodges along the edge of the river, making for breathtaking views. The Chobe River has a large body of water all year round, making it very easy to spot hippos and crocodiles fairly regularly.
Kasane is situated a few kilometres from the Chobe River’s confluence with the Zambezi, where the four countries of Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Namibia meet.
Kasane is the Northern entrance to the Chobe national Park. The numerous lodges and safari operators in and around the town offer morning and evening drives into the park. In the Southern tropics where four African countries meet and the confluence of two great rivers is Kazungula. Where the Chobe and Zambezi rivers meet is the island of Mpalila.
One of the most distinguished travellers to have passed through the area was Dr David Livingstone. Of course, there’s the belief that Dr Livingstone ‘discovered’ the Victoria Falls, although there were people already living there. What we do know, is that he was so bowled over by the sight before him that he affectionately named the falls after Queen Victoria.
For travellers wishing to stay and enjoy the park, there’s no shortage of lodges in Kasane. Some are splendidly situated, with wonderful views of the river and its wildlife. Often visitors opt to have a morning game drive and an afternoon boat cruise, with an afternoon game drive the following day, as this is the time of day when elephants are usually spotted. Bird life is prolific.
The river cruises give visitors a great opportunity to view the birds and animals from close quarters. In fact, the Chobe boat cruise has been declared much better than the Zambezi at Victoria Falls. Many visitors also tack on a day trip to Victoria Falls, which lies just about 80 kilometres from Kasane. If you are in Kasane, it would be a terrible waste not to include a trip over to the breathtaking Victoria Falls.
The Chobe area is famed for its elephant population and is currently believed to be home to largest elephant population in the world.
Kasane now boasts small shopping malls where all basic commodities can be purchased, as well as curios gift shops. While its main attraction is the park that lies a mere 10 kilometres away, there are nevertheless attractions in and around Kasane.
How to Get to Chobe
By air – the easiest option is to arrive at Kasane International Airport. It is a 30-minute drive from the entrance to Chobe National Park and is also a good jumping off point for visiting Victoria Falls in neighbouring Zambia and Zimbabwe. There are several flights per day from within Botswana, as well as from nearby countries.
By car – The road into Kasane is tarred all the way from the East and South from Nata, which connects to paved roads from Zimbabwe (notably Victoria Falls), and within Botswana from Francistown, Maun and Gaborone.
Alternatively, you can cross by land (or ferry) from neighbouring Zambia, Namibia, or Zimbabwe.