Botswana is a country in Southern Africa. Bordered by South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Namibia, it is the perfect expat location. This region of the world boasts a high quality of life and low cost of living. The country has a stable government and is considered to be one of the safest countries in Africa.
This nation has a much lower population density than other countries in the region, with large areas of land that aren’t being used. There are relatively few natural disasters, making the country fairly insulated from climate change.
Botswana EXPAT LIVING
Botswana is one of Africa’s most developed and stable economies. It’s home to the world’s second-largest diamond mine after Russia. It has undergone a rapid economic expansion in recent years, with strong growth in the construction, banking, and tourism sectors.
It is one of the cheapest countries in Africa, so if you’re a prospective expat looking to save some money on rent or eat healthier meals, Botswana can be a good option for you. The country continuously maintains high levels of stability and security, low crime rates, and low-cost education. Living in Botswana is relatively affordable, with the cost of living being 14% below the world’s average.
SAFETY AND SECURITY
This country is peaceful, with high levels of societal cohesion. Security risks are low, but crime rates are higher than in other countries in the region. The Botswana Police Service (BPS) is primarily responsible for enforcing laws and protecting citizens.
Healthcare in Botswana is a major topic of discussion in the expat community. Healthcare in Botswana isn’t as advanced as healthcare in westernized regions, but there are still some options available. In Botswana, many people rely on traditional healers, herbal remedies, and prayer for health care. These methods can sometimes be seen to be more effective than modern medicine due to the abundance of natural resources that exist within the region.
Transportation in Botswana is a bit tricky because distances are vast, and there are not many vehicles. It is advised to get a driver for your trip if you plan on doing anything outside of the capital city, Gaborone.
Bring a flashlight, as it is easy to get turned around in the dark. Expect your phone to run out of battery quickly. This is because there isn’t much electricity in the rural areas of Botswana, and most places you visit won’t have power for more than six hours a day. But this isn’t much of an issue in the more developed regions of the country.
CLIMATE AND WEATHER
The country has a warm temperate climate and up to 12 hours of sunlight per day. This makes it an ideal place for those who enjoy outdoor activities or who want to explore the natural beauty of the African continent. It is replete with natural resources, including diamonds, coal, and copper. The country is home to the Okavango Delta, which has been described as one of the 8th Wonders of the World.
Botswana is one of the most exclusive safari destinations in Africa. It’s well-known for its incredible wildlife and natural scenery, but it also offers a variety of entertainment options, such as casinos, zoos, and luxury resorts.
Spirituality is a significant part of Botswana’s culture. Traditional religion is widespread in Botswana, but it is not the only religion that is practiced. The country is home to a number of other religions and beliefs, with Christianity as the official religion of more than half the population.
Though few Botswanan citizens practice pure Christianity. The majority of people in Botswana engage in a form of Christianity that has been mixed with traditional beliefs.
The government grants freedom to all citizens to practice their religion or belief without any interference from the state. However, this does not mean that there are no problems with religious intolerance in Botswana.
There are cases when people from different religions or beliefs have been discriminated against and attacked because of their beliefs. For example, in March 2017, a Muslim man was beaten by villagers in Gaborone because he was wearing a T-shirt with the words “I love Jesus” on it.
Outside of Christianity, most adherents believe in God, and many still hold on to the traditional religion of their ancestors. The traditional beliefs of the Batswana are integrated into the healthcare system, politics, and many other aspects of life.
TRADITIONAL RELIGION IN BOTSWANA
Badimo is the primary traditional religion practiced in Botswana. This system was created by their ancestors and then passed down to those living in the region of Tswapong. Badimo may be understood as ancestors or the living dead, those who were once alive. Both are still present and can help guide us in decision-making.
Before the missionaries arrived, the Batswana believed in a Supreme God called Modimo, who created and controlled everything. However, there were also ancestors that were more present and had greater influence over their daily life.
These spirits are venerated and invoked with sacrifice, prayers, and good moral character. Badimo intervenes in the daily lives of their descendants. Their intervention ranges from small acts such as providing a person with rain to major events like drought or famine. They can withdraw their intervention if a descendant does not operate with virtue and integrity. These spirits maintain the natural order of the community.
To learn more about expat life in Africa, listen to this episode of the African Spirit Reintegrated + Reimagined podcast: