Gaborone

Often described as Africa's fastest growing city, Botswana's capital Gaborone is a vibrant and colourful city, which lies in the flat valley between Kgale and Oodi hills, on the Notwane River in the south eastern corner of Botswana, 15 km from the South African border post at Tlokweng.

As the capital city, Gaborone is the seat of government as well as the country's commercial and administrative heart. The city is named after Kgosi (Chief) Gaborone who led the Batlokwa tribe into the area in the 1880s.

There are numerous busy shopping malls offering full range of imported and locally produced goods, excellent restaurants, top international quality hotels, sports clubs and various night clubs. New buildings and suburbs sprout like mushrooms wherever there's a block of land to fit them, resulting in a mix of low-cost housing, blocks of flats, shopping centres and industrial complexes.

Government ministries, the National Assembly, the House of Chiefs and the Archives are all grouped in the Government Enclave. The University of Botswana, the National Museum and Art Gallery, as well as the stadium and a golf course are also located here.

Botswana International Trade Fair held in the city is an annual event. Football matches and cultural gatherings are frequent occurrences at the National Stadium, while music and drama are performed at a number of venues, including Maitisong Cultural Centre.

Situated close to the capital, Sir Seretse Khama International Airport has modern facilities to cater for all wide-body aircraft and has recently installed state-of-the-art radar facilities aimed at enhancing the safety of flights in Botswana airspace.

Visitors to Gaborone now have an excellent choice of 'craft' shops to choose from. Botswana Craft, which specializes in crafts from Botswana, has several outlets in the city. The Camphill charity shop stocks good handmade wooden furniture and various other craft items such as local pottery and weavings. At Oodi weavers, 5 km north of Phakalane, visitors can tour the weaving factory and shop, while in Broadhurst the Craft Workshop houses a range of very upmarket craft outlets which is becoming exceptionally popular with Gaborone's cappuccino drinking set.