Kasane is about 316km of good tarred road from Nata, and 506km from Francistown. It's a straight and easy drive, though not very interesting scenically; most people stop at Nata to fill up with fuel and relieve the boredom. If you are hitching or travelling by bus, then this road is easy by Botswana's standards – make an early start from Francistown and you can expect to reach Kasane by nightfall.
Note that there are often plenty of elephants on this road, so despite it being tar you should drive with caution. As with most roads in rural Africa, driving at night is asking for trouble – especially as grey elephants are well camouflaged against the grey tarmac.To/from ZimbabweAt Kazungula
There is an excellent tarred road from Zimbabwe to the Kazungula border and across into Botswana (open 06.00–18.00). This means that one of Africa's biggest centres for travellers is a day-trip away from Kasane – and, more noticeably, that Chobe can be visited as a day-trip from the Falls.
About 2km after entering Botswana at the substantial immigration office, there's a T-junction. The right turn is for the ferry to Zambia only; left leads you immediately past a disease control post. Here your vehicle will be driven through a puddle of insecticide and you'll be asked to stamp your shoes on an impregnated mat. You'll also be checked to make sure that you're not importing banned animal products – like fresh meat, milk, bones or skins. (All part of Botswana's zealous efforts to protect their national herd from diseases.) Under 2km later and there's a right turn to Kasane, while straight on leads to Nata and Francistown. This is about 12km east of Kasane town.
If you're on an organised trip then it's very easy to have a road transfer arranged for you between Kasane and Victoria Falls. It'll take about two hours, and cost in the region of US$45/£30 per person, one-way.At Mpandamatenga
About 93km south from Kasane, and 223km from Nata, this is one of the country's few arable farming areas. It's easily distinguished by the prominent grain silos, which tower over the surrounding sorghum and maize fields. There's a small border post here for crossing into or out of Zimbabwe. It opens 08.00–16.00. This is under 50km from Robins Camp, deep in the heart of Hwange National Park, so it can be a convenient way to drive between Chobe and Hwange.To/from Zambia
About 2km from the disease-control post mentioned above, is the ferry over the Zambezi to Zambia (open 06.00–18.00). This often takes quite large trucks and is a substantial size. The ferry journey costs about US$25 per vehicle, the precise amount depending on the vehicle's size. Once on the north bank, it's about 60km of pot-holed tar heading east to reach Livingstone, though if you want to get to Livingstone then it's usually faster to go via Zimbabwe – even taking into account the extra time at border crossings.
Alternatively, heading west on the Zambian side, it's about 130km to the small town of Sesheke. This is the gateway to Zambia's Western Province, although given that Sesheke can be reached painlessly on good tar roads, through Namibia via Ngoma, this would usually be my first choice of route.
Thus you may find that the ferry is mainly used either by very local traffic, or by haulage companies who wish to minimise the number of customs officials that their trucks come into contact with.
If you want to hitch across to Zambia, then try standing where the Zimbabwean and Zambian roads fork, hitching on both of them. To get into Kasane or to head for Nata, the disease control post makes a perfect hitchhiking spot as vehicles have to stop here anyway.
There is a plan to span the Zambezi with a bridge here, at an estimated cost of about P402 million (mid-2001). If built, it would be one of only five bridges to span the width of the Zambezi anywhere along its length. (The others are at Chirundu, Tete, Livingstone, and a footbridge at Chinyingi mission.)To/from Namibia
Ngoma is the location for a bridge across the Chobe, and a border with Namibia (open 06.00–18.00). It's about 51km from the centre of Kasane by good tar road, or rather more if you take the scenic riverside road (4WD advisable) through Chobe National Park. From Ngoma, it's a further 69km of good tar to the main town of Namibia's Caprivi Strip, Katima Mulilo.
Kasane (airline code: BBK) is a busy gateway for the light aircraft that taxi visitors around the camps of northern Botswana, but it's otherwise fairly quiet. Most travellers coming through Kasane will also pass through Victoria Falls or Livingstone, and find it best to use the frequent flights to/from that airport to reach either Harare or Johannesburg.
That said, August 2001 saw Air Botswana launch direct flights between Kasane and Johannesburg. This was the result of travellers wanting to avoid the unrest in Zimbabwe, and access Kasane directly from the main regional hub of Johannesburg. However, at time of press the continued success of this route was looking in doubt.Kasane Airport
Turn away from the river up a good tar road on the west side of Kasane town, just east of the Chobe Safari Lodge. After 1.4km you meet the main road to Ngoma at a T-junction. Turn right and after less than a kilometre you'll see a left turning clearly signposted to Kasane Airport.
Here there is a small, neat and very organised little airport, though being a short distance from town it's very quiet and lifeless between planes.
There are buses and regular small combies plying between Kasane and Nata, and linking on to both Francistown and Maun – but relatively little else. As with most long bus journeys, get there early in the morning to be sure of getting away. Expect Francistown to cost about P45 and take seven hours, Maun to be about P50 and take a little longer.