Currently, tourism in Botswana is dominated by wildlife-based and safari tourism. There is an increasing demand for more diversified tourism products, catering to the local and regional markets in the Southern African region, in addition to the international market. As part of an initiative to leverage water storage reservoirs/dams for tourism purposes, Botswana Tourism Organisation contracted Hatfield Consultants Africa to develop a Sustainable Tourism Plan for Shashe Dam near Francistown in Botswana. Commissioned in 1973, Shashe Dam is a water-supply reservoir, which also currently supports some commercial and sports fishing. The area around the dam provides rich habitat for birds, invertebrates, and mammals, and the reservoir contains domestic and exotic fish species.

European Space Agency/Botswana Tourism Organisation

Implemented in

  • Africa
  • Botswana

Led by

  • Hatfield Consultants

Sector of activity

Type of initiative
Policy Frameworks & Tools, Research, Analysis, Assessment

Type of lead actor
Business Sector

Start date

End date


To date, tourism in Botswana has been largely focused on high value, low volume, low impact safari-tourism in the Okavango Delta and Chobe River regions. To address the need for diversity in the tourism offerings, Botswana Tourism Organisation (BTO) initiated a series of dam tourism projects, to unlock the potential of a series of large water supply dam reservoirs for outdoor adventure tourism, recreation and leisure.


This project included the development of a Tourism Plan for Dam Tourism at Shashe Dam in the Central and North East districts of Botswana, based upon, Scoping and Stakeholder Consultation, resulting in a comprehensive Scoping Report, and the parallel development of a Strategic Environmental Assessment and detailed Tourism Plan for Shashe Dam. The plan is designed to be executed in a series of development phases, ensuring sustainable investment and growth.

Impact and Results

The plan also aims to contribute to the diversification of tourism products in Botswana, whilst providing a wide range of high quality outdoor leisure and recreation activities, accommodation options, and entertainment for multi-generational visitors from across Southern Africa.