I’ve been in Gaborone, Botswana for almost two weeks now. The days are hot, quiet and serene. The nights are spent (by me, at least) reading, writing, and/or catching up on Netflix series’. For a person that is accustomed to living in a large, bustling city; Gaborone can be, well, a bit boring. There are, however, a few gems that will keep your interest and make you appreciate the place affectionately known by locals as Gabs.
One of the gems that I fell in awe with is Sanita’s Nursery + Tea Garden.
It was a hot day, like most days since being in Botswana, and I was scheduled to meet up with and Instagram friend who is from Gabs. She suggested meeting at Sanita’s Tea Garden and after hearing the words ‘tea garden’; I was intrigued.
I arrived early (because there is no Uber here and I had to depend on my friend Corey to drop me off on his way to band rehearsal), but I was happy that I did. Upon entering, I was greeted with an abundance of plants. Succulents, flowers, cactus — they were all at Sanita’s and made me feel in my element. The older I get, the more plants make me feel grounded and refreshed.
This is when I realised that Sanita’s isn’t only a tea garden — it is also a nursery & garden centre.
After researching, I learned that Sanita’s is the oldest and largest nursery in Botswana. In business since 1970, Sanita’s produces more than 90% of the plants they sell. They also offer the largest selection of indigenous and exotic plants in Botswana. Beautiful pots and containers to place your new plants in are also available for sale. These items are all sourced locally in Botswana.
I spent a while admiring the nursery (and wishing I could take home lots of succulents) and then I made my way towards the tea garden. After picking out a table away from the sun, I waited for my Instagram friend to arrive. It was around 3:00 p.m. on a Tuesday and I noticed there were a lot of parents and their school-aged children sitting around and enjoying gelato. There were also groups of friends, colleagues and couples enjoying an afternoon in the beautiful tea garden, surrounded by plants.
I really liked that there were a diverse mix of patrons at Sanita’s.
When my Instagram friend arrived, we greeted each other and ordered off of the menu. There is a large selection of food and drinks and I opted for the lemonade (which is made with lemons grown in the nursery) and a sticky onion quiche.
The service was very good — the waitress was nice, attentive and brought our orders out quickly. I have noticed that restaurant service in African and European countries can be quite slow compared to the U.S. I was impressed by the service at Sanita’s (especially because I had mentally prepared myself for slow service). The quiche was very tasty and I didn’t feel gluttonous after eating it.
Regretfully, I did not try their homemade gelato, but I would love to return just for a taste. There is also a jungle gym for kids which makes it a fun place for everyone.
Sanita’s Nursery + Tea Garden is a gem in Gaborone that I think everyone who finds themselves in Botswana should visit. I truly enjoyed the vibe of being surrounded by lush greenery while sipping on freshly squeezed lemonade and conversing.
This is the perfect place to spend an afternoon reading, writing or catching up with friends. Oh, and there is also WiFi, which is always a huge perk for travelers like myself.
If all of the above doesn’t convice you that Sanita’s is a gem in Botswana, please note that in 2011, Michelle Obama enjoyed an afternoon at Sanita’s.
Enjoy more pics below:
For more info, find them on Facebook here.
Let me know if you visit & thanks for reading!