Palapye is a large village, in many ways like a small town, with 'suburbs' rapidly
growing up. It originally served as a railway siding, and takes its name from the
Impala antelope which was abundant in the area.
Palapye is located in eastern Botswana, near the Lotsane river. It is the busiest
intersection on the main Gaborone - Francistown road with a number of shops and petrol
filling stations at the intersection between Palapye, the A1 Gaborone - Francistown
highway and Serowe.
Palapye has a population of 37,000 (2011 census). It has grown chiefly due to its
location, and to a limited extent, due to the Morupule coal mine and power station,
5km to the east on the Palapye - Serowe road. This provides electricity to most of
Botswana, and Palapye has become known as 'Botswana's powerhouse'.
There is a railway station, several primary and secondary schools, banks, various
shops and supermarkets, 2 post offices, a police station, several district offices,
a hospital and numerous small industries.