Safari and wildlife trips and tours come in so many different varieties. The final form of your tour can range almost as much as the species you will see. Whether you favor a traditional big game safari tour, a jeep safari tour, a horseback safari, or even a husky safari, your choice of destinations is vast.
Where to go for big game Safari tours?
When most people think of a safari tour, a typical African Big Game safari is what usually springs to mind. As home to the big five; lions, elephants, rhinos, buffalo and leopards, Africa has always captivated us and continues to do so.
This vast continent offers rich-pickings for travelers seeking a memorable safari adventure. Watch in awe as a lioness stalks her prey, spot the giraffes camouflaged in the Savannah grasslands, or witness the staggering size of elephants, buffalo and rhinos.
- Namibia in particular offers so many incredible experiences on top of the unbeatable Big Game safari experience itself. Stay with the San people and see how the tribesmen and women live at one with nature, or stay in a comfortable lodge, in among the wild landscapes of bizarre and overwhelmingly beautiful nature.
- Drive through the plains of Kenya at Tsavo or Amboseli National park, seeing the country’s spectacular wildlife as well as some natural wonders, such as the Shetani lava flows.
- Drive alongside herds of Zebra in Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park and see endangered Rhino before heading on to Zanzibar to relax in the tranquil blue waters.
- Get up close and personal with the gorillas and chimpanzees in Uganda, following and observing them as they go about their daily lives.
- Visit Oudtshoorn in South Africa for a unique experience of the world’s largest Ostrich farm followed by a jeep safari to see the Big Game.
Horseback Safari Tours
Horseback Safari tours are an unbeatable way to see animals up close and to truly connect with the landscape around you. You will feel a part of nature since you will be able to appreciate some of the world’s most majestic creatures from the back of your trusty steed.
This is recommended for more active travelers since it can be physically demanding at times, involving incredible adventures such as riding through rivers, vast grass plains and up and down tricky terrain. Make sure to pack well, since you will need long trousers.
Another small warning; flies tend to flock around horses in warmer climates and this can become irritating after a while - pack some insect spray to ensure you keep them at bay.
South Africa is an incredible destination for a horseback safari, with many ranches and lodges providing riding safari packages as well as accommodation in the midst of incredible landscapes that will take your breath away.
Luxury Safari Tours
For those not wanting to throw themselves straight into nature and off the beaten track, many destinations offer more luxurious accommodation options. Eco-lodges, spas or luxury ranches will give you the opportunity to stay in an incredible destination in total comfort, whilst enjoying a few of the finer things in life.
Wake up ready to enjoy a day of exploration before pampering yourself or settling down to a delicious meal and enjoying the breathtaking sunset.
When should I go on a Safari Vacation?
The best time for a safari or wildlife vacation is during the dry winter season. With less grass and foliage in the way and more animals camping around the waterholes, you will be able to see the animals for miles.
You’ll need to investigate when the dry season typically falls in your chosen destination since this can vary. For instance, even within Africa, the variety can be huge, with the dry season for East Africa (Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Uganda) falling between June to October, while South Africa enjoys a longer season, from April to October.
What to pack for a Safari Vacation?
The exact list will depend on where you decide to go but some key rules are applicable to any safari or wildlife tour.
- Light cottons and comfortable clothing are best for the Sub-Saharan African climate. Try to avoid bright colors and stick to greens and khakis instead. Long sleeves and trousers are recommended in the evening to prevent mosquito bites.
- You will also need to take anti-malaria medication, before and during the visit- see your local GP for more information.
- Always wear sensible footwear such as trainers or lightweight walking boots.
- Binoculars and a camera are of course a must!