Viewing Africa’s wildlife may have been piqued by a National Geographic documentary, magazine article, a visit to a zoo, or watching “The Lion King”. Due diligence by the novice explorer turns endless choices into a successful safari. One option is contacting a ‘safari expert’ tour operator to arrange the itinerary OR one can become an informed traveler, and research what is important to see and experience on a wildlife safari.
An African safari involves several wildlife game drives, staying in remote locations, and observing the behavior and survival skills of Nature’s inhabitants.
Which African country to visit?
54 countries claim the continent of Africa home. Organized safaris are available in 3 distinct African regions - 8 countries that are toured individually, or combine 2 or 3 countries in one safari expedition. The regions are:
1. East Africa – Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda
2. South Africa, the country
3. Southern Africa – Botswana, Namibia, and Zambia
The country to tour would depend on the specific animals the novice explorer wants to observe, which is primarily determined by the landscape and rainfall.
When is the Best time of the year to go on a safari?
Tour operators advertise game safaris are offered 12 months/year. Yes, that is true, but the operators fail to mention that some lodges and tented camps shut down operations during part of the year – the low season.
The main reason for closure is weather related, the long rains. The continuous torrential downpours of the ‘long rains’ hampers wildlife sightings and the dirt roads become impassable.
Types of Safari: Budget/First Class/Deluxe/Luxury
The differences between a budget versus a deluxe safari are the quality and location of accommodations; quality and number of included activities (which are hidden in the final safari cost); size of the safari tour group; and the level of personalized service.