The best countries to go on safari

The best countries to go on safari

If you’re looking to escape the stress of modern life, there’s nothing quite like the wide-open spaces, dramatic landscapes, and fascinating wildlife you’ll experience on safari!

But the African continent is a pretty big place, with thousands of amazing lodges and hundreds of magnificent game reserves to choose from. Which should you pick? Hopefully this list will help you decide!


Kenya – the classic safari

If this will be your first visit to Africa, Kenya probably offers the most classic safari experience of all the destinations we cover here. Located in East Africa and home to the famous Masai Mara National Park, Kenya is also one of the best places to view the incredible Great Migration.

In this spectacular event, 1.7 million wildebeest, 470,000 gazelle and 260,000 zebras make their way from Tanzania to the Masai Mara between July and October in search of better grazing for their calves.

And because it’s located on the equator, Kenya has balmy weather all year round – perfect for those looking to avoid peak holiday periods and get some great deals on flights!

South Africa – the do-it-all safari

If you like your safari with lots of cultural and culinary experiences thrown in, then South Africa is a great choice. From Cape Town to Johannesburg, there are boundless opportunities for adventure and entertainment.

The famous Kruger National Park is easily accessible from virtually anywhere in the country, so you really can design the perfect trip that ticks all your travel boxes! A luxury safari in the Kruger National Park for Americans is particularly attractive, as the favorable Rand/Dollar exchange rate means you’ll get great value for money.

Botswana – the romantic safari

Botswana is home to one of Africa’s most precious gems – the Okavango Delta, which is the world’s biggest inland wetland. In stark contrast, the rest of the country is largely desert – which is why so many amazing creatures flock to the delta. More than 1,000 species of plants, 480 species of birds, and 130 species of mammals call the delta home.

Botswana is especially well known as a wedding and honeymoon destination. Luxurious accommodation, candlelit dinners under the African stars, intimate boat tours among the water lily covered lagoons, and the drama of Victoria Falls provide the perfect backdrop for romance!

Tanzania – safari + tropical islands

Like Kenya, Tanzania is a great safari destination to see the Great Migration. The Serengeti National Park in particular is a good place to view this annual spectacle, with many lodges positioned near river-crossings so travelers can watch the drama unfold on their doorstep!

The Ngorongoro Crater, the site of an ancient volcano, is a World Heritage Site well worth visiting – especially since all of the Big Five can be spotted here.

However, amazing wildlife is not all Tanzania has to offer. It’s famous for the beautiful beaches that can be found along its eastern coastline, nestled up against the warm Indian Ocean. And just a short boat ride away, the immaculate islands of Zanzibar, Mnemba, Pemba, and Mafia Island are the perfect spots to unwind post-safari!

Rwanda – safari + gorilla trekking

Unlike many other African safari destinations, large swathes of Rwanda are covered in tropical rainforest – home to the elusive, enigmatic, and highly endangered mountain gorilla. Permits are required to undertake a gorilla trek, which usually lasts between one to three days – but your tour provider will arrange this for you.

Rwanda lies in the Great Rift Valley, known for its rich biodiversity. Some of the unusual animals you could see here include colobus monkeys, the rare African golden cat, and golden monkeys.

Namibia – safari + desert adventures

Although it’s larger than France, Namibia has the second-lowest population density of any country on the planet. In fact, its name comes from a Khoekhoegowab word meaning “vast place”.

Most of the country forms part of the Namib desert, although the more semi-arid regions are where you will find the larger national parks, such as Etosha. Here you can see all the classic safari animals, but it’s on the Skeleton Coast where you’ll find some of Namibia’s most unique attractions.

Here, where the only moisture comes from fog rolling in from the sea, plants and animals have made all sorts of fascinating adaptions to survive. If you take part in a desert walking tour, you’ll be amazed to discover life where you’d least expect it.

For adventure-seekers, sandboarding and quad biking among the dunes, and windsurfing and kite boarding along the coast are on offer.

Cultural experiences include excursions to the eerie ghost town of Kolmanskop, where buildings have become partially submerged by desert sand, the Twyfelfontein Rock Engravings, meeting the incredible indigenous Himba people, and exploring the German colonial architecture of Swakopmund.

In conclusion

As you can see, there’s a safari destination to suit every kind of traveler. From tropical beaches and lush rainforests, to sprawling savannah and vast deserts, Africa has it all!


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