Mention the word Safari Holidays and most people will envisage the open plains of the Masai Mara or Serengeti that we often see on television.
However Africa offers much more on safari holidays than just the grassy savannahs, arid desert areas, lush deltas and thick forested bushveld. All of these are home to the amazing animals that we associate with an African safari holiday. The animals have adapted to live in certain conditions which means that some areas have animals unique to that region, such as the Gerenuk Antelope which can only be found in certain parts of Kenya. This is a quick guide to the best safari holidays and places to see some of the most popular animals in Africa.
The Big 5 Comprising of Elephant, Rhino, Lion, Buffalo and Leopard, the ‘Big 5’ can be found in reserves in Kenya, Tanzania, Namibia, Zambia, Botswana and South Africa. Some of the smaller reserves do not have the larger herbivores such as Elephant, some do not have the large predators and Rhino would not fair well in the marshy wetlands of the Okavango Delta. Almost all reserves will have the other popular animals such as Giraffe, Zebra and Antelopes.
Big Cats Cheetahs favour open spaces where they can use their speed to wear down their prey. For this reason places such as the Masai Mara, Serengeti, and Namibia are the best areas to view them. Leopard use an ambush technique and need trees, making them harder to spot. Wildlife film makers often travel to the Sabi Sand Reserve in South Africa where leopard are found in large numbers. Lions are common all over the east & southern African continent and can be found in most reserves. For something a little different, visit the Black Maned lions of the Kalahari or the tree climbing lions of Lake Manyara, Tanzania.
Birds Africa is a “twitchers” paradise. Choose from the many game and nature reserves, national parks, lakes, lagoons, wetlands and bays – habitats are very varied and specialist guides are available. We recommend the Okavango Delta in Botswana, South Luangwa in Zambia and St Lucia Wetlands, South Africa.
The Annual Migration Nowhere other than Kenya and Tanzania gives you the opportunity to view the spectacle of the wildebeest migration. Whilst rain dependent, the migration occurs all year round, constantly moving to find the lush new grass. It is estimated that something like 4 million animals participate. The wildebeest lead this annual exodus followed by the zebra and lesser antelope with the ominous presence of the carnivores trailing the herds. The best times to see the great migration is during the months of May to June in the Serengeti, Tanzania and from July to October in the Masai Mara, Kenya.
Meerkats These adorable members of the canine family can be found in Namibia, southern Botswana and the Karoo in South Africa. They favour a hot, desert terrain, where they can easily construct their burrows. There is an ongoing research project just outside Oudtshoorn on the Garden Route, South Africa where you can view an habituated group.
Gorillas & Chimpanzees Gorilla Permits are like gold dust and must be purchased by anyone wishing to see the Lowland Mountain Gorillas in Uganda and Rwanda. To view these magnificent apes requires at least a couple of nights which can be combined with a stay in Kenya or Tanzania.
Chimpanzees can be found in Uganda, western Tanzania and on a large sanctuary in Ol Peteja Conservancy in Kenya.
We travel regularly to various reserves in Africa and we are always happy to recommend reserves based on your interests.
If you would like to know more about our safari holidays, we can answer all your questions: Call us on 01444 225640 or Email us at email@example.com