Tips for finding the best safari destination in South Africa
It can be overwhelming to plan the perfect South African safari for you and your group. The most popular guided tours may not be the best choice for you according to your interests and budget. You might want to see different animals than the Big Five, or perhaps you want to embark on a self-guided safari. Maybe you want to camp beneath the stars or stay in a luxurious suite every night.
No matter what your individual preferences are, South Africa has plenty of options to choose from. You’re sure to come across the best safari adventure for you by considering the following tips:
Create a list of must-see animals.
Most people want to see the Big Five animals, which includes lions, leopards, black or white rhinos, African elephants, and Cape buffalo. While all of these animals are common in South Africa, there are very few places where you can see all of them coexisting within the same area. If seeing the Big Five is at the top of your list, check out the expansive Kruger National Park. Kruger covers nearly 5 million acres to explore, and most people report seeing the Big Five within a 2-day trip!
If you want to see predators in action, Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park is a great choice. Although this park lacks rhinos, elephants, and buffalo, you’ll likely see lions and leopards stalking their prey. Other animals in this region include cheetahs, hyenas, bat-eared foxes, and over 300 bird species.
Know who you’re traveling with.
It’s essential to consider the needs and abilities of everyone within your group. Making sure that everyone is comfortable with the itinerary is the most important part of the planning process. For example, you might not have any trouble with walking for several hours a day, but others within your party may struggle to keep up.
If you’re traveling with your partner, you can even have a romantic safari experience! One all-inclusive package includes guided safari drives or walking tours during the day, and then you can return in the evening for a massage and a candlelit dinner. The following day includes a private flight to another private lodge in Kruger National Park where you can embark on more safaris and indulge in wine tasting and spa treatments.
If you plan on traveling with children, travel advisor Eric Monkaba has a few words of advice. Monkaba says, “I typically recommend safaris for children ages eight and up.” He notes that lodges can sometimes have age restrictions, so parents will want to check that out before booking their stay. The most kid-friendly destinations tend to have program options just for children to enjoy, such as the Morukuru Family lodges.
Decide if you want to be part of a group safari.
Some people love the camaraderie of a group safari, but others might not enjoy spending several days alongside strangers. Group safari tours tend to be less expensive than private safaris, but having your own personal guide will allow you to customize your own trip and go at your own pace.
If you want complete freedom, the cheapest option is to go on your own safari adventure. It’s fairly inexpensive to rent a vehicle in South Africa, but you might have more difficulty finding animals without the help of an experienced guide. In addition, going on a self-guided safari means that you won’t have the help of an all-inclusive travel agency. You’ll be responsible for booking your accommodations, creating your travel routes, finding food, and more.
Don’t limit your options!
When you’re planning a safari getaway, don’t forget about all the other gems that South Africa has to offer. After spending several days trekking through the wilderness, a stay in the incredible city of Cape Town can be the perfect ending of your trip. You can enjoy local wines, a range of world-class dining experiences, and several marketplaces, or maybe you’d prefer lounging on the lovely Boulders Beach.
Another appealing city for tourists is Johannesburg, the biggest city in South Africa. This sprawling city was once home to Nelson Mandela, and guests can even take a tour of his house. There are countless monuments, museums, and other intriguing sites where tourists can learn about the history of South Africa.
You’ll feel like you’re truly immersed in the wilderness during a South African safari, but that doesn’t mean you need to give up your modern communication needs. With an international SIM card from BNESIM, you can share photos online, text, and call your loved ones no matter where you travel. Instead of paying expensive roaming charges when you go overseas, choose BNESIM for affordable plans and reliable service in over 170 countries.