Safaris started from Africa! Even the word safaris was coined in Africa. Indeed it is true that this word started from the Kenyan coast and it is a Swahili word meaning a long journey. Remember Swahili is a mixture of Arabic and the local Coastal tribes language.
The tradition of taking a safari began many years ago. It started when the wealthy explorers took the hunting expeditions to Africa by that time refered to as the “Dark Continent” in search of big game trophies that they could hang on their walls. These hunters also coined the word “big Five safaris” referering to the 5 most difficult animals to hunt. Many people think that the “big five” refers to the 5 big land mammals! However this is not true it refers to the five most difficult animals to hunt and these include Lions, Leopards, Buffaloes, Rhinos and Elephants.
Today there are a few hunting safaris in Africa – thanks to the different conservation organisations and countries that have embraced ecotourism! However there is more effort needed to reduce hunting further most especially in Southern Africa.
The dynamics of a safari have also changed; Safaris are nolonger for only wealthy explorers! Today Budget, luxury travellers and backpackers take safaris in Africa. In most destinations tourists no longer hunt but only take photo opportunities of wildlife.
Many travelers come to Africa to see The Big Five. Most big five safaris go to South Africa and East Africa where these animals exist in national parks. These are the Lion, Cape Buffalo, Leopard, African Elephant and the elusive Black Rhino. The opportunity to see these wild animals in their natural homes, for most people, is a once in a lifetime experience. The top destinations to see the big five are South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Today there are travelers who visit Africa to see primates. These include mountain gorillas, chimpanzees, bonobos, monkeys and more. The most famous destinations for primates watching are Uganda, Rwanda, Congo, Tanzania. Gabon and Central African Republic are new comers to those looking for primates watching most especially gorilla safaris.With evolution of ecotourism, many destinations in Africa have embraced the ideology of promoting ecotours.
What Safari to Take
The many different types of African Safaris often present a challenge to visitors when doing a selection. And for a truly memorable experience, getting the right choice is a must. Which safari type should you take? How do you plan so that you get the best from your Africa safari vacation?
The African continent boasts of a very large variety of attractions ranging from wildlife and beaches to unique physical features spread all over the country. The best way to discover and to experience these features and attractions is to get yourself into one or more of the types of safaris listed below. Each safari type has its strong points and you may rest assured that it can be fun all the way. Here you are… Check out our list below. It contains the different types of safaris currently available, follow the link to get further details about any one of the types – such as which parks offer that type of safari
- African Tent Safaris
- Vehicle/Road Safaris
- Walking Safaris
- Self-Drive Safaris
- Horse Riding Safaris
- Fly-in Safaris
- Hot Air Balloon Safaris
- Family Safaris
- Cultural Safaris
- Beach Safaris
- Adventure Safaris
- Sports Safaris
- Honeymoon/Wedding Safaris
- Educational Safaris
- Therapeutic Safaris
- Birding Safaris
- Business Traveller Safaris
- Conference Safaris
As you work on your selection, you have the option of selecting more than one types. This of course will give you the advantage of making your African safari an even more adventurous one and to expose you to the diversity that is Africa.
The types of African safaris listed above are by no means limited, we are open to suggestions and you are free to request for a customized package that meets your taste and expectations
Important Things to Know About Africa Safaris
Cost of a Safari
Many people think that a safari can be expensive. To take a safari you need to book a flight to Africa, pay for an all inclusive safari with a tour operator. A safari may look to be expensive given that you have to pay for entrance fees, guide fees, activity fees and other costs but this is OK given that the money generated from park entrance fees and activity fees is further used to conserve these parks.
A Safari in Africa can also be physically taxing – on game viewing safaris you will need early mornings and late nights. In addition to that you will also be traveling in countries that won’t have the same luxuries and the same infrastructure that you’re used to at home. You can travel along bumpy roads with dust but that is part of the African Experience!Though most safaris can be rated moderate there are some tiring safaris with long treks within forests, mountains or highland areas. There fore you need to know which kind of safari you are taking and the degree of fitness needed.