A safari vacation in Africa can be one of the most thrilling, exciting and educational vacations you can take. You will see and experience things you never even imagined possible, from stunning sunsets to bizarre and interesting animals to beautiful and almost alien landscapes. You are, however, traveling to another continent and a whole new world, so it is important to be prepared. Here are five things you should know and do as you begin the process of preparing for a walking safari in Africa.
Travel Light: Preparing for a Walking Safari
Understand first that the experience you’re about to undertake is not a normal vacation. Pack light, don’t load yourself down with gear and understand you’ll likely be traveling in a large group. Don’t bring a ton of cameras and gear; this will only get in everyone’s way and damage your co-travelers’ enjoyment. In addition, you are on a walking safari. For goodness’ sake, wear comfortable clothes and shoes!
This Is Not an Amusement Park
Your safari trip is not a trip to Disneyland. You will be in the wild, viewing animals in their true natural habitat and while safari trips make every effort to keep you safe, there are dangers in coming close to wild animals. Listen to your guide—there are reasons for the rules they have in place and for the requests they make.
You May Not See It All
Understand that since you are viewing natural habitats and wild animals, you might not get to see everything you’re hoping to see. It’s possible the wildebeests just won’t be around the day you go on your trip. There are five animals that everyone wants to see: lions, elephants, buffalo, leopards and rhinoceros. You may find that one or more of these creatures doesn’t show up—they’re on their schedule, not yours. You need to prepare for the fact that you might be disappointed.
Every Experience Is Different
You may have the opportunity to explore several different walking safari experiences while on vacation. If you can, then do so! Each experience offers something different and if, for example, you don’t see a lion on Tuesday, the trip you take on Thursday might just feature one.
Patience and Attention
If you are patient, willing to follow the rules and explore many different experiences, your African walking safari trip will be the time of your life. Even if you don’t get to see every single animal you wanted, you’ll still be treated to an experience that you will probably never top. The key is following the rules, staying comfortable and being patient and attentive. Keep your eyes open and your camera sharp, and don’t forget to just enjoy your trip.
If you are ready to take the vacation experience of a lifetime, we are ready to provide it! Look over our different African Safari Experience packages, and give us a call for more information or to book your trip today.
Jill Liphart for Roho Ya Chui, Travel Africa