If you’ve ever done any research about going on an African safari, then you’ve likely learned about the Big Five, which are five of the most famous animals you could see on your vacation. However, what few people know is that the sea possesses its own Big Five, and if you prefer spending time on the water to being on solid ground, you need to be sure your safari includes these interesting marine creatures.
Here’s some information about the Big Five of the sea and advice for seeing these interesting creatures the next time you take an African safari.
Spend Time with the Cape Fur Seal
The most playful member of the marine Big Five is the Cape Fur Seal. These fun-loving mammals can be found up and down the west coast of South Africa, but are especially numerous in the Cape Town area.
Unlike some other animals on this list, you can actually interact with the Cape Fur seal up close and in personal, both on land and while snorkeling.
See the African Penguin
If you prefer your animals to be cute and cuddly, then you’re going to love the African Penguin, the smallest member of the Big Five of the sea. These small birds can be found in a variety of South Africa locations, including gorgeous Boulders Beach
When you visit Boulders Beach, you’ll be able to swim with these adorable creatures, which is an experience you’ll always remember fondly.
Do Some Whale Watching
Whales are some of the most majestic animals in the world, and if you’ve always wanted to go on a whale watching adventure, your African safari will provide the perfect opportunity.
Between the months of June and December, you can see Southern Right Whales off the coast of South Africa. Because these whales are endangered, there are several nurseries in the area where you can get a great view while the whales swim and play. Be sure to bring your camera, because you’ll definitely want to commemorate seeing this member of the Big Five of the sea.
Swim with the Dolphins
If you’re like many people with a fondness for the ocean, you probably dream of seeing dolphins while you’re out on the water. Fortunately, the waters off the coast of South Africa are home to multiple dolphin species, including the well-known bottlenose dolphin
During the period between May and July, the sardine population in near Africa explodes, drawing dolphins to the area. If you want to see dolphins on your trip, make sure your safari takes place during this time of year.
Beware of Great White Sharks
Just like the normal Big Five, the Big Five of the sea features a deadly predator: The great white shark. One of the deadliest creatures on the planet, seeing a great white shark swimming in the African ocean is a unique thrill that shouldn’t be missed. While you’ll definitely want to keep your distance, you’ll always remember seeing a great white shark in the wild.
If you love seeing marine animals in their natural habitat, then you should be sure to watch out for the Big Five of the sea on your next African safari.