Why a Solo Safari Can Be a Great Choice

hyrax

For many, going on a vacation is a great opportunity to spend time with their friends or family. However, if you’re the type of person that enjoys exploring a new location unencumbered, then taking a solo vacation can be an excellent decision, particularly if you go on a solo safari.

While going on a safari with a companion can certainly be a fun experience, there are a variety of benefits to traveling alone that you might not realize, making it a good idea to examine this type of vacation a little more closely. Here are some reasons you should consider going on a solo safari if you want a vacation where you’re able to spend some time getting to know yourself.

Meet New Friends

When you travel with a friend or family member, it’s likely that you’ll spend all of your time with your companion, which can be a tremendous amount of fun. However, this also means that you may miss out on the opportunity to meet new friends.

If you’re traveling on your own, you’ll have the ability to develop new friendships with people that you meet on vacation. For people that have trouble making new friends, this can be a great way to expand their social circle. Meeting new people and starting friendships that may last a lifetime is a great reason to go on a solo safari.

Have Fun Your Way

If there’s any drawback to traveling with someone you know, it’s that choosing activities can turn into a negotiation if your tastes don’t match. For example, your friend may prefer an activity and you may want to go on an adventure, possibly resulting in an impasse.

On the other hand, if you go on a solo safari, you’ll be able to choose the activities that are right for you without worrying if your travel companion will also have a good time. This means you can use your solo safari to check items off of your bucket list that you’ve been delaying.

Anyone tired of vacations where they have to negotiate which activities they get to enjoy should consider booking a solo safari.

Save Money or Go Big

Traveling in a group almost always means there needs to be a discussion about costs, which often leads to sacrificing activities or locations in an effort to save money. The biggest benefit of going on a safari yourself is that you’ll be able to spend as much or as little money as you wish.

For example, if you’re looking for a budget friendly safari that includes only the essentials, you can book an affordable trip for one. On the other hand, if you want to fill your safari with activities and experiences, you can go all out and spend as much money as it takes to book your perfect trip. Spending the exact amount of money you want on your vacation is an exciting reason to go on a solo safari.

If you’re used to traveling with other people and want something different for your next vacation, you should plan a solo safari where you can make brand-new friends and have fun the way that you desire.

Choose a Safari to Match Your Personality

2016-11-01_africa_0238

From time to time, everyone needs to get away from the humdrum of their everyday life and let loose on an exciting vacation. If you’re looking for a trip that you’ll remember long after you’ve returned home, few choices are better than going on a safari.

There are countless benefits of choosing a safari as your next vacation, but one of the most enticing is being able to plan a trip that perfectly matches your personality. Here are safari options that you could choose and advice for planning a vacation that fits your individual wants and needs so that you have a great time.

Relax in a Small Group

While many people go on vacation to add a little excitement to their life, other travelers are mostly interested in forgetting about the pressures of their normal life so that they can finally relax. If relaxation is what you’re looking for out of your next trip, then your best option is going on a small group safari.

Unlike other safari options, small group trips will give you the individual time that you’ll need for rest and relaxation. While there will be group activities, you can also spend time on your own enjoying the beautiful African scenery and reflecting on what’s most important in life. Small group safaris are the perfect idea when you want a restorative vacation that you’ll always remember fondly.

Fill Your Trip with Activities

If you do the same things day in and day out, then your goal for your vacation may be to break free from boredom and participate in activities that get the blood pumping. For adventure seeking travelers that don’t mind meeting new people and taking part in new experience, going on an overlanding safari is an excellent decision.

With an overlanding safari, you’ll have a unique vacation where you make new friends and go on adventures that you can only find in Africa. If you’ve never tried bungee jumping, for example, you could book an overland safari that includes a stop in Vic Falls, one of the world’s most thrilling bungee jumping locations. Overlanding trips will also include great sightseeing opportunities where you can enjoy both exotic plant and animal life.

Extroverts looking for their ideal vacation should strongly consider an overlanding safari.

Consider Your Needs

Small groups and overlanding safaris are just two of the many options you could choose if you’re finally ready to go on an African safari. This means that the best way to book a safari vacation of your dreams is to take some time to consider your needs.

What type of fun are you looking for out of your vacation? Do you want to reconnect with nature, or are looking you experience new cultures and meet new people? Is a trip that’s loaded with adventure from start to finish the right choice for you, or do you want time on your own to explore? Answering these questions before you start booking your trip will guarantee that you have a vacation tailored to your specific tastes.

If you want a vacation that provides your perfect idea of fun, you should start exploring your safari options so that you can take a fun and memorable trip.

Big Five of the Sea

2016-10-30_africa_0009

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.

Advice for Tipping on Your African Safari

2016-11-03_africa_0186

If you’re planning on going on an African safari for the very first time, it’s likely that you have a lot of questions that you want answered. In addition to wanting to know about what to pack and how to have the best time on your trip, you may also wonder what’s the best way to handle tipping.

While you’ll spend most of your safari exploring nature, there will be occasions where you might need to tip someone, which can be intimidating if you don’t know the process. Here’s a little advice for tipping on an African safari that will make sure you’re able to show gratitude to those who’ve made your trip special.

Make Sure to Have Physical Money

One of the biggest obstacles that people encounter when it comes time to leave a tip on safari is not having any physical currency. Because everything on your safari is booked well in advance, including meals, it’s very easy to pack only your debit or credit card and forget to bring any cash along.

If you want to be certain that you can tip on your safari, you should be sure to make sure you have at least a little bit of cash. Make sure you have enough US currency with you that you can exchange some for the local equivalent in every country that you visit. When you exchange your currency, make sure to visit a reputable location instead of using exchanging currency on the street.

How You Should Tip

Although it won’t be common, there are a few circumstances where you’ll want to tip while on safari, which is why you need to make sure that your tipping the right way.

In some places that you visit on your trip, there will be a communal tip jar where you can leave your tip. However, if you want to tip someone directly, place it in an envelope and then give it to them personally. This will ensure that the person you wish to tip will be the one that receives the money.

If you choose an overlanding tour, there will usually be a group fund to which you can contribute. This fund will be used to tip all the guides that you encounter on your overland tour. Remember, however, that if you eat at a restaurant, you will need to leave an individual tip.

Gifts Instead of Tips

Some travelers want to express gratitude to their guide by giving them a gift instead of a tip. If you want to give a gift instead of tipping on an African safari, there are a few suggestions you could choose. While you could choose an item that will be personalized to your tour guide, which will be a great way to show them that you’ve enjoyed your trip and that you appreciate their service.

Unlike some other places you could visit, tipping is as important in Africa as it is in the United States. Fortunately, by following this advice, tipping on an African safari should be easy and stress-free.  Make sure to include tipping in your budget when you plan your African safari so that you can express your gratitude on your trip.

Vehicles You May Ride in on African Safari

2016-11-02_africa_0180

If you’re planning on taking an African safari, then you’re probably interested in learning everything that you can about your upcoming trip. While there are a lot of issues you need to be aware of before your safari, one of the most important is the different options for transportation that you can choose.

Modes of transportation on safari can include vehicles both large and small, as well as travel on foot. Learning about a few common African safari vehicles will help you plan your trip so that you have the best time possible. Here are a few of the most common African safari vehicles that you could choose and advice for planning convenient transportation for your safari holiday.

Trucks for Overlanding

The most common vehicle that you will encounter on safari is an overlanding truck. These are very large vehicles that have been specifically designed to handle the tough driving conditions that are common on African safari, including river crossings and poorly paved roads.

Overland trucks can range widely in size, with some vehicles capable of carrying 12 passengers and others able to accommodate as many as 44. Seats in these trucks will be raised and there are large windows on both sides of the vehicle so that you have a full view of the gorgeous scenery. If you want to fill your safari with as many sights and sounds as possible, then an overland truck is your top transportation option.

Benefits of Microbuses

If you’re going on a smaller group safari and don’t plan on traveling through tough terrain, then an adapted micro bus is the perfect safari vehicle. These buses can comfortably seat between six to ten passengers, and there are a variety of features that make for convenient, comfortable transportation.

Many of these budgets, for instance, have large windows that are perfect for sightseeing or picture taking. When a micro bus has been outfitted specifically for safari, it will include a variety of features, including a GPS system, a suspension that provides for a smooth ride, and an air conditioning system that will keep you cool in the African heat. There may also cooler boxes so that you can take food and safety equipment such as a fire extinguisher or first aid kit.

Game Viewing Vehicles

Travelers that are planning on visiting a game park during their African safari will usually ride in a game viewing vehicle. These vehicles have been designed to give safari goers the best game viewing experience possible, and will ensure that you are able to clearly see the exotic plant and animal life in the game park.

Many game viewing vehicles are completely open, meaning without windows, so that you will have an unobstructed view while driving through the game park. However, because they are open, these vehicles are meant only for short drives. If you go for a ride in a game viewing vehicle, make sure to protect yourself from the elements with the proper clothing and equipment, such as wide brimmed hat and sunscreen.

Before you book your African safari, think about the type of vehicle you may use for transportation and you’re sure to have a great trip.

Jill Liphart for Roho Ya Chui

Activities to Avoid on Your Next Safari

6-kenya-safari-tour

Any traveler looking for the most exciting vacation possible should consider going on an African safari. If you’ve never been on a safari, then you’ve been missing out on one of the most magical vacations in the world. Whether you want to see wild animals in person or are interested in learning about a new culture, an African safari is your best possible choice.

For first time safari goers, it’s important to learn about a few activities that should be skipped on these trips. While these activities may seem fun, they’re often more trouble than they’re worth. Avoid choosing these activities when you’re booking your African safari so that you can have a safe vacation that’s filled with unforgettable memories.

Interacting with Lions

As previously mentioned, being able to see exotic animals is one of the top reasons to go on safari. One of the most popular animals to see on safari is the African lion, one of the most majestic creatures in the world.

While you should definitely be sure to view lions on your safari, you should refrain from booking any activity that promises direct interaction with these creatures. Allowing travelers to cuddle lion cubs is a huge industry in Africa, but it also puts these animals at risk. If a lion cub frequently interacts with humans, it will have zero chance of surviving in the wild.

Adventures with Baboons

Another safari activity that should be avoided is feeding wild baboons. While it can be tempting to feed baboons, particularly as they are frequently found near picnic areas, you may be putting both yourself and the animal in harm’s way.

When baboons are fed by humans, it encourages them to interact with humans on a more frequent basis, fostering dependency and reducing the baboon’s ability to find food on their own. Additionally, baboons can be very aggressive, especially when they aren’t given what they want. This means that baboons that have learned to accept food from humans may attack if a traveler denies them a treat.

If you travel through an area where there are baboons, make sure that all your food is locked up. If possible, stay in your vehicle until the animal has departed. Should a baboon approach you, do not attempt to pet the animal. Despite their appearance, baboons are still wild animals that may attack when they feel threatened.

Taking an Elephant Ride

If your only experience with African safari is films and television shows, then elephant riding is an activity that you may associate with this type of vacation. While riding on an elephant may seem fun, it is actually an extremely risky activity, and is something you should avoid.

Although they are large creatures, the spine of an elephant is not designed to support weight, meaning riding on an elephant can harm the animal. In addition, elephants that respond to human commands have often undergone cruel training, and taking part in elephant rides supports this practice. Instead of going on an elephant ride, view these creatures humanely in a game park or conservation area.

Choosing the right activities, and avoiding the wrong ones, will ensure you have an exciting African safari.

Jill Liphart for Roho Ya CHui

Making Your Safari a Once in a Lifetime Trip

african-safari-travel-ideas-2014-the-safari-tours

If you’re looking for an exciting trip to an exotic location, there is no better choice than going on an African safari. For many people, booking an African safari is a lifelong dream, and when this dream is finally fulfilled, it’s common to be overwhelmed by the experience.

There is so much to see and do on a safari that you may worry you’ll miss out on something, making your vacation much more stressful than it needs to be. Fortunately, making the most out of your safari isn’t as difficult as you might think, especially if you plan ahead. Here are a few tips to help you make your African safari a once in a lifetime vacation, and advice for easily planning your next trip.

Research and Preparation

An African safari is unlike any other vacation you’ve ever taken, which is why it’s common for travelers to be intimidated by the process of planning their safari. This means that the best way to make the most out of your safari is to search and make preparations well before your departure date.

Once you have the itinerary and pre-departure information for your safari, review this information until you know it backwards and forwards. Committing these items to memory will help you feel prepared when it’s time to leave for your trip. Next, you should be sure to research your destination. Find out the season when you will be arriving so that you can know what clothes and equipment to pack.

If you start prepping for your vacation early enough, you’ll be able to overcome any pre-trip jitters.

Plan for Optional Activities

When you’re booking your African safari, you should have the option to sign up for a variety of extra activities. If you want your trip to be as memorable and fun as possible, you should register for as many of these activities as you can. The optional activities available on safari can help you maximize your fun and ensure that you won’t miss out on excitement while on your safari.

Pack Your Technology

A mistake that many people make when going on safari is leaving their electronics behind. While it’s understandable you may want to unplug for a bit while on your trip, certain electronic devices can be invaluable.

For example, driving between locations on safari can be very time consuming, and having your electronics can help keep you entertained. Also, if your smartphone has a quality camera, it can be much easier to use your phone for photographs instead of packing bulky camera equipment.

Be Flexible

Perhaps the best way to make the most out of your African safari is to keep an open mind. Even the most well-planned vacation can run into roadblocks, so it’s very easy for a complex trip like a safari to not go as you might expect. Keeping a flexible attitude will ensure that you have a great time on your safari, regardless of the circumstances of your trip. If you expect to have fun on your trip, then you will.

With the right attitude and a little planning, you can easily book an African safari that you’ll remember for the rest of your life.

Jill Liphart for Roho Ya Chui