Wildlife Wonders: Best Safari Destinations in Africa

By Kate

Ever found your mind wandering to the vast expanses of Africa, pondering on where one could encounter the best safari experiences? Us too! Indeed, our curiosity has led us on quite a voyage through sweeping savannahs and dense forests.

This guide will whisk you away on an armchair adventure to Africa’s top 10 safari gemstones; places buzzing with unique wildlife that will surely tickle your fancy. So, pop the kettle on for a cuppa and settle down for what promises to be an utterly unforgettable journey.

Key Takeaways

  • Africa is home to exciting safari spots like Masai Mara in Kenya and Kruger National Park in South Africa.
  • Different types of safaris include classic, water, and desert trips.
  • First – time safari goers can start with places such as Masai Mara or the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania.
  • For seasoned travelers, Mana Pools & Lower Zambezi National Park are must-visits.

Top 10 Safari Destinations in Africa

Top 10 Safari Destinations in Africa

Embark on an unforgettable adventure with our top 10 safari destinations in Africa, from witnessing the Great Migration in Masai Mara, Kenya to spotting the big five in Kruger National Park, South Africa.

Delight your senses as you immerse yourself in Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Crater or explore Botswana’s wild landscapes of Okavango Delta and Chobe National Park.

For a unique encounter with mountain gorillas, venture into Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park or enjoy the stunning wilderness at South Luangwa National Park, Zambia. Experience otherworldly beauty at Namib-Naukluft Park, Namibia and let Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe leave you awestruck with its abundant wildlife.

Masai Mara, Kenya

Masai Mara in Kenya is a gem for all nature lovers. It tops the list of Africa’s best safari spots. This place thrills with its large number of wild animals, including the Big Five.

The beauty here goes beyond words! One can see wildlife close up and enjoy amazing views of nature. Many people come to Masai Mara between July and October. They want to spot the yearly wildebeest move, which is an awe-inspiring sight.

Trust us, you won’t forget your time in this special part of Kenya!

Kruger National Park, South Africa

Kruger National Park in South Africa is a wildlife dream come true. It’s the largest animal park in the country with plenty of space for animals to roam. This huge park covers 7,523 square miles! That’s bigger than some small countries!

This place is one of the top safari spots in all of Africa. Even more exciting, it’s home to the Big Five animalslions, leopards, rhinos, elephants and buffalo! We can also spot lots of birds here too.

Kruger has it all for every nature lover out there!

Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

We can’t miss the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania on our list. It is famous around the globe as a top safari spot. Huge numbers of animals call this park home. Over 1.5 million wildebeest, zebras, and gazelles live here! This park hosts the Great Migration, one of Earth’s most stunning sights.

Not only does it have beautiful views but it also earns high marks for protecting wildlife. The Serengeti offers many ways to see its wonders up close, like game drives and hot air balloon trips.

You can also go on guided walks with experts who know all about the park’s diverse life forms.

Okavango Delta, Botswana

We pack our bags for Botswana, home to the famous Okavango Delta. This place is one of Africa’s top safari spots and with good reason. With its lush greenery and large amount of animals, it offers an experience like no other.

Every year, water pours into this river delta from the Okavango River making life bloom in abundance. UNESCO even classifies it as a world heritage site because of its unique setup and ecological value!

Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

The Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania is a real treat for the eyes. This place holds seventh rank among Africa’s natural wonders. The beauty here is beyond words, with amazing mountains all around.

It’s famed as the world’s largest caldera, showing off how great nature can be. The crater is home to many animals like elephants and lions. You will even spot swift cheetahs and heavy rhinos there! Folks often call it a ‘Garden of Eden’ for its rich wildlife variety.

Chobe National Park, Botswana

Chobe National Park in Botswana is a gem. It sits among the top 10 safari places to see wildlife wonders in Africa. The park holds many wild cats, elephants, and Cape buffalo. You can be sure to see something amazing.

The real draw of this place is the large herds of elephants. This sight will stay with you forever! If you wish, take a boat trip on the Chobe River as part of your visit. Seeing animals from water gives a unique view and adds more fun to your trip.

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park offers a true taste of Uganda’s wild side. Located in the country’s southwest, it boasts one of Africa’s largest gorilla populations. More than 500 of these impressive creatures live within its borders.

But that’s not all you’ll find here. We can go on exciting safari drives and spot elephants, or take to the trails for a trekking adventure. Bird lovers flock to Bwindi Forest National Park too as it is home to many rare birds unique to Africa.

It’s no surprise it got named as the best birding spot on the continent! So why don’t we pack our bags and gear up for some unforgettable wildlife encounters together?.

South Luangwa National Park, Zambia

South Luangwa National Park in Zambia is a wonder for the eyes. This park covers an area of 9050 square kilometers. It’s like stepping into a place untouched by time, full of African wildlife.

Here in South Luangwa, you can see animals in their natural habitat during jeep safaris. The game drives are thrilling! You might even spot a leopard lurking in the brush – it’s famous for its leopard sightings! With its rich biodiversity, breathtaking landscapes and authentic safari experience, we find South Luangwa to be one of Africa’s best places to explore.

Namib-Naukluft Park, Namibia

We find Namib-Naukluft Park in the heart of Namibia. This spot is part of the world’s oldest desert, the Namib Desert. The park bustles with life. It is home to close to 114 types of mammals! We can hike here and explore this unique place on a safari.

Huge sand dunes and rocky mountains paint a stunning view for us. They make our journey more thrilling as we watch wildlife in its real home. Let’s go on an adventure in Namib-Naukluft Park, where exploring never ends!

Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe

We love Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe. It’s one of the top safari places in Africa. The park is huge, making it the biggest one in Zimbabwe. Many animals live here with over 100 types of mammals and 400 kinds of birds calling it home.

Hwange National Park gives a special treat to wildlife fans. You will see many animals up close thanks to high-level game viewing on offer there. The guides at this park are experts who know what they’re doing.

This helps elevate your experience at Hwange National Park even more.

People visiting Southern Africa can get to Hwange National Park easily too! It offers an off-road feel like no other for those looking for something different than your regular travel spots.

Different Types of Safaris

Different Types of Safaris

Journey with us as we delve into the myriad of safari experiences awaiting in Africa, from classic land escapades, thrilling water expeditions to unique desert adventures. Intrigued? Continue reading for a deeper insight!

Classic safari experience

We love the classic safari experience. It’s like living in a wildlife movie! You stay in amazing safari lodges or camps. From there, you set out on guided tours to see big five animals – lions, elephants, rhinos, buffalos and leopards.

These tours happen at dawn and dusk when the animals are most active. You can take great photos on these trips too. Having an experienced guide makes it even better. They know where to find exciting animals and they tell wonderful stories about them!

Water safari

We have a great time on water safaris! They are different and fun. We wade through rivers like the Nile, Akagera, Rujifi, Shire, Luangwa, Kafue and Zambezi. We see wildlife up close in their natural homes.

In Botswana’s Okavango Delta we ride mokoro canoes to watch animals drinking at the river banks. The rush of white water rafting in Zimbabwe and Zambia’s Victoria Falls thrills us! Jinja in Uganda is another spot for heart-pounding action on a water safari.

Our trips help keep parks clean and protect animals too.

Desert safari

Desert safaris offer a whole new side to Africa. They let us explore nature’s play of sand and sun in remote locations, away from the usual busy paths. We get to hop into off-road vehicles and zoom across towering sand dunes! You can even find special animals here that live only in such dry places.

One spot we like much is Damaraland for desert safaris. It is full of high mountains and it has wildlife that suits this type of place well. Plus, there’s hardly any crowd so you get a lot of space all for yourself.

This helps make your adventure very quiet and deep. If you want to feel real peace, this could be just the right thing for you.

Best Safaris for First-Timers

Venturing on your first safari trip? We recommend starting with the awe-inspiring Masai Mara in Kenya, the Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania or the majestic Kruger National Park in South Africa – they offer quintessential African adventures that are simply perfect for beginners.

Masai Mara, Kenya

Masai Mara in Kenya is a top pick for a first-time safari. This wildlife reserve is rich with animals and stunning sites. The sight of vast rolling landscapes will take your breath away! Many rivers cross this land, full of life.

We can spot not just one or two, but all the Big Five here – lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo and rhino. Masai Mara swarms with these grand creatures making it an exciting place to visit.

Let’s not forget about the Great Migration too! Millions of wildebeest and zebra roam free in search of fresh water and food every year on these plains. Join us as we dive into this ecological wonderland that promises a once-in-a-lifetime adventure!

Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania are must-see spots for safari goers. The Serengeti is famous the world over. It won an award as the best national park on Earth! Each year, hundreds of thousands of people come to see its wide plains.

They spot wildlife like lions, elephants and giraffes. Ngorongoro Crater is a natural wonder too! You can find lakes, woods and open areas here that all kinds of animals call home.

This place is a gift for those who love to watch animals in their own homes.

Kruger National Park, South Africa

Kruger National Park is a top place for an African safari in South Africa. It has many different things to do and places to stay. A lot of people can get there easily, which makes it one of the best spots in the world for seeing wild animals.

We have seen big animals like lions, leopards, and rhinos here. The park is also home to elephants and Cape buffalo. These are known as the Big 5 animals. If you want to see them up close, going on game drives is a great idea.

Beginners really enjoy their first-time safaris at Kruger National Park because they can see so much wildlife!

Best Safaris for Experienced Travellers

For those seasoned in safari adventures, the Mana Pools & Lower Zambezi National Park offers a remarkable wilderness experience as you traverse Zimbabwe and Zambia. Of course, you cannot forget the private reserves of Okavango in Botswana for its unique aquatic safari encounters.

If your heart seeks uncharted terrains, Kenya’s Laikipia Plateau lets you walk amidst magnificent wildlife species while hubby photographers would find their paradise at Imfolozi Wilderness Trails in South Africa with unparalleled opportunities to capture brilliant images of the diverse African fauna.

Now imagine exploring southern Tanzania’s Ruaha National Park or Uganda’s Queen Elizabeth National Park; these are game-rich areas where you might be lucky enough to spot elusive wildlife species! Each destination fills experienced travellers with awe-inducing moments that linger long after your safari concludes.

Mana Pools & Lower Zambezi National Park, Zimbabwe/Zambia

Mana Pools on the Zambezi River in Zimbabwe is a great place for close views of wildlife. This special park lets you walk near animals without stress. It gives you new feelings and thrills that cars can’t give.

On the other hand, Lower Zambezi National Park in Zambia hides many wonders. Some people say it’s Africa’s best kept secret! Both parks let you fly high to see different wild areas from above.

Game reserves keep the animals safe here as well so we can enjoy watching them now and for years to come.

Okavango private reserves, Botswana

We recommend Okavango private reserves in Botswana for seasoned travellers. It’s one of the best spots for a safari. The place is vast and untouched. You’ll find it in the heart of a huge, freshwater wetland.

This makes it special among other safari sites. Lots of wildlife call this home. You can see all sorts of animals here because there are so many types living together! For those who love to watch wild creatures, Okavango offers amazing chances to do just that!

Laikipia Plateau, Kenya

Laikipia Plateau in Kenya is a top choice for seasoned safari explorers. Known as one of East Africa’s finest spots, it charms visitors with its great wildlife. Once filled with livestock farms during colonial times, it now flourishes as a haven for many unique animals.

We can spot plenty of different species here! Also, there are many fun activities to do. We can join birdwatching trips or take part in conservation work. For those who love spotting animal tracks, this place is perfect too! Plus, restful nights wait at the area’s rich and cosy safari lodges after busy days exploring nature’s wonders.

Imfolozi Wilderness Trails, South Africa

We love the Imfolozi Wilderness Trails in South Africa. These trails let you sleep out and back pack through wild beauty. Hluhluwe Game Reserve is where you will find them. The views here are breath taking with lots of rolling hills.

You can walk on these old game reserve trails. So, why not go have an adventure! Get your shoes on and start hiking. We promise it’s a fun trip worth every step!

Ruaha National Park, southern Tanzania

Ruaha National Park is a great place in southern Tanzania. It’s the second biggest park in Tanzania and the largest one in East Africa. Many wild animals call this park home. Animals like impala, waterbuck, wild dog, lion, and leopard are common here.

This park also has Usangu Wetlands where you can learn about conservation hands-on. Ruaha National Park shows off Tanzania’s natural beauty at its best! If you love safaris and wildlife, put it on your must-visit list.

Queen Elizabeth National Park, Uganda

We can’t miss out on Queen Elizabeth National Park in Uganda. This wonderful place is big, nearly 2,000 sq km of wild land! Here, we can see elephants, lions and buffalo. What’s cooler? The park has tree climbing lions! It’s not a common sight.

This park is loved by many people and it gets lots of visitors every year. There are so many animals here too; over 5,000 hippos live in the park. For seasoned travellers like us who seek unique wildlife experiences, Queen Elizabeth National Park stands out from the crowd as one must-visit destination.

How to Choose a Safari and Safari FAQs

Choosing the perfect safari involves careful consideration of factors such as timing and tour operators. Our comprehensive FAQ will help clarify any queries about what to expect, from animal safety to maximizing your wildlife viewing experience.

Dive in for more!

When is the best time to go on a safari?

Going on a safari is best during the dry season. Usually, this season lies between June and September in most parks and reserves across East and southern Africa. The reason is simple, water becomes less during this time.

So, many wild animals gather at places with water making them easy to spot. But if your trip is to Kenya or major areas of Tanzania plan it from January till March or from June till October for an amazing experience.

Also interestingly, Serengeti has two short rainy seasons; they happen around March to April and November to December which are often peaceful times for a visit as there are fewer tourists during that period.

Of course don’t forget about June! Across various locations in Africa, this month can be one of the best times to set off on a safari journey.

What should I bring with me on a safari?

We’ll need a few key items for our safari. First off, grab a backpack. It is good for holding sunblock, shades, a hat and lip moisturizer. The sun can be strong so these will keep us safe from it.

Clothes in neutral or khaki colors are best; they help us blend in with nature. Good walking shoes or boots are another must-have item. They will ensure we’re comfortable as we explore the wild areas on foot.

Don’t forget to put some bug spray into the backpack too! It keeps the mosquitoes away from us while out there in wildlife zones.It’s also handy to take binoculars along; they make spotting animals and birds easier and fun!

Are the animals dangerous?

Yes, Africa is home to many dangerous animals. Predators like lions and venomous snakes, such as the black mamba, live here. The black mamba can grow up to 14 feet! But don’t let this scare you off.

On safari tours, we keep a safe distance from wild animals for your safety. Few wildlife encounters turn harmful when done right. We make sure all our tours are safe and enjoyable for everyone.

Picking an ethical safari operator also helps in wildlife conservation efforts by responsible tourism.

Will I be stuck in a vehicle all day?

Just to be clear, being on safari means we will spend good time in a vehicle. It’s part of the thrill. Viewing wild animals up close from our ride is an amazing experience. We also get to interact with our guides and drivers during this time.

But there’s no need to worry about being stuck all day. Many safaris have other fun activities too! We can leave the vehicle and stretch our legs at times. Some parks in South Africa even let us drive ourselves for a new adventure! This self-drive safari gives us more freedom to explore at our own pace.

Where are the best guides?

You’ll find top-notch safari guides in Africa’s leading parks such as Serengeti National Park and Kruger National Park. These places know the value of good guides. They hire people who have deep knowledge about animals and their habits.

The guides in Botswana’s Okavango Delta are also quite skilled. They can track animals both on land and water! In Kenya, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and South Africa, they train their guides well to keep you safe while meeting the Big Five (lion, elephant, buffalo, leopard, rhinoceros).

So don’t worry about safety or missing out on key sights; just pick any favorite spot from our recommended African safari destinations!

Do I really need a guide on my safari?

Yes, we do need a guide on our safari. A good guide knows the place well. They can show us the best spots to see animals. They keep us safe from danger. Guides also help local people get jobs and save nature.

We learn a lot from them about animals and plants too! Choosing a good tour operator will give us an expert safari guide for our trip.

How do I choose a good tour operator?

Picking a good tour operator is key for a great safari experience. First, think about what you like and how much money you want to spend. Do some study on different safari places. This will help us find the best one for our needs.

Tripadvisor has many ideas on where to stay during your trip. We can also ask people who know a lot about safaris for their tips and get advice from them as we plan our first trip or next adventure!

How can I safari responsibly or get more involved?

We can all do our part for a better safari. One way is by picking eco-friendly choices. This means going with tour operators who care for the earth. They should follow good rules to keep nature safe.

On your trip, be sure not to litter and to respect all wildlife.

Another path is helping local people and places. By buying local goods, you give back to the people in that area. Some safari trips also let you learn more about how to protect animals and the wild spots they live in.


Africa will make your heart race with its amazing wildlife. Going on a safari is the best way to see this. Africa awaits you with open arms and roaring lions! It’s time for an adventure, so pack your bags, grab your camera, and get ready for the ride of your life!

What are some top safari destinations in Africa?

The Serengeti in Tanzania, Kruger National Park in South Africa, and the Okavango Delta in Botswana are some of the best safari destinations in Africa.

When is the best time to go on a safari trip to Africa?

The best time for a safari trip often depends on where exactly you plan to visit, but typically dry seasons would be ideal as animals gather around water sources.

Can I go on a safari without a guide?

No, going on an African wildlife safari alone can be dangerous and illegal. It is always safer and more educational to hire an expert guide.

Will I see all of the “Big Five” animals at every African Safari destination?

Not necessarily; seeing all of the “Big Five” – lion, leopard, rhinoceros, elephant, buffalo – largely depends on which part of Africa you are visiting during your Safari adventure.

Do children enjoy animals safaris too?

Yes! Many children love being able to see wild animals up close while safely touring during a guided Safari tour.

About the author

Hello there, fellow travellers! I'm Kate, one half of the Chandler's Travel duo, and my love for travel is matched only by my love for sharing it with others. For me, every journey is an opportunity to learn something new, be it a local tradition, a tasty dish, or simply a new way to see the world.

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