Breathtaking Big Five Safari Adventures
There is very little to compare with the thrill of seeing one of the Big Five in the wild in Africa. They are known as the Big Five from the days when they were the most highly prized hunting trophies because they were big, beautiful and dangerous. They are truly majestic animals.
- Lions, the royal family of the African bush are our favourites. They are so powerful, so full of poise and dignity. Their cubs are so playful and adorable. They command immediate respect and admiration.
- Leopards, the most elusive of the Big Five, are the most beautiful with their spotted coats. They are hugely charismatic and immensely powerful with their habit of climbing trees to keep their kills away from other predators.
- Elephants are the gentle giants (but they are to be treated with respect because of their power and size). The biggest land mammals, they are highly intelligent and immensely sympathetic, living in large breeding herds.
- Rhinos, with their beautiful horns, are real characters. They are huge and sometimes bad tempered. Partly because they are the most endangered of the five, it is always exciting to see them.
- Buffalos with their massive horns are both the favourite prey and the most formidable enemies of lions. Living in herds, sometimes of thousands of them together they are a wonderful sight to see.
There are many game reserves where you can see all five of the Big Five. As a family we once saw all five on the same day in the Kruger National Park in South Africa.
We can advise you where to find them and we can book you the best game reserves and lodges, or the best tours.
Your safari doesn't have to be ultra-luxury (but it can!) or eye-wateringly expensive. We will make sure that it is sustainable and contributes to the conservaion of biodiversity and the wellbeing of the local communities.
Everything we book is ABTA and ATOL protected and as flexible as possible. Our job is to make sure you have a stunning Big Five safari. Place an enquiry or set up a consultation with us to get the process started!
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Planning Your Big Five Adventure
There are lots of different ways to go on safari, and lots of different places where you might expect to see the Big Five. Some of the considerations you might want to take into account are:
- How easy and quick it is to get there;
- Whether you want to dedicate your whole holiday to the safari or whether you want to combine other holiday activities as well, and if so what;
- How certain you want to be of seeing some or all of the Big Five;
- Whether taking medicine to prevent Malaria is an issue for you;
- How much you want to spend.
South Africa has great options for seeing the Big Five. For those on low budgets the National Parks in South Africa offer fantastic self-drive and self-catering options. They are easy to get to, but bear in mind that while you will always see some of the Big Five (elephants are more or less guaranteed) you would be very lucky to see all of them unless you go for a really long stay. These parks offer well known options like the world renowned Kruger National Park, as well as Malaria-free options like the Addo Elephant Park, which is easily combined with the Garden Route and Cape Town, and Pilanesberg, which is close to Johannesburg and Pretoria.
South Africa also has some of the best luxury Big Five Safari options, both in the Greater Kruger Park Area and in the Malaria-free areas of the Eastern Cape and the Highveld.
South Africa has great beaches to combine with a Big Five safari, but is is also easily paired with Mozambique, the Seychelles or Mauritius.
Zimbabwe, and specifically Hwange National Park, is one of our favourite places to see the Big Five. With easy access through Victoria Falls (and the chance to see the wonderful waterfall as well) Hwange has a stunning range of options at excellent prices.
Kenya is one of the best known places to see the Big Five. They can be seen in several of the reserves, but certainly the best to see as many as possible of the Big Five is the Maasai Mara, because of its very high density of game. The Masai Mara is an excellent place for small group tours, in particular. It also has a wide range op options from beautiful accommodation in the National Park to superb options in the adjacent conservancies where the density of game is as high, but the density of tourists is much lower.
Kenya also offers fantastic beaches to combine with a Big Five safari, as well as easy access to Zanzibar and Mauritius.
There are two very different options to see the Big Five in Tanzania. What is known as the Northern Circuit, which includes the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti National Park is one of the most popular places. The density of game is extremely high and the access is very easy. Like Kenya, this is an excellent place for small group tours. Also like Kenya, there is a range of options with the lodges in the conservancies offering a more exclusive game viewing experience.
In the South of Tanzania, far more remote and more difficult to get to, more popular with experienced safari goers are the Ruaha and the Julius Nyrere Nature Reserves. With very few other holidaymakers sharing very large spaces these parks offer wonderful opportunities for really wild experiences.
Tanzania also has the option of combining your safari with a lovely beach holiday on Zanzibar island.
The magnificent Big Five areas in Zambia, and in particular the stunning Luangwa Valley, are increasingly popular among those looking for more exclusive safari experiences. Less remote than Southern Tanzania, but still offering a very unusual Big Five experience, there are superb lodges and wonderful game viewing in Zambia.
Last, but by no means least, Botswana offers absolutely wonderful opportunities to see the Big Five. The Okavango Delta is a watery wonderland which is probably the most popular destination for people from South Africa who really know what they are looking for. Further north, Chobe offers probably the best elephant viewing in the world, as well as plentiful sightings of the rest of the Big Five. these areas are not so easy to access, but they are well worth the effort when you get there.
We do lots of safari honeymoons as well as other bucket list Big Five safari adventures. Why not book a consultation with us or submit an enquiry and we will get back to you to discuss your holiday ideas and your options. Consultations and holiday planning assistance are entirely free!
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