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Ranking high on most traveller’s bucket list is going on a luxury African Safari and it’s no wonder why. To witness the thrilling chase of a cheetah hunting a buck, or simply seeing the slow trek of elephants finding new grazing spots is unforgettable. However, deciding on when to go is an important factor as each season offers different experiences. We take a closer a look at the best times to take a Safari in Southern Africa.
Undoubtedly, dry seasons are ideal times for Safari-goers. This is because thirsty animals are on the move to find water which makes their movements predictable. They are usually found at water holes and rivers for easy game-spotting. Animals, especially elephants, are often sighted as they move from overgrazed areas in search of fresh grasslands.
Dry Winter: For Better Driver and Walking Tours
Dry winter in Southern Africa takes place from May to August. Apart from easily spotting animals in their natural habitat, during this time, visiting a Safari also means more bearable weather conditions.
The pleasant weather allows you to stay in the sun longer and embark on driving tours without the canopy down – this offers you clearer views of game. The bush and grasslands are also quite low during and makes walking trips possible without accidentally encountering dangerous animals.
Early Spring: An Amplified Safari Experience
September to October has you in the midst of Spring and as the weather becomes drier, animals are more desperate for water. This gives you ample chance of easily spotting animals. Walking tours become less likely as the heat begins to turn up and the weather becomes drier and dustier.
What To Expect From Each Country In Southern Africa
July to October is the best time to visit Zimbabwe especially the largest game reserve in the country – Hwange. If you wish to include the Victoria Falls in your Safari, the best months to do this is in March and April as the views are more magnificent. White River rafting is best from August onwards as rapids are fast and the water is low.
Botswana is not the cheapest Safari destination as most parks are inaccessible via roads and require a charter which means extra expenses. However, visiting the glorious Okavango Delta from June through September in Botswana to see the huge herds of animals congregating makes it priceless.
Although most of Namibia is desert area there are still better times to visit for better game viewing. May to September offers you the driest months and animals flood to waterholes.
Namibia is also the country most people visit for bird-watching and the ideal time to do this, although, hot and humid is, from December to March.
The ideal months for a Safari in South Africa is from June through September as the weather is cooler and drier. Visiting during this time also means increased chances of spotting the famous Big Five.
Visiting South Africa means better infrastructure, so even during rainy weather, roads are less likely to be washed out.
Are you ready for your Safari?