Preparing for the high season in Southern Africa

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Preparing for the high season in Southern Africa

Planning a safari to Africa and preparing for the high season in Southern Africa and destinations like Zimbabwe, Botswana, Zambia and South Africa offers numerous opportunities for exceptional wildlife viewing experiences. The unique landscapes and wilderness areas of each destination make them ideal for an adventure of a lifetime for any nature lover.

The high season for safaris in these southern African destinations generally falls between June and October, when the weather is drier, making wildlife easier to spot as they gather around water sources. This period also aligns with the region’s winter and early spring, offering cooler temperatures and a more comfortable safari experience.

Elephant in Southern Africa
Elephant in Southern Africa

Here is JENMAN African Safaris’ guide to preparing for the high season in Southern Africa.

Plan your safari

When starting to plan your safari, it’s important to conduct research. Begin by familiarizing yourself with each destination and what makes it special. Zimbabwe is known for attractions such as Victoria Falls (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) and the wide plains of Hwange National Park. Botswana is renowned for the labyrinthine waterways of the Okavango Delta and the elephant herds of Chobe National Park. South Africa’s Kruger National Park is famous for being a haven for the Big Five animals, while Zambia’s South Luangwa National Park offers unique walking safaris.

Choose your accommodation and itinerary

During high season, popular lodges and campsites can book up quickly, so it’s advisable to plan and book well in advance. Choose accommodations that align with your budget and comfort preferences, ranging from luxury lodges to rustic tented camps. When planning your itinerary, consider how much time you want to spend in each location and whether you prefer a guided tour or more independence.

Okavango Delta, Botswana
Okavango Delta, Botswana

What to Pack

Packing smartly ensures comfort and convenience during your safari. Choose lightweight, breathable clothing in neutral colors such as khaki, beige, and olive green. Also, pack light layers for fluctuating temperatures, including a warm jacket for morning and evening game drives. Durable, comfortable walking shoes are a must.

Other essentials include:

  • Binoculars to observe animals from a distance.
  • Camera or high-quality smartphone to capture those special moments. Don’t forget extra memory cards and batteries.
  • The African sun can be intense, so pack sunscreen, a wide-brimmed hat, and sunglasses.
  • Keep insects away with reliable insect repellent. Additionally, consider packing antihistamines for insect bites and allergies.
  • Prepare a basic medical kit with essentials such as pain relievers, antidiarrheal medication, antiseptic wipes, and adhesive bandages for minor injuries.
  • A flashlight or headlamp is essential for navigating campsites or lodges at night.
Lionesses in Southern Africa
Lionesses in Southern Africa

Health and safety

Visit your doctor or a travel clinic well in advance to discuss vaccinations and health precautions. Malaria is prevalent in many safari areas, so antimalarial medication may be recommended. It’s also wise to ensure you have travel insurance that covers medical evacuation.

Respect wildlife and local customs

On safari, you are a guest in a wild and natural environment. It is crucial to respect the wildlife and maintain a safe distance at all times. Additionally, familiarise yourself with and respect local customs and traditions. This respect extends to adhering to park rules and guidelines, ensuring minimal environmental impact.

Consider the ethical impact

Choose safari operators who support conservation efforts and community empowerment. Responsible tourism helps ensure that wildlife preservation and the benefits of tourism are sustainable and equitable for local communities.

We are a leading safari tour operator that provides world-class guided group tours and tailor-made packages throughout Southern Africa, East Africa, and Madagascar, ensuring unique wildlife experiences.

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