We’ve all been romanced by the charms of Africa before, through countless cinematic, musical and literary depictions of this mysterious land. Ever thought of roughing it like Tarzan? Or rocking safari chic like Claire Foy in The Queen? Now is the time to get off your screens and embark on a real, live safari adventure.
With a host of tours available across the continent’s many nature reserves and parks, safaris are a prime opportunity to open your mind and awaken your senses. From the boundless vistas to the massive diversity of life, all fighting in the great game of survival, there’s nothing quite like it on earth.
Here are some other reasons why you should experience this ultimate African adventure.
A Whole New World
The landscapes of the African savannah are unmistakably unique. Each of the locations across the continent has their charms and quirks, from local tribes to unique natural events. You decide which safari is the one for you. Remember to take note of the best visiting periods for the more seasonal areas. If your timing is just right, you’ll get to witness incredible events, from a herd crossing a predator-infested river to a migratory entourage passing before your eyes.
A Real Escape
Embarking on a safari is literally escaping into another realm. You are travelling into the wild, whether on foot, by vehicle, or even on a canoe. The concert of Nature’s elements envelopes all your senses, as you get further away from the distractions of your everyday routines and demands. Welcome the isolation as you immerse yourself in the moment, subjecting yourself to the elements, and letting the unexpected sweep you off your feet.
The Wildlife (and not just the Big 5)
We might have all seen the Africa enclosure at the zoo before. But, there is a world of difference in coming up close to a wandering herd of elephants, within their habitat, no fences between you. As you come across the diversity of wildlife gathering at watering holes or roaming the plains, that Jurassic Park sense of awe is multiplied many times over, with every new encounter. For those with deeper pockets, some tours take you to highly endangered species, like Rwanda’s mountain gorillas, to observe some highly protected animals.
Your Friendly Neighbourhood Safari Guides
Pretty much all safaris are led by seasoned guides, educating you on a wide range of safari-related topics. From tracking to animal behaviour and even survival tips, their wealth of knowledge will astound. As you listen to their words of wisdom and insight, you might learn a life lesson or two. Also, as you’re walking through the bush, any fears for your life will be allayed, knowing you’ve got a trusty armed guide who’s well able to protect you.
Move to the rhythms of African culture and lifestyles
A voyage through the African bush is also a chance to experience authentic African culture, whether through the African meals that are served out or the nomadic communities that you encounter. With bush camping opportunities and chances to interact with locals, including the Maasai and Mbuti, safaris can leave you with a new perspective on life, as you witness a different way of living.
Stunning Sunrises and Sunsets
As the sun peeks over the sleeping Serengeti or dips back into the horizon at dusk, you get to savour an ethereal period of burnished glory. Watch in awe as the light endows the plains with vermillion and pink hues. Embrace the silence as the magic of these brief yet unforgettable moments capture your breath and even bring tears to your eyes.
Support Safaris, Support Conservation
By going on a safari tour, you also contribute to the preservation of Africa’s flora and fauna. It’s a win-win situation, as you are treated to the safari’s cathartic adventures while knowing that your support is also going towards protecting the future of these lands. Most tour groups provide environmentally responsible lodging and itineraries, so rest easy and let them take care of you like they take care of the wild.
May the day never come when we can only see these incredible locations in a picture or a video. Book your tour with a reputable agency that is accountable to the continued conservation of these precious domains and their inhabitants.
Regardless of age and preference, there’s a tour that suits you and your group, so come and be humbled by the majesty of the savannah. Maybe you’ll have a new appreciation for the live-action Lion King remake when it hits theatres, having seen the real circle of life for yourself.
This article originally appeared on Wego.