by Tamlin Wightman on April 10, 2012
5 min read

Been there, done that, got the Big 5 T-Shirt?

Even if it’s not your first time in Africa on the back of a game-viewing vehicle, photographic safaris offer a unique way to encounter the bush – through the lens of a camera.

No matter what your level of photographic prowess, a luxury safari to Africa will provide you with countless opportunities to capture the perfect photograph. There are many luxury lodges that offer specialist photographic safaris for amateurs and professionals alike.

Leopard through the lens

At Rhino Africa we can plan the perfect experience for you. Simply contact one of our photographic safari experts today and visit our website for more information.

Specialised Safari Vehicles

Londolozi has custom built a completely unique, specialised photography vehicle. A standard Land Rover was modified and fitted with adjustable bucket seats that can swivel 180 degrees, allowing guests maximum flexibility to achieve unusual camera angles and to create exceptional images.

Photographic safari at Londolozi

Equipment for personal guest use includes:

  • stills and video camera
  • camera support arms and tripods
  • night vision goggles
  • individual scorpion torches
  • e-reference book (loaded with over six reference books including birds, trees, mammals and stars)
  • star laser pointer
  • “sound safari” equipment designed to amplify the sounds of the African bush

This is a complete experience, backed up by highly trained rangers and some of the best big cat viewing in Africa.

Londolozi Private Game Reserve
  • Cheetah Plains in the Sabi Sand Game Reserve has also created a specially-designed vehicle with swiveling seats and control arms, custom-built into a brand new Toyota Land Cruiser. In addition, you’ll be accompanied by an on-site professional photographer to give you all the instruction and help you need.

Highly Trained Guides

Private Game Reserves and safari lodges such as Londolozi, Singita, Lion Sands and Royale Malewane employ some of the most highly skilled rangers and trackers in the world. Many of the rangers take a special interest in photography and their skills are of invaluable assistance on your photographic safari. A ranger who knows how to get the best shot will make the effort to place you in the perfect position to get your back-lit portrait of a leopard. The neighbours are going to be very impressed!

  • Ulusaba Private Game Reserve is Sir Richard Branson’s private reserve and offers Photographic Safari packages that include a professional photographer’s assistance and guidance.

Why not hire a private guide for the duration of your safari? Read more about using a private guide here.

Videographer Barend getting a young hyena on camera

Don't try this at home!

Hide & Seek

Often the best way to get the photograph you’re looking for is to lie in wait. Many lodges throughout Africa have magnificent waterholes where animals congregate. These are often viewable from your private deck, or even from your plunge pool! Quite a few have gone the extra step and built hidden hides where you can sit comfortably and wait for the action to happen right in front of you.

  • In Botswana, the bird watching is unsurpassed. There are many lodges here that are particularly recommended for bird watchers, such as Duma Tau, Xigera and Jao Camp. Duma Tau has an amazing hide particularly known for its close up elephant sightings.
Birdwatching in Lion Sands

Birdwatching in Lion Sands

Birdwatching at Lion Sands

Birdwatching in Lion Sands

On the Water

In the Okavango Delta, Botswana, traditional dug-out canoes called mokoros allow you to silently glide close to animals on the bank (and in the water). Bird watching from the mokoro is particularly good and the slow, steady movement of the boat is conducive to taking great photographs.

In the Chobe National Park and along the Chobe River, motorised boats are the preferred method of travel and allow you get to up close to elephants, hippo, crocodiles and much more. Many of these boats have built-in camera arms to stabilise your equipment and take the weight off your arms.

Okavango Delta

Game viewing in the Okavango Delta

Use Your Feet

Sometimes the best way to get close to an animal is on foot. Many lodges in Africa allow you to get out of the vehicle and walk right up to the wildlife. At Sanbona in the Western Cape, you can get near to cheetah and rhino on foot.

Sanbona Wildlife Reserve

Sanbona Wildlife Reserve

At most of the private game lodges in the Sabi Sand Game Reserve, your ranger can take you on a bush walk. While on foot you’ll be presented with entirely different photographic opportunities and you will see things you wouldn’t be able to see from the back of a vehicle.

Zambia is one of the best countries to go on a walking safari and nowhere is more suited to a walking safari than the South Luangwa National Park. Here you can spend nights in luxury at five star lodges and in the day you will travel by foot to the next lodge for the following evening’s rest. Along the way you can expect close up encounters with elephant, giraffe and other African wildlife. You will be clicking away at every opportunity!

South Luangwa National Park

Walking safari in South Luangwa National Park

The best way to get started is to speak to one of our African safari experts for free, no-obligation advice. Who knows, you might be the next wildlife photographer of the year!