March 12

On the Ground: What to Expect On A Safari Bush Walk


March 12, 2018

Safari bush walks can certainly give you an adrenaline rush because you’re stepping – quite literally – into the wilderness many animals call home. Safari by game vehicles are amazing but the smaller details and marvels are often missed. This is why a walking safari is a spectacular way to get closer and experience the bush like never before.

Safari bush walk at Erongo Wilderness Lodge

What to Wear on a Walking Safari

  • The idea is to blend in with the natural surroundings of the bush, so wear beige, dark green or brown clothes.
  • To prepare for all weather and temperatures, layering up is a good idea. But make sure it’s easy for you to carry around.
  • Seeing that this is a walking activity, invest in sturdy walking shoes so as not to end up with thorns in your feet.
  • It’s also a good idea to wear long socks to keep the ticks away.
  • Don’t forget insect repellent spray to keep biting bugs at bay.
  • The African sun can scorch, so lather on sunscreen and wear those hats and sunglasses for efficient protection.

Group of safari bush walkers crouching to watch buffulo nearby

Always listen to your ranger’s rules

Rangers get to know the bush so intimately, they can tell you about almost everything – from flora and birdlife to large animals to small.  And even the tiniest tell-tale signs – you can trust them. Before embarking on your adventure, your rangers will explain the rules of safari bush walks. These are meant to keep you safe and maximise your chances of encountering even the shiest animal.

These rules usually include:

  • Silence is golden – it gives you greater opportunities to truly immerse yourself in the bush and not startle any creature around.
  • How to react to potentially dangerous animals if you do come face-to-face with them, such as lion, hippo, elephant or rhino.
  • Keep alert – engage with all your senses and learn as much as possible on this incredible walking safari.
  • Expect the unexpected – these moments are the treasures you take home to share.

An impala peers out from within the tall grass

Relish every moment to observe and learn

Your ranger will give you many opportunities to learn the secrets of the African bush and show you the different plants, birds, animals and insects on the walk. You will be able to smell, feel, sometimes taste, hear and see so many things – it’s truly an amazing experience.

You will get to learn to identify the tracks of different animals, and even their scat! Grow your knowledge on medicinal plants and the ones to avoid. As you journey through the bush with your ranger and your walking team, marvel at the intrinsic connections that make up the ecosystem. Everything is connected and every living creature has a role to play – even the tiniest ant. This realisation and being able to see it with your own eyes is such a rewarding part of safari bush walks.

A lion's paw print in the mud

Remember, every safari experience is created differently. This means you can go on as many safaris as you’d like and still encounter something new. You can find out more about a typical day on safari here.


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About the author 

Jessica Bothma

Jessica grew up surrounded with stories and photographs of the Congo and Lake Kivu, where her grandfather experienced his childhood. After reading several National Geographic magazines, she realised her dream of travelling and writing about Africa. Jessica is proudly Deaf and fluent in South African Sign Language and hopes to master more languages. Besides being an avid reader, she loves animals and wants to experience owning as many pets as possible.

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