Ah, the beauty of Africa – its vast landscapes, rich cultures, and unrivalled wildlife. This year, our seasoned experts have come together to pick the top destinations they believe should make every traveller’s "African Safari 2024 Adventure." They’ve outdone themselves, presenting a collection that will, no doubt, ignite your wanderlust spirit!
1. Madikwe Game Reserve – South Africa
Nestled in South Africa's malaria-free North West province, Madikwe Game Reserve stands out for its expansive wilderness and excellent Big 5 experience with added sightings of the rare African wild dog. We've fallen in love with its biodiversity, but also with the fact that it's a lesser-known gem, ensuring a more exclusive escape. Plus, it's malaria-free, so the perfect holiday destination for those travelling with children or the elderly.
For the ultimate stay, we recommend the Madikwe Hills Private Game Lodge. Think elegant suites with private plunge pools overlooking the untamed plains, making it perfect for an escape from life's demands.
2. Sabi Sand Game Reserve – South Africa
Adjoining the famous Kruger National Park, Sabi Sand Game Reserve is renowned for its exceptional wildlife sightings, especially of the elusive leopard. Our Travel Experts hail it as a must-visit for its incredible nature walks, night safaris and off-road driving, which allow for intimate encounters with animals big and small.
Voted as both South Africa's and Africa's Leading Luxury Lodge for a sixth consecutive year at the World Travel Awards, our Travel Experts all agree that Silvan Safari steals the spotlight! This sanctuary showcases the grandeur of Africa, with opulent suites that meld seamlessly with the natural surroundings, reflecting the raw beauty of the Sabi Sand.
3. Tswalu Kalahari Reserve – South Africa
Stretching over 110,000 hectares in the Kalahari, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve is our country's largest private game reserve. Not only does Tswalu's commitment to conservation add to its appeal, but it's also home to the regal black-maned lions, pangolins and desert-adapted species, making it a must-add to any African travel bucket list!
At its heart lies Tswalu Motse Lodge. This sanctuary, designed to blend into the mountain range that forms its backdrop, offers a number of Legae (Tswana word meaning "small house"), promising privacy and luxury. From horseback safaris to bespoke game drives, a stay here redefines the African safari experience.
4. Skeleton Coast – Namibia
Where dunes meet the Atlantic Ocean and desert-adapted elephants wander, you'll find Namibia's hauntingly beautiful Skeleton Coast. Its name might evoke images of desolation, but this stretch of coastline is teeming with fascinating facets, including peculiar creatures, contrasting landscapes, shipwrecks speckling its shores, and so much more.
For those seeking solitude and stark beauty, Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp celebrates its surroundings, with canvas tents and communal spaces that invite the outside in. Guided excursions reveal secrets of this strange setting, while evenings are spent under a blanket of stars, making a stay at Hoanib otherworldly.
5. Lower Zambezi National Park – Zambia
Flowing downstream from Victoria Falls, the mighty Zambezi River, with its floodplains, woodlands and variety of fauna, carves its way through to a wild wonderland of water and wilderness. The Lower Zambezi National Park in Zambia offers a unique blend of fishing, canoeing, and traditional safari, giving you a multi-dimensional adventure.
Our Travel Experts' top pick here is Chiawa Camp, with its old-world charm and riverfront setting that allows you to immerse yourself in the sounds and sights of nature – all the while relishing the nostalgic aura of traditional safaris.
6. Kafue National Park – Zambia
The vastness of Kafue National Park, Zambia's oldest and largest national park, never ceases to amaze. From the Busanga Plains to thick woodlands, its varied ecosystems invite an array of animals, from antelope to leopards, cheetahs, and more. Moreover, Kafue boasts almost 500 bird species and grants exceptional game-fishing excursions.
Enhance your stay by bedding down at Shumba Camp. Poised on a tree island, it provides panoramic views and an authentic bush experience. Raised on wooden platforms, the camp's luxurious tented units, central dining area, and fire pit create an atmosphere that's both wild and welcoming.
7. Okavango Delta – Botswana
A shimmering UNESCO World Heritage site in Botswana, the Okavango Delta is a labyrinth of lagoons, channels, and islands. From sturdy buffalos to graceful giraffes, its waters attract a plethora of wildlife, making it a premier safari destination. Here, Mokoro excursions offer a unique perspective, making it a firm favourite among our Travel Experts.
At Nxabega Okavango Tented Camp, one can embrace the delta's essence. Set on raised platforms and shaded beneath a lush canopy of trees, each sumptuous tented suite overlooks the floodplains, offering front-row seats to nature's stage, curated especially for your African safari 2024 adventure.
8. Maasai Mara National Reserve – Kenya
The iconic Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya is synonymous with the Great Migration. Witnessing millions of wildebeest and zebra traversing its plains is a spectacle we believe should be on everyone's radar when considering their African safari 2024 adventure.
But the Maasai Mara offers more than the migration, as the reserve is a year-round wildlife haven where the Big 5 roam freely against a backdrop of rolling hills and acacia-peppered plains
Our Travel Experts' top pick for accommodation in the Maasai Mara National Reserve is Sanctuary Olonana Camp. Beyond its prime location on the banks of the Mara River, Sanctuary Olonana stands out for its commitment to sustainable luxury. Think eco-chic suites, rejuvenating spa treatments, and gourmet cuisine, all anchored by a deep respect for the environment and local Maasai culture.
9. Serengeti National Park – Tanzania
A landscape where horizons know no bounds, the Serengeti National Park is another vantage point for the Great Migration and Big 5 sightings. Echoing with the roars of lions and the distant rumble of wildebeest hooves, this famous savannah in Tanzania is like a living production of "The Lion King".
Selected for your African safari 2024 adventure, Singita Mara River Tented Camp offers an intimate embrace with the land and people of Tanzania. From its environmentally conscious design and cultural elements to the wildlife activities, Singita Mara is a love letter to the Serengeti.
10. Volcanoes National Park – Rwanda
Set against the misty backdrop of the Virunga Mountains, Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda is an ethereal wilderness flourishing with life. Famed for the mountain gorillas that reside here, tracking and meeting these majestic creatures is a profound experience, taking you deep into the heart of the African rainforest.
For a dreamy stay, Bisate Lodge tops our Travel Experts' list. Its domed-shaped thatched villas nestle into the verdant forest backdrop, boasting spacious verandas that offer breathtaking views of the nearby peaks. The lodge's design draws inspiration from traditional Rwandan culture, while its luxurious interiors are crafted for the utmost style and comfort.
Top Destinations for 2024 Revealed
And there you have it! With ten of the best destinations selected by our Travel Experts who have first-hand experience of all of these places, it's time to start planning your African safari 2024 adventure. Why wait? Reach out, and let's start ticking off that travel bucket list. Your journey begins today.
Featured Image Credit: C. Culbert
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