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Items to Consider When Planning a Safari Bucket List Trip

Have you given any thought to planning a bucket list safari trip in Africa? If so, this piece may help you to figure out where you want to go and what you want to do. It can all be rather overwhelming if you don’t get some good, solid advice.

There are so many different countries to visit there including South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Namibia, Rwanda, Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania.

Some questions to ask include the following considerations that I’ve noted below.

Is your planned travel all about the animals and safaris or would you like to combine it with some great winery visits, culture & history, or is there even a checkmark next to one of the great waterfalls in the world?

How about combining your African safari with a romantic beach option at the end of your travels? There are some fabulous ones to consider including The Seychelles, Mauritius, Zanzibar and other great beach options off the coasts of South Africa, Mozambique or Kenya.

What animals do you want to see? Is it just the “Big Five” – elephants, rhinos, leopard, lions, and buffalo or is your favorite animal the giraffe or cheetahs? How about primates? Have you always loved the gorillas and chimpanzees that we’re so close to from a DNA perspective? Would you love to see them in their own habitat? How about the Marine “Big Five” including whales, dolphins, sharks, seals, and penguins? You may not even have heard of this big five? Do you love all kinds of birds?

What about your personal needs with the requirements for hair dryers and curling irons or are you pretty easy going when it comes to traveling and can live without this need?

Are you into some degree of adventure such as abseiling, swimming with the sharks, hiking, kayaking, caving, bungee jumping, or ziplining?

Do you love trains and want to consider one of the great luxury train options, like Rovos Rail or the Blue Train?

Photo above of Rovos Rail, courtesy of AmaWaterways


How about your accommodation? Do you like tented glamping or prefer lodge-style accommodation? To what degree of luxury do you prefer?

What time of year do you want to travel although with Africa, you can certainly go any time of year, there are specific areas that are better visited at certain times of the year to maximize your experience? What temperatures do you prefer to have when traveling?


Do you have any children traveling with you and if so, what are their ages? There are some fabulous options for family considerations especially if you want to avoid malaria risk areas. Africa is such an incredible educational option for family travel with children including both the animal safari knowledge as well as the cultural element. It can be such a life-changing travel option for children and adults alike.

If not traveling with family, maybe you have some friends you are able to travel with? This can be such a great option since you can have a tremendous experience that you can share with them. It also enables you to share transfers, safari vehicles and other private touring options making it that much safer and more affordable for everyone.

If you’re at all concerned about the culinary aspect to travel in Africa, don’t be! The food and wine options are incredible! You can definitely get some varied styles of food and cooking, but you can also get very basic food any time – whatever is your preference and it’s all outstanding at the lodges and camps that I have been to and would recommend. The other thing that you need not worry about is if you have any allergies or aversions to food whatsoever. I’ve been able to very comfortably travel with absolutely no issues with my gluten free requirements with my allergy.

Considering how popular African safari travel has become, it’s highly recommended that you start planning well in advance since many of the best camps have limited space. There’s been so much pent-up demand for travel everywhere, that people are starting to consider their planning even earlier now than ever before.

Last but certainly not least, what’s your budget? Generally, in the travel business, we tend to talk about a per person, per day cost to make it easier to plan accordingly. The great thing with most of the lodges in Africa is that they’re all-inclusive so that you need not worry about getting nickel and dimed and know what your cost is upfront. Travel to Africa can be tailored to most budgets depending on the level of accommodation, length of travel, and various destinations and tours selected.

I can help you with all these questions and more to craft the ‘perfect’ bucket list trip to Africa for you. Call or email me when you’re ready to consider this fabulous experience of a lifetime. By the way, as I’ve always said to everyone I talk to about Africa, you’ll find it gets in your heart and you’ll want to go more than just once. Rene and I will be planning our 6th trip to Africa soon since we absolutely fell in love with all the countries we’ve visited there.

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