Africa’s photographic safari scene is by now well-established.
Areas like Kenya’s Maasai Mara or South Africa’s Sabi Sands have over 60 years of experience in crafting the ideal safari for their guests, making subtle tweaks depending on their visitors’ nationality, ages, preferences, safari history etc., and you are bound to get an absolutely mind-blowing, world-class nature immersion as a result.
Yet over the last decade or so, a few off-the-beaten track gems have started popping up on our radar (read about a few of them here), and knowing what we do about how much incredibly positive feedback some of our travellers have sent us about their stays in such lodges, we thought we’d fill you in on a few reasons why it’s sometimes the smaller, hidden-away places that really set your soul on fire.
Here then, are four very good reasons why the lesser known spots should sit high on your next-want-to-visit lists:
Lower Vehicle Density
The established places are where everyone wants to go. Sure, there’s a reason – usually that the game viewing is exceptional – but hand in hand with that you will sometimes find things like vehicle pressure, blaring radios and evidence of man starting to intrude into what should essentially be a wilderness experience.
By looking slightly further afield to the lesser well known areas, you stand a much greater chance of enjoying sightings to yourself, enjoying them for far longer, and getting a sense of exclusivity that you didn’t pay a premium for.
Which brings us to Point #2:
2. Lower Costs
Safari can be expensive, there’s no denying it, particularly in the luxury lodges in the high-impact game-viewing areas.
Yet if one chooses carefully, you can often see just as much without breaking the bank to have to do so.
There are plenty of game reserves in Africa – like Ruaha National Park in Tanzania or Nxai Pan in Botswana – that can provide world-class wildlife sightings, yet because they have tended to fly under the radar, don’t charge as much as their better known cousins nearby.
One will often find that the more established wildlife destinations have a formula that works. And this is all to the well and good. However, by going further afield, you are likely to encounter experiences that can’t be found anywhere else. The truly nuanced safari and adventure destinations differentiate themselves in a myriad of ways; by involving you in the uniqueness of the local culture; by giving a completely different take on what sundowner drinks should involve; boat cruises on a lake where you can cast a line to try out tiger fishing… anything is possible when you try somewhere unique…
4. Thrill of Discovery
You will likely have a fair idea of what to expect in the more documented wildlife areas of Africa. You will likely have seen pictures or seen a documentary feature or two.
Yet the secret parks feel like just that a lot of the time; well-kept secrets. Dry river beds fringed with palm trees and endless baobab forests covering rolling hills as far as the eye can see… you can find these and so much more just when you least expect them, by venturing a bit more into the unknown… You won’t have friends or family telling you exactly what it will be like based on their own experiences, instead you get to be the explorer, to break the new ground of all your contemporaries.
Don’t just book somewhere random, that’s definitely not what we’re saying.
But if you do want to truly feel that adventurous spirit, almost as if you are the first person to venture into a place, then do a bit of research (or ask us), see where the reviews say is brilliant but not a lot of people know about, and go…
Get in touch through firstname.lastname@example.org to start planning YOUR adventurous safari…