Luxury African safaris are all about intelligent and adventurous explorations of the vast and varied landscapes of Africa, throwing in to the exotic mix sumptuous top hotel accommodation in some of the continent’s most cosmopolitan and exciting cities. From Zambia to Kenya, these tailor-made getaways take in a series of lodges and game reserves as visitors indulge in a range of quintessentially African experiences, from tracking wild dogs in Laikipia to travelling on Mozambique dhows, all accompanied by expert guides who make sure they miss out on nothing. Luxury wildlife Safaris bring you up close and personal to nature in the raw, but in complete safety. Here’s our guide to the best luxury safaris for 2013.
Safaris in Kenya
Kenya is where the classic safari experience beloved first of big game hunters with guns and now of big game lovers with cameras all began. It’s still one of the most popular safari destinations to head for, with a particularly spectacular landscape and an unsurpassed variety of wildlife of every kind in its natural habitat. From vast mountain ranges to sandy beaches, Kenya offers it all in spades, and there are a number of different types of safaris awaiting the discriminating traveller here.
Stay at Joy Adamson’s original campsite in Shaba National Reserve, or combine a wildlife trek in Mara North Conservancy with a relaxing stay at the gorgeous Kinondo Kwetu beaches for a honeymoon with a difference.
Safaris in Namibia
Namibia is the classic African wilderness, full of a seductively haunting beauty that will take your breath away. Largely composed of serene desert sands and bordering the Atlantic Ocean, Namibia is a land of contrasts still inhabited by nomadic herders and unchanged for centuries. Explore the dunes and deserts of this romantic landscape in the Huab Conservancy and Etosha National Park, or see the rare desert elephant and black rhino in their natural surroundings in the NabibRand Nature Reserve and Walvis Bay.
Uganda has some of the most exciting landscapes in Africa, with a rich and varied wildlife population, especially of apes. The country celebrated its first 50 years of autonomy in 2012 and it has been making giant strides in the field of wildlife conservation.
There are numerous great safari holidays to choose from in The Pearl of Africa, from tracking the famous primates in Kyambura Gorge which looks like something out of King Kong, to trekking through the surrealistic landscapes of the Ugandan section of the Volcanoes National Park.
Zambia, right in the middle of the Dark Continent, is renowned for outstanding natural gems like Victoria Falls and remains largely unexplored by Africa enthusiasts, so visitors feel here today much as Stanley must have when he came after the elusive Dr Livingstone over a century back. As you’ll have gathered by now, the landscapes are rich and varied and packed with exotic indigenous species in their natural habitats. Go on a great family safari, staying at luxury complexes in the Lower Zambezi, Livingstone or the Luangwa Valley, as a brilliant introduction to Africa for the kids. Or explore the whole region by air, flying over the Victoria Falls and on to the timeless Okavango Delta, shared with Botswana.
If you’re on honeymoon, try the romantic hideaway of Mchenja Camp on the meandering Zambezi and watch elephants and great cats coming down to the watering hole before embarking on a luxury safari that takes you to the exotic King Solomon’s Mines setting of Chongwe River Camp.