Everyone loves an East Africa safari but to avoid rain-swept beaches and where'd-everything-go savannahs, you'll need to be in the right place at the right time.
There is no single best time to visit East Africa but there are rainy and dry seasons. Each has its advantages and each destination has its best moments, not least in the Masai Mara/Serengeti where the seasonally-driven wildebeest migration takes place.
If you have already decided when you are going on safari, it's now time to choose where to travel to; if your dates are flexible, you can plan your safari better by understanding East Africa's seasonal trends.
We've split the year up into three periods to coincide with the main phases of the wildebeest migration and the rainy seasons.
At a glance: Expect warm temperatures and short rains. Game viewing in the Serengeti, diving in Zanzibar and gorilla trekking in Uganda and Rwanda are excellent choices now.
Weather: This is summer in East Africa. Temperatures are warm and pleasant with an average high of 28°C and an average low of 15°C. The rains from early November to late March are usually scattered and localised with short-lived downpours. There is often heavy rain in late March.
Read more about where to see the wildebeest migration from December to March.
At a glance: Don't be put off by the long rains: safaris are still good in the Serengeti, Lake Manyara and Masai Mara. It's also less expensive and popular destinations are less crowded.
Weather: The long rains arrive and heavy showers can be expected for a few hours every day or so. Avoid the hot and humid East African coast at this time as well as Uganda and Rwanda - rain is torrential.
Read more about where to see the wildebeest migration from April to June.
At a glance: Mild temperatures and classic dry-season game viewing make these months a popular time to visit East Africa. Book accommodation and tours well in advance, especially if it's the wildebeest migration you want to see. Visitor numbers peak in August.
Weather: The October to December short rains in Tanzania and central Kenya notwithstanding, these months are mostly dry and sunny forcing animals to gather at permanent water. July to September offers the most pleasant weather in East Africa, especially along the coast.
Read more about where to see the wildebeest migration from July to November.
At a Glance