African safaris are changing. As surely as the camera has replaced the hunting rifle, the growing popularity of guided walking safaris signals a revolution in traditional game viewing. Away from the confines of a vehicle, travellers are now venturing into big game country on foot for anything up to several days, spending starlit nights at remote lodges or pre-erected tented camps.
An African walking safari is one of life's most unforgettable adventures. Imagine birdsong-filled days spent following animal tracks, shadowing a foraging baboon troop or settling down in the shade to watch buffalo gather at a waterhole. Armed rangers and professional guides ensure your safety and comfort, and you’ll sit down to a fire-cooked meal and slip into bed between crisp sheets every night.
Prepare yourself for a different kind of safari experience. Set in some of the best game reserves in East and Southern Africa, there are always plenty of animals to see on a walking safari but the emphasis is on the environment’s smaller details – a dew-dazzled spider web, shy flowers and bumbling beetles. Cultural elements come into play as well, whether it’s greeting local herdsmen or sharing stories with your guide. Formal barriers melt away after a day or two, fireside conversations carry on deep into the night and you’ll be left with a better insight into this alluring continent.
Find out where to go before delving into our selection of recommended Africa walking safari tours. We’ve chosen the best walking experiences in the best reserves across East and Southern Africa and adding on a few days’ at a safari lodge or tropical beach resort is as simple as it is rewarding – simply ask a Safari Expert.
Walking safaris augment Africa’s other great on-foot experience – trekking holidays. A more mountain-based experience, trekking through lush rainforest for gorillas and chimps has become a must-do activity in Uganda and Rwanda while a multi-day Mount Kilimanjaro trek lies on the bucket lists of travellers the world over.
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Find out what it feels like to Step Into the Wild: South Luangwa Walking Safaris
At a Glance
Get up close and personal with Africa’s wildest game reserves on a walking safari – from short, guided “bush walks” to multiday expeditions, it’s the most intimate way to discover Africa’s wildlife.