Travelling to the African continent with parents, siblings, kids, grandkids, and other family members can be an enriching assortment of shared experiences. They have become so popular they have been nicknamed ‘3G’ vacations, as they usually involve three generations. Nothing quite compares to family safari holidays in Africa.
Multi-generational travel is a goal for families who are seeking togetherness in a time-constrained modern world. A safari is the perfect opportunity for family members - who often live far apart - to have a unique, shared experience in a magical setting. Whether you are celebrating a special birthday, an anniversary, or simply wanting to re-connect, we have a list of 15 properties that are perfect for multi-generational family safaris.
Kenya & Tanzania
1. Jabali Private House, Ruaha National Park
Surrounded by ancient and immense baobab trees in the heart of Ruaha National Park is where you will find Jabali Private House. This exclusive multi-generational luxury lodge in Tanzania is entirely yours to enjoy – where safari greats including herds of elephant, buffalo and lion can be seen roaming in the distance. In fact, this area is well known for its high densities of lion, super prides of 20 or more are commonplace.
Waiting on standby for your arrival are a private guide and chef, and you can enjoy quality family time without the cooking, cleaning and even the driving! All of the activities at Jabali Private House are tailored to your family’s wishes, and include day and night wildlife drives as well as walking safaris. With no set times, you can choose to spend the day on safari or around the swimming pool savouring good food and creating cherished memories with the people you love.
2. Governor's Camp, Masai Mara National Reserve
Governor’s Camp is one of the oldest camps in the Mara. The stunning setting of Governor’s Camp was once reserved - almost a century ago – for Kenya’s colonial governors. It is perfectly placed on a thickly forested meander of the Mara River and is one of the best multi-generational safari camps in Kenya.
This is a safari journey that is reminiscent of the bygone days of luxury safari travel featuring canvas tents complete with en-suite bathrooms and flushing toilets. Imagine waking up to the sound of chortling hippos in the river below, or the birdsong of a myriad of beautiful species. It’s a quintessential immersion into the natural world and its wonders - including from July to October, when it plays host to the Great Migration. Governor’s offers a transformational safari where families can join Masai cultural visits, see the wilds of Africa from a hot air balloon, revel in bush breakfasts and dinners, or simply enjoy a spa treatment in camp.
3. Sanctuary Olonana, Masai Mara National Reserve
Sanctuary Olonana is guaranteed to leave families spellbound and is set on a private stretch of the Mara River in Kenya. Game viewing starts at the lodge, where a pod of hippos lives permanently in the river just below, and many other species come to drink. The suites feature floor-to-ceiling glass doors that fold to open, blending the interiors with the exteriors - where you are ever-connected to the surrounding beauty.
When you aren’t exploring the Mara’s rich eco-system on customised safari vehicles, you are accompanied by an experienced Masai guide to a village where you learn all about this vibrant culture. A particular highlight for the kids is being able to learn how to make and shoot a traditional bow and arrow, make a fire, and participate in traditional dances. You could also choose to have the family catch the first few rays of sunrise on a hot air balloon ride, floating gently above the plains.
4. Saruni Mara, Mara North Conservancy
Saruni Mara is an unfenced bush lodge and unlike most of the other properties in the Mara’s conservancies, it is built with a degree of permanence, setting it apart for the other tented camps nearby. It is an intimate and remote camp, that features polished wood floors, Persian carpets, and enormous cedar beds.
It’s the ideal family safari and the main activities include day and night game drives, guided bush walks, visits to a rhino sanctuary, or you can take a hot-air balloon flight for a bird’s eye view over the endless plains. For the more adventurous families, you can take part in the ‘Warrior for a Week’ programme, which is a special course in which you will learn bush skills, including animal tracking and guiding.
5. Linyanti Ebony Camp, Linyanti Wildlife Reserve
Linyanti Ebony Camp is one of the greatest places to take the whole family in Botswana. It is situated along the banks of the Linyanti Marsh, which is the only permanent water source for the region’s plethora of wildlife during the dry season months. You will find only an exclusive number of tents, making it a private safari sojourn.
The safari camp features a main guest area that has a comfortable lounge, a dining room that showcases authentic African cuisine and an inviting splash pool, a welcome respite from the heat of summer. What makes this safari camp truly exciting is its mix of both land and water activities, you and your loved ones can revel in twice-daily game drives, walking safaris, birdwatching, boat cruises, traditional mokoro rides and fishing.
6. Chobe Game Lodge, Chobe National Park
Chobe Game Lodge’s claim to fame is that it is the only permanent accommodation within the Chobe National Park, right on the banks of the Chobe River. This area is well regarded as having the biggest population of elephants on Earth, and it is one of the best multi-generational lodges in Botswana. Interestingly, this is where Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton tied the knot in the mid-1970’s.
The guides at Chobe Game Lodge (mostly women) will take families on incredible adventures from visiting the local village, farmers, and basket weavers of the community to experiencing water and land-based safari activities - where you can watch an elephant family during their morning routine or marvel at a tower of giraffes grabbing some lunch from the trees. As much as the lodge is about activity, they also want families to kick back and relax and take advantage of private plunge pools and share stories around open-air fire pits.
7. The Elephant Camp, Victoria Falls
The Elephant Camp is found on the Zimbabwean side of Victoria Falls, and from the camp’s hillside location in the national park you can see the mist of ‘The Smoke That Thunders’. The camp has a classic luxury safari feel with large canvas tents decked out in neutral tones, offset with bright red sofas and bed throws.
Victoria Falls is pegged as a destination of great adventure – from white river rafting to Zambezi River cruises. It is an ideal escape for families in search of secluded accommodation complete with plunge pools, outdoor showers and sunken firepits, and a place to revel in adrenaline-based activities. Plus, the Elephant Camp offers community and conservation-focused activities including an elephant experience and a visit to the Victoria Falls Wildlife Trust.
8. Stanley & Livingstone Boutique Hotel, Victoria Falls
The Stanley & Livingstone Boutique Hotel is in the lush grounds of the Victoria Falls Game Reserve, surrounded by abundant wildlife and where gracious living is embodied in design and décor. It is a grand multi-generational lodge in Zimbabwe and where families can spend quality time while sating their adventurous spirits.
The main lodge offers lush gardens to stroll through and a swimming pool to cool off in. When the family isn’t out bungee jumping, walking with lions, abseiling, or witnessing a famed African sunset from the deck of a boat, this is the perfect African home-away-from-home.
9. Somalisa Acacia, Hwange National Park
Somalisa Acacia takes its name from the trees in the region, symbolic of the deep roots of family connections and is one of the best multi-generational safari camps in Zimbabwe - particularly for families with small children. The camp sits on the edge of a seasonal floodplain and is where elephant families traverse, making Hwange famous for its sightings and earning its nickname as ‘elephant country’.
While the parents and grandparents take advantage of a dip in communal plunge pool or relax on a hammock on a private deck, the kids can join the Ngwana Club, where they can enjoy cooking classes, nature walks, traditional storytelling, and arts & crafts activities. This is a quintessential safari sojourn where relaxation meets education, cultural immersion, and phenomenal African wildlife viewing.
10. Khayelitshe House, Matobo Hills
Khayelitshe House finds itself in a unique landscape surrounded by the huge, granite boulders of the Matobo Hills. It is booked on an exclusive-use basis and is perfect for a family safari in Zimbabwe. From a distance the house appears as if it’s a classic African homestead, but on closer inspection it reveals a more eclectic design.
The house sits in an area of private land that is adjacent to the Matobo National Park. There is a wealth of exciting activities here, from tracking white and black rhino on foot to nature walks and hikes, exploring one the highest concentrations of ancient rock paintings in the world. Fully serviced, families are well taken care of by a private chef, guide and staff while they revel in African wonders.
11. Time + Tide Chongwe River House, Lower Zambezi National Park
The Time + Tide Chongwe River House is a four-bedroom house that overlooks the Chongwe River on the western boundary of the Lower Zambezi National Park. It features a remarkable design and when you enter the house into the main room you look out over the deck and pool to the river and mountains beyond.
Some of the furniture has been carved from winterthorn tree and creates an ambience of a unique African adventure – and has even been compared to the Flintstone house. The house is spacious and has delightful finishes from tunnels that connect rooms to showers that feel more like standing under a waterfall. Families can spend their days canoeing along the river, on walking safaris (in a country known as the birthplace of this safari activity) and revel in both day and night game drives.
12. Chiawa Camp, Lower Zambezi National Park
Sitting along the banks of the Zambezi River, Chiawa Camp is ideal for multi-generational travel and is one of the finest camps in the country, winning numerous high-profile awards over the years. This is where days are spent on game drives, informative bush walks, canoeing excursions, fishing expeditions, river safaris and stargazing into a carpeted night sky.
Zambia has some of the best guides on the African continent that will make families feel at ease, relaxed, and entertained. The luxurious tents on offer feature all safari highlights including indoor and outdoor showers and claw baths with uninterrupted views of the river. There is a thatched lounge and bar area along with an alfresco dining deck, open campfire, and a swimming pool to while away holiday leisure hours.
13. Saseka Tented Camp - Thornybush Game Reserve
Saseka is derived from the Tsonga language meaning ‘beautiful’ and this lodge in the Thornybush Game Reserve is precisely that. For multi-generational travel seekers, the Leadwood Villa is an enchanting African escape and has its own dedicate game-viewing vehicle and ranger-tracker team (however, it only accommodates children who are older than fifteen). To add to an already pristine travel journey, a private chef is on hand to conjure up all sorts of delectable meals.
The design of Saseka Tented Camp is a blend of tented camps of yesteryear with contemporary elements. This is a luxury bush immersion with suites having their own private sundecks, pools and outdoor showers. Saseka is a place where families can journey into the wild landscape and see Africa’s iconic wildlife, including the elusive leopard.
14. Dulini Leadwood Lodge - Sabi Sands Game Reserve
Dulini Leadwood Lodge is in the western part of the Sabi Sand Game Reserve, overlooking the Sand River. This game reserve dates back to 1898, which makes it the oldest private game reserve in the country. This is Big 5 territory and is famed for its leopard sightings, as well as elephants, white rhinos, buffalos and hippos.
It is one the best luxury multi-generational lodges in South Africa and can be booked as its own safari travel bubble. The dream team at Dulini will accompany families on morning and afternoon game drives as well as interpretive bush walks. What makes this lodge truly special is the intimacy and privacy it provides, as well as the decadence of private plunge pools, outdoor showers and intimate in-room fireplaces.
15. Cheetah Plains - Sabi Sands Game Reserve
Cheetah Plains is the epitome of safari luxury in an area renowned for its game viewing and dramatic sightings of leopard, elephant, black and white rhino, and more. The villas at Cheetah Plains are booked on an exclusive use-basis and are ideal for families wanting a private escape into the wilds of Africa - where they will not only connect to nature, but also with each other.
A major highlight of Cheetah Plains are the electric game vehicles, offering a near-silent safari experience, all equipped with solar-charged Tesla batteries, bolstered suspension, and heated seats. Each villa comes with its own team, who are always on hand to ensure a superlative safari experience.
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