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Africa is still the number one choice of millions as a safari destination

  • Tuesday, 26 November 2019
  • Linda Chivell

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More than 30 million tourists visit Africa every year. Over half of the international arrivals are for business purposes and may partake in tourist activities as well, while 15% travel for pure tourism and 30% visit friends and family.

Tourists select the continent as a destination for wildlife viewing and to enjoy the sunny skies. Africa is the world’s number one destination for safaris which range from the exotic to the very simple. With the continent’s vast and diverse nature makes it complex and difficult to decide on the best region for a safari.

Below is a quick guide to some of the safari hot spots on the African continent where you will find well developed or fast developing tourism sectors with an abundance of wildlife as well as low to no visa requirements especially from countries like France, the UK, the USA, Germany and Portugal.

serengeti

The Serengeti wildebeest migration is the main reason Kenya and Tanzania have become popular safari destinations. This migration sees millions of wildebeest, accompanied by various other animal species, move between Tanzania and Kenya. The best places to view this migration include Kenya’s Maasai Mara and Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park.

etosha

The Etosha National Park in the northern arid region of Namibia offers great chances of spotting endangered black rhinoceros as well as flamingos in the salt pans.

Kruger

The Kruger National Park in South Africa is in its own league because of its diversity of animals as well as advanced environmental management techniques and policies.

iSimangaliso Wetland Park was the first site in South Africa to be awarded World Heritage status. It contains most of South Africa’s remaining swamp forests and is Africa’s largest estuarine system, which is a partially enclosed body of water where freshwater from rivers and streams mix with saltwater from the ocean. The park borders Kosi Bay and St Lucia Lake which is the only place in the world where you can find sharks, hippopotamus and crocodiles in the same body of water.

Kgalagadi

The Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park consists of mostly unspoiled wilderness in the north of South Africa, crossing over into Botswana. This park is largely located in a desert area and is famous for animal species such as the Kalahari black-maned lions and the Gemsbok or Oryx.

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Garden Route Game Lodge is situated at the entrance to South Africa’s world-famous Garden Route Coast. Sightings of the BIG 5 are frequent. Started in 1999 the wildlife reintroduction has seen the return of elephant, white rhino, lion and buffalo to the area. Antelope such as the Cape Eland, kudu, black wildebeest, zebra, springbok and gemsbok are now at home on the grassy plains. The elusive Cape Mountain leopard is a rare treat to spot on safari. The region boasts a mild climate with hot summers and cool winters and an average of 300 days of sunshine per year. Enjoy a malaria-free safari holiday on the Garden Route as part of your family holiday itinerary.

Today, due to conservation efforts, the wildlife in Africa is showing steady growth. Nowadays, many tourists want to get up close to these animals in an ethical manner which also drives conservation efforts, since with tourism comes economic improvement.

Original article appeared in  The Conversation

 

 

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