Keep the African safari dream alive with our handy planning calendar that gives you a month‐by‐month breakdown of the year’s hottest safari happenings and our team of advisors’ “Top Spots” to experience them!
We’re starting 2023 on a high note and staying positive by looking at some of the amazing things you can look forward to on this year’s safari calendar. Africa is very much open for business, and travel to and from Africa is actually incredibly easy in our experienced hands. (Our recent reviews on Trustpilot say so) So now’s the time to plan your next safari with us, because there’s something amazing for you to see and experience in every month of the year in Africa!
JANUARY – MARCH | SUMMER
In SOUTHERN AFRICA summer is in full swing – and it’s one of the most incredible times to be on safari, thanks to the Emerald Season (also known as the “Secret Season”!)
It’s the time of “The Big Green” with lush, dense bush turned into a vast viridian vibrance thanks to the life‐bringing rains. Expect incredible birding, lots of baby animals everywhere, and theatrically thrilling thunderstorms.
It’s also a great time of the year for boat-based river safaris and for gliding silently along the waterways of the Okavango Delta in a mokoro.
In EAST AFRICA, the wildebeest are concentrated in the southern part of the Serengeti in Tanzania and will give birth in late January and early February. With lots of new born baby zebra and wildebeest about, there is lots of predator action. Along the Indian Ocean’s crystalline turquoise coastline, the turtles will be hatching.
APRIL – MAY | FALL
After the vibrant explosion of new life of the Green Season, fall descends in all its wild glory on southern Africa, with the quintessential “Safari Season” kicking off at the start of April in Zambia’s Lower Zambezi and South Luangwa National Parks. The wilderness areas here are truly sensational, with many summer migrant bird species still in residence. Catch-and-release fishing on the Zambezi River is now also open for business at this time of the year.
The annual inundation of Botswana’s Okavango Delta begins — and Victoria Falls is, by now, in full legendary flood!
Further north in Rwanda and Uganda, the mountain gorillas move down to the lower altitudes so they can feed on the juicier, more nourishing young bamboo shoots.
In East Africa, the wildebeest begin their slow trek north, moving into the Seronera region of the Serengeti towards the Western Corridor.
JUNE – JULY | WINTER
BOTSWANA‘s Okavango Delta is experiencing its peak flood as winter comes to the southern regions of Africa.
This is also when you start to see Southern Right whales appearing along South Africa’s pristine southern coastline as they move into protected bays to calve. The astounding oceanic phenomenon of the famous “Sardine Run” off South Africa’s coast is another unique sight to behold!
As the dry season begins, the bush thins out, laying the landscape bare for exceptional game viewing, especially near waterholes and rivers as the game gravitates in their droves towards these communal thirst-quenchers.
Namibia, South Africa, Botswana, and Zambia are absolutely sensational for game viewing!
In EAST AFRICA, the wildebeest are gathering in the Western Corridor, preparing to cross the Grumeti River on their journey north to the Masai Mara.
AUGUST | PEAK SAFARI SEASON
This is the prime month for game viewing right across Africa!
In SOUTHERN AFRICA, winter is in full swing, and the dry season biting hard. Botswana is especially breathtaking in August. Southern right whales are calving off the coast of South Africa. Namibia’s Etosha National Park is pumping right now with spectacular sightings around the waterholes, including the fabled “white ghosts” ‐ huge bull elephants covered in the pale dust of Etosha’s salt pans.
The Wildebeest Migration is concentrated in the north of the Serengeti as the herds prepare to head into the Masai Mara. Humpback whales arrive in all their gargantuan majesty off the east coast of Africa.
Zimbabwe has so much to offer the safari purist from Hwange National Park to Mana Pools and the Victoria Falls
It’s also the dry season in the mountains of Rwanda and Uganda, making for exhilarating gorilla trekking!
In the winter months, the short grass and dry vegetation make for superb game viewing throughout Africa.
EVERYWHERE in Africa is magnificent at this time of year, so wherever you choose to go you’re guaranteed an abundance of thrilling sightings!
Top Spots – EVERYWHERE!
SEPTEMBER – OCTOBER | SPRING
It’s warming up in SOUTHERN AFRICA as Spring gets underway. This is an amazing time to be in Zambia and Botswana as many water birds begin nesting, especially yellow‐billed storks, the iconic African jacana, marabous, and various species of heron and egret forming huge breeding colonies.
These destinations are stunning at this time of the year: Okavango Delta, Chobe National Park, Lower Zambezi Valley, South Luangwa
EAST AFRICA‘S epic Wildebeest Migration is in the Masai Mara with awe-inspiring river crossings seen along the Mara River. It’s also a fantastic time to be in the Indian Ocean islands of Mauritius and Seychelles.
NOVEMBER – DECEMBER | SUMMER
The rains arrive in SOUTHERN AFRICA once more, and the dry season comes to an abrupt end. It’s the end of the safari season in the Lower Zambezi and South Luangwa national parks in Zambia, and many roads in Zimbabwe’s Mana Pools National Park are closed due to being waterlogged.
Botswana’s Makgadikgadi Pans fill with the first storms of the season and huge flocks of flamingoes arrive. The northern regions of the Linyanti and Selinda are exceptional. In the north of Zambia, the straw‐colored fruit bats migrate in Kasanka National Park.
In South Africa’s Greater Kruger National Park, the game viewing is spectacular and the birding exceptional as the summer migrants arrive. The bush transforms from its wintry earth-browns to lush, vibrant greens – and, of course, the mercury begins to soar!
Along the Indian Ocean coastline, turtles are coming ashore to lay their eggs.
Destinations to consider are South Africa’s Greater Kruger; Botswana’s Makgadikgadi, Linyanti and Selinda regions
In EAST AFRICA, the wildebeest are moving south through the Serengeti.
And these are just a mere glimpse of the most well-known seasonal highlights! All through the year, no matter the season, there are incredible experiences to be had and sights to be seen. Of course, some careful planning and expert advice is needed to ensure that you are at the right place, at the right time.