Top 10 Game Parks in Africa that are a Must Go to
Africa is considered one of the top tourist destinations. It boasts magical tourist attractions such as historical sites, white sandy beaches, a rich culture of the people, a warm and wet climate, and ultimately, it is best known for its national parks. It is estimated that slightly over 67 million tourists visit Africa annually, most of whom make their way south of the Sahara to visit the national parks. There are over 225 popular game parks and reserves all over Africa. Out of over 225, below are the 10 best-rated game parks in Africa.
1. Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Sitting on 14,763 square kilometers of land, Serengeti National Park in Tanzania, located east of Africa, is considered the most popular national park in Africa. It is home to thousands of animal species and is best known for hosting one of the Seven Wonders of the World, which is the wildebeest migration. Annually, the wildebeest migrate from Serengeti National Park to Maasai Mara National Park in Kenya and back. This Wonder of the Natural World attracts millions of tourists to Serengeti National Park every year.
Best Time To go: July-October
Major Attractions: Big 5 animals, Wildlife, birds, Moru kopjes, Grumeti and Mara River, Seronera River Valley, The retina hippo pools, wildebeest migration, Olduvai Gorge and the Masai peoples Culture
Best Experiences: The wildebeest migration tracking, River crossing, Masai Cultural performances, 5 Days Serengeti Ngorongoro Safari.
Places To Stay & Eat: Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge, Melia Serengeti Lodge, Four seasons safari lodge, Severin safari camp, Kirawira Serena camp
How To get There: From Arusha town, the drive is 419km and takes 6-7 hours. By flight, you fly in from Arusha or Kilimanjaro airport and takes 1hr 45 minutes.
2. Okavango Delta, Botswana
Coming in second is the Okavango Delta, situated in the heart of Botswana. It is regarded as one of the largest inland deltas in the world. River Okavango empties onto open land contrary to nature, which dictates that most rivers empty to either the sea, ocean, or lake. Because of this feature, on February 11, 2013, it was voted one of the Wonders of Africa. To add to its attributes, it is home to thousands of species of plants, 130 species of mammals, over 500 species of birds, numerous species of fish, and reptiles. The eastern side of the park is inhabited by the BaSarwa, which is one of the tribes in Botswana. The Okavango Delta is every tourist’s dream destination.
Best Time To go: June-October
Best Attractions: Moremi Game reserves, chiefs island, Mboma island, the many wooden bridges, Xakanaxa Lediba bird watchers paradise, paradise pools, Dombo hippo pools,
Top Experiences: Mokoro canoe day trip, Moremi walking stick safaris, camping
Places To Stay & Eat: Khwai River Lodge, Tuludi camp, sanctuary Stanley camp, sable alley
How To get There: Through Maun airport north of Botswana take a flight south for 15 to 45 minutes. There are direct flight from Jo’burg south Africa to Maun airport and take 2hrs. A charter flight over the Okavango will give you an amazing view of the massive swamp and islands below.
3. South Luangwa National Park, Zambia
South Luangwa National Park in Zambia goes up to two spots to claim the third position as one of the infamous game parks in Africa. It has immensely gained popularity because, unlike other national parks in Africa, it offers a unique cocktail of breathtaking woodlands, spectacular green plains, and the enchanting Luangwa River, which meanders over the terrain, sustaining life and arousing the senses. It is also the home of walking safaris as well as luxury travel. South Luangwa National Park is quite scenic, as it lies on the floor of the famous Luangwa Valley. It is home to a wide array of endemic and rare wildlife.
Best Time To go: May – August
Top Attractions: Wildlife, 4 of the big five animals, hundreds of birds species, baobab trees, herds of elephants, major woodlands and savannah,
Best Experiences: Mobile walking safaris in off-grid camps, best birding safaris in the world, boat safaris, relaxing bush spa treatment, Kunda tribe of Kawaza village, tribal textiles, night game drives, Photographic Safaris, watch elephants walking through reception area at Mfuwe Lodge, Mountain biking at Tafika,
Places To Stay & Eat: Mopani safari lodge, track and trail river camp, Mukambi safari lodge, Msandile river lodge, Njobvu safaris
How To Get There: A drive from Lusaka to South Luangwa takes 10 hours. A flight from Lusaka takes 70 to 80 minutes and they will fly low to make sure you see the most of the national parks and valleys.
4. Maasai Mara National Park, Kenya
Thinking about spotting the big cats? Look no further than the “Home of the Big Cats,” as Maasai Mara National Park is famously referred to. Maasai Mara in Kenya is known to be the home of the big cats as well as the “Big Five”. It also hosts the infamous wildebeest migration, as the beasts of the wild migrate in great numbers from Serengeti National Park in Tanzania to Maasai Mara National Park. Predators spring into action to prey on the wildebeest, giving tourists a show of nature at its finest. This is one of its greatest attractions that lures millions of tourists from all over the world. Book a 3 days Masai Mara Camping Safari.
Best Time To Go: July-October
Top Attractions: Ol Kinyei Conservancy, Olare Orok Conservancy, Mara Triangle, Mara River
Best Experiences: Witness the wildebeest migration, The Mara River Crossing and Wilderness safari
Places To Stay & Eat: Elephant Pepper Camp, Enkewa Camp, Mara Bush Camp
How To Get There: Masai mara is 260km South West of Nairobi and takes 5-6 hours drive or a 40 minutes flight.
5. Kruger National Park, South Africa
Kruger National Park in South Africa is around 19,500 square kilometers in size. It is the largest known national park in Africa. This is as big as Israel. It has a magnificent road network, which makes it among the few game parks in Africa that one can easily access with their personal cars. It is famously known to be the home of over 500 species of birds, six of which belong to the infamous Big 6. Half the world’s population of black and white rhino, which is an endangered species, inhabits Kruger National Park.
Best Time To Go: May-October
Top Attractions: Wildlife and the big five, Vegetation and Trees, lakes and dams, Cultural sites like bushman rock art, historical and archeological ruins,
Best Experiences: game drives, walking trails, mountain bike riding, gastronomical experiences,
Places To Stay & Eat: Kruger gate hotel, Kruger private lodge, The Outpost lodge, Lukimbi safari lodge, Nsala wilderness camp, Lion sands, Imbali safari lodge,
How To Get There: You can fly directly into O.R. Tambo international airport and then drive 4 hours to the park or charter a flight to Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport (MQP).
6. Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda
Volcanoes National Park is Africa’s oldest national park, and it earns its name because it is home to five Virunga volcanoes. Only 1,000 mountain gorillas exist in the world. Most of these spectacular creatures have made Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda their home. Spotting a gorilla is every tourist dream, and there is no better way to fulfill this fantasy than visiting Volcanoes National Park. These rare species have made the park significantly popular over the years.
Best Time To Go: June-August
Top Attractions: Gorillas, wildlife, mountains Karisimbi, Bisoke, Muhambura and volcanoes, caves, Hiking trails, The Dian Fossey memorial trail,
Best Experiences: Hiking the volcanoes, tracking mountain gorillas, tracking Golden monkeys, caving, bird watching, cultural village visit to Ibyiwacu, Bulera and Ruhondo twin lake visit
Places To Stay & Eat: Da Vinci gorilla lodge, Mountain gorilla view lodge, Virunga lodge, Kinigi guest house, Five volcanoes boutique Hotel, Sabyinyo Silverback lodge, Gorilla nest Lodge, Singita kwitonda Lodge
How To Get There: You can take a helicopter flight from Kigali city operated daily, You can also catch a bus from Nyabugongo Bus Park In Kigali To Musanze Town For 2.5 Hours. They run from 9.00am to 6.00pm after every half an hour.
7. Etosha National Park, Namibia
Etosha National Park lies in the country with the oldest desert, which is Namibia. It is situated in the middle of a desert north of Namibia. Despite Namibia being largely composed of desserts, Etosha is located in an area that is moist, which attracts wildlife. It is home to a variety of wild animals, including the renowned Big Five, except the buffalo.
Best Time To Go: May-August
Top Attractions: Mirages of the Etosha Pan, Okakuejo and other water holes, Wildlife, Birds, Cultural immersion HAI|OM San hunters,
Best Experiences: Best Self drives, Photography tour, Birdwatching at Namutoni spring, Watch the Big four.
Places To Stay & Eat: Mokuti Etosha, Etosha king Nehale, Etosha safari camp, Etosha village, Torgos lodge, Okutala Etosha lodge
How To Get There: Closest airport is Hosea Kukato airport, you can then fly from here using a smaller chartered plane to Etosha. Driving from Windhoek takes 6 hours on smooth well-maintained roads.
8. Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe
Hwange National Park, which is situated to the northwest of Zimbabwe, is the country’s oldest national park. It was initially referred to as Wankie Game Reserve, the name has since changed. The park lies on the border of Zimbabwe and Botswana. Hwange is famous because it is home to the largest elephant population, which is estimated to be around 30,000. It is an hour’s drive from the prominent Victoria Falls.
Best Time To Go: July-October
Top Attractions: Grasslands, Mopane woodlands, Mandavu and Musuma Dams concealed lookouts, 18th Century ruins at Bumbusi, Nyamandhlovu pans, Wildlife, Birdlife, Sunsets, game Drives, 40,000 strong elephant herds, Wild dogs.
Best Experiences: birdwatching walks, Walking safaris, Victoria Falls day excursions by helicopter, Cultural experiences with local community, lazing at a Hwange sundowner by a water hole, Sleep out by the stars (star gazing), Open Day Spas , Guided canoe safaris, Largest elephant herds.
Places to Stay & Eat: Hwange safari lodge, Gwango elephant lodge, Elephant Hills resort, Xhabe safari lodge, the elephant camp.
How to Get There: You can reach Hwange national park from Victoria Falls VFA in Mosi-O-Tunya NP by air some 200km away. There are direct flights from Johannesburg to Victoria Falls airport (VFA). Hwange NP is 8 hours away from Harare capital city if you choose to drive by road.
9. Kidepo Valley National Park, Uganda
Coming in at position nine is Kidepo Valley National Park, which is a hidden gem located in the Pearl of Africa. It boasts an abundance of wildlife, comprising 75 species of mammals and over 470 species of birds. This park ought to be every tourist destination when they visit Uganda. There is also a cheaper Gorilla tracking safari in Uganda’s Bwindi impenetrable forest national park.
Best Time to Go: September to March
Top Attractions: Mt Morungole, Narus River, Kidepo river, Huge savannah plains, wildlife, Lomej hills, Lonyili mountain, Namamukweny valley, Kanangorok hot springs.
Best Experiences: Game viewing, Nature walks, Lonyii summit hike, guided night drives, Bird watching.
Places to Stay & Eat: Kidepo savannah lodge, Katurum lodge, Apoka safari lodge, Adere safari lodge, Zebra safari lodge, Kigambira safari lodge.
How to Get There: You can get a bus from Kampala to Kotido town some 14hrs away. From Kotido you can hire a private vehicle to the park. Using public means is however not advisable as the vehicles stop at multiple stages and wastes a lot of time. You are better off hiring a private transport from Kampala.
10. Simien Mountains National Park, Ethiopia
Simien Mountains National Park is often overshadowed by the numerous prestigious national parks in East Africa. The Ethiopian Gem is unique in its own way, as it has breathtaking views as well as exotic wildlife. Its main attractions remain its steep cliffs and cool climate. The conditions in the park have been conducive to the survival of the capra ibex wee, which is an ibex species that is found nowhere in the world. It is also for endangered species such as the Ethiopian wolf and the Gelada baboon.
Best Time To Go: October – March
Top Attractions: African alpine forest, montane savannah, 21 species of mammals, Wildlife including Ethiopian wolf, gelada baboon, Menelick’s bushbuck, Walia ibex, Leopards and many more.
Best Experiences: Simien Mountain Trekking, Sightseeing, the Danakil depression Experience, Tigray churches visits,
Place To Stay & Eat: Simien Lodge, Mekonnen lodge, Simcot lodge, Limalimo Lodge
How To Get There: Most visitors fly from Addis Ababa airport to Gondar airport with a domestic flight. You will then drive for 2hrs to Simien mountain national park.
The beauty of Africa is depicted in its wide range of National Parks, which are home to an array of exotic and endemic wildlife. These National Parks are necessary visit for every wildlife enthusiastic tourist either local or international.
To get more information about bespoke safaris in the Top 10 Game parks in Africa, contact Robert on whatsapp on +254722661827 for immediate chat or email email@example.com