Safari is one of the best travel experiences for a wildlife-loving family. Taking your children on safari helps to swap learning in the classroom with real-world experiences in the jungles of Africa. Discover the truly wild side of life with Shrike Safaris. Below are a few tips you need to consider when traveling with children on safari.
The best way to help your children enjoy the safari is to prepare them psychologically. For sure, an African safari sounds exciting and for the better part of it is a wonderful experience. You will get to ride on an overland land track as you explore some of the most sublime landscapes. You will get to enjoy viewing the world’s most iconic wildlife. In some cases, you will get to see them up-close.
In some cases, however, it will come down to luck. You might end up taking hours before having a good view of wildlife. Leopards, for instance, have been known to master the art of stealth and camouflage. You may never see a single one in your entire safari. Therefore, you need to make your kids understand that the best experiences require patience. You might have to move from one park to the other. Your children need to be prepared for such circumstances so that they do not drive you up when they start getting antsy.
In some cases, the things that adults find intruding do not mean a lot to kids. For instance, adults can spend a whole day driving through a national park trying to spot one exotic bird. All this while forgetting that children do not care about whatever specific bird you want to see. Eventually, boredom will start to build slowly.
To avoid this, let your children get involved in the whole experience. You should get them a camera and a wildlife guide to teach them about the various animal species. You can also turn spotting and identifying these animals into an award-winning competition for them. This will help them keep engaged. They will also get to learn more about wildlife and safari etiquette. More importantly, they will get involved in the wholesome family experience.
Your kids will always be your kids. You should expect the same behavior whether you are at the mall back in your home town or you are on a safari. Therefore, be prepared for this. Have some counter offers ready so that you do not derail the rest of the traveling troupe.
There is no bad time to go on a family safari. However, the dry season is the perfect time for taking your children on a safari. Spotting wildlife during the dry season is easy. Animals are more likely to gather around water points during these times. Therefore, you will know where they are, and that makes it easier to spot. However, note that the dry season may also become extremely hot. This may not sit well with your family. The wet season, on the other hand, can be incredibly verdant and scenic. However constant rains may make self-drive safaris a challenge. Besides, animals will be camouflaged by the ensuing foliage, making it hard to spot them.
The best thing with holiday safaris is that there is always a way to personalize your experience. Although it is not advisable to go on a self-drive safari in some African countries, most private lodges will always offer you the chance your experience around the needs of your family. This gives you a perfect opportunity to explore the exhilarating landscape at your pleasure. When taking your children on a safari, book a private jeep so that you can be able to determine the perfect itinerary for your family. You will be able to schedule your viewing according to the time that best suits your children.
Safaris are appropriate for all ages. However, be sure to confirm age restrictions there may be for children in specific game reserves. Age restrictions mostly apply where you will have big cats encounters. The restrictions depend on the country you are visiting and the kind of safari you are going to. In some game drives, you spend many days bumping around in a jeep. Others will take you a few hours. These could be the most appropriate for a family safari. Nevertheless, you do not always have to take a ride on your jeep to view animals. Some lodges offer wildlife encounters that are far away from your accommodation and actively welcome young children.
Generally, walking safaris are not allowed for children under the age of 12. Besides, some parks will not allow toddlers and babies since their cries may scare animals away ruining the experience for others. Since there are no fences, children will need fulltime supervision.
Besides wildlife viewing, there are so many other things you can do while on a family safari. Older children, in particular, would like the thrill of more exciting activities. You can try horse riding, canoeing or cycling.
Africa offers a myriad of memorable experiences, and everybody has a different story to tell. For some, it is love at first sight. You can also learn about conservation and discover the challenges of environment and the surprises that Africa has to offer. Every safari adventure will give you a different experience.
Safari holidays are a dream come true for many people. Having a successful one with your family is the ultimate achievement. If you need a little more advice or inspiration, visit our family safaris packages and start planning for your next wildlife adventure.