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Water safaris + marvellous wildebeest + ultimate Botswana
It’s that time of year here in Southern Africa when crepuscular temperatures are somewhat crisp, the static air is bone-dry, trees are bare, and the remaining grass is like straw. It’s safari time! Well, actually all year is safari time, but this is the favourite time of year for many to visit Africa. Wildlife is easier to find because of the lack of vegetation cover and their need to find water.
We are receiving more last-minute requests than usual (a sign of the times?) – which are often challenging to fulfil because many lodges are fully booked during peak safari season. Of course my team will bust a gut to find your desired safari experience at short notice, BUT did you know that the BEST time of year for epic wildlife encounters is late in the dry season – September to mid November (before the short rains)? The dry is at its peak, temperatures are rising and there is an air of desperation to proceedings. This is when I choose to do bushtime. Drop us an email for advice and to plan your late dry-season safari.
Meanwhile, here at home on the Greater Kruger border our nights are filled with lions, leopards and hyenas calling and elephants trumpet-squealing. While Verreaux’s eagle-owls and southern white-faced owls provide a soothing background audio. Life is good.
Keep the passion
Simon Espley – CEO, Africa Geographic
From our Editor – Taryn van Jaarsveld
There is an Africa to be explored beyond game drives and bush walks: an Africa buzzing with incomparable vitality. Along the continent’s rivers, streams and lakes, you will find a distinct kind of safari, one that celebrates the very lifeblood of the land. In our first story, we’ve compiled a list of the top water safaris to experience in Africa, from gliding down the waterways of the Okavango Delta, to floating down the Chobe on a riverboat or kayaking the Nile.
They’re the subject of many a dream safari – the unlikely heroes of an epic African adventure. And not for nothing do thousands of visitors head to witness them in action during the Greatest Show on Earth. This week, we pay homage to the wildebeest. See our second story below.
Lastly, as host to the Okavango Delta, Chobe, Savute, Makgadikgadi and more, Botswana is the ultimate safari destination that offers a complex web of wildlife habitats to satisfy even the most demanding traveller. We’ve put together everything you need to know about a safari in Botswana.
Africa’s rivers, streams and lakes are its lifeblood. Here’s a list of some of our favourite water safaris on the continent
Star of the Great Migration and one of Africa’s toughest (and most comical) animals
Botswana is a veritable whose-who of Africa’s top safari destinations. Here’s why
TRAVEL DESK UPDATES:
Zambia is calling… Our safari experts are on standby and ready to book your trip:
Affordable South Luangwa safari – from US$2,625pps
This fantastic combination of walking and vehicle-based game viewing will appeal to experienced safari-goers and novices alike. Expect exceptional wildlife, tracking on foot, scrumptious bush breakfasts and unforgettable sundowners in Zambia’s premier safari destination.
Stay at Chisa Busanga, Kafue National Park, Zambia
Chisa Busanga Camp lies on a beautiful island in the heart of Busanga Plains, Kafue National Park, overlooking vast floodplains and dambos that teem with wildlife. Book 4 nights at Chisa Busanga In 2024, and all internal flights and transfers will be included.
From our Scientific Editor – Jamie Paterson
Languages evolve in weird and wonderful ways, along with a host of colourful idioms and expressions. Naturally, animals feature heavily in these creative turns of phrase, occasionally perpetuating some rather glaring misconceptions.
For example, did you know that most bats have keen eyesight, with some even postulated to see better than humans? Obviously, different species use this sense in combination with echolocation and smell depending on their diet, but no bat is truly blind. So the common simile “as blind as a bat” is way off the mark and probably arose from their erratic flight patterns.
Likewise, owls do not have a penchant for wisdom and goldfish actually have a rather remarkable memory.
THE SNARE SCOURGE
In our forum: The illegal practice of setting snares to hunt animals is a widespread problem in Africa, posing a risk to biodiversity. In South Africa’s Western Cape, snaring poses a serious threat to leopards. The Cape Leopard Trust (CLT) is developing a multi-pronged strategy, including research, conservation and education, to grapple with this complex issue.
Read more about how CLT is addressing snaring & attempting to combat the scourge.
WATCH: The country of Gabon aims to protect 30% of its land, ocean, and freshwater habitats by 2030, and is emerging as a conservation leader in Africa and globally (03:37). Click here to watch
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HOW TO GET THE MOST OUT OF AFRICA GEOGRAPHIC:
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