How to Plan a Trip to Africa

How I Planned Three Weeks of Wow

South Africa | Botswana | Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

Big 5: A Hungry Young Male Lion on the Prowl!

A young male lion following his mother on the prowl right behind our jeep at Chobe on July 29, 2016!

 

#jessicainafrica

A few months ago, I wrote about how I started working for Safari With Us as a content marketing strategist in October 2015 and how I started to prepare for my upcoming vacation to Africa.

You may have noticed that I didn’t really reveal what we were planning to do at that point. It was a process though, we just didn’t wing it and if you followed Safari With Us’ social media posts, you got an idea of what we did. However, I rarely had wifi, so I didn’t post often and would like to take this opportunity now to come back and map it out for you.

How to Plan a Trip to Africa | Step 1: Prioritize Destinations

Usually, I take care of the prep work; flight, car rental, accommodations and my husband takes care of the sightseeing schedule since he’s the history buff and Meister of spontaneous day planning in Europe. But this trip, we were visiting a completely different continent and since I’m the nature & wildlife fan, the ball was entirely in my court. Of course it helped that I had Andre, the owner of Safari With Us, on my team!

I had an entire 3 weeks to plan. For some people (Americans in particular), this is a LOT of time, but in reality, it’s nothing! I could have easily spent 3 months there and still not have seen everything! But there I sat with 3 weeks to plan, so the first thing I did was prioritize destinations into 3 categories: 1) must visit/do 2) would be nice to visit/do and 3) only if we have time.

This is what I came up with!

Must Visit/Do

  • African Safari in South Africa
  • Chobe National Park, Botswana
  • Okavango Delta, Botswana
  • Cape Town, South Africa

 

Would be Nice to Visit/Do

  • The Garden Route, South Africa
  • Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

 

Only if we have time

  • Ziplining in Tsitsikamma Forest
  • River safari
  • Canoe trip
  • Relax, shop, do nothing

 

How to Plan a Trip to Africa | Step 2: Map it Out

That’s actually a pretty small list, but then I reviewed the Safari With Us website and paid particular close attention to the itineraries and distances. Whew! You see, distance in Africa is perceived WAAAY differently than in Europe, even from the US standpoint for that matter.

After much research, thought and discussions, I mapped out this for the first two legs:

3 Generations of Lohmanns travling in Southern Africa

And this for the last leg:

From Cape Town along the Garden Route

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Andre for being so informative and patient with me. He answered all my questions, even the silly ones, and went above and beyond the call of duty! Thank you, Andre!

As you can probably guess though, we spent a LOT of time traveling! I won’t write about the entire trip in one post though, it’s just way too much information. I’ll stop here and continue in a few days and explain each stop thoroughly, adding images and videos as I go.

By the way, the lion image above was one of our highlight sightings. It was early in the morning at Chobe National Park and we watched a group of lions stalking the open prairie for prey. This young fellow walked right behind our jeep. He was in a bit of a hurry to get past us. They don’t like vehicles, but tolerate them as ‘part of the scenery’. Of course we respected their territory and just sat still and remained quiet. I’m not sure if they found anything for breakfast though, but I’m kinda glad I didn’t see it. Yeah, I know, it’s nature and they have to eat too. Still, I’m just glad I only saw carcasses on this trip and not live hunts.

I could have easily spent 3 months in South Africa and still not have seen everything!

Follow the shenanigans of three generations going on a safari and
connect with us on our social channels! I’ve hashtagged my posts: #jessicainafrica

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Happy traveling,


 

Are you Eager to Plan a Trip to Africa?

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About the Author
Jessica Lohmann is a Content Marketing Strategist. She's responsible for web content and is the one you're engaging with on Safari With Us's social channels. She's a native US American, born and raised in New York, but has been living in Germany for - well - decades. She stopped counting. She envisions a world where every animal is treated with respect and went to great lengths to work with Safari With Us because she wants to promote sustainable tourism and spread awareness about the plight of African wildlife.

Did You Know?

The Lion population in Africa has been reduced by half since the early 1950s. Today, fewer than 21,000 remain in all of Africa.