Family Safari in Africa

We truly feel blessed that we have been able to watch our children grow in the African bush.  A family safari is special time together.

Having the privilege of spending time in the most spectacular wilderness areas that southern Africa has to offer, it has given them a great grounding of nature, conservation, life and death, and to enjoy simple pleasures such as watching the moon rise or the sun set.

Our kids have played in mud pools, stood in the footprints of elephants, played games with various dung (poop!), caught Tiger fish in tranquil channels, learnt how a termite mound is built and the importance of it to the eco-system, they have played soccer with the local staff and danced around fires with local singing camp choirs. They have seen rare species such as wild dog on a hunt, watched leopards take their kills up trees, and baby impala taking their first steps. They have been very blessed indeed, as have we to be able to join in on their learning expeditions.

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Travelling on safari to Africa with children is a great gift. Seeing the bush through their eyes is magical, and really puts so much into perspective. Just the excitement (and okay, stressfulness) of the airport journey, getting on the plane, and arriving at a unique destination is enough to get the juices flowing, let alone seeing them land at a remote bush airstrip after a scenic small aircraft flight and see their first African animal! The smells, sights, sounds gets all of their senses alive.

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Fortunately, many safari lodges and camps understand the importance of catering for families with children. Gone are the days where there are strict child ages travelling to luxury safari camp. Whilst there are still several that choose not to accept children, or those that have a 12 year or older policy, there are many throughout Africa that welcome children of all ages – even infants.

Safety of course is paramount, and these companies have spent time and money on educating and training their staff on how to look after families with children so that they can get the most out of their special holiday. Of course there are wild animals that can wander through the camps, and the responsibility of their safety relies on the parents/guardian so one does need to listen to all of the safety talks given, but the benefits are numerous. Imagine your child seeing their first giraffe or elephant in the African bush, or gazing up at a sky full of stars from horizon to horizon and trying to understand how it all works, or listening to hyaena’s calling from afar, or playing with the local staff and learning their traditions and culture. Enjoying nature at its best!

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Many camps and lodges are really well equipped and cater very well for children – kid friendly meals, family rooms designed for safety and comfort, packs that include games and field guides and puzzles etc.  Some have baby-sitting facilities, and others will entertain the kids during the day while mum and dad have some quiet time to enjoy by themselves.  Some are much more ‘’child friendly’’ in terms of facilities and location, including many in malaria-free or low-risk malaria areas. There are a variety of places that families can travel that will offer an exceptional experience for you and your children, and we can guide you in choosing the right one for your family.

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Our children have experienced a true sense of nature, and we are forever grateful for that!

By Tammy & Alex Chaplin (info@remarkable-africa.com), Remarkable Africa, www.remarkable-africa.com

Photos courtesy of Wilderness Safaris and Alex Chaplin

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