‘What shall we wear on safari in South Africa’ (or any other african destination) is a frequently asked question. The answer to this varies very much by season.
Get our Insider Guide to What to Wear on Safari below for the ‘full monty’ & useful packing lists…
I will summarize some essential pointers for people travelling in the African spring months from mid August to October…
Note: In the Cape spring starts and ends later than up in the Kruger area. Similarly further north towards the equator, Zambia and Botswana are getting very hot by mid to late September.
Safari clothing in South Africa – Spring
The ‘shoulder months’ of Spring and Autumn are always a tricky one as far as packing is concerned. Temperatures may vary considerably within an average two week vacation period. As you never know when Winter will change to Spring or indeed Spring to Summer…
Spring-like weather starts in mid August – later in Cape Town, the Garden Route and Eastern Cape. But there is no guarantee of this. As in the States & Europe, spring brings variable weather – beautiful for days and then a bit cold and rainy for day or two. Rain might occur if you are in the Cape so bring a rainproof jacket and comfortable walking shoes.
I am aware that choosing a Kruger safari can be a confusing issue. Many people want to visit the Kruger Park and then find themselves bewildered by the choices. Do they stay at a rest camp or opt one of the Kruger private lodges. Which are private concessions within the Kruger National Park? Or do they go for one of the private game reserves which are adjacent to the park. Such as the Sabi Sands lodges or Timbavati?
There are so many options for your Kruger Safari. So this is where I think a specialist tour operator that knows the various areas & camps can really prove their worth. (But then I would think that, wouldn’t I?)
What is the difference between the Kruger National Park Safaris ? If you stay at one of the Kruger private lodges within the park itself or the lodges in the Sabi Sands or Timbavati private game reserves?
Having just been on a Kruger safari with MY family & stayed at both I thought it would be worth demonstrating the differences using actual examples.
Private Game Lodge experience
First we stayed at Simbavati River Lodge. A private game lodge in the Timbavati Game Reserve which has open borders with the Kruger National Park. This means that the wildlife is free to wander in & out between the Kruger Park & the reserve allowing for natural animal movement.
The Simbavati River Lodge is a great little lodge. Well priced with friendly staff and great food. Being well in the middle of the Timbavati, it offers great game viewing. On our short 2 night stay we saw a LOT! Several sightings of lion, buffalo, elephant of course, white rhino. Even a leopard up in a tree carefully preserving its impala kill from the waiting hyenas below. However the ‘piece de resistance’ was the pack of wild dog on the move clearly looking for their next meal.
What’s the best time for a South Africa safari? This is a frequent question we’re asked. As with so many questions, it’s not so easy to give a quick, glib answer
This is because I don’t know how broadly or narrowly the questioner is defining the word safari… Does he mean when is the best time to come here for a holiday or vacation? Or does he mean when is the the best time to view wildlife on a safari?
The answer to the latter question is relatively simple. As with the rest of Southern Africa, the best time to visit for a South Africa safari to see the wildlife is during our dry winter and spring months (May to early October).