Bush Walks & Walking Safaris

Bush Walks & Walking Safaris

Exploring Africa on a walking safari is all about the little things you might miss in a vehicle: identifying scat, following tracks, smelling wild sage, or learning how termite mounds are made. You might see some large game as well, such as elephant, giraffe, or buffalo. On foot, you truly appreciate their size, and your senses sharpen. Immediately, your primordial instincts respond to the sights, sounds, and smell of the wilderness. Slowing down means safari’s supporting actors take center stage. Without a rumbling engine, you’ll notice laboring insects and delicate blooms while suddenly paying great mind to the direction of the wind.

A walking safari can be a day-long affair or multi-night. Multi-day walking safaris include the support of a vehicle-supported team that will set up and deconstruct a mobile camp each night. Set off in the soft morning light to avoid the heat of the day. You’ll hike for a few hours with expert guides, making every excuse to stop and read the signs of the bush. Around lunch, you’ll arrive at a fully constructed fly camp. Amenities will be rustic (bucket showers, bed roll tents), but the food will be gourmet and the proximity to nature is unmatched.

Guided bush walks in Africa are shorter—perhaps an hour or two nearer to your camp—are an incredible opportunity to take in the sounds of the bush. It’s the perfect way to depart the game vehicle and stretch your legs while gaining an intimate experience with nature.

Bush walks are offered across Eastern and Southern Africa and finding a property that offers walking as a half-day activity is fairly easy. However, often times you can not walk inside national parks so you may need to stay in a property in a private conservancy or concession. While most camps have a minimum age in place for walking safaris (usually 16 years old), a place like Ant’s Nest in South Africa will offer all-ages family friendly walks (“bush bumbles”) so that everyone can partake!

Where to go on a luxury walking safari in Africa

If you’re looking for a more serious walking safari experience, there are a number of fabulous multi-day walks that we highly recommend. In some instances, you will spend your days walking while returning to your camp or lodge at night.

Walking safaris

Camps including Tanda Tula (Kruger, South Africa), Marataba Walking Trails (Limpopo, South Africa), and Nomad (Ngorongoro Highlands, Tanzania) offer these types of walking experiences.

Luxury fly camping

Alternatively, you can walk during the day and fly camp in a new location at night. Maasai Trails (Maasai Mara, Kenya), Karisia Walking Safaris (Laikipia, Kenya), Footsteps Across the Delta (Okavango Delta, Botswana), Wayo Walking (Serengeti National Park, Tanzania), and Shenton Safaris in Zambia are great choices for longer excursions.

Unique luxury walking safaris

The Congo Conservation Company excels at walking safaris between its three camps in Republic of Congo‘s Odzala National Park where you can also find yourself wading here through higher streams and “bais” for a real adventure!

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