What happened to January? The year has just started, right; and there’s still lots of time to make 2015 the year of ultimate adventure, right? Not really, before you know it you will be writing 2016 on everything – scary. So how do you get what you want before father time gets what he has come for? Get those annual leave calendars out & put your travel plans in place, go on, do it now.
To help you make the most of your time we have put together a comprehensive guide to the top 5 ultimate must-do, bucket-list items in Africa. So take the wildebeest by the horns and make this year one to remember…
White Water rafting on the mighty Zambezi
The Zambezi River has, undoubtedly, the best white water in Southern Africa! This activity is not for the faint hearted. Although this is pretty much a year round activity, serious adrenalin junkies will tell you that the best time to go is from September to January when the water levels are low. During high water (January to July) only the last 15 (of 25) rapids are open.
After marvelling the beauty of the Victoria Falls, you will decent into the lush gorge which ranges between 100m to 200m deep . Hop on a raft and battle grade 5 rapids on this adrenalin inducing activity & by the end of the day you will be rewarded with a smile you can’t wipe of your face and memories that will last you a life time.
Hop on our East African Explorer tour and get the best of game parks, beaches and HOT adrenalin pumping activities in Livingstone, Zambia where the mighty Victoria Falls plummets into the Batoka gorge.
Tandem sky dive in Swakopmund, Namibia
The vastness of endless, rolling desert dunes, met by the blue, blue ocean to the west makes this probably the most ethereal, trippy and unique drop zone in the world.
After a scenic flight over the desert you and your qualified jump partner will exit the plane at 10, 000 feet to enjoy a 30–35sec free fall at 220km/h. Just relax, open your eyes and enjoy the exhilarating experience before the parachute opens. Once under the canopy, you will have another 5–8 minutes to take in the breath taking splendour of the Namib before touching down only a few metres away from base – where your less adventurous friends will be waiting enviously.
Take a trip on our Desert Tracker and relish the desert of the Namib Naukluft before taking the plunge out of the plane. This is the ultimate rush adventure activity to do!
Climb Mount Kilimanjaro – the highest free standing mountain in the wild.
Rising 5895m above the East African Plains, Mount Kilimanjaro is Africa’s highest peak, the highest free standing mountain in the world and one of the most spectacular and achievable of the seven summits (or 9, depending on your definition)There are 7 routes to choose from, all reaching the summit at Uhuru peak & rewarding you with unforgettable views from the roof of Africa!
As a first time ascent, I would recommend considering either the Marangu route, Machame route (both approaching the mountain from the south) or the Rongai route (northern approach). These offer a variety of terrain & scenery depending on your needs and although most routes are camping, the Marangu route even offers hut accommodation all the way to the last camp before summit.
As long as you are fit, healthy and have determination, there’s every chance you’ll reach the top, although an acclimatisation day on the mountain is highly recommended to combat altitude sickness.
Take the challenge and start training! Join us on one of our daily Kilimanjaro trek departures. Not for the faint hearted!
Gorilla trek in Uganda
There is no question that trekking the protected mountain gorillas is the most unique and impactful wildlife experience you will have in Africa. The experience of sitting with these remarkable animals and watching them as they go about their daily business in the jungle, will certainly stay with you for a life time.
Due to the tropical climate in Uganda, you can successfully trek to see one of the parks resident gorilla families year round. March to May, and September to November, might be slightly more challenging though as it is wetter, which makes trekking a bit more challenging.
The rangers do a fantastic job of monitoring the families and their movements so you are almost guaranteed to find a family to hang out with on your first hike, but depending on where they are, you could be hiking anywhere from 1 to 5 hours. You will spend an hour or two watching these gentle giants interacting with each other, playing, grooming, eating and sleeping and although you are not allowed to interact with them, there is nothing stopping these curious apes from coming over to get a better look – and sometimes feel! – of you.
Coming face to face with these magical creatures will leave you with so many tales to tell to your friends and family… and might just change how you think of our closest relatives.
Trek and see the mountain gorillas on our Gorilla Encounter tour and soak in the majestic lives of these remarkable creatures as they travel through their own territory.
Game drive in the famous Serengeti/Ngorongoro Crater – Wildebeest Migration
David Attenborough & IMAX have definitely done their bit to make this migration one of the best know and most visited in the world. To be honest though, with more than two million wildebeest, half a million Thomson’s gazelle, and a quarter of a million zebra, it was never going stay secret for long.
The best months to go is April – July (although April can still be a little wet). Most calves are born in a short window of time in February in the Southern Serengeti where they graze and grow until roughly April. Depending on rainfall, this is generally when they set of north-west across the plain through the Moru Kopjes and Seronera, before pushing through the western corridor to cross the Grumeti river around June & July.
As if this extravaganza wasn’t enough of a draw card, the influx of prey means that the hunters are on high alert. With lions, crocodile and other predators out in full force, chances are good that you will, with enough patience, witness the chilling and humbling spectacle of life and death on the African plains. Don’t forget to add a hot air balloon flight to top of this bucket list activity.
Join our Kenya and Tanzania Adventure around the migration dates and experience the best spectacle on earth.