10 Best Safari Destinations to Go to In South Africa

by | Africa

Aug 11, 2023

Ever thought of visiting the best safari destinations in South Africa but wondered where you could go to? Be rest assured that this article has all the hot spots handpicked for you. 

1. Sabi Sands Game Reserve

If you are a lover of luxury, this could just be your best bet. The Sabi Sands is created out of two perennial rivers where wildlife have decided to make a home. Even better, this place shares a boundary to the east with Kruger National Park. 

While on a ride here, there is no way you would miss seeing the Cheetahs, Elephants, and even Buffaloes but trust me; they do not pose a threat to your safety. 

Why I had said at the start that all lovers of luxury should pull up here is because this reserve boasts of one of the best accommodations you can find. With the state-of-the-art pools and spas and tons of things to keep your interest piqued, you would definitely have a swell time. 

2. Aquila Private Game Reserve

This is another fine safari destination. The Aquila game reserves boast of giving you a chance to see the big five (Lions, Leopards, Elephants, Rhinoceros, and cape Buffaloes). 

They assure you of a great time during the spring. During this period, a great number of birds would have migrated down there, and also, this is the season where young are born. So, you have the chance to see the cute lion cubs. And trust me, Aquila is beautiful. 

Read: 10 Most Beautiful Cities in South Africa

3. Phinda Game Reserve

Although underrated by many, I do not see a reason why someone should leave South Africa without visiting Phinda. 

Here, every time is the best time to visit. First off, the Phinda game reserve is huge, featuring varying types of landscapes ranging from wetlands to forests and grasslands to woodlands. 

Do you want to know the best part? I will tell you. In Phinda, a very rare type of forest called dry sand forest exist. The dry sand forest consists of beautiful large trees, orchids, ferns, and even up to three troupes of savannahs! 

Should I mention the part where their staff are so hospitable? This place is a home away from home. 

4. Kruger National Park

This should have been at the very top because it is the biggest place you can visit in South Africa! 

Do you know that it is the third largest game reserve in the world? Housing over 12,000 elephants, close to 30,000 Buffaloes, and 5,000 Lions and Leopards, what could possibly be better than this? 

If you love bird watching, look no further because the Kruger National Game Reserve has over 517 species of birds! 

Do not even think too much about how you can fit visiting this game reserve into your budget because all budgets can work here. 

You can get not-so-expensive lodging during your stay. This reserve has about five types of vegetation, a perfect road network, and hospitable tour guides to help you explore! 

Read: 10 Cities With the Most Beautiful Women In South Africa

5. Pafuri Walking Safaris

Although this is more of an experience than a place, I highly recommend this safari destination in South Africa. 

This exercise is done in the Kruger National Park. During this exercise, you and many others are given a first-class tour guide on the beauty of the reserve while walking on foot. This is a fun way to see the reserve and learn while doing so. 

Trust me, it is totally safe, and no wild animals would jump out to eat you. Of course, there would be security around and some biscuits and tea you can nibble on. What better way is there to lose weight and have fun? 

6. Thornybush Game Reserve

If you seek a more personalized experience, this is one beautiful place to go on a safari you should not pass. In more public parks, you may not get the personal experience that this game reserve promises. 

The Thorny Bush Game Reserve is one of the safest places you can possibly be at. And what’s more? It is children-friendly. So you can take your kids along on your vacation with no qualms. It is very worthy of note that the Thorny Bush Reserve shares a boundary with the Kruger National Park.

Read: 10 Fascinating African Tribes With Unique Traditions

7. Quad Bike Adventures

The Quad Bike Adventures of the Northern Cape is a must-do. What better way is there to see the beautiful safaris than on a powerful four-wheeled bike? This is a very fun activity as there are many things to see behind the wheels of your bike. 

These bikes are fast, so there is no way it would not be an exhilarating experience. You do not need any special skills or training to ride these bikes. All you need to master is the basics of starting and stopping the bikes, and then you are good to go. 

8. Marine Big 5 Safari Cape Town

It seems we have swelled so much on the land safaris it seems there are no aquatic experiences for you. The Marine Big 5 safari promises to feed your eyes with sights of beautiful sea creatures such as dolphins, seals, and even some species of sharks. 

9. Augrabies Falls National Park

This is the most unique of the lot. Here, you have the whole safari experience of the wildlife, landscape, and savannah, and to make the package bigger, you stand the chance of seeing the majestic Augrabies waterfall, which is about 60 meters high. Unlike many waterfalls, it has a deep gouge at the bottom, which helps control erosion.

Read: Interesting Facts About South Africa

10. Samara Karoo Private Reserve

Take it from someone who has been there, this safari destination in South Africa is beautiful, and the sun here is hot. If you want to get a good tan on your summer body, you better start considering visiting this place. 

The sun just provides the perfect aesthetic for your Instagram photos. The temperature on some days goes over 35 degree Celsius. If you are not so much of a sun person, you would not be missing out on much as it snows here.


Africa can give you some of the best experiences ever! 

By Lonely Africa Editors

The Lonely Africa Team covers everything about Africa. Our team of experts provides in-depth analysis that helps you understand complex topics on the African continent.

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