First time on safari

What to expect, where and when to go

Experiencing large animals up-close in the wild is exhilarating, but it’s only half the picture on safari

Few people are prepared for how immersive the safari experience is. Superb safari camps in beautiful wild places, wonderful food the chance to share in-depth family time are among the best reasons to go on safari

Days on safari are filled with a rich tapestry of events - large and small so they seem somehow longer than at home. Long enough to be able to have a full morning's game viewing, a substantial lunch and still steal a good couple of hours after lunch to sleep, before heading out again in the afternoon. There are few deadlines that you or the children have to meet. No "hurry up, we'll be late" no "what do you mean you cant find your other shoe?" On safari, life just works to a different rhythm, dictated by the rising and setting of the sun.

And everything is large-scale, screen-free fun; food cooked over an open fire in a safari kitchen, cooks and camp staff who'll take time off to thrash the children at football, shooting stars, glow worms, bucket showers and lots and lots of dirty great animals. 

 

For children, Africa is intoxicating and profoundly liberating. As parents one of the immeasurably valuable things you'll find on safari is quality time with your kids. ”

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It's all about the adventure, but none of it's any fun if the planning and the back up aren't 100%

At Natural High our familiarity with Africa doesn't make us blazé about the seriousness of taking children to the African continent; it's all about the adventure, but none of it's any fun if the planning and the back up arent 100%. 

We fully understand that there are a number of components that are essential to making your family holiday a success and that without the right mix, things can be a lot less enjoyable.  We've been travelling in Africa with our families since they were tiny and weve been working with our partners  - from Tanzania to Zambia to Morocco - for years. We discuss every detail of your trip with you before you give us the go ahead and we provide full back up throughout the trip in case anything goes wrong.

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Choose from a range of family friendly destinations

All of our family safaris are tailor-made and designed to get the important things right – letting you explore quiet, game rich areas with an excellent guide and wildlife that will be sure to keep you all on the edge of your seats. Depending on what you want to experience on your trip, there are a number of incredible destinations to think about.

Tanzania has everything for a family safari holiday - incredible wildlife, awe-inspiring views and natural wonders of the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater, but also some of Africa’s best and far less known parks like Ruaha and Selous in Southern Tanzania.  Plus with Zanzibar and Pemba Islands just 20 miles off the coast, a safari can easily be combined with some exotic beach time - a great way to start or finish your trip.

Zambia has a huge amount to offer families from awesome wildlife, a range of adventurous activities as well as some proper wilderness to get off the beaten track. The Zambezi River is a must and gives you the rare opportunity for top drawer game viewing in a beautiful setting. Zambia has some great private house that provide exclusivity, privacy and a pool to cool off after a hot day in the bush.  

For something a little different, consider a trip to planet’s fourth largest island - the beguiling island of Madagascar. Here you’ll find rainforests rich in exotic wildlife including lemurs, chameleons and birds a plenty. Time it right and Madagascar is awash with marine life, from migrating humpback whales to whale sharks. Your children will be excited by the chance to swim with manta rays or huge green turtles while the whole family will enjoy relaxing on white sandy beaches and cooling off in turquoise waters.

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Whichever destination you choose, we believe adventures like this aren’t for spoiling the children. It’s about having quality time together, broadening their horizons and appreciating that the best things in life may not be things at all. Keep this front of mind when making the tricky decisions along the way.

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Sample trips for first time safaris

The wildebeest migration from sylish camps

Highlights:

Get into the heart of the wildebeest action from stunning small safari camps

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Sample trips for first time safaris

Northern Tanzania for active families

Highlights:

Great Wildlife, plenty of activities, simple comfortable camps in beautiful areas

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Sample trips for first time safaris

SOUTHERN TANZANIA'S DRY SEASON

Highlights:

Outstanding game viewing off the beaten track in Southern Tanzania's Ruaha & Selous

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Sample trips for first time safaris

Giraffe Manor and the Elephant orphanage

Highlights:

Meet the world famous giraffes then head to Daphne Sheldrick's elephant orphanage camp in Tsavo

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Sample trips for first time safaris

The best of Namibia's Landscapes and Wildlife

Highlights:

Incredible desert-adapted wildlife, beautiful safari lodges and epic landscapes

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When to go - plan around the school holidays

School holidays often dictate travel dates and flexibility. There are some fantastic options for safaris all year round and here are our picks that fit in with school holidays:

Every year in mid-February roughly a million wildebeest gather on the short grass plains of the Southern Serengeti to give birth. Roughly 400,000 calves are born in the space of a single week. As you can imagine this attracts numerous predators; cheetah stalk the plains, lion prides sprawl in the shade of trees, leopard, while illusive, are never far away. All of this makes travelling in February half term a superb time for wildlife viewing.

Easter is also a good time to visit Tanzania and game viewing is still plentiful, but Kenya is another great option during the early Spring. An easter family safari in Kenya can include some time in Meru National Park where there are lots of opportunity to fish, enjoy beautiful scenery and African-style camping. Then to Laikipia Plateau which offers enormous freedom to do exactly what you like, from swimming in waterfalls, fly-camping under mossie nets, camel safaris with Samburu guides or tracking wild dog on foot – the options are endless.

Between July and September there are numerous options for families throughout Sub-Saharan Africa. The Luangwa Valley in Zambia is stunningly beautiful in early summer with great game on show. Families with older children can book a private safari house in The Luangwa, giving you all space and privacy to come and go as you please. One of the main attractions of Zambia is the abundance of big game and if you book a private house you have a good chance of seeing elephants, hippo and giraffe from the comfort of your own verandah.

Meanwhile in Northern Tanzania’s Serengeti and Kenya’s Maasai Mara the wildebeest migration is in full swing on the Mara River. An action packed safari is more or less guaranteed at this time.

The school summer holidays are the perfect time for a family safari with so many destinations having the right balance of great weather, amazing wildlife and exciting activities for young and old. Most of the African safari locations are ideal for family trips between June and September.

Morocco is ideal for a short half term break in the Autumn. The fierce desert heat is too much in the summer, but (like the Spring) Autumn is a great time to visit the Atlas Mountains or the deserts of the south. Morocco is incredibly easy to access from Europe, but is also one of the best wilderness destinations in Africa, especially if you want to embrace a new culture. Our top recommendation is to try one of our mobile tented camps carried on the backs of mules or camels. If you like the idea of trying some of Morocco’s legendary surf breaks, consider heading to Taghazout for a few days at the end.

Families that like the idea of getting off-grid for a few days should again head to Morocco with breath-taking wilderness, days exploring on foot, freshly cooked Moroccan food and nights beneath a blanket of stars.

TALK TO US ABOUT YOUR FAMILY SAFARI

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+44 (0) 1747 830950

Our experienced travellers include:

Olly Williams
Olly Williams
Andrea Hulme
Andrea Hulme
Alex Edwards
Alex Edwards

It takes genuine local knowledge to craft trips that go beyond the ordinary.

All of us at Natural High have over 20 years’ experience in the countries we offer. We’ve lived there, worked there and arranged countless one-off journeys for clients. We live to travel – and love to share our tips on what’s really worth doing. For expert advice (and a traveller’s tale or two), speak to one of our team. They’ll be happy to let you in on their travel secrets, and help you plan a tailor-made trip that’s truly unforgettable.

Reviews

Another Perfect Trip

"Morocco was our fourth trip with Natural High and true to past trips, the itinerary was right on point for our interest and goals, all logistics went off without a hitch and the service throughout the trip was high end. Everyone we worked with were friendly and professional. We had a fantastic time...Thank you!"

Tom & Karen Holterhoff

Perfect holiday from start to finish.

"Absolutely excellent service. The itinerary was spot on and the whole holiday worked like clockwork. The pre holiday notes and briefing were most useful too. I would have no hesitation in recommending Natural High Safaris to others."

Angela R CR

Fabulous trip to Tanzania

"This is the second time we have used Natural High Safaris, and again they organised an outstanding holiday for us, this time in Tanzania, combining a safari and beach holiday that was top-notch. Highly recommend them, with huge range of experience and desire to really understand what it is their clients want - and then delivering! Thanks to Catherine Ronan."

Anonymous

An outstanding trip to the Himalayas superbly designed by Natural High.

"Natural High organised a 2 week family trip to Ladakh in August 2018. Andrea Hulme used her local knowledge to design an exciting trip that included a 5 day trek, white water rafting and numerous cultural visits and experiences. Their local partners Shakti were absolutely outstanding and we loved staying in the village houses as opposed to hotels. Their female Ladakhi guide Sonam was really one of the best we have every had on our travels."

Anonymous

Natural High

"Yet again another great holiday arranged by Natural High - Air France tried to ruin it but Natural High and their local agent were very helpful in resolving the problems caused. ."

James and Laura AH

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