Deciding which country to go to in Africa for your so-long dreamed safari adventure can easily become a dilemma. And truth is, Africa is a limitless continent with incredible national parks and game reserves that would be the perfect scenario for a brilliant safari experience but, which national park should you visit?
Below is a list of my favorite national parks across Africa in which, except for Etosha National Park in Namibia, all of them home Africa’s Big 5 (read Safari Vocabulary at the end of this page). Please note that there’s no guarantee to see the members of the Big Five in any of the national parks in this list. It’s well-known that the population of rhinos are drastically dwindling across Africa; however, some Big Five are notably common in specific locations at certain times of the year. Also note that most national parks home a high number of giraffes, zebras, wildebeests, hippos and a grand variety of antelope and birds.
SERENGETI NATIONAL PARK, TANZANIA
Serengeti is by far is my favorite National Park in whole Africa. Its endless fields are home to our world’s most incredible wildlife. And when visiting Serengeti during the Great Migration season, be ready to experience one of nature’s most incredible events as wildebeest migrate to neighboring Maasai Mara National Park in Kenya.
MAASAI MARA NATIONAL RESERVE, KENYA
Maasai Mara may get all the buzz for the incredible wildebeest migration but truth is, this fascinating national park is also home to Africa’s Big Five and if you want to have a high chance of witnessing lions hunt make sure you visit Mara during the Great Migration period from August to November.
ETOSHA NATIONAL PARK, NAMIBIA
Etosha is Namibia’s top visited reserve and despite lacking the presence of buffalo, its countless waterholes make for a great spot for a high chance to see hippos, rhinos, elephants, and lions gather around to quench their thirst. Etosha National Park is also the best national park in Africa to see the black rhino.
MOREMI GAME RESERVE, BOTSWANA
Moremi Game Reserve is in the lush green heart of one of the world’s largest inland Delta, the Okavango. Greenfields homing countless river banks are the ideal place to spot hippos. Moremi also homes the largest herds of elephants in Africa and a great population of leopards and cheetahs.
QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK, UGANDA
In recent years Uganda has become a highly demanded African destination –mostly due to the mountain gorilla – but truth is, Uganda also home an incredible number of wild animals, and Queen Elizabeth National Park is particularly proud of one of them; the tree climbing lion.
CHOBE NATIONAL PARK, BOTSWANA
Chobe National Park is Botswana’s second heavyweight national park in terms of the incredible abundance of wildlife. The gateway to Chobe is the town of Kasane, and it can be easily reached from Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Namibia. Daily boat safaris from Kasane can make up for a great chance to see hippos and elephants.
KRUGER NATIONAL PARK, SOUTH AFRICA
Kruger National Park is one of the most visited national parks in Africa due to its abundant wildlife scattered over 19.000 km² surface. Krueger is also considered as one of the most reliable Big Five spots in Africa. You now have an extra “excuse” to visit South Africa.
BWINDI IMPENETRABLE FOREST, UGANDA
Unlike any of the national parks mentioned above, Bwindi has something very special to offer; it is only 1 in 3 countries in the world to home the endangered mountain gorillas. Taking part in a gorilla trekking is far different from going on a safari but the experience is just as incredible as taking part in an ordinary game drive.