A trip to Africa is an incredible experience, but it is advised you are well prepared for your excursion.  Here’s what you need to know:
  • Opt for Malaria-free destinations.  There are numerous Malaria-free reserves you can visit without having to stress about taking medication.
  • Safety first.  With extensive experience and knowledge of the bushveld, our guides will give you the necessary precautions when going on an African safari.  Don’t take the risk as animals often roam freely through the camps.
  • Pack some winter clothing.  As you will most probably visit Africa during the colder months, pack some winter essentials to keep you warm.
  • Pack summer essentials.  If you picked a beach holiday, remember to pack some sunhats, sunscreen and your costumes.
  • Tipping is customary, but at your own discretion.  We recommend a 10 to 15% for great service at restaurants or hotels.
  • Passport and Visa requirements.  It is your responsibility as a traveller to ensure you have the correct documents. Please check the requirements with the South Africa Department of Home Affairs. Failure to comply with visa and/or passport requirements may result in denied travelling to South Africa. Please note that visitors who wish to travel to South Africa must have a passport that is valid for at least 30 days after their intended return date from South Africa. A valid visa, if required and sufficient funds to pay for day-to-day expenses during your stay.  If you have children under 18 years of age travelling with you, you are now required by law to provide the following additional documents:
  • Proof of guardianship or custody of said child/children
  • Written consent from the guardian in the case of an unaccompanied mino


If a visit to Africa is on your to-do list, AFRICAN SPIRIT should be on speed dial.  Although safaris are more popular during May to October as vegetation is at its thinnest at this time so game viewing is far easier than during the summer months, safaris in South Africa is permitted all year round. On your African safari our team of highly experienced guides will take you through the natural landscape to witness a diversity of wildlife. Come and experience the beauty of the bush.


Questions we often get asked

These are a few of the questions we often get asked. If you have another question, please feel free to contact us.

Can you customize a trip just for me?
Absolutely! We'll give you some sample itineraries and you can use them as a sample of what we can put together.  Every aspect of our tours can be changed: length, level of accommodation, route or even add a theme like birding or food, which can put a whole new dimension to any of our sample tours.  You dream it, we'll help you live it.

How long do I need for a good safari?
How long is a piece of string? We have done tours that are just a day; our longest tour was just over 9 weeks, spanning 5 countries. We recommend you take as long as you can. This will allow us time to show you what you want and give you a chance to get submersed in the experience and get a true feeling for what a safari is.

Is it safe?
YES it is.  African Spirit Safaris works very hard to ensure the safety of all our guests.  Since we started in 1999 we have only had one incident where a guest lost his passport but it was recovered. When it comes to tracking and getting close to wild animals, there is always an element of risk. We use guides who have an average (per guide) of over 20 years of guiding experience. You can feel secure and comfortable knowing that our guides know, love and respect the bush. Our guides have a great sense of self preservation too - so stick with them and you'll be fine.

Can I drink the water?
Africa generally has good tap water, however the mineral composition varies greatly, as does the source of water (dams, boreholes, springs etc.) so we always advise our guests to stick with bottled drinking water to be safe. Tap water is fine for showering and brushing teeth.

What about the food, I have specific dietary needs?
This needs to be discussed upfront before we start designing your tour/safari, as we will then choose the lodges that can accommodate your specific needs. Most lodges do cater for the normal requests like vegetarian or gluten-free meals, but there are fewer lodges who cater for kosher requests. If you let us know what you need, we'll ensure your needs are met.

What type of vehicle will we be travelling in?
It depends where we are travelling. In Southern Africa we generally use comfortable air-conditioned vehicles while travelling from one area to the next, while game viewing is done in open safari vehicles. In East Africa the tour vehicle is normally the same vehicle you will do your game viewing in, a “POP TOP” vehicle, so once in the game viewing areas the top of the vehicle pops up and you can then stand or sit to enjoy the wildlife around you. Once we know your itinerary plan, we can confirm which vehicles we'll be using. Of course, we can also arrange helicopters, balloons, canoes, trains, motor launches etc. as required by terrain and by your itinerary.

Are we guaranteed to see all the animals we want?
NO. We do try our very best to show off all our amazing fauna and flora but nobody can guarantee you will see them. The African bush is a true wild experience and not a zoo so half the thrill of doing a game drive is not knowing what you will see and experience along with the hunt of trying to find certain species. As an example, we've seen all of the Big 5 in just one hour on one tour, and none of the Big Five on the next (although we did see some of the lesser known creatures of Africa and spectacular bird life).

Is malaria a big concern?
Yes, but only if you are travelling to a malaria area (for example, Victoria Falls). If your itinerary does take you to malaria areas, we will notify you and advise you to visit a travel clinic to get the best medical cover.  We also send you practical tips on how to ensure you don’t get bitten, like covering up in the evenings with longs sleeves and long pants. However, since we started in 1999 we have not had a single guest get malaria.

What should I pack?
This will change from tour to tour as well as from season to season, so we will send you a packing list. However the basics would be a camera, lots of spare memory cards, a good hat and sunblock and a warm jacket (when you’re on an open safari vehicle the wind chill can make it feel very cold and we do get cold snaps even in summer).

Do I need a big fancy camera with all the huge lenses?
If photography is your hobby and you have the gear then yes, do bring it. You'll have a great time in the bush. However, for those who don't have a high end camera, a good point and shoot will record your holiday just fine. Our guides do their best to ensure we get as close as we can so you don’t need a high power zoom. To prove it, all the photos on our website were taken with a bridge camera (point and shoot with a good zoom).

When is the best time to travel?
We cover a huge area and climates differ radically. Here's our quick low down on some key areas:
- The Cape (Cape Town, Garden Route, etc): best in summer.
- Northern South Africa and most of Southern Africa:  best in winter when there is no rain and animals are forced to stay close to water holes, and there are fewer bugs.
- Serengeti: in February or March the migration is in the south and comes to a brief stop so animals can have their babies. Soin this case summer is best.
- Birding: summer is obviously best as the migratory birds are back and they are all in the bright breeding colours.

More questions?
If you have another question, please feel free to contact us for a specific answer to each destination.