Family safari in October, 4 great countries to consider

A family safari is a rich and rewarding holiday, with something for everyone across Africa. While the summer, Easter and Christmas holidays might be obvious choices, October half term is also an ideal time to enjoy a family safari. You’ll find excellent wildlife viewing and great weather, and some of the best countries for families are very good to visit at this time. We summarise four of our favourites below.

Zambia family safari
Often overshadowed by its better known neighbours, Zambia offers wonderful wildlife viewing on day and night game drives, boat trips and walking safaris. There are some excellent authentic, seasonal tented camps and the guides here are among Africa’s finest. Family friendly accommodation is ideally suited to all, though families with teens are likely to be able to enjoy more of everything on offer with age limits of 12 on walking safaris.

October is the end of the dry season in Southern Africa and as such temperatures are high. You can expect hot, dry days and warm nights. It is a dry heat (temperatures are usually between late 30s and mid-40s) and many camps now have a form of cooling in the rooms now – standing fans or over-bed air-conditioning in some instances. With this heat, and water sources dramatically reduced, the wildlife viewing is fantastic and rewards those who visit during this time.

In addition to the key safari areas, the Victoria Falls provides the ideal place to start or finish your holiday. For those who enjoy time on the beach, the shores of Lake Malawi are easily accessed from the key safari areas of Zambia and provide an ideal base to relax.

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A walking safari with teens, Time and Tide, Zambia

Kenya family safari
A perennial favourite for young families, teens, safari aficionados and those visiting Africa for the first time, Kenya has so much to offer. Families are excellently looked after with guides who love nothing more than engaging young minds. Accommodation designed with families in mind, a plethora of activities and amazing wildlife viewing, ensures a fabulous family holiday.

With diverse landscapes and habitats, the country plays host to wonderful array of wildlife throughout the country. The famed wildebeest migration with its dramatic river crossings, is often still in the Masai Mara (usually resident between mid-July to October), and adds to the already amazing wildlife and experiences which can be enjoyed.

Added to this, the Kenyan coast provides the ideal place to spend a few days relaxing before returning to the UK. A little further afield and still easily accessible, the white sandy beaches of Zanzibar are also an ideal choice.

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Children watching elephants at Lewa House, Kenya

Botswana family safari
Renowned for the quality of its wildlife viewing in vast tracts of untouched wilderness, there is a great deal to be enjoyed during a safari in Botswana. Combining different areas of this surprisingly diverse country offers the chance to experience a huge amount during a stay. From the watery oasis of the Okavango Delta, where camps on deep water channels are able to offer boat trips and mokoro safaris, to the other-worldly expanse of the Makgadikgadi salt pans, the variety is huge. Quad biking on the pans, walking with habituated meerkats – who will use you as a lookout post given half a chance – and traditional game drives, all keep young minds engaged and interested.

Camps vary hugely; from the wonderfully luxurious to the more adventurous mobile safaris and all offer family friendly inter-connecting rooms. Combining different styles of accommodation throughout your trip adds to the variety experienced overall. The temperatures here are also likely to be high, though slightly lower than those in Zambia. Expect hot, dry days and warm nights.

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Children with habituated meerkats, Camp Kalahari, Botswana

South Africa family safari
Often referred to as ‘the world in one country’, South Africa really does have it all. Fabulous wildlife viewing can be enjoyed throughout, either in national parks or in vast private reserves. The variety and diversity is huge and wildlife viewing areas include the world famous Kruger National Park. Again, the range of accommodation options is extensive and includes exclusive use villas, family friendly lodge and tented accommodation. In addition, much of the country is malaria free.

Along with the amazingly diverse wildlife viewing areas and opportunities, a marine safari in October would also be great. The southern right whales migrate along the coast of South Africa, with areas of the southern coast offering some of the best land based whale watching in the world. Taking a boat trip affords a better view of these wonderful animals and also offers the opportunity to see seals and dolphins as well.

Away from wildlife viewing there is a huge amount to see and do from all that the cosmopolitan and vibrant city of Cape Town has to offer, with something to suit everyone. Those who love the outdoors will enjoy Table Mountain or Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, the penguin colonies and exploring the Cape Peninsular. Other areas of interest in this country include historical sites such as the Battlefields and Robben Island, plenty of museums, the Winelands and the beaches of KwaZulu Natal. A trip combining safari with any of the other extensive range of options is straightforward and a rewarding family holidays.  

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Family safaris at Kwandwe Private Reserve, South Africa

If you would like more information for a family safari holiday in October, give us a call or email Lucinda to discuss your wishes. We would be delighted to help you put together a fabulous safari holiday.