A safari might seem like a challenging holiday option when you’re with the kids, but there are some camps that have everything you need to keep the herd at bay. Here’s five of the best adventures for the whole family.
1. Lap up the luxury of Londolozi, South Africa
Not only is Londolozi one of Africa’s finest lodges, it can also accommodate your children – in style. It’s the world’s first game reserve to be granted Relais & Châteaux status, and in 2014 Conde Nast Traveller voted it the number one hotel in the world. It’s an impressive reputation to uphold, but it cements Londolozi’s commitment to luxurious comfort, outstanding service and impeccable cuisine.
The Londolozi Cubs program simultaneously educates and informs children as they’re invited to participate in a range of fun activities that teach them about preserving Africa’s rich flora and fauna species. As well as planned excursions and an educational centre, the kids will be guided throughout by a skilled naturalist, the Cub Coach, who’ll oversee everything they do.
2. Do Zambia for the family
Zambia is a country of untouched wilderness, waterfalls and wonder, making it one of the most memorable safari options out there. It’s rugged natural landscapes can make it difficult to travel with children, but a few companies have tailored packages especially for families, so there’ll be no need to remove Zambia from your bucket list just yet.
Imagine Travel has created a family-friendly adventure to save you the planning work. There’s game viewing in the magnificent South Luangwa National Park, followed by a range of activities around the Zambezi River, and it finishes off at the must-see Victoria Falls. The all-inclusive voyage includes game drives, guided tours and boat cruises as well as the option of white water rafting when you get to the falls. Expert Africa and Natural High Safaris also organise Zambian family adventures and have some of the best guides for kids out there.
For a DIY Zambian adventure, Royal Chundu Luxury Zambezi Lodges provide riverside accommodation and a myriad of children’s activities like treasure hunts and frogging safaris. They also offer professional child minders for kids under two.
3. Marvel at the meerkats at Jack’s Camp, Botswana
Jack’s Camp makes for an unforgettable luxury experience and the kids are very welcome. Sprawled under a palm grove, the camp provides sweeping views out over Botawana’s legendary Makgadikgadi Salt Pans. The secluded oasis has been constructed with its country at heart: rich mahogany and historical settler’s items adorn the vicinity and make for authentic furnishings.
There are ten tents to choose from, each with en-suite bathrooms and private decks that look out over the surrounding savannah. Desert-adapted wildlife such as jackal, springbok, hyena, ostrich and steenbok can be spotted all year round and if you’re lucky you’ll glimpse a Kalahari lion or leopard. But it’s the abundance of meerkats that may get the kids most excited. Nearby colonies mean spotting the playful little creatures is easy, and the camp’s staff are more than happy to take children out to see them.
4. Hang out at malaria-free Madikwe, South Africa
Tucked into South Africa’s North West Province, Madikwe Private Game Reserve provides the breathtaking home to the Big Five as well as wild dogs, cheetah, plains game and over 360 bird species. Madikwe offers a host of luxury lodges and children of all ages are welcome at both Motswiri and Tuningi Lodges. Each provides authentic safari living in a luxe furnished space. You may be sleeping under thatched roofs but you won’t have to sacrifice a shred of comfort.
Madikwe also offers a selection of children’s activities such as games nights, cooking classes and dung tracking, giving you plenty of time to relax and enjoy the ever-evolving scenery. Just a four hour drive or 50 minute flight from Johannesburg, it’s fun for all the family in a completely malaria-free environment. Children under five stay for free.
5. Relax in Singita Ebony’s Family Suite, South Africa
Situated in the private Sabi Sand Reserve and adjacent to Kruger National Park, Singita Ebony Lodge rests on the banks of the Sand River and offers infinite views of South Africa’s remarkable wilderness. Lion, leopard, elephant, giraffe, buffalo and other big game come within spitting distance of the lodge year-round.
Singita Ebony offers 12 exclusive suites, two of which are designed specially for families. Completely secluded from the rest of the property, the family suites offer complete luxury living in private, four-bed villas. Each master bedroom has its own plunge pool, and outside there’s a large pool deck to lounge on. Guests are also given their own Landrover with a guide and are provided full use of Ebony Lodge’s luxury spa and amenities. While kids are kept busy with activities such as archery, the grown-ups are invited to kick back and enjoy elegant menus and wine tastings from the award-winning Singita cellars.