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5 Incredible African Walking Adventures

April 27, 2015 Southern Africa Bush Tails

For travelers who want to feel connected to the earth under their feet, nothing compares to a walking safari or hiking adventure in Africa. With trained guides leading the way, you’ll experience sightings of wildlife in a whole new way, but also be able to see the little things that make the African bush so special, such as the Little 5, the smaller, equally interesting, but impossible to spot from a vehicle, cousins of the Big 5: Ant Lion, Leopard Tortoise, Buffalo Weaver, Elephant Shrew, and Rhinoceros Beetle.

Here are 5 of our absolute favorite adventures on foot:

1. Old Fashioned Walking Safari in South Luangwa, Zambia

National Geographic Traveler Magazine included this adventure as one of their 2015 Trips of a Lifetime, and it’s easy to see why. Mark Nolting wrote of his experience in the South Luangwa  ” On a visit we saw very good game, including a huge herd of more than 500 buffalo, elephant (including a huge tusker), many hippo, including a large pod with several humorous juveniles, Thornicroft’s giraffe, bushbuck, greater kudu, lion, serval and genet. On an evening game drive we spotted our first Pel’s fishing owl (a lifer), and then were able to watch a leopard stalking some guinea fowl in a bush and pounce – came away empty handed.  One morning when we arrived at the confluence, we walked down to the river to a pod of over 100 hippos. As we approached, more than 50 ran out of the shallow water across the dry riverbed to deep water a few hundred yards (meters) away. The sight of 50 one-ton “bums” of bouncing fat running together was too funny for words!”


2. Walking Adventurer’s Safari to Northern Tanzania

If you’re looking to get out of the jeep and explore Tanzania on foot, there are options for this on our northern circuit Walking Adventure. The suggested activities include hiking near Arusha National Park, forest hike and mountain biking on the Lake Manyara escarpment, hikes near the spectacular Ngorongoro Crater, and game walks near Tarangire. The Value and Classic pricing options allow you to pick the adventure best suited for your style of travel and budget.  Also consider a week safari in the south to Ruaha and Selous parks – a more remote destination.


3. Eyes on Elephant of the Pools and Pans, Zimbabwe

Another National Geographic Traveler Magazine award winner, this AAC exclusive safari made it onto their penultimate “50 Tours of a Lifetime” list. The guides—Nic Polenakis, Dave Carsons, Nick Murray, and Paul Hubbard—are some of the best in Africa, and are the highlight of the trip. Spot the Big 5 on this safari that combines walking in Hwange; canoeing, walking, and game drives in Mana Pools; plus a cultural visit and chance to see rhino in Matobo Hills.


4. Our Point of View Active South Africa

This trip lets you experience South Africa on foot in a kaleidoscope of unique settings, including on safari in the Timbavati Reserve Area where activities include bush walks as well as the opportunity to sleep out under the stars in Tanda Tula’s “Star Beds.” Elsewhere, there’s hiking, and sea kayaking to see Cape Penguins in Cape Town, and hiking on the Garden Route’s stunning Tsitsikamma Trail, plus a dolphin and whale watching cruise.


5. Desert Dune Safari to Namibia

On this adventurous journey, guests traverse the highlights of Namibia, visiting the iconic red dunes of Sossusvlei, tracking black rhino at Desert Rhino Camp, and exploring the dramatic Skeleton Coast Hoanib Camp with its historic shipwrecks, seal colonies, and incredible desert wonders, including animals such as elephant, lion, springbok, gemsbok and ostrich that have adapted to the harsh environment.