One of our passions as parents is letting our kids experience animals in their natural habitat and we love to take the kids on family-friendly safaris in South Africa. As a vacation destination, South Africa is probably the best when it comes to family safaris because, not only are there safari options in the world-famous Kruger National Park, but you can enjoy a bush to beach safari and tour around places like Cape Town. There is so much to do that you may need to come back a few times before even thinking about heading elsewhere!
A Guide to 9 of the Best African Family Safaris in 2022
Moriti will tailor something specifically for your family as well. From health issues to food preferences, private safaris to remote lodges, we can do it all. Check out our tailor-made safari enquiry form
Family Safaris in Botswana
Botswana is South Africa’s neighbour making for easy access via OR Tambo International in Johannesburg. We believe smooth logistics are essential to a happy, comfortable family vacation.
Top of the list for a Botswana family safari is both the Okavango Delta and Linyanti. These magnificent freshwater havens are an oasis in the middle of the Kalahari and home to diverse wildlife. The game viewing is superb and activities include game drives, nature walks and boating. The lodges we use have specific activities just for kids, making mom and dad very happy!
Family Safaris in Zimbabwe and Zambia
Zimbabwe and Zambia’s incredible natural wonders, untouched wilderness areas and plentiful wildlife make it a superb choice for a family holiday. In the country’s most popular destinations, you’ll find a host of family-friendly lodging options. There are lots of family-friendly activities in these two countries for children of all ages.
If you’re on a short family holiday in both or one of the countries, three of the best destinations to visit are Victoria Falls, Hwange National Park and Mana Pools, which are nearby to one another in the northwest corner of the country.
Important things to consider & FAQ's
Safari for kids younger than 5 years old
We don’t recommend taking infants or children younger than 5 years old on a safari to a shared game lodge. We would highly recommend a private safari where you have the lodge, chef and guide all to yourselves. This will enhance your experience and allow us to tailor the daily activities around you and your children. We just so happen to be the experts at this just by the way! A very popular choice is our 7-day family safari to Kruger Park. You cannot get more family flexibility anywhere else.
Keeping the kids involved on a family safari
Teach your kids how to use binoculars and give them a chance to look for animals and birds. Combining your safari with a few days or a week on the beach is a great idea. Africa has a string of wonderful beach options and we can easily customise your family safari to incorporate a trip to the seaside.
All of the safari reserves in Zimbabwe, Zambia, and Botswana are in malaria-risk areas, and even in South Africa the Greater Kruger Park and KwaZulu-Natal are considered to be of low to moderate risk for malaria. We strongly advise that you should consult your doctor before deciding to take younger children to a safari lodge anywhere that has even a low risk of malaria. This does not mean that you cannot take kids on safari in these areas, but parents should be aware of the risks and the precautions they need to take before they commit to their safari.
Families who are concerned about malaria should look for child-friendly safaris in malaria-free areas in South Africa. And, as you should expect, we have just the safari for you! Check out our 8-day Cape Town Family Safari which combines the beach, bush and a few surprises.
Electricity in Botswana, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe is 220/240 volts. Most safari lodges and camps are not connected to an electrical supply. Solar lighting (backed up by batteries) is common, with many lodges having a generator, which runs part of the day (morning and late evening when guests are out on their activities). Lanterns also provide light at night. In many camps running on solar power, you will not be able to use a hairdryer. Long story short, you will not have any issues if the kids need a night light or need to charge their favourite device.
The answer to that is a resounding, yes! One of the biggest factors in Moriti even becoming a safari company was to get families together on a safari, eat around a table together, have an adventure and spend quality time together. In a very fast-paced, uncertain world, this is all that matters. We will always suggest the best locations, food options and accessibility when you enquire to make sure everyone is happy and excited.
Depending on the age of your children and the requirements needed, we will arrange most of your children’s needs. Most of the family lodges and camps that we use have all that your youngster will need to be happy and healthy on his/her little safari. Family accommodation is the norm, unless the lodge is busy in which case we will make another arrangement to make sure you are comfortable. The best thing to do is just ask, we will make a plan as we say here in South Africa.
Children love safaris if they have the right guides and activities. We often book families for safaris lasting at least seven days, and even after ten days, many children continue to have an amazing time (and don’t want to leave their new home with all the cutie stinky animals). Remember, your kids will be so busy discovering new things and loving the experience that it’s not likely they’ll get bored. We also plan excursions on our private Kruger safaris which keep the kids busy and exploring new places.
This depends on the type of safari you choose. On our set safaris where you share a lodge, you pay around 50% of the adult rate for children under 15. However, a private safari with an exclusive lodge is a different story. Due to the fact that you pay a daily rate for the lodge, chef and guide, this number is divided up amongst the number within your family giving you the per person rate. It may look more expensive, but it always balances out in the end and we are always here to answer any questions.
We recommend six to twelve months in advance or even more for some destinations. For peak-season travel, allow closer to a year. Family accommodation and exclusive lodges generally book up first as there are fewer of these options.
If you’re planning a safari over the winter holidays, know that Christmas time is busy everywhere and we even see people booking 18 months to 2 years out. For the best accommodations and bookings, we recommend you get in touch with us a full year out from your desired travel dates.
The options are endless! Depending on the age of your children, they might enjoy walking safaris, boating or canoeing (usually for ages 12+) hanging out near a waterhole (where the wildlife come to you), helicopter safaris, gorilla trekking and chimp trekking (usually for ages 16 and up).
For smaller kids, we either add in some activities or the game lodges have programs for kids to enjoy that will teach about the animals and tracking. Either way, kids of all ages will have lots to do.
We encourage your family to meet and interact with local children and their communities. If you place a priority on authentic connections with the local community then our safaris in Botswana and Zimbabwe will be perfect for you