The Beautiful Big 5 African Safari Animals to see on your Safari!

Lion pride in the Serengeti

Everyone who goes on a safari wants to see the beautiful Big 5 African Safari Animals! What are the Big 5? The Big 5 are Lion, Leopard, Rhino, Cape Buffalo, and Elephant.  Of the Big 5, only the Cape Buffalo is not critically endangered.

The first safari I ever went on was in Sabi Sands, Kruger National Park, South Africa, and we were fortunate enough to see the Big 5 African Safari animals in our first 24 hours. Believe me, there is nothing like seeing these animals in the wild. It is almost a religious experience to see African Safari animals where they belong, in the bush or on the savanna. Zoo? Forget it. Once you have observed them in the wild, you’ll never again want to see them caged or used as circus tricks.

LION

The King at night in Sabi Sands. Alexandra Minton Photography
In the Serengeti
Serengeti, Tanzania, scenting.

LEOPARD

Male leopard, just a few feet away in Sabi Sands
Momma protecting her fresh kill.
Leopard guarding her kill
Impala hooves. Leopards take their kills up trees.

ELEPHANT

The African elephant in Chobe, Botswana. Photo credit Alexandra Minton.
Elephant family taking a break in Chobe.
Randy and Wes watching elephants in Chobe Botswana, 2009. They are now endangered, and yet Botswana recently opened Elephant hunting.
Mama and her baby

RHINO

Rhinos are so close to extinction, the black rhino is already extinct in the wild, as is the Northern White Rhino. This is the Southern White Rhino. Photo by Alexandra Minton
Large Rhino in Sabi Sands

CAPE BUFFALO

A herd of Cape Buffalo with the other land rover.
A bird picking parasites off a Cape Buffalo. Photo by Alexandra Minton
A very OLD Cape Buffalo. Randy Minton.

A safari is an exciting, spiritual, and enlightening experience. If you can possibly do it, it is the trip of a lifetime. But I think we all need to realize that wildlife now has to be managed on reserves, it is not as if these animals are free to truly roam the continent. Each reserve exists to protect the animals, and to protect the humans and the livestock near them. When on safari, it is obvious that these animals are used to safari vehicles and people. Without proper management, these animals would be gone from our planet and the tourist industry that supports many people would fall apart.

They ignore the vehicles

For a greater understanding I encourage you to watch IN THE SHADOWS OF LIONS. It is the most important short film documentary I have seen regarding safari tourism, and conservation efforts in Africa. Learn what is really going on in wildlife management. Learn what is ethical and what is not. The film is only 20 minutes long, but it packs in a lot of shocking and invaluable information. There is nothing more important than conservation efforts.

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Tam Warner

Award Winning Travel Journalist and Blogger, writing about Eclectic Travels in the Empty Nest! From scuba to luxury cruises to kayaking to expeditions, Tam is ready to go! Contact me at travelswithtam@gmail.com

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Tam Warner

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