Image (c) African Bush Camps
Going on an African safari is an adventure of a lifetime, but travelling with teenagers can present a unique set of challenges. Teenagers are often hard to please, and their interests may differ from those of their parents. However, with a little bit of planning and preparation, a family safari can be an unforgettable experience that brings everyone closer together.
In this article, we’ll share some tips on how to plan and enjoy an African safari with teenagers. From choosing the right destination to engaging your teens in the wildlife experience, we’ve got you covered.
Choosing the Right Destination
When planning a family safari with teenagers, it’s important to choose a destination that will appeal to everyone. Here are some things to consider:
- Choose a destination that has a variety of wildlife. Teens may get bored if they only see one type of animal. Look for destinations that offer a variety of species, such as lions, elephants, giraffes, zebras, and hippos.
- Consider the time of year. Different destinations have different peak seasons, which can affect the cost and availability of accommodations, as well as the number of tourists. Also, consider the weather conditions and whether they will be suitable for your family.
- Look for destinations that offer activities beyond game drives. Teens may appreciate activities such as walking safaris, hot air balloon rides, and cultural visits.
Preparing for the Trip
Before embarking on your African safari, make sure you and your teenagers are prepared. Here are some things to consider:
- Check the vaccination requirements for your destination. Make sure everyone in your family is up to date on their vaccinations, and get any additional vaccines that may be required.
- Pack appropriately. Safari attire should be comfortable, lightweight, and neutral in colour. Make sure everyone in your family has a good pair of walking shoes, a hat, and sunscreen.
- Get your teens excited about the trip. Watch documentaries, read books, and show them pictures of the animals and landscapes they will see. This will help build anticipation and excitement for the trip.
Engaging Your Teens in the Wildlife Experience
Teenagers may not always be interested in the wildlife experience, but there are ways to engage them and make it more enjoyable. Here are some tips:
- Encourage your teens to take photos and videos. They can use their smartphones or cameras to capture the animals, landscapes, and people they encounter on the safari. This will help them remember the trip and share it with others.
- Get them involved in planning the itinerary. Let your teens choose some of the activities and destinations they want to visit. This will give them a sense of ownership and excitement about the trip.
- Inspire them to disconnect. While it’s important to capture memories and share them with others, it’s also important to disconnect from technology and enjoy the experience. Encourage your teens to put their phones down and soak in the beauty of nature.
Tips for Staying Safe on Safari
Safety is always a concern when travelling, especially in remote and wild areas. Here are some tips to help you and your family stay safe on safari:
- Follow the rules and guidelines set by your guide. They are there to keep you safe and ensure you have a great experience.
- Keep a safe distance from wildlife. While it’s tempting to get as close as possible to the animals, it’s important to respect their space and safety.
- Always listen to your guide’s instructions. If they tell you to stay in the vehicle or not to make sudden movements, follow their lead. They have experience and knowledge that can keep you safe.
- Use insect repellent and wear long-sleeved shirts and pants to avoid insect bites. Some insects, such as mosquitoes, can transmit diseases like malaria or dengue fever, so it’s important to take precautions.
- Don’t leave food or rubbish outside. This can attract animals, and they may become aggressive or dangerous.
Q: What if my teenager gets bored on safari?
A: Engage them in the experience by encouraging them to take photos and videos, asking what activities they really want to do and letting them get to know their guides by riding upfront with them.
Q: Is it safe to go on a walking safari with teenagers?
A: Walking safaris can be safe if done with an experienced guide who knows the area and the wildlife. However, it’s important to follow their instructions and stay alert at all times.
Q: Do you have any reviews by parents who took their teen to Africa?
A: I sure do – check out Ellen Paulsen’s glowing testimonial here
Travelling on an African safari with teenagers can be an incredible experience that brings families closer together and creates lasting memories. By choosing the right destination, preparing for the trip, engaging your teens in the wildlife experience, and staying safe, you can make the most of your safari adventure.
Remember to embrace the adventure, disconnect from technology, and enjoy the beauty of nature. With these tips, your African safari with teenagers will be a trip to remember.