There’s nothing like your first encounter with a dangerous wild animal on foot: the excitement, fear and thrill of this primal experience is much more memorable than a hundred game drives where you’ve ticked off the big five. Escaping the confines of your 4×4 and exploring the bush on foot opens a whole new world of the wild.
Here are 5 reasons to get out of the car and put your hiking boots on:
1. A new perspective on wildlife
Being on foot changes how you view animals. You may have previously dismissed impalas as boring when you see herds of them on game drives, but when you encounter them on a walking safari, you can’t help but marvel at their beauty, speed and grace. You realize how much work it is just to stay alive in the bush, and you can feel how vulnerable prey animals are: at any given moment they could be eaten, which endows you with a new sense of respect.
2. You learn more about the bush
You do find out about the behaviour of animals on game drives but you learn a whole lot more on foot, especially if you have a good guide. Delve into the stories behind a pile of old bones, learn about the place of animals, insects and plants in bewilderingly complex ecosystems, discover that trees are more interesting that you think and find out about seeds that are almost magical in their evolutionary adaptations.