With safari season in full swing and spring on the way, Africa is coming alive with new life, fresh blooms and boundless opportunities to see beguiling creatures and hot-off-the-press places . Here are seven destinations that are at their brilliant best in the spring.
1. Mozambique for diving
Only a short flight from Johannesburg, Mozambique’s tropical climate, beaches and islands provide the perfect escape for those keen to enjoy the ocean, either above or below the surface. Seaside towns like Vilanculos and Tofo are great for exploring while the Bazaruto archipelago is where you’ll want to be for diving. The best time to go diving is during the winter months of May to September when there is less wind and the current is not as strong, making visibility far clearer.
2. The Seychelles for comfortable sunbathing
When it comes to relaxation, sunbathing and swimming, the Seychelles is your mecca. One of the the Indian Ocean’s most exquisite island clusters, it’s a popular destination year round but reaches it’s peak in September when temperatures are milder and spot on for sun worshipping. The average temperature is 26 degrees so you can dig your toes in the sand and bask for longer without discomfort or sun burn.
Photo Credit: thetravelmanuel.com
3. Cape Overberg for whale watching
T’is the season for whale watching in the Cape Overberg, and the seaside village of Hermanus in Walker Bay is one of the top 12 whale watching destinations in the world. Peak calving season is between July and August; while in September you can see the mothers and their growing babies swimming and frolicking before they start their long journey back to the icy waters of the Antarctic. Grab a pair of binoculars and pick your spot on the cliff side or head out on a boat excursions and get up close to the gentle giants.
4. West Coast for wildflowers
Come springtime in South Africa, something truly spectacular happens along the West Coast when wildflowers explode into bloom, setting fields and farmyards aflame with shades of orange, red, yellow, pink and purple. Road trip your way along the coast through Darling and up to Namaqualand to experience nature strutting her stuff in her very finest hues.
5. Namibia for peak season game viewing
Now that the dry winter season is here, most of Southern Africa yields generous wildlife sightings. Namibia in particular is busy with travellers heading to Etosha National Park to see great herds of game gathering around the waterholes of the world’s largest salt pan. Because it’s peak season the parks and roads will be busy, but the tantalising promise of animals is worth braving the crowds for. Pack your patience and good humour and you’ll be richly rewarded.
6. Kenya for The Great Migration river crossings
While the migration actually happens all year round as two million wildebeest, zebra and other plains game head to greener pastures from the Serengeti in Tanzania to the Masai Mara in Kenya and back again, July to October showcases the most riveting chapter of this spectacular story. It’s then that the herds cross the crocodile-infested Mara River waters in the ultimate life-and-death spectacle. Thousands of animals attempting the crossing at the same time scatter in panic as crocodiles launch themselves out of the water to secure their supper. It’s a sight not to be missed.
7. Chobe and Linyanti for mass elephant sightings
If seeing elephants is your goal, you’ll want to head to Chobe National Park and the Linyanti Concession in Botswana during the dry winter months of September and October. These regions are home to around 150 000 elephant. Prior to the rains coming, they can be found congregating around the river to slake their thirst after a long, hot day foraging for food. They drink up to 200 litres of water per day and they often run the last few metres to the water, trumpeting wildly in their excitement and thirst.