What I neglected to tell them is that safaris require much more than a desire to see the animals. It’s that lack of excitement in the field that actually makes a safari magical — the anticipation of it all. When we were in Namibia we moved from smaller game parks up to the enormous Etosha National Park. Talk to your kids about patience, and remind them that they might have to wait to see the big game they’re hoping for. If you can give your kids their own camera or let them man the video recorder you’re bound to get multi-media memories that are sure to bring smiles later on. I once went on a night safari with a woman who insisted on getting out of the jeep, in the middle of the bush, to use the bathroom in the wild, and insisted no one in the jeep look in her direction. Heather Greenwood Davis and her family were recognized as Travelers of the Year by Traveler magazine in 2012. About Intelligent TravelNational Geographic believes that to know the world is to change it. Help your first grader stretch her phonics muscles by practicing sounding out the letters n and t. Featuring a simple prompt and plenty of blank space, this worksheet is great for helping kids flex their writing muscles. Your child can grab her pencils, both plain and colored, and get to work flexing her literary muscles by writing an illustrating a fairy tale. Who in their right mind would pass up the opportunity to watch animals in their natural habitat, roaming free as they were meant to? Who wouldn’t get excited about this chance of a lifetime?


They require patience. It’s possible to be out in the fields for hours and only see baboons and gazelles.
It’s the way your heart jumps when the lump you thought was simply a large stone…moves, or when you spy something small in the bush, only to realize it’s a lion cub, no, wait, two — and there, in the shadow, its mother, too! Kids who hate long car rides, getting up early, or who tend to fall asleep once they’re in the car may actually dose off now and then.
This is the sort of ingenuity I’ve grown accustomed to in Africa, where, even in the face of the impossible, people struggle, persist, and pull through. We're on the front lines of travel that illuminates, celebrates, and preserves irreplaceable places—and we're taking you along for the ride. If you no longer have access to the e-mail address associated with your account, contact Customer Service for help restoring access to your account.
By the time we reached Etosha, they could point out some of those smaller animals on their own and were even more blown away by the big game. Teach them the fun of the search, and be prepared to help them pass the time when there’s not much to see.
And having paper, crayons or colored pencils on hand will buy you more time when you’ve spotted something that isn’t moving much.
It sounds silly, but the Disney-like ramble of some tour operators can lead you to believe all is perfectly safe. Usually the biggest concern is noise level (they may frighten off the very animals you’re looking for) and safety. Think long and hard about filling your days with game drives- most lodges offer anywhere from 2 to 4 per day – and pack in time for just relaxing at the lodge.


We spent the first day saddened by the savaged carcass of an animal which had most probably been attacked and eaten by a lion. Many lodges offer books (either at the front desk or in the gift shop) that will help your kids identify less familiar animals. But in spite of it all, everyone lowers their shoulders and plows ahead, realizing that we’re in this together.
However, the next day when we got to see a herd of lions complete with baby lion cubs,all was forgiven.
Mine loved working through a checklist that included everything from different species of birds to the varying types of gnus. Some of my favorite memories are of bumping along in the fresh air with one of my son’s heads on my shoulder.
Keep your wits about you and remember that small children can look like prey to wild animals.
Others may lower the age limit if you’re in a private jeep just for your family, or suggest you only take certain game drives over others. Take their advice and think long and hard about your child’s personality before booking the trip. My sons once stepped out of a jeep at a game reserve where wild dogs were being preserved and the immediate transformation of the dogs from playful puppies to hunters made me very grateful for the electric fence.



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