My huge dream journey expertise to witness African wildlife and see rhinos within the wild was made full by my current journey again to Africa. I can now mark this huge dream off of my journey dream listing.
I’ve visited a number of nations within the continent of Africa, however I by no means encountered a rhino within the wild. It has been on my dream bucket record ever since.
If visiting an African wildlife protect to see rhinos within the wild is considered one of your huge goals too, the perfect climate months for a visit are September, October, March, and April when temperatures aren’t blindingly scorching. There are additionally sure occasions of yr when some wildlife parks are closed to guests.
Additionally, contemplate the kinds of different wildlife you’d wish to see as totally different nationwide parks home totally different species with some areas specializing in the unique birds of Africa, whereas others housing huge recreation animals. You need to inquire as to when are your greatest probabilities of encountering a rhino.
Packing for a wildlife journey to Africa is fairly easy for me as a seasoned traveler, however Journey Advisors has an excellent packing listing at The Final Packing Listing for Your African Safari so I gained’t cowl what to usher in this journey article.
- 1 Dream Wildlife Journey Cease #1: Rhino Africa Destinations Pilanesberg, South Africa
- 2 Dream Wildlife Journey Cease #2: Rhino Africa Destinations Swaziland in South Africa
- 3 Dream Wildlife Journey Cease #three: Rhino Africa Vacation spot Botswana
- 4 Dream Wildlife Journey Cease #four: Rhino Africa Vacation spot Namibia
- 5 New Huge Dream: Save the African Rhino
Dream Wildlife Journey Cease #1: Rhino Africa Destinations Pilanesberg, South Africa
My wildlife dream journey started on the Pilanesberg Nationwide Park reserve in South Africa. Most individuals consider Kruger Nationwide Park once they visualize happening safari in South Africa.
Pilanesberg is a wonderful various in case you are brief on journey time otherwise you favor to remain in a malaria-free zone. Just some hours’ drive from Johannesburg Soth Africa, the Pilanesberg wildlife sanctuary provides a incredible variety of species to watch with over 50 giant mammals, together with the Massive 5: the lion, leopard, the black rhinoceros, elephant, and Cape buffalo.
Set between the Kalahari Desert and the Lowveld area, Pilanesberg landscapes are exceptionally mesmeric to photographers. Pilanesberg is the one reserve set in a uncommon alkaline ring complicated–considered one of solely three on the planet.
Quickly after beginning on my first safari drive ever–I noticed a lion lounging about within the undergrowth. To be trustworthy, I used to be underwhelmed. For representing kings of the jungle, he seemed scruffy as he laid half hidden within the grass as if bored by our existence. Perhaps that is because of the reality at this specific recreation protect, the typical age of a lion is 12-years-old, so likelihood is good he’s going to reside an extended life, and he has seen his justifiable share of park guests. It’s estimated that there are solely about 20,000 lions left in Africa, so I’m grateful these majestic creatures are nonetheless round to look bored by guests who need to take snapshots.
A bit additional down the street, a two-ton mom rhino wandered out throughout the grass in entrance of us adopted by her calf. They stopped to graze peacefully; gently nuzzling one another. This household rhinoceros encounter was my first South African wildlife ‘wow’ second.
The statistics regarding rhino deaths as a result of poaching in South Africa are horrifying, however the Pilanesberg Reserve is likely one of the few locations within the continent the place you possibly can view each black and white African rhinos within the wild.
The rhino horn is wrongly believed to have medicinal functions, so poachers kill rhinos just for the intention of eradicating their horns. It’s heartbreaking to think about whereas watching them up shut in a pure surroundings.
Inside a brief area of time, I misplaced rely of what number of of those spectacular mammals I encountered. It was additionally encouraging to see the anti-poaching unit checking all the guests and the automobiles.
In case you are trying to keep on the Pilanesberg Nationwide Park reserve, their web site provides a wealth of info on lodging:
“Pilanesberg offers a host of accommodation options, ranging from resorts, safari tents, bush lodges to chalets, and self-catering. Discerning travelers will especially enjoy the exclusive lodges in the private Black Rhino Reserve, which was recently added to Pilanesberg National Park. Families and budget travelers will find a variety of accommodation choices to suit every budget, including self-catering, bed and breakfast and chalet options. Pilanesberg Game Reserve offers a good option for travelers who would like to visit the internationally acclaimed Sun City, with some lodges located only ten minutes’ drive from the park.”
Dream Wildlife Journey Cease #2: Rhino Africa Destinations Swaziland in South Africa
The drive from Pretoria to Swaziland is an extended day-and-a-half of touring, and I used to be drained once I lastly arrived on the Hlane Nationwide Park. Earlier than the park was made public in 1967, Hlane Nationwide Park was a personal royal searching floor.
The park covers 20,000 hectares (there are 100 hectares in a single sq. kilometer), and the identify “Hlane” is from the siSwati identify for “wilderness.” Hlane is legendary for its huge recreation with cheetahs being their most up-to-date addition to the park.
My first wildlife encounter right here was as magical because it was sudden. Strolling out onto a terrace I used to be thrilled to see a herd of giraffes go rocking by via the timber.
When you have ever seen a giraffe ‘run’ you’ll know it’s a distinctive movement to watch. A second later a rhinoceros bull got here trotting by means of the timber into the clearing–about 100 meters away from the place I used to be standing–solely to be met by one other bull trotting in the other way.
They postured and snorted at each other, and I assumed they could get right into a nasty struggle. However no, one of many rhinos backed down they usually each moved alongside peaceably. Sadly, I wasn’t capable of photograph this breathtaking spectacle of wildlife interplay and compromise, however it’s a scene that may stay perpetually in my reminiscence.
Hlane Nationwide Park lodging are the Ndlovu Camp and the Bhubesi Camp. These two camps are 16 kilometers aside from one another with the Ndlovu Camp that includes the large recreation space, whereas Bhubesi Camp is a camp outdoors the endangered species space overlooking the Umbuluzana River. Yow will discover out extra about park lodging right here.
Dream Wildlife Journey Cease #three: Rhino Africa Vacation spot Botswana
As soon as I accomplished my keep at Hlane Nationwide Park, I headed up by way of the middle to Botswana to the Moremi Recreation Reserve alongside the Okavango Delta, to a spot I’ve traveled to up to now.
Botswana is among the most secure financial nations in the entire of Africa. It isn’t shocking that Botswana now has a number of the lowest rhino poaching charges in Africa. Botswana is residence to 4 wildlife parks: the Central Kalahari Recreation Reserve, the Chobe Nationwide Park, the Moremi Recreation Reserve, and the Savuti Nationwide Park.
The Okavango Delta is now thought-about the perfect place in Botswana to view a rhino within the wild.
The Botswana Defence Pressure and Wildlife Division have educated a hand-picked, specialist anti-poaching staff dubbed the “Tusk Force” and they’re having nice success in defending the re-introduced rhino inhabitants in Botswana.
Once I visited Botswana in 2003, it was a really totally different story, with the Black Rhino thought-about extinct and just a few White Rhino left. I certainly by no means noticed even one rhino throughout that journey spent touring and photographing by means of the Okavango Delta.
Annually at its peak in Might, northern Botswana turns from a dry savannah right into a wealthy wetland, when the Okavango Delta springs to life. Throughout this era is when it’s thought-about a good time to see probably the most wildlife, however I might argue that if viewing huge recreation animals is your precedence then you definitely may think about touring right here within the winter season. Simply put together your self for lots of mud.
Dream Wildlife Journey Cease #four: Rhino Africa Vacation spot Namibia
The African nation of Namibia is situated in southwest Africa and is most recognized for being the house of the Namib Desert alongside the coastal Atlantic Ocean. The Etosha Nationwide Park is located in northwestern Namibia.
It’s huge, masking 22,750 sq. kilometers of various ecosystems from the well-known salt pan so huge it’s seen from area–to the desert savannahs. August via November is the height season to see wildlife within the park.
The park is a very good place for unbiased vacationers as you possibly can camp in one of many three fenced campgrounds and self-drive safari to your hearts’ content material.
The campgrounds even have waterholes with protected viewing areas so you’ll be able to watch the sundown and the animals after darkish. Etosha has almost 150 mammal species, together with uncommon and endangered species such because the Black Rhino, Black-faced Impala, Tsessebe, and Gemsbok.
You’ve gotten a superb probability of seeing the endangered black rhino in Etosha, and I noticed simply two at a crowded waterhole. Namibia has a inhabitants of about 1 750 black rhinos–about one-third of the world’s international inhabitants. Nevertheless, the black rhinos of Namibia are distinctive due to their capability to reside with out water.
Based on the SaveTheRhino.org web site,
“The current rhino poaching crisis has deep-seated roots in Zimbabwe, where the difficult socio-economic and political climate facilitated rhino poaching. Once the easy pickings had been had in Zimbabwe, poaching gangs turned their attention to neighboring South Africa, which suffered massive increases in poaching between 2009-2014.
In around 2013, the poaching crisis spread, to other countries in Africa. First, Kenya was hit hard–its worst year for poaching was in 2013 when 59 animals were killed (more than 5% of the national population). In 2015 both Zimbabwe and Namibia were walloped: Namibia lost 80 rhinos to poaching, up from 25 in 2014 and just two in 2012; while in Zimbabwe at least 50 rhinos were poached in 2015, more than double from the previous year. For Africa as a whole, the total number of rhinos poached during 2015 was the highest in two decades.”
New Huge Dream: Save the African Rhino
Africa’s wild rhinos want the world’s assist. That’s why I’d wish to make you conscious of Dave Stirling and Johnny Robert’s Save the Rhino Worldwide marketing campaign at savetherhino.org to save lots of African rhinos from extinction. Since 2001, Save the Rhino has grown from a small charity elevating £300,000 a yr, to elevating round £2,000,000 for programmes in six African and two Asian nations, for all 5 species of rhino.
Right here’s extra concerning the SaveTheRhino.org On The Edge program:
I simply can’t bear to think about returning to Africa with out rhinos or of you taking your dream journey to Africa to see wildlife and never have the ability to witness considered one of these magical beasts in individual. They’re really value saving and it’s my hope they’re nonetheless obtainable so that you can see if you obtain your huge dream to see rhinos in Africa.
Natasha von Geldern
Natasha von Geldern is a journey author, editor, and blogger who’s captivated with making the pages of the atlas actual by touring the world. She is a contributor to Travel Wire Asia, Wild Junket Journal, Yahoo! Complete Travel and Travelbite. You’ll find her on her journey web site and weblog, WorldWanderingKiwi.
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