Of all the world's wonders, Africa may rank high on the list of adventure travel destinations. This massive continent is home to the wildlife you have to go to the zoo to see in the U.S.
One dream of many travelers is to go on an African safari to see the elephants, lions and tigers up close in their native habitats.
The best destinations to see Africa's wildlife
Consider booking a vacation getaway to one of these top African safari destinations:
Kruger National Park: Located in northeast South Africa, Kruger National Park is the second largest national park on the continent. It's here where adventure travelers will find the largest mammals of any African game reserve including the "big five" – lion, Cape buffalo, rhinoceros, elephant and leopard. There are also several other animals that live in the national park including hyena, zebras, giraffes, cheetahs and the endangered African wild dog – there are only 400 remaining. There are 21 camps, nine entrance gates and nine wilderness hiking trails in Kruger National Park, plus you can even book a night-time safari.
Ngorongoro Crater: Head to Tanzania to see the Ngorongoro Crater in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. It's considered one of Africa's seven natural wonders and is more than 2,000 feet deep. The crater was formed following the collapse of a large volcano and is now where cheetahs, leopards, elephants and the world's largest lion population live.
Okavango Delta: The Okavango Delta is another African natural wonder that's located in Botswana and is the watering spot for animals during the seasonal flooding that occurs in July and August. It's here where travelers will find one of the greatest concentrations of wildlife in Africa as well as one of the most unique ecosystems in the world. Visitors can see the delta from a hot air balloon, on horseback or in a canoe or vehicle. There's always wildlife present, so there's no specific time of the year that's best, which makes this an ideal destination for any work schedule.
Maasai Mara National Reserve: The Maasai people once inhabited what is now the Maasai Mara National Reserve. The reserve is Kenya's most popular safari destination. This is where the Great Wildebeest Migration takes place from July to October and travelers may see the millions of animals who make their way through the region. Visitors may even catch a glimpse of the semi-nomadic Maasai people in bright red clothing.
Serengeti National Park: Serengeti National Park is located in Tanzania and known as the classic setting for African safaris. It's one of the places where visitors can see a lion kill as well as the migration of wildebeest and zebra. The park is a lesser-visited destination compared to Maasai Mara National Reserve. Visitors to Tanzania's oldest and most populous national park can see as many as 1.7 million wildebeest and thousands of other animals grazing on the land.
South Luangwa National Park: This national park is home to one of the largest concentrations of wildlife in Africa, particularly around the Luangwa River. Visitors will see pods of hippos that can reach in the hundreds as well as elephants, leopards and zebra. Birdwatchers will enjoy this spot as there are more than 400 species of birds in South Luangwa National Park.
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest: To see the human's closest animal relative, visit Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. It's home to half of the world's Mountain Gorillas and the most biologically diverse areas on the globe. Vegetation and vines coast the forest floor and can reach altitudes of 6,500 feet, making for a good hike. The gorillas can be see pounding their chests as they assert their dominance in the forest. Other animals that can be see include chimpanzees, red colobus, blue monkeys and grey-cheeked mangabey.