Nearly everyone with whom I’ve swapped African safari stories vividly remembers their first encounters with iconic animals in the wild. Most of those people have been adults recalling younger adult days, but a few (more and more!) were kids when a prowling lion or ambling elephant wandered within easy view of their jeeps on the Kenyan savannah, in the South African bush or any of the other notable places where humans and great beasts commonly meet.
I have no regrets about having waited until my 30s to marvel at Africa’s wildlife wonders. I feel privileged to have done so at all. But I also secretly wish that I’d enjoyed at the life-changing awe of an animal encounter at an age when the wide-eyed wow factor was absolute, when it wasn’t immediately colored by fear, concern and even anger about poaching, trafficking in animal parts, and species extinctions. And so, to the best of my ability, I aim to bring that pure rush of discovery to my two little boys, who already can’t contain their admiration for nature’s majesty.
I also know where I will turn when the time is right. As an organization bringing together the leading suppliers, resources and experts that serve traveling families, the Family Travel Association counts among its members more than a dozen tour operators committed to the best possible family-friendly African safari experiences.
You may never have thought of an African safari as a realistic vacation option for you and your family. You may have pondered it, but dismissed it as too complicated, dangerous or expensive. You may have leaped the first few hurdles and then been overwhelmed. Whatever the case, we invite you to reconsider it by reading about the following companies and how they have changed the way everyone should think about family safari in Africa.
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