Africa is a mecca for big game enthusiasts. Home to more than 1100 mammals, it also has the highest concentration of wild animals roaming free on open plains. There is such a diversity of wildlife here that the continent boats an amazing 50 biosphere reserves and 80 wet land reserves. Small wonder many tourists come here on holidays to experience the wildlife first hand. There are a number of safari trails across the continent, National Parks and Game reserves where the indigenous wildlife is protected and where you can see it in safety under the guidance of trained ranger.
If it’s your first time on a safari, it’s better to travel to a game reserve like the one at Mount Kenya. This was deemed a World Heritage Site in 1997 and covers an area of 715 square kilometres. Here trained guides with marksmen will take you around in a 4X4 Land Cruiser for you to see the elephants, buffalo, lion and several species of antelope including the rare Bongo, that roam here. Giraffes will be seen grazing the acacia trees and you might see packs of hyenas – but keep your distance, as they have the most powerful bite of any animal in the world! Leopards are around but are more active at night when they hunt as they have excellent night vision. Your guide will probably point out the occasional hippo that can be quite aggressive and you’re sure to glimpse crocodiles in the basins and swamps. One rarer animal is the rhinoceros which is being relocated to safer environments, although many wild rhinos still frequent water holes on the plains.
Further north, in Egypt, tourists on family holidays can also take safaris to see the indigenous wildlife. Transport is either a 4X4 Land Cruiser, jeep or even camel. These generally travel to the Mount Sinai region where it is possible to see mongoose, hyenas and wild boar. Unfortunately, the Egyptian wolf you’ll not likely to see as he is now endangered and quite rare. Ibex are found around Sinai whilst deeper in the deserts, gazelles are seen. Herds of wild camels are a common sight. Egypt is home to only 98 species of mammals, 123 species of birds but of course, this is the land of the snake with asps and horned vipers being the most common. Crocodiles, especially the famous Nile crocodile used to be a common sight but now is restricted to the shores of Lake Nasser only.