Africa, home to breathtaking landscapes and diverse wildlife, is a dream destination for nature lovers. Going on safari in Africa isn’t as expensive as you think. A common misconception is that safaris are just for the rich; there are more affordable options that offer an equally enchanting experience.
The two most budget-friendly safari destinations are Kruger National Park and Addo National Park in South Africa. Other inexpensive safari destinations in Africa include the Okavango Delta in Botswana, the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda, and Amboseli National Park in Kenya.
Today, we’ll explore Africa’s top six budget-friendly destinations, allowing you to experience its wild wonders without blowing your budget. Let’s begin.
Which African Safari Is Cheapest: Top Six Destinations
Here’s a curated list of the top six low-cost African safari destinations that offer an immersive wildlife experience without compromising on the thrill.
Kruger National Park, South Africa
Addo National Park, South Africa
Okavango Delta, Botswana
Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Uganda
Amboseli National Park, Kenya
1. Kruger National Park, South Africa
Kruger National Park in South Africa offers an affordable safari experience, with prices between $160 and $400 per person per day.
Located near Johannesburg, this renowned reserve allows you to save on travel costs. One of the advantages of visiting Kruger is the option for self-drive safaris, which helps you save on tour expenses.
With a daily visitor limit, making advanced bookings is recommended to secure your spot. When considering costs, remember the travel expenses from O.R. Tambo International Airport. Aside from that, understand the breakdown of daily fees, lodging options, and safari expenses to plan your budget effectively.
2. Addo National Park, South Africa
Addo National Park in South Africa offers a more budget-friendly African safari experience than Kruger. Not only does it have more affordable entrance fees ($5 to $20 for an adult and $2 to $10 for kids), but it also allows for self-drive options, which can save you even more money.
Along the popular Garden Route, Addo National Park is easily accessible and provides a unique opportunity to spot the Big Five – Elephants, Lions, Leopards, Rhinos, and Buffaloes. With its diverse landscapes, including dense thickets, open plains, and rolling dunes, the park offers a variety of habitats for wildlife.
3. Okavango Delta, Botswana
If you’re on a budget and looking for an affordable African safari experience under $150 per person, consider exploring the Okavango Delta in Botswana. The Okavango Delta is a unique wetland that floods seasonally, attracting wildlife.
Budget camping trips are available for those looking for cost-effective options. They allow you to immerse yourself in nature without breaking the bank.
4. Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
For the cheapest African safari experience, head to Serengeti National Park in Tanzania. This iconic destination offers an abundance of wildlife and the largest mammal migration in the world, just about $40 per person for a short walk.
This park also offers a range of moderately affordable multi-day safari experiences that allow you to immerse yourself in stunning landscapes and observe the diverse wildlife.
5. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Uganda
To continue exploring the cheapest African safari destinations, explore the beauty of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda. This hidden gem is known for its incredible gorilla-watching opportunities and ancient rainforests teeming with diverse flora and fauna.
When cost is a consideration, timing is key. Gorilla watching is best during the dry seasons of January and February or June to September. The chances of encountering these majestic creatures are higher during these months, making it a worthwhile investment.
6. Amboseli National Park, Kenya
Amboseli National Park in Kenya offers a variety of wildlife experiences, from spotting crocodiles in the swamps to witnessing the majestic zebras roam freely.
Amboseli National Park is a budget-friendly choice. You can fly into Nairobi and then take a short, affordable internal flight or drive to the park. Accommodation options range from camping to lodges, catering to different budgets.
Strategies for Budget-Friendly Safari Destinations in Africa
Planning a cheap safari in Africa requires careful consideration and strategic choices. Here are some key strategies to help you make the most of your safari experience without spending too much:
Book Affordable Safari Tour Package
Consider booking an affordable safari tour package to explore budget-friendly safari destinations in Africa. These tour packages offer incredible wildlife experiences, such as the majestic herds of elephants in Amboseli National Park or spotting the Big Five in the Masai Mara without sacrificing your budget.
Travel During Low or Shoulder Seasons
Consider visiting African safari destinations during the low or shoulder seasons for the best chance to save money and experience a budget-friendly adventure. Traveling during these off-peak periods can offer significant cost savings, as many safari lodges and tour operators offer lower prices to attract visitors.
Consider Camping or Budget Lodging
Camping is a popular choice for budget-conscious travelers, as it immerses you in nature while keeping costs down. During the off-season, you can save money by opting for camping or budget lodging options for your African safari adventure.
Join Group Tours
By joining a group tour, you can benefit from cost sharing, which significantly reduces the expenses of your trip. These tours often include accommodation, transportation, and activities, all at a fraction of the cost compared to booking everything individually.
Travel by Road
Road travel is the most cost-effective way to explore multiple countries and enjoy breathtaking landscapes. South Africa and Namibia are perfect examples of countries that offer affordable road trips for adventure seekers.
Explore One Destination at a Time
For a low-cost African safari, consider exploring one destination at a time. Instead of covering multiple countries in one trip, focus on a specific country or region. This strategy reduces travel costs and allows deeper immersion in the local culture.
What is the minimum price for the African safari?
The minimum price typically ranges from $125 to $150 per person per night while camping. Whether you camp in a group or opt for a private camping experience, you can enjoy the thrill of spotting wildlife in the rich culture of Africa.
With prices starting at $125 per night, you can experience an unforgettable safari adventure without sacrificing your savings.
What time of year is the cheapest for an African safari?
You’ll find the cheapest African safaris during the green season, which typically runs from November to April. This is because the demand for safaris is lower during this time, so tour operators and lodges are more likely to offer discounts to attract travelers.
Experience the Wonders of African Wildlife at an Affordable Price
African safaris are not reserved for the elite traveler. There are plenty of options if you’re looking for a budget-friendly African safari. With careful planning and strategic choices, you can embark on a thrilling wildlife adventure without breaking the bank.
Aside from that, traveling during the off-peak season, typically between April and June, offers even greater savings. With a little research and planning, you can embark on an affordable adventure and experience the wonders of Africa’s wildlife.
Ferona Jose is a passionate travel writer and blogger at Travelistia. She has traveled throughout Europe, Asia and the Americas. Her writing focuses on cheap travel destinations, travel experiences, cultural insights, and travel hacks.