Big Five safari holidays in South Africa

leopard are elusive big five animals to spot The most elusive of the Big Five; the leopard will drag its prey high up into the trees to escape scavengers

For many first time visitors to Africa, a top priority is ticking off the so-called Big Five: lion, leopard, buffalo, elephant and rhino. South Africa offers many excellent opportunities to do this, and it is the easiest place in Africa to see rhinos, since it supports more than 90% of the continental population of these endangered creatures. It is also the African country best suited to self-drive safaris.

South Africa’s top Big Five destination is the Kruger National Park, which extends over almost 20,000 km² to form one of Africa’s largest and most iconic safari destinations. Kruger is home around 40,000 buffalo, 13,000 elephant, 1,600 lion, 2,000 leopard, 7,000 white rhino and 400 black rhino. For those who can afford it, great alternatives to Kruger are the exclusive private reserves that border it, and ‘concession lodges’ that occupy enclaves within it.

cape buffalo one of the big five animals The Cape buffalo can weight up to 850 kilograms

South Africa boasts many other world-class safari destinations, among them the malaria-free Pilanesberg and Madikwe Game Reserves northwest of Johannesburg.

travel eexpert big five safari south africa


Our Recommended Itinerary

The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)

day 1 to 3

Welcome to your Big Five safari
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)

day 4 to 6

Explore the Kruger National Park
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)
  • The Ultimate Big Five South African Safari (7 days)

day 7

See you on your next visit

View Full Itinerary

Popular South Africa Safaris

These popular itineraries can be customised to match your budget and travel dates

 | South African Bush and Beach Journey (10 days)

South African Bush and Beach Journey (10 days)

Explore the magic of Cape Town followed by the Scenic Garden Route and finally the Big Five members at the Kruger National Park...

 | South African Midlands Meander (15 days)

South African Midlands Meander (15 days)

Explore the Eastern Cape, Lesotho and KwaZulu Natal...

 | Cape Town, the Winelands and Kruger Luxury Journey (9 days)

Cape Town, the Winelands and Kruger Luxury Journey (9 days)

Experience Cape Town, the lush Cape Winelands and a safari in the Kruger National Park and you'll fall under South Africa's spell...

 | Bespoke Safari in South Africa (14 days)

Bespoke Safari in South Africa (14 days)

Experience the best that South Africa has to offer, with a holiday tailor-made for you ...

Exterior view of Ngala Tented Camp | Delightful Cape Town and Kruger Luxury Safari (12 days)

Delightful Cape Town and Kruger Luxury Safari (12 days)

Combine Cape Town and the surrounding Cape Winelands with a safari in the Kruger National Park for a relaxing and exhilarating South African safari...

 | Nature, Romance and Exclusivity - A Complete African Honeymoon (14 days)

Nature, Romance and Exclusivity - A Complete African Honeymoon (14 days)

This exclusive African honeymoon through East and Southern Africa is the perfect way to celebrate the start of your new journey together...

Aerial View of Sun City | Sun City and Madikwe Family Safari (6 days)

Sun City and Madikwe Family Safari (6 days)

From Sun City's hedonistic pleasures to the majesty of nature at Madikwe Game Reserve, this journey combines the best of two very different worlds...

 | Cosmopolitan Cape Town and Kruger Tour (7 days)

Cosmopolitan Cape Town and Kruger Tour (7 days)

Discover the Big Cats in the Kruger National Park and enjoy the bustling harbour, world-class beaches and top-notch vineyards in Cape Town...

 | Two weeks in South Africa - a luxury rail safari

Two weeks in South Africa - a luxury rail safari

Experience the best that South Africa has to offer: it's white-sand beaches, lush green wine-lands and find the Big Five wildlife in the Kruger National Park. ...

 | Kruger to the Mozambican Coast (7 days)

Kruger to the Mozambican Coast (7 days)

Combining the bush and the wildlife found in the famous Sabi Sand in the Kruger National Park with a tropical stay in one of the sublime lodges of Mozambique's Ponta Mamoli...



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