Safaris are pretty accessible these days, and nowhere near as stuffy as they once were. However, there are still a number of unwritten (and written) safari rules that should be observed to ensure you’re preserving safari etiquette.
Top Safari Rules for Perfect Safari Etiquette:
- Keep on marked roads and tracks, unless it’s explicitly stated that driving off-road is allowed. Off-road driving can cause soil-erosion through exhaust fumes, oil and killing the grass.
- Don’t drive through closed roads or park areas.
- Stay in your vehicle at all times, unless with a guide or at a designated area. Vehicles act as hides, as animals don’t usually associate them with humans.
- Stick to the correct opening hours unless you have special dispensation – it’s normal for parks to enforce a dusk to dawn ban.
- Don’t harass the animals. Make little noise, don’t use torches or make sudden movements and don’t try to attract their attention.
- Never feed the animals. If animals learn to associate food with humans they can become aggressive, food could make them ill and it disrupts their natural habits.
- Never chase the animals in your vehicle (or on foot!), and remember that they always have right of way.
- Don’t throw litter at all, even biodgreadable stuff. Aside from degrading the environment, some animals eat whatever they find.
- Don’t disturb other park visitors – they all have the same rights as you. Don’t pull up in front of another vehicle, hindering their view. Wait for your turn to view if it’s one car at a time.
- Always turn your engine off when viewing wildlife at close range.
- Remember that wild animals are unpredictable and dangerous. Don’t take any risks.
- Stick to the park speed limits – usually between 30km/h & 50km/h. Speeding damages road surfaces, increases noise and dust levels, and you stand a greater chance of hitting an animal.
- Don’t pick any flowers/vegetation.
- A guideline for tips for guides/drivers/cooks is around $10 per group per day, more if they’ve done an amazing job.
What’s your take on the rules of safari etiquette listed above? Have any other points you think we should add to the list? Join in the conversation in the comments section below.