Where to See the Big Cats of Africa

Will Bolsover

15 Mar 2016

Where to see the big cats of Africa

Natural World Safaris MD, Will Bolsover, has years of experience both leading tours in Africa and organising extraordinary journeys for hundreds of people throughout Africa and worldwide. Here, he details where is best to see Africa's big cats in order to maximise your wildlife encounters.

Namiri Plains Camp, Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

If you want to see the fastest land animal on the planet, then Namiri Plains is where you head for. Only recently opened, Namiri is pretty much located in its own exclusive concession on the border of Serengeti National Park and offers some of the best sightings of cheetah on the continent. With a limited number of tents, views across the plains of the Serengeti and the nearest neighbour over an hour away, Namiri is a hotspot for big cat sightings.

Mfuwe Lodge, South Luangwa Valley, Zambia

The most elusive of predators, the leopard, is in top demand and there is no better place to see it than the South Luangwa Valley. Nicknamed Leopard Valley, spend a week here and you are not going to be disappointed. Mfuwe Lodge is the perfect base from which to spend your first few nights before setting out to some of its sister camps such as Bilimungwe or Kapamba to name just a few. 

All of these camps provide excellent camp for leopard sightings as well as some of the best walking safaris on the African continent.

Apoka Lodge, Kidepo Valley National Park, Uganda

In the remote northern region of Uganda, much less know than the renowned gorilla parks, Kidepo offers some world class lion sightings. Whilst not guaranteed by any means, the lions are often found in pursuit of one of the largest buffalo herds around. Catching a glimpse of this adrenalin-fuelled activity is a highlight of any wildlife enthusiast’s career.

Spend your day out on the plains before relaxing back in the comfort of the lovely Apoka Safari Lodge.

Rekero Camp, Masai Mara, Kenya

One of our favourites, Rekero Camp has it all. Located in a prime location on the confluence of the Mara and Talek Rivers, Rekero even has its own private wildebeest migration crossing viewable from its grassy lawns at the right time of the year. This is not the highlight however, for us, this location provides the perfect spot for tracking the plentiful resident leopards along the river banks, watching and waiting for the cheetah boys to hunt on the southern plains, or setting off to track down one of the renowned resident prides of lions who never fail to deliver.

Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp, Skeleton Coast, Namibia

For those wishing for something a little different, head to Namibia, and more specifically Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp. Only opened for a year or so, this camp offers exclusive access to desert adapted wildlife including desert lions and desert elephant. To see either of these rare species in their natural habitat is a rare treat, and to be able to retire to the comfort of Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp at the end of each day is ideal.

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