So you have been on safari and seen the major parks in Kenya and Tanzania - the Masai Mara, Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater. You have travelled to South Africa's Kruger and heck, you have even been to Botswana's Chobe and Namibia's Etosha. And you know Africa gets in your blood and you cannot get enough of wildlife viewing, of going on safari, of experiencing the African bush and wildlife.
So where next? Here are seven African safari destinations for connoisseurs. Seven parks and areas so remote few people will have heard of them, let alone visit them.
Central African Republic
Dzanga-Ndoki National Park in the Central African Republic preserve some of the most beautiful rainforests in Africa, and the last of their kind on the planet. The park is home to important populations of forest elephants, western lowland gorillas, chimpanzees and many other endangered mammals. Discover a world untainted by man, an intact jungle where nature rules. Visit a forest clearing which attracts spectacular wildlife, including large herds of forest elephants, and enjoy the unforgettable experience of tracking lowland gorillas, getting close to a habituated family and seeing how they make the forest their home. View trip
Chad's Zakouma National Park is one of Africa’s best kept wildlife secrets – a little known park in a little known country that harbours huge numbers of iconic wildlife species. It is home to elephants, lion, leopards and more. Spend your days on game drives, setting out early in the morning to get the best chance of spotting animals on the move. Search for the huge herd of elephants that lives here, keep an eye open for predators such as lion and leopard, and enjoy a total wilderness experience far from the crowds. View tour
Democratic Republic of Congo
The undisputed giant of Africa, the Democratic Republic of Congo is undoubtedly one of the most challenging countries to travel through, yet it offers some of the most incredible and memorable experiences the continent can offer. The far east is perhaps its most beautiful region and home to an impressive wealth of wildlife, much of which is found nowhere else. Track mountain gorillas and chimpanzees, ascend Nyiragongo volcano with its bubbling lava lake and finally, meet rare eastern lowland gorillas, the larges of all primate species. View tour
Gabon has been described as a paradise for wildlife enthusiasts, with a huge proportion of its land designated as national parks and home to some of the continent’s most impressive wildlife. This is a land of primeval jungles, beautiful beaches, wetlands and savanna, made famous by the explorer Mike Fay in his epic trek through Central Africa. Explore in the company of expert guides and look for gorillas, forest buffalo, elephants and with a bit of luck, hippos surfing in the sea. View tour
The island continent of Madagascar is a truly unique part of Africa and much of its wildlife is found nowhere else on the planet. Encounter northern Madagascar’s unique wildlife and explore the little visited and utterly spectacular rainforests of Marojejy National Park which cannot even be reached by road. Look out for the critically endangered Silky Sifaka with less than 200 individuals thought to remain in the wild. Check out some of incredible endemic flora and fauna and learn about the efforts to save some of the incredible species that exist in this remarkable country. View tour
Africa's largest wildlife reserve, Selous, is remote and sees few visitors. Yet wildlife viewing is unparalled, both from the water, from a vehicle as well as on foot. It is the place to come for a true "Out of Africa" experience. Throw in a visit to nearby Ruaha and you have a trip that cannot be beat. Ask us about tailored safaris to Southern Tanzania.
The jewel in Zambia's national parks is South Luangwa, with over 9000 square kilometres of untouched wilderness, ox-bow lagoons, riverine vegetation and amazing accommodation. This is the place to enjoy a spectacular walking safari with expert guides, moving on from one magnificent small camp to the next. You will experience Africa's wildlife up close and at eye level. The park is home to elephant, buffalo, hippo, zebra and giraffe, as well as lion and hyena to name but a few, but perhaps its most famous residents are the leopard and the most colourful bird life in southern Africa. View tour