We get to celebrate one of the most epic animals on earth this month – the majestic Elephant. Having just commemorated World Elephant Day in August, I wanted to share 3 of my favourite elephant experiences below with you all!
There’s many reasons why I love elephants, their soulful eyes, their playfulness, how they value family and teamwork and of course the females are the boss.
Hwange National Park, where my partner Imvelo Safari Lodges operate an incredible experiential and community based circuit of camps, has to be the greatest elephant show on the planet in the high season. There are up to 45000 elephants and a fascinating statistic showed there are often more elephant to people visiting the park! So for elephant lovers, Nehimba in northern Hwange, has to be one of my all time favourite destinations for close up, exclusive elephant experiences.
One dines metres from these humbling and enormous tuskers but my ultimate is to sit next to the crackling fire late into the night and watch as they gather around the pool, waterhole and lodge in their hundreds. In the silence, one can truly connect to them, and observe their complex social hierarchies. More so, listening to their rumbling sounds reverberate through you, being so close to them, you can hear them gulping down the precious water in the dry season. It is simply one of the most extraordinary moments with elephants I have ever been lucky to experience. Watch this jaw dropping elephant experience here.
We had just flown into Makgadikgadi with my Botswana partner Golden Africa Safaris and on our way to camp, we could not have asked for a more perfect safari moment! Elephants at a waterhole with the sun sinking in the distance, pink candy floss clouds and stunning Ilala palms in the background.
In the silence and vastness of this great salt pan the contrast with this exquisite scene was palpable and the best first sighting we could of asked for on our safari! They drank, played, cooled themselves down as the sky turned all shades of dusky and magenta pinks and eventually fiery reds and we all felt ourselves exhale and enjoy this ‘postcard perfect’ sighting! If I had to try describe ‘Africa’ in a scene, this would be it. It is always better to see it, then read it, have a squizz here. Sunsets, Salt pans and silence!
Being on the mighty Zambezi River has always been one of my happy places since childhood, and when we get to spend an evening on the water surrounded by Elephant – it’s the icing on the cake!
Ellies splashing around, cool breeze, glistening water, bubbles and then the epic sunset – day made! It is extremely special watching the elephant wade in the water close by, with the chorus of birdlife all around. My partners there, Victoria Falls River Lodge, offer very plush, exclusive sundowner cruises and one of the best ways to finish off a day under the Zimbabwean sun! Enjoy a magnificent virtual sundowner here – Sundowners and Splashes!
May we forever continue to celebrate and protect these beautiful animals!
Image Credits: Imvelo Safari Lodges.