A traditional safari daily routine is as follows; get up early and go for a game drive making sure to fit in breakfast before or during. Head back to camp and have lunch with a couple of beverages. Siesta. Go for an evening game drive, a couple of sundowners, and a sumptuous dinner. Repeat.
As you can see, this might not leave much room for any significant exercise, discounting the sometimes very strenuous walk from your room to the dining area and rolling around in the back of the vehicle trying to drink your sparkling wine and spot a leopard at the same time. We used to say that we drive you into camp and roll you out.
Of course, you might find this all rather appealing. If however, you are of the more active types, there are lots of things you can do to fulfil your exercise fix whilst on safari.
Unfortunately, you cannot go for a run. The safari camps are unfenced so there are big and dangerous wild animals wandering in and around the camp – African wildlife is incredible, but I’d really like you to enjoy your entire trip.
These days, lots of camps and lodges come equipped with yoga mats which have become a popular activity. Often the rooms are also so vast you’ll have plenty of space to get your workout in on the deck or even in a dedicated yoga area. There’s nothing quite like a sun salutation against an African sunrise. Equally some camps towards the premium end of the spectrum now even have air-conditioned gyms. You can also try getting stuck in the sandy riverbed and digging yourself out, carrying my camera bag and sitting at the back of the canoe and paddling around the hippos.
The varieties of food available have also changed significantly. Gone are the stodgy buffets of old, now you will find globally and locally infused cuisine, a Mediterranean diet and a much more health (and taste) conscious approach (quite incredible when you see the kitchen tents the chefs are working out of in the middle of nowhere).
Make sure to get out for a morning bush walk when temperatures are cooler - this is a great way to get out and stretch your legs and experience the bush in a totally different way. You can even build your safari around walking – check out our private guided safaris to get started. Walk across the Serengeti, walk the wilds of Ruaha national park, and walk from camp to camp in South Luangwa National Park. You could really test yourself and climb the tallest free-standing mountain in the world - Mount Kilimanjaro!
We must mention the primates here. No not me…the gorillas of Rwanda and Uganda and the chimpanzees of Tanzania. Trekking to see these incredible animals is tough, admittedly sometimes they might just wander right past your room, but mostly you will be hacking through the forest up very steep mountains. Not to put you off at all - the rewards bring moments to cherish for a lifetime. If you want to see some elite athletes in action, watch the scouts at Greystoke Mahale shoot up and down the mountain before you’ve finished your breakfast. Watch the chimps swing through the trees, disappearing out of sight over sheer cliffs and through the impenetrable bush like a walk in the park.
A perfect finish to any safari is a few days of relaxing at the beach. But when you’re done relaxing you can take a dip in the ocean for some snorkelling, scuba diving, whale shark swimming and all sorts of other activities that are on offer. If you are particularly dogged, cycling into the wind along the beach in Zanzibar really works up a sweat I can tell you.
There are many options on your safari vacation to fit in a workout, albeit maybe not a traditional weights session in the gym, but one that will provide you will the most incredible memories and stories to tell. The world really is your oyster with our tailor-made safaris created around you. Get in touch today to create your perfect trip.