One of the highlights of visiting Mpumalanga is to go on a game drive. Tourists from all over the world flock to South Africa on an annual basis in the hope of spotting the majestic elephant, endangered rhino, powerful lion or fantastic giraffes. For those who are not as fortunate to live near a national park, the experience of seeing the big five from the comfort of a game drive vehicle, is an absolute once in a lifetime experience.
Regardless if you are part of a group going on a game drive in the Kruger National Park or are self-driving through a national park, safety is priority. Each form of transportation has its own benefits. If you are opting for the self-drive option, you can choose which paths you want to follow and embark on a journey of discovery. On the other hand, going with a group on a game drive in a specially designed open safari vehicle is also great since you can sit back and relax and take in all the professional guide shows you.
BEST KEEP YOUR DISTANCE FROM ELEPHANTS.
However, there is one thing that can go terribly wrong and ruin this magical moment for tourists to South Africa – a disastrous and unsafe game drive. The media is full of stories about disastrous game drives when elephants charge at vehicles, leopards attack game drive vehicles and others. Follow these helpful tips to ensure your game drive goes smoothly and everyone stays safe.
Be sure that your vehicle is roadworthy if going on a self-drive game drive. Since visitors are not allowed to get out of their vehicles when driving in the Kruger National Park, it can be disastrous if you should get stuck in the middle of nowhere with a hungry lion eyeing you from behind a bush. Also, inform others of your whereabouts in case you should require assistance
Hold Your Ground
It is a good idea to observe an animal’s behaviour. There are some signs to watch out for that can help you avoid a possible collision. The animals can show signs of agitation such as flapping of ears, growing, twitching of tale etc. When confronted with an aggressive elephant, hold your ground and turn the engine of the car off. Hooting and revving the car, will only make the animal more aggressive as they perceive this as a challenge.
Whilst on a game drive, be alert to the road conditions and how it may change from tar to dirt. Be sure to adhere to speed limits. As a passenger on board a game drive vehicle, you can alert the driver if you feel uncomfortable with the speed he is driving at or gets too close to a wild animal. Remember that you must never try to touch the animals or feed them. It is important that you are safe and have fun.
PHOTOS BY TWNA