Guided Safari or Self-Guided?

So, you’ve decided to go on safari. Rhinos, elephants, and lions, oh my! Before you jet off on your journey, you’ll want to decide if you’re going to go on a Guided Safari or a Self-Guided Safari. There are pros and cons to each, it just depends on the type of safari experience that you’re looking for.

lions on safari

Guided Safari


  • Your guide is knowledgeable. (On animals, the area and the like) Going on safari is what they do for a living. They’re going to know the answers to almost any question you could ask them.
  • Relax without a care. Because you’re not the one driving, you’ll be able to spend your time looking for animals and enjoying the scenery.
  • The guide will point out what to see and where to look when on the Game Drive. No second guessing or missing anything. Your guide is there to, well, guide.
  • No navigation system needed, the guides will know where they’re going
  • Added security and safety that comes when travelling with a “local”


  • Less free time without the guide and group
  • Guides will cost you a daily rate, so it might be a bit more expensive.

elephants on safari

Self-Guided Safari


  • Enjoy your privacy. There’s no guide or group around, so you’ll get loads of time together.
  • You can book guided parts of your holiday, so you can get that first-hand knowledge and the much-needed alone time.
  • Independent experience. You’re the one planning the trip and deciding how you want to spend your time.
  • You’re the driver! Driving around elephants and lions is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that many people would want.
  • The thrill of spotting the animals yourself is a whole new level of adrenaline.


  • You’re the driver, so keep your need to eyes on the road and off the animal spotting most of the time.
  • You’re responsible for your own game drive, so there might be animals and sights that you miss.
  • Unless you’ve brushed up on your safari trivia before leaving, your knowledge will fall short of a guide’s.
  • No navigation system, so make sure to pack your own!
  • You’re off the grid, so added security from your phone and google aren’t always going to be working.

giraffe on safari