Live your lock-down holiday with Live Safaris


Joseph Higgins explains how to enjoy a whole safari from the safety of lockdown

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Image by WildEarth

By Joseph Higgins

The current global pandemic and its restrictions on travel, leisure and pretty much every service that people usually utilise can be a real downer. Many people have had or will have to cancel holidays and trips abroad for their own safety and it can be really frustrating and disappointing for everyone involved, myself included. But during this difficult time, I’ve actually turned to one of my Mum’s hobbies that’s managed to give me a bit of escapist entertainment; the Live Safari.

Live Safaris are simple; it’s a live-streamed Safari, complete with a ranger to interact with via virtual messaging like a live stream chat. It couldn’t be more simple, to be honest: a ranger drives around their reserve with a camera on their car and camera operators with them to capture and explain all of the sights a normal Safari would include. This makes them not only entertaining if you’re an animal lover but also quite educational if, like myself, your love of animals never quite reached the research phase.

The concept of a live Safari can be quite odd at first. I didn’t understand my mother’s fascination prior to the pandemic locking us all inside, but it’s actually quite relaxing to be taken on a tour of the wild, where you know no one is breaking any social distancing rules, and being able to see some of nature’s most majestic creatures in their natural habitat, hardly even registering that the ranger and their car even exist.

While I am sure that there is more than one Live Safari provider, the one that I wish to elaborate on is WildEarth. The WildEarth safaris can be found through a simple Google search (or via the links included at the conclusion of this piece) and they have been a fantastic source of entertainment and sanity in these trying times.

The WildEarth Safaris are run out of the Djuma Private Game Reserve and the Beyond Ngala Private Game Reserve. They run a Safari every sunrise and sunset, local time of course, but as the reserves are located in South Africa, the timezones match up relatively well for those of us in Europe. If you’re from further afield their website contains times that can be converted to your local timezone.

Each Safari is marketed as “Completely unscripted and unpredictable – this show is reality TV as it is supposed to be. Authentic and REAL.” and they’re not lying when they say that. Unfortunately, that means some days you can watch a safari with nothing going on - you might see some of the smaller animals scurrying about in the undergrowth but we’re all really watching to catch a glimpse of the larger creatures. Lions and elephants are my personal favourites which appear from time to time. Each pride of lions has a history in the reserve and it really feels as though you get to know them if you watch for long enough. I won’t go into too much detail about them, because it’s really a relationship you should cultivate for yourself!

Also, an honourable mention must go out to the hyenas, a creature that gets woeful misrepresentation thanks to their star-breaking appearance in The Lion King. The WildEarth crew do a fantastic job explaining everything about those creatures, so they no longer seem like cartoon villains whenever they appear on your screen.

All in all, times aren’t so great right now. If you wanted a holiday or had one booked, the chances are you won’t be able to go this year, and that’s a real shame. But your disappointment can be mitigated by the wonderful cast and crew of WildEarth Safaris. Also, did I mention they’re conservationists and treat animals with kindness and respect? Yeah, it’s awesome.

WildEarth Website:
WildEarth Youtube Channel: