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Break out of the ordinary and start a new family tradition this holiday season with a safari in December. Celebrate Christmas on safari in Africa this December and enjoy summer weather with your family and a slower pace than the normal end of year hustle.

By Haley Beham

When I was a child, Christmas was my favorite holiday. As I’ve become an adult, I’ve struggled to find some of that Christmas magic amid the consumerism of the holiday. Sometimes, I just want to leave it all behind and spend the break traveling. The top of my list would definitely be an African safari in December.

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Christmas in Africa looks a lot different than in the United States. To start, it’s summer. Across much of the continent, you’ll find warm weather, occasional rains, and green plains. Many destinations are at their best in the summer.

As the grasses begin to cover the plains, there are migrations taking place in Tanzania’s Serengeti and Botswana’s Kalahari Desert. The great numbers of the herds that move across the plains attract predators, resulting in incredible game activity and wildlife viewing. If you want to see big cats at their best, a safari in December is the time to go to these areas. It’s also a great time for bird watching, as migratory birds move into the area. 

A Christmas Safari in Botswana

In Botswana, our 10-night Desert to Delta journey puts you and your traveling companions in prime position to explore this season through both the Central Kalahari and the Okavango Delta.

Safari in December - Luxury Tanzania Safari - Ker Downey Safari in December - Luxury Tanzania Safari - Ker Downey

A Tanzania Safari in December

In Tanzania, brief afternoon thunderstorms push through the plains, leaving behind clear skies and amazing contrasts in colors – a photographer’s dream setting!

The Luxury Tanzania Safari by Ker & Downey is the ideal journey to take over the Christmas holidays. It’s 14 days spent exploring the Serengeti’s private conservancies and engaging in authentic cultural experiences.

If you can’t swing 14 days, consider heading to Namiri Plains for several days. Its name comes from the Swahili word for “big cat.” The area holds one of east Africa’s highest cheetah densities and provides reliable game viewing. 

Safari in December - Luxury Tanzania Safari - Ker Downey Luxury Tanzania bush breakfast - Ker Downey

Kenya for Christmas

Spend the holidays in Kenya on safari. We suggest pairing a stay at Sasaab in the Samburu National Reserve with Angama Mara in the Masai Mara National Reserve. And for a truly memorable Christmas gift, add a few days at Solio Lodge. There, you can take a helicopter to Mount Kenya for a picnic breakfast. For a little peace and relaxation, finish up your safari in Zanzibar among its famous beaches and tranquil waters.

the Safari Collection - Luxury Kenya Safari - Ker Downey

South Africa in December

South Africa is another great pick for year-end holidays and December safaris. Head to one of Singita’s glamorous properties in the Kruger area for Christmas. Ring in the New Year in Cape Town. Then fly and flop on the beaches of Seychelles or MauritiusRead more about our favorite ways to experience South Africa’s safari bests and cultural wonders.

As always, Ker & Downey’s private guides are dedicated to providing an exceptional journey focused on the landscape and wildlife of your destination, away from crowds.

Because Tanzania, Botswana, Kenya, and South Africa are popular destinations for the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, we recommend planning your year-end safari at least nine months in advance. To make a safari in December part of your holiday plans, contact your designer. Who knows, maybe I’ll see you there!

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