Green Season in Africa
By James Hill
Green season comes at a specific time in Africa – between or after the annual rains. It can vary from country to country, however, November, March, April & May are considered to be the green months.
During this time the typical image of the dusty African plains does not exist and instead you are left with big green verdant spaces where life is thriving. Travelling in March your’re almost guaranteed to see calves and cubs wherever you go as the animals take full advantage of the plentiful food. However, since there is an abundance of water and food the game is spread out as opposed to when you go during the dryer months and the game have to continually return to the same watering holes. This means that it can be tougher to find the game you seek and may mean you spend longer searching for animals than actually watching them, that is unless you travel with the leading professionals who know where to look, like I did.
My colleague, Meeta and I recently hosted a fam trip to Zimbabwe, Botswana and Kenya and we found numerous benefits to travelling in March “The Green Season”.
We started in Zimbabwe, more specifically, Victoria Falls ,“The Smoke That Thunders”. Here we were treated to witnessing the upper Zambezi with high water levels, meaning the Falls where in full flow, and it is when the Falls are in full flow that you can see the famous spray or the “smoke” at its impressive best. It is during this full flow more than at any other time that the Falls really earn their status as a natural wonder of the world. This amazing spectacle can be viewed from above on a helicopter tour, front on via a walking tour, or even from the comfort of your balcony from certain hotels, for example Ilala Lodge and Elephant Camp.
We then travelled to Chobe in Botswana, a popular option for visitors to Victoria Falls, it only took about 50 minutes. The border crossing was quick and painless. Chobe is known for having larger herds of elephants than any other national park in the world. On entering the national park my first impression was how rich it looked due to the rains, it also didn’t take long to spot the famous residents, large and small. (We did experience rain whilst we were here but it only lasted 10 minutes).
The group then flew to Kenya, and I was so excited as this was my first time visiting the famous Masai Mara. Green luscious plains were not what I had expected to see, the area looked very healthy and so did its inhabitants. We saw a number of young calves and a large pride of lions with cubs just a few months old, courtesy of the green season. It may be thanks to our driver, Joana, that we didn’t struggle to spot game but we did have to travel further to do so.
In conclusion, we had the most amazing trip, saw incredible sights, stayed in stunning accommodation, and I cannot wait until I travel to Africa again – it most definitely captured a piece of my heart.
During green season you can expect to see fewer guests in the camps and lodges and also expect to receive good discounts due to it not being the peak season. When it comes to value for money green season does not disappoint!