3 mistakes you SHOULDN’T make on Safari

Safaris are without a doubt incredible to experience and can be life changing.

Here are some of the mistakes that you shouldn't make on your Safari experience.

1.  Have unrealistic expectations

With social media being part of our daily lives, we are constantly flooded with incredible wildlife images one after another.  Although these images are usually taken over a period of time (often stretching a few years) it can easily give us the false impression of wildlife around every corner.  Every park or reserve that you are planning to go to is wild (at least the ones that we offer) and can have busy and quiet periods from a sightings point of view.  You can always turn the odds in your favour by travelling to these Parks during the right time of the year, heading out in during the peak hours (early morning and late afternoon) and by spending as much time in the field as possible.

Limit your expectations and the overall experience we will more enjoyable for yourself and everyone else around you.

2.  Spending limited amount of time in sightings

We often use the phase FOMO - Fear Of Missing Out, and during safaris this is a real thing.  So many times you will find vehicles stopping in a sighting, spend 5 minutes and then race off again to see what else they can find.  It is no secret that the more time you spend with an animal, the more you will see their natural behaviour and more often than not doing something interesting.  We are usually informed about other sightings on the radio, but unless something significantly else is happening, ALWAYS stay with the sighting that you are currently with.

Remember, if in doubt, wait it out!

3.  Put pressure on your Photography

Not sure if social media is once again to blame here, but I find recently people are putting a lot of pressure on themselves and their photography.  Is this not suppose to be a hobby?  Fun?

Why did you take up photography in the beginning?  To earn a living through photography or to have your camera along to document your experience?

I've seen people cry because they've missed an image.  People's whole experience/trip "spoilt" because they missed a shot.

Yes I agree, it does suck when you miss an image,  but what difference is it going to make?  Is it for those 10,000 followers that would have said wow?  That print you wanted to put on your wall?

At the end of the day, it actually doesn't really matter.  The experience of your photography, being out in the wild, untouched regions of the world, watching the sunrise or sunset...  That is what it should be about.

Stop putting extra pressure on yourself about creating outstanding images one after another, trip after trip.

Just go out there, enjoy the experience, limit your expectations and spend time in sightings...  It is amazing how the odds will turn in your favour.


I look forward to hearing your thoughts.



6 thoughts on “3 mistakes you SHOULDN’T make on Safari

  1. Ann Nichols


    Indeed Johan I totally agree with your comments

  2. Shazmeen


    Love this and it’s so true. We forget that when we leave we walk away remembering more of the experience than how we got a shot… unless it was an insane shot!

    • Johan Van Zyl

      Thank you so much Shazmeen and totally agree with you. Thank you for taking the team to read the blog.

    • Johan Van Zyl

      Thank you Ann, really appreciate it.

  3. Kevin webb


    I sometimes think we miss a lot by just viewing safaris through a viewfinder ,put the camera down for a while and just take everything in

    • Andrew Beck

      We couldn’t agree more Kevin! Thanks for the comment.

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