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Best places to see Elephants in South Africa

The Southern and Eastern African game reserves are home to the continent’s densest African elephant populations. The best places to see elephants in the wild are in the national parks of Botswana, Cape Town, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Zambia, and South Africa. 

South Africa is home to the savanna elephant, which can be found on grassy plains as well as in the bushveld. The Kruger National Park is one of the best places to see elephants in South Africa. The park has a large population of elephants, as well as other animals such as lions, leopards, and rhinos.

Even though their fenced-in and protected areas only make up a small portion of the range that they should have. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) reports that the their populations are healthy and that their numbers are growing. 

This is a possibility. However, researchers believe that there were once between three and five million elephants roaming the continent of Africa during the 1930s and 1940s. The current population is not even close to reaching this level.

The loss of habitat, due to human settlement and land-use changes, is the primary threat to elephants. They are also killed for their ivory tusks, which are used to make carved figurines and other objects. The illegal trade in ivory is driven by demand from Asia, where elephant ivory is considered a status symbol.

In this article, we will tell you which African countries are considered to be the best for safaris and specifically where you can see elephants in those countries.


1. Kruger National Park

Homepage of Kruger National Park, South Africa
Homepage of Kruger National Park, South Africa

Kruger National Park is the best place in South Africa to see elephants. This park has the largest elephant population, and visitors have a good chance of seeing them in their natural habitat. 

Quick facts:

Number of Elephants:20,000-23,000 (inside the entire national park)
Location:https://goo.gl/maps/GVsBu9yYvQoYGiiD7
Homepage:https://www.krugerpark.co.za
Quick facts about Kruger National Park, South Africa

The best time to see elephants in Kruger National Park is during the dry season when the elephants congregate around waterholes. However, elephants can be seen year-round in the park. Even during the wet season, there is a good chance of seeing elephants in the park.

In addition to elephants, Kruger National Park is also home to a variety of other wildlife, including lions, leopards, and rhinos. Visitors to the park can go on safari drives, bush walks, and night drives to see the wildlife.

As a result, it is a great place for wildlife lovers to visit.

Location:

Video:

“What It’s Like to Safari at Kruger National Park in South Africa” by Going Awesome Places on YouTube.

2. Addo Elephant National Park

Homepage of Addo Elephant National Park, South Africa
Homepage of Addo Elephant National Park, South Africa

The Addo Elephant National Park is located in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. It is about an hour’s drive from the city of Port Elizabeth. The park is home to more than 600 elephants, as well as other wildlife such as lions, leopards, and rhinos.

Quick facts:

Number of Elephants:600
Location:https://goo.gl/maps/ABe519ygfR4rACAQ7
Homepage:https://www.sanparks.org/parks/addo
Quick facts about Addo Elephant National Park, South Africa

Visitors to the park can go on safari drives, bush walks, and night drives to see the wildlife. In addition, there are a number of hides located throughout the park where visitors can get a close-up view of the animals.

Visitors to the park can enjoy game drives, bush walks, and boat safaris. The park also has several lodges and campsites where visitors can stay. Some of the most well known are the Addo Elephant Lodge, Kruger Shalati, and the Gondwana Game Reserve.

The Addo Elephant National Park is a popular destination for both local and international tourists.

Things to see:

  1. Lion (found mostly in the southern section of the park)
  2. Herds of elephant at Hapoor dam
  3. The Interpretive Centre at Main Camp
  4. The picturesque Zuurberg Mountain
  5. The rolling sand dunes of the Woody Cape section

Location:

Video:

“Addo Elephant National Park – South Africa” by South Africa Travel on YouTube.

3. Pilanesberg National Park

Homepage of Pilanesberg National Park, South Africa
Homepage of Pilanesberg National Park, South Africa

Elephants are one of the most popular animals in the world. They are massive, impressive creatures, and it’s no wonder that so many people want to see them up close. 

If you’re looking for an opportunity to see elephants in their natural habitat. Then, Pilanesberg National Park in South Africa is a great place to go. 

Quick facts:

Number of Elephants:240
Location:https://goo.gl/maps/rKiG6e7hER7y9UjPA
Homepage:https://www.pilanesbergnationalpark.org
Quick facts about Pilanesberg National Park, South Africa

The park is home to a large population of young elephants. Visitors often have the chance to see them grazing and bathing in the lakes. In addition, the park offers several ranger-led programs that allow visitors to get even closer to them.

Pilanesberg National Park is located in the North West province of South Africa. It is about a two-hour drive from Johannesburg. The park is open all year round, but the best time to see elephants is during the dry season (May to September).  

Whether you’re watching them from a distance or getting the chance to feed them. A visit to Pilanesberg National Park is sure to be a memorable experience.

Location:

Video:

“South Africa: Pilanesberg National Park” by RoadTrips n More on YouTube.

4. Inkwenkwezi Game Reserve

Homepage of The Inkwenkwezi Game Reserve, South Africa
Homepage of The Inkwenkwezi Game Reserve, South Africa

Inkwenkwezi Game Reserve is one of the best places in southern Africa to see and interact with elephants. The reserve is home to one of the large population of elephants in southern Africa, and visitors can find plenty of opportunities to get up close and personal with the elephants of the reserve.

Quick facts:

Number of Elephants:Unknown
Location:https://g.page/InkwenkweziPrivateGameReserve
Homepage:http://visitbuffalocity.co.za
Quick facts about The Inkwenkwezi Game Reserve, South Africa

There are several feeding stations located around the reserve, where visitors can watch elephants eating and drinking. The largest ones are at the waterholes, where visitors can also see elephants bathing.

In addition, there are a number of ranger-led programs that allow visitors to get even closer to the elephants. These include walking with elephants, riding on elephants, and even swimming with elephants. Several walking trails wind through the bush, providing opportunities for hikers to spot elephants in their natural habitat.

And for those looking for a truly unique experience, the reserve offers elephant-back safaris. Where visitors can ride atop these majestic creatures as they roam through the bush. 

Inkwenkwezi Game Reserve is located in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. It is about an hour’s drive from the city of Port Elizabeth. The best time to visit the reserve is during the dry season (May to September) when the elephants are most active.  

No matter how you choose to experience them, a visit to Inkwenkwezi Game Reserve is sure to be an unforgettable encounter with some of nature’s most amazing creatures.

Location:

Video:

“Inkwenkwezi Private Game Reserve” by Inkwenkwezi Private Game Reserve on YouTube.

5. Tembe Elephant Park In KwaZulu-Natal

Homepage of Tembe Elephant Park In KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Homepage of Tembe Elephant Park In KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

If you’re searching for an up-close and personal encounter with some of South Africa’s most famous animals, a trip to Tembe Elephant Park is a must. It is regarded as the finest walking safari in southern Africa because to its close proximity to the animals and spectacular views.

Quick facts:

Number of Elephants:250
Location:https://g.page/TembeElephantPark
Homepage:https://tembe.co.za
Quick facts about Tembe Elephant Park In KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

The park is located in KwaZulu-Natal, the province where there are a large number of African elephants that include salvaged ones (rescued from Chobe National Park and Amboseli National Park). As well as different species of animals including lions, leopards, rhinos, and buffalos.

There are several ways to experience the park, but one of the most popular is to go on an elephant-back safari. 

This unique experience allows you to get closer to these gentle giants than you ever thought possible. You’ll even have the opportunity to help out with the elephant’s daily routine, such as bathing them in the river.

Whether you’re a wildlife enthusiast or just looking for a fun day out, Tembe Elephant Park is sure to leave you with memories that will last a lifetime.

Location:

Video:

“Tembe Elephant Park” by Tembe Elephant Park on YouTube.

6. The Elephant Sanctuary, Plettenberg Bay

Homepage of The Elephant Sanctuary, Plettenberg Bay
Homepage of The Elephant Sanctuary, Plettenberg Bay, South Africa

The Elephant Sanctuary in Plettenberg Bay is one of the best walking safaris to see elephants in South Africa. 

Quick facts:

Number of Elephants:12
Location:https://g.page/ElephantSanctuaryPlett
Homepage:https://www.elephantnaturepark.org
Quick facts about The Elephant Sanctuary, Plettenberg Bay, South Africa

The sanctuary is home to large herds of African elephants, and visitors can get up close and personal with these majestic creatures in southern Africa.

There are several daily elephant interactions, including feeding times (there’s something special about seeing an elephant squash a watermelon!), baths, and walks. Visitors can also learn about the sanctuary’s efforts to rescue and rehabilitate elephants that have been injured or orphaned in the wild

The Elephant Sanctuary is a great place for African elephant lovers of all ages to connect with nature and learn about the importance of conservation.

Location:

Video:

“Elephant Sanctuary Plettenberg Bay” by Наталья Савельева on YouTube.

Conclusion

If you’re looking to see elephants in South Africa, there are plenty of great parks and reserves where you can do excellent elephant sightings.

We’ve highlighted six of the best places to see elephants in South Africa if you want to get up close and personal or take part in a safari with African elephants, so be sure to check them out on your next trip!


FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions

Where are the most Elephants in South Africa?

The most elephants in South Africa can be found in Kruger National Park, which is home to the largest population of elephants in the country.

What is the best time to see Elephants in South Africa?

The best time to see elephants in Africa is between May and October, when the animals are most active.

Where can I play with Elephants in South Africa?

There are several places where you can play with elephants in South Africa, including the Elephant Sanctuary in Plettenberg Bay and the Tembe Elephant Park in KwaZulu-Natal.

Can you see Elephants in the wild in South Africa?

Yes, you can see elephants in the wild in South Africa. If you want to see elephants in their natural habitat, we recommend going on a safari in Kruger National Park.

Article by Ethan Smith

The Elephant Man is a huge fan of elephants. He lives in the United States, but travels to Africa every year to go on safari and see the big 5: African elephant, African lion, Cape buffalo, Black rhinoceros and White rhinoceros. The Elephant Man doesn't have much time for other hobbies because he only has one true love - elephants!

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