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Robert Ball

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Robbie developed a passion for the African bush from many visits to his family’s small holding in a greater conservancy just outside Johannesburg. Living in the big city his whole life, he always found refuge in the outdoors and has grown to appreciate ...

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on What to Expect: Morning Drive vs Afternoon Drive

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Definitely a morning drive. The earlier the better…

The early bird catches the worm…

Having not been on a safari I can not choose between morning or afternoon. Allowing the experiences of each to simply sink into my mind would provide the information about choice. But, and there is always a but, choosing may not be the right way to think about the question.

Well exactly, why choose when one doesn’t have to?

I agree with ROB, a day is not complete without both safaris. The morning is always fun as you begin to find all the animals and can get an idea of what is happening as the bush wakes up. It definitely doesn’t hurt to have a cup of delicious coffee with a bit of Amarillo. However without the afternoon/evening safari you would the day was incomplete. I would not want to choose. It is all marvelous and well as educational! Victoria

Well described, Victoria! Thank you.

I love both, probably for the same reasons Robert. The morning is nice and fresh and it is exciting to see what happened in the hours of the night, from the start on. The evening drive is exciting as well, but completely different. I realize that on evening drives I start out feeling relaxed and lazy, and only get kickstarted if things are starting to happen. And ‘things’ can be a lot of different things………..

You never know what lies around the corner!

I’ve now done 69 of each at Londolozi and just can’t choose between them as I’ve had fabulous sightings both early and late. I’m not an early riser usually, but when I’m there I willingly set my alarm for 04.40, and never regret it. There is something extra special about seeing something incredible at a time I’d normally be fast asleep. Also the Amarula added to my hot chocolate is always very welcome at around 8am! On the other hand there is nothing to beat driving back to camp on a clear evening as hundreds of stars appear above you – I always feel I want to be doing this forever. If only!

Upon getting back to camp after your morning drive and sitting down for breakfast it may be, say, 10 o’clock and you would have been awake for 5 hours already! Amazing to think what one can miss out on. Thank you for your comments Suzanne.

Senior Digital Ranger

Love your perspective Robbie. But definitely cannot choose between them – both compliment each other so beautifully, book-ending the fabulous day.

Thank you, Jane. Exactly, why choose if one doesn’t have to?

Hin Robert.
If asked, morning or afternoon drive, the only answer for me can be: both, of course, every day. I have never ever left out any drive, morning, afternoon, midday or whatever kind of drive. And I most certainly won’t in the future either.
Why? Because you never know what is going to happen and it would be such a pity to miss even one second of any drive and one interesting sighting of any animal.
Of course, I can understand that the guide and tracker team sometimes needs a break for a drink, I rarely do. Maybe if I can gclimb on top of a kopje and can see some animals from above. Otherwise: I can drink and sleep and eat at home, maybe 46 weeks of the year, but I can never go on a safari and see all those animals at home.

I am in the same boat as you, i have serious “FOMO” (fear of missing out), if i am not on either drive. The more time out in the bush, the better. Thank you for you comment, Christa

Hi Robert, I think the early morning drive with it’s cold breeze and all should be fantastic to see what played out the night before. The animals are slowly but surely getting up to graze, the impala skin shows that they are getting cool as well.. but then again each person has there own preference.

There is definitely a large element of excitement about morning drives, i agree Valmai! Thank you.

Why choose? I believe in enjoying every single moment of the safari experience from that early morning cup of coffee where you can see your breath to watching the sun set as rhinos graze nearby, perhaps with a drink in hand. After over a hundred game drives, I’m thrilled with each one and having traveled halfway around the world to be there, every moment is precious’

It’s hard not to enjoy every moment spent out in the bush, i must agree!

A toss-up but usually the morning has the most excitement for us but that’s because we are definitely predator-centric! But as you point out, both have their moments!

Thank you for your opinion, Bob and Lucie! I tend to agree (but would prefer not to have to choose!)

All drives, every day! It’s all about the animals!

Spot on, the more time in the bush, the better. Thank you for your comment, Mary.

Robert, Thanks for trying to answer the question! We cannot decide, so will call it a draw for us. We love both game drives as there is always something different to explore!

Thank you Michael and Terri, I must admit – I am in the same boat as you!

While typically I prefer to sleep much later than the early wake up calls for morning game drives, there is something so refreshing and restorative about waking up outside with nature. But I agree, they’re are each special in their own right and I couldn’t choose a favorite.

Waking up with the birds and animals around us is incredibly special, I agree Chelsea. It is one of my favourite things about living in the bush.

Love the anticipation of the day with a coffee in hand on an early winter’s morning. On the other hand. The evening’s star show is always spectacular; however, it also means the day is done except for the memories.

The day is done, yes, but there is tomorrow to look forward to and start that wheel of anticipation again!

An unqualified BOTH! And ending the day with a sundowner. What could be better?

There are few things better in the world

Having been on hundreds of game drives, there’re all great, but some are greater than others. I prefer the morning drives for the reasons described above and I’d add another reason. The earliest I ever started a game Drive was 3:30 am. It was completely dark, but the sounds. I’ll never forget the sounds.

Wow – that is a very early start! The sounds are indeed quite magnificent. Thank you for adding another great reason, Jeff.

whichever is being offered.

They are both on offer, Patrick. Every day.

Couldn’t not agree more Robert, both the morning and evening drive have their special moments but to truely appreciate the ‘whole’ Safari experience one must enjoy both!! The time in between is special to enjoy the sleepy afternoons of bird watching, the fabulous array of fauna, and the peace that surrounds you. I wouldn’t be able to miss a minute of my day in the bush 💗💗

You have summed it up perfectly, Cally. Thank you!

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