In addition to the world famous Kruger National Park, South Africa is home to nearly 150 other national parks and reserves including those dedicated to nature, marine life, forestry, botany as well as other unique interests. For decades these parks have welcomed millions of visitors each year.
All the above has done well to promote South Africa as a kind of Eden where it's possible to tour comfortably in a 4x4 amid abundant and exotic wildlife, to be able to safely watch predators as they dine on their prey, to observe the big cats in the tall grass or to follow the migration of herbivores…
South Africa has long been the most popular hunting destination in Africa especially as a first time hunting safari destination. Well over 6,000 international hunters visit annually for plains game and big game hunting on the more than 9,000 registered game ranches in South Africa. Hunting properties range in size from a few thousand to over 250,000 acres where hunters can discover a country and its wildlife that are among the most beautiful and richest that Africa has to offer.
There are nine provinces in South Africa. However more than half of the most popular plains game species are taken in just two provinces, the Limpopo and Eastern Cape. The species taken in these provinces that top the list are Impala (Aepyceros Melampus), Warthog (Phacochoerus Aethiopicus), Greater Kudu (Tragelaphus Strepsiceros), Blesbok (Damaliscus), Gemsbok (Oryx Gazella), Blue Wildebeest (Connochaetes Taurinus), Burchell's Zebra (Equus Quagga Burchellii), Black Wildebeest (Conochaetes Gnou), Southern Bushbuck (Tragelaphus Scriptus Sylvaticus), Common Waterbuck (Kobus Ellipsiprymnus) and Springbok (Antidorca Marsupialis) predominantly in Eastern Cape province.
While hunting in South Africa one can take the big five; Lion, Leopard, Buffalo, Elephant and Rhino. The big five species are dispersed all over South Africa with most being harvested in a couple of provinces. About 60% of all Leopards are taken in the Limpopo province with another 25% being hunted in the North West province. Approximately 65% of all Buffalo are harvested in the Gauteng province and an additional 20% are taken in the KwaZulu Natal and Free State provinces combined
Hunting in South Africa also offers the opportunity to hunt exotic species, not indigenous to South Africa or sometimes Africa at all, most of which is conducted in the Eastern Cape Province.
The habitat is mostly savanna shrub, dry, grassy plains, thorn and acacia. The hunting areas in the province of the Kalahari are semi-desert and the soil is often sandy which can make walking challenging and tiresome.
There is no set hunting season in South Africa so one can hunt throughout the year. Keep in mind when traveling south of the equator that the seasons are reversed; June, July and August are South Africa's winter months and therefore the coldest months as well as the most popular among hunters. In some areas the frost setting in by early morning can feel like December in Europe or northern United States but without the snow.