Our Recommendation For The Best Holiday Destinations In February:
Countries to visit in February: Tanzania, South Africa, Kenya, Rwanda, Botswana, Zambia
When it comes to planning a safari adventure in February, it’s important to consider the general weather conditions and ideal climate for wildlife sightings. In Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda and parts of South Africa, February falls within the short dry season, offering excellent opportunities for game viewing. The weather is typically warm, with temperatures ranging from pleasant to hot during the day and cooler evenings. In Botswana, Zambia and the Kruger area of South Africa, February is the wet season with the rains turning the bush verdant and filling waterholes, lakes and rivers. This ‘green season’ is the low season, offering better prices and less visitors. Here are some of the best countries to visit in February.
February is an ideal month to visit Tanzania’s national parks, with hot, dry weather, between the end of the short rains (November) and the beginning of the long rains ( March). In some places the rains may arrive early, in February, bringing relief from the heat and bringing green landscapes, flowers and birds, also encouraged by the earlier short rains. This time of year is known as the green or shoulder season. It’s quieter than peak season and prices are often good. In southern Serengeti Plains and Ndutu region, the calving season for the wildebeest and zebras is in full swing making the most of the lush vegetation. Patrolling predators can often be seen in the vicinity – this is the time to witness the circle of life!
For bird watching, plan a trip to Tarangire National Park, where you can also see the resident large herds of elephants and stately baobab trees. Also on our list of best holiday destinations in February for birding is Lake Manyara National Park, with its soda ash lake which attracts flamingos and many other bird species.
Visitors interested in climbing Africa’s highest peak should sign up for a Mount Kilimanjaro climb as February offers relatively clear skies and good climbing conditions. However, it is important to be prepared for colder temperatures at higher altitudes.
- 8-Day Wildebeest Calving & Migration
- 7 Days Rhino Ngorongoro Crater Safari
- 8-Day Kilimanjaro Lemosho Route Climb
Considered one of the best months to visit South Africa, February is one of the hottest months. However, there are variances across such a huge country, with sunny days, cool breezes and rarely rain in Cape Town and Western Cape while in Kruger and Durban it can be very wet with dramatic summer thunderstorms – a good time for birders when the northern rivers and lakes fill up and migratory birds arrive from Europe and Asia.
Enjoy the beautiful weather in Cape Town and explore this vibrant city, known for its stunning scenery and diverse attractions, or take a road trip along the scenic Garden Route, a stretch of coastline known for its breathtaking landscapes and charming towns. Visit the lush forests of Tsitsikamma and enjoy the beautiful beaches of Plettenberg Bay. February is an ideal time for whale watching in the coastal town of Hermanus.
If your primary goal is to witness the big five in action, head to South Africa’s Kruger National Park, a wildlife reserve that also boats incredible birdlife. You can also visit other popular parks including Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park and Addo Elephant National Park for great game viewing while in iSimangiliso Wetland Park, leatherback turtles come ashore to lay their eggs.
- 4-Day Kruger Park Fly and Drive Safari
- 12-Day Exclusive Safari, Cape Town and Surrounds
- Cape Town Whales & Garden Route
A hot and dry month, February is a good time for game viewing in most places in Kenya, together with bird watching with the arrival of migrant species. Begin your journey in Maasai Mara National Reserve, where the wildlife seeks out the waterholes, and witness its diverse resident wildlife. It is also a great time to explore Amboseli National Park, renowned for its large elephant herds and stunning views of Mount Kilimanjaro.
Lake Nakuru National Park is a must-visit destination, especially if you are a bird enthusiast looking forward to the stunning sight of a lake covered with flamingos. Samburu National Reserve is another wildlife preserve that you shouldn’t miss. It is known for its unique wildlife like the Grevy’s zebra and Somali ostrich.
Divers and snorkelers should head to the Kenyan coast to see whale sharks, manta rays, sharks, dolphins and turtles while February is a good time to climb Mount Kenya with the warm and dry weather. In addition to wildlife sightings and climbing, February also offers a chance to witness cultural events like the Maasai Mara Marathon.
- 7 Days Masai Mara, Naivasha and Amboseli Safari
- 7-Day Kenyan National Parks Safari
- 12-Day Kenya Big Five Safari
With warm to hot weather, and comfortable cool nights, the higher altitude Volcanoes National Park is the ideal place to begin your adventure in February. Here you can trek through lush forests to see the endangered mountain gorillas in their natural habitat, a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
In February, you can also witness the spectacular Kwita Izina gorilla naming ceremony, celebrating Rwanda’s gorilla conservation efforts. The Kwita Izina gorilla naming ceremony takes place in Kinigi, which is located near Volcanoes National Park.
The dry season in February is a good time to visit Nyungwe Forest National Park, which is not only home to chimpanzees and various primate species but also harbours an array of birdlife, over 300 bird species, as well as 75 mammal species. If you want to combine your primate safari with the big five, head to the Akagera National Park, where you can also enjoy boat safaris along the picturesque lakes.
- Once-in-a-Lifetime Gorilla Experience
- Trekking Mountain Gorillas, Chimpanzees and Golden Monkeys
- 25 Days Breathtaking Wildlife Safari
Botswana, a phenomenal safari destination, is the best place to holiday in February for those looking for a more affordable safari to Botswana, although generally Botswana is still known for being pricey throughout the year. February is the low season, or green season, as it’s one of the wettest months (together with January) with heavy downpours and high temperatures and humidity. There are perks to travelling in February: prices can be less expensive, visitor numbers are lower and the landscapes look stunning with lush green vegetation
You can start your Botswana safari adventure at Okavango Delta, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where you can navigate through the waterways on a mokoro (traditional canoe) and spot diverse wildlife on the trip. In addition, the rains bring spectacular bird life, with migrant species arriving from Europe, Asia and other parts of Africa.
In February Botswana’s great zebra migration, consisting of thousands of plains zebra, is in Nxai Pan National Park enjoying the lush grasslands before heading back to Chobe National Park in March. Chobe National Park is renowned for its large elephant herds and thrilling game drives along the Chobe River while a trip to the Moremi Game Reserve, a protected area known for its exceptional wildlife viewing, might include sightings of lions, cheetahs, leopards, and endangered African wild dogs. In stunning Makgadikgadi Pans, you can witness unique salt pans and diverse wildlife.
- Best of Botswana Safari
- Okavango Delta & Moremi Adventure
- Etosha, Caprivi, Chobe & Victoria Falls Safari
Zambia’s rainy season (November to May), is also aptly known as the green or emerald season as the landscape comes to life with lush vegetation and full foliage as well as animals giving birth. In the midst of the green season, February is ideal for those looking for beautiful scenery, less crowds, lower prices and great value. However, be aware that some camps are closed during the rainy season and some areas are inaccessible.
If you are planning to visit Zambia for a safari in February, South Luangwa National Park is a great place to head, known for its exceptional leopard sightings and walking safaris. With many camps closed and fewer visitors, South Luangwa is a great place for seasoned travellers wanting to experience the serenity of the bush, newborn animals, big cats and predators walking along tracks rather than the thick bush, and seasonal activities such as boating safari.
Birdlife in February is fantastic with seasonal and year-round residents. In Liuwa Plains, the annual floods attract a wealth of bird life with large flocks taking to the skies including crowned cranes and Africa’s largest wattled crane population.
February is also a great time to visit the breathtaking Victoria Falls as it’s approaching its fullest flow in March. A remarkable sight at this time of year, don’t forget a raincoat as you are likely to get wet from the spray!.
- 2-Day South Luangwa National Park Safari
- 6 Days Kafue National Park and Victoria Falls – Luxury
- 12 Days Victoria Falls, Kafue, South Luangwa, Lower Zambezi Safari
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