Where to see African Elephants in the wild. 30+ Places to see elephants in Africa.

The African wilderness is full of interesting animals but none has quite the presence as the African Elephant. From their size, intelligence, and social structures, elephants are the most iconic of African wild animals, and you could spend days with them without getting tired.

In this article, we'll look at the places where you can go and enjoy your personal interaction with the African Elephants in their natural wild habitat.

Where To See African Elephants In The Wild

African elephants can be seen in the protected areas of Eastern, Southern, Centra, and Western Africa.

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elephants in kruger np South Africa

In Eastern and Southern Africa, the predominant African elephant species is the African Bush Elephant, also called the Savannah Elephant.

In Central and Western Africa, the slightly smaller African forest elephant is the major species of Elephant present.

As their names suggest, African Bush Elephants live in the savannah and open grasslands that are present in Eastern and Southern Africa. The African forest elephants live in the rainforests of central and western Africa

Elephants used to roam much of Africa but have since been limited to protected areas such as national parks and game reserves in various countries.

Where To See Elephants In Eastern Africa

The predominant African elephant subspecies in Eastern Africa is the African Bush Elephant. The most popular of these parks and game reserves are Maasai Mara, Serengeti, Queen Elizabeth, and Amboseli.

The table below shows the national parks (and country) where you can visit and see elephants in Eastern Africa. Some places where your chances of seeing elephants are low have been left out.

GAME PARK/RESERVE TYPE OF AFRICAN ELEPHANTS COUNTRY
  • Amboseli National Park
African Bush Elephants  Kenya
  • Tsavo East & West National Park
African Bush Elephants Kenya
  • Samburu National Park
African Bush Elephants Kenya
  • Masaai Mara National Reserve
African Bush Elephants Kenya
  • Serengeti National Park
African Bush Elephants Tanzania
  • Ngorongoro Conservation Area
African Bush Elephants Tanzania
  • Tarangire National Park
African Bush Elephants Tanzania
  • Ruaha National Park
African Bush Elephants Tanzania
  • Selous Game reserve
African Bush Elephants Tanzania
  • Katavi National Park
African Bush Elephants Tanzania
  • Queen Elizabeth National Park
African Bush Elephants Uganda
  • Kidepo Valley National Park
African Bush Elephants Uganda
  • Murchison Falls National Park
African Bush Elephants Uganda
  • Akagera National Park
African Bush Elephants Rwanda

Amboseli National Park, Kenya

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Amboseli np elephants and kilimanjaro

Amboseli National Park is located south of Nairobi and close to Kenya's border with Tanzania. Amboseli is very popular because its backdrop is Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa's tallest mountain.

Queen Elizabeth National Park, Uganda

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herd of elephants in Uganda

Queen Elizabeth National Park is Uganda's most popular wildlife destination for both Locals and foreigners. The Kazinga channel attracts big herds of hippos, buffalos, and elephants that can be seen on a boat cruise.

Selous Game Reserve, Tanzania

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elephants drinking in selous gr

Selous Game Reserve is Africa's biggest game park located in the southern part of Tanzania. While not as popular as Ngorongoro or Serengeti, the diversity of animals is incredible. Around the banks of the Rufiji river, you will find big herds of animals including elephants, rhino, giraffes, zebras, leopards, and more.

Where To See Elephants In Southern Africa

Like East Africa, Southern Africa is also dominated by the African Bush Elephants in its national parks and reserves. The most popular destinations for Elephants in Southern Africa include Chobe, South Luangwa, Hwange, Kruger, and Etosha National parks.

GAME PARK/RESERVE TYPE OF AFRICAN ELEPHANTS COUNTRY
  • Chobe National Park
African Bush Elephants Botswana
  • Mashatu Game Reserve
African Bush Elephants Botswana
  • Okavango Delta
African Bush Elephants Botswana
  • Majete Wildlife Reserve
African Bush Elephants Malawi
  • Nkhotakota Wildlife reserve
African Bush Elephants Malawi
  • South Luangwa National Park
African Bush Elephants Zambia
  • Mana Pools National Park
African Bush Elephants Zimbabwe
  • Matusadona National Reserve
African Bush Elephants Zimbabwe
  • Hwange National Park
African Bush Elephants Zimbabwe
  • Etosha National Park
African Bush Elephants Namibia
  • Kruger National Park
African Bush Elephants South Africa
  • Addo Elephant National Park
African Bush Elephants South Africa

Etosha National Park, Namibia

Etosha National Park is Namibia's most popular place for wildlife game viewing. The park has 4 of the big 5 African safari animals, as well as favorites like giraffes, zebras, hyenas, and more than 300 species of birds.

Chobe National Park, Botswana

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chobe river sunset cruise

Chobe National Park is located in the northern part of Botswana. Chobe is well known for its diverse eco-systems that are home to one of the biggest concentrations of African wildlife. Chobe National Park is home to the largest population of elephants on the African continent.

Kruger National Park, South Africa

Kruger National Park is located in Northeastern South Africa. Kruger is well known for wildlife safaris of the big five game animals as well as other mammals, birds, and water animals.

Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe

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elephants at Nyamandhlovu Pan in Hwange np Zimbabwe

Hwange National Park is Zimbabwe's largest park and is well known for the big herd of big game - especially buffalo and elephants. With more than 30,000 elephants, the elephant population is only surpassed by Chobe in neighbouring Botswana.

South Luangwa National Park, Zambia

South Luangwa National Park is located between the elevated mountains of Eastern Zambia. With the herds of elephants, hippos, buffalo, giraffes and many other animals, South Luangwa is perfect for the walking safari.

Where To See Elephants In Central Africa

The central African wilderness is mainly comprised of thick and natural rainforests. This is why you will mostly find the African forest elephant species in the central African region.

African forest elephants usually live in smaller groups and are hard to track when in the jungle. The tourism sector in some of these countries is also underdeveloped, and so we advise planning ahead of time.

GAME PARK/RESERVE TYPE OF AFRICAN ELEPHANTS COUNTRY
  • Garamba National Park
African Forest Elephant D.R. Congo
  • Odzala-Kokoua National Park
African Forest Elephant Congo - Brazaville

Where To See Elephants In Western Africa

In Western Africa, the predominant elephant is also the African forest elephant because of the rainforests.

GAME PARK/RESERVE 

TYPE OF AFRICAN ELEPHANT COUNTRY
  • W National Park
African Forest Elephant  Benin
  • Mole National Park
African Forest Elephant Ghana
  • Yankari National Park
African Forest Elephant Nigeria

Yankari National Park, Nigeria

Yankari National Park is located in northeastern Nigeria,s Baichi state. Yankari National Park is the largest wildlife park in Nigeria and a very important and popular tourism destination.

Closing Thoughts

And that is it. While we didn't include each and every place where you can find elephants living naturally, we have added all the ones where you will almost be guaranteed to see many elephants.

While you will find herds of elephants in these parks, elephants are actually in danger and need to be protected. Tourism contributes to the research and enforcement of their conservation. We urge you to avoid purchasing any souvenirs made from animal parts, in this case, elephant ivory/tusks.

If you want to go on a safari and your bucket list includes elephants, you will have many options to choose from. Whatever your schedule, budget, and additional activities, elephants are an easy and wonderful activity for your safari.

We hope this article was informative and helpful. Here are some other articles that might interest you.

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