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Hunting in South Africa

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413 hunting trips from 66 outfitters starting from $352

413 hunts
$352 starting from
90 animals
12,379km to the nearest trip

Why South Africa

Hunting in South Africa: Diversity of animals

Diversity of animals

South Africa boasts an incredible diversity of game animals, from the Big Five to plains game

Hunting in South Africa: Most affordable hunts

Most affordable hunts

South African hunts are among the most affordable on the African continent, and are some of the best values in the hunting world

Hunting in South Africa: Organized safari industry

Organized safari industry

South Africa has a large and highly organized safari industry, with outfitters in nearly every part of the country

South Africa

About hunting in South Africa

An African safari is a dream adventure that in many cases comes along only once or twice in a lifetime. South Africa is one of the premier destinations for the first time safari hunter or the seasoned safari veteran. South Africa has an unrivaled diversity of species — more than 45 major plains game species and all of the Big Five may be hunted here. A large variety of game birds, some presenting very challenging shooting, are on licence with generous bag limits. South Africa has so much to offer and every foreign hunter, regardless of their specific requirements or preferences, will find a suitable hunting destination in our country to meet their needs. The Professional Hunter Association of South Africa (PHASA) takes pride in having some of the finest African outfitters and professional hunters as their members, outfitters and professional hunters who are, in most cases, the most active in the South African industry. Formed in 1978, PHASA supports the conservation and ecologically sustainable development and use of natural resources, for the benefit of current and future generations, through the promotion of ethical hunting. PHASA members willingly adhere and subscribe to their strict Code of Conduct and are subject to PHASA's disciplinary oversight process. Each membership application is carefully scrutinized. Applicants with a known and recorded history of unethical behavior are denied PHASA membership. An increasing number of international clubs and shows recognise and promote the importance and value of booking with PHASA members when hunting in South Africa. For this reason PHASA members only are allowed to market South African hunts at the premier overseas shows. For the same reason, BookYourHunt only allows PHASA members to offer hunts in South Africa.

What you need to know

  • 1. Planning your trip
  • 2. Upon arrival
  • 3. Hunting
  • 4. After the hunt

Planning your trip

Visas and Documentation

Travelers from the USA and most European and British Commonwealth countries are not required to have a visa to enter South Africa. Find out the visa requirements for your country here: http://www.dha.gov.za/index.php/immigration-services/exempt-countries.

Special requirements apply for children under the age of eighteen who are traveling to South Africa. Minors are required to produce, in addition to their passport, an Unabridged Birth Certificate (showing the particulars of both parents) when exiting and entering South African ports of entry. When a child travels with only one parent, additional documents should include an affidavit in which the absent parent gives consent for the child to travel, a court order granting full parental responsibilities or legal guardianship of the child, or the death certificate of the absent parent.

Health

Most of South Africa is malaria-free, but malaria is present in a few areas, including northeastern KwaZulu-Natal Province as far south as the Tugela River, Limpopo (Northern) Province, and Mpumalanga Province. It is also present in Kruger National Park. If you will be hunting in or traveling to those areas, malaria prophylaxis is recommended.

Firearms Permits

South Africa has strict rules for hunters bringing firearms into the country. Visitors who are hunting or participating in a shooting event must acquire a Temporary Import Permit. These can be obtained on arrival at the airport at the SA Police Firearm Office situated after immigration. There are also a number of commercial services that can secure your permit in advance for a fee, including the Professional Hunters’ Association of South Africa; for their service, click here: http://www.phasa.co.za/legislation/firearms/firearms-import-permits/pre-issued-permits.html.

To be issued a permit, you will need to show proof of ownership of your firearm(s) (for American hunters, a U.S. Customs Form 4457 is sufficient), as well as an invitation letter signed by your outfitter proving that you have booked a hunt in South Africa.

Each hunter is allowed to bring up to four firearms, but no two may be of the same caliber. Ammunition is limited to 200 rounds per firearm. It is advisable to pack your ammunition in a hard-sided, lockable case, as sometimes airlines will require you to check your ammunition separately.

Upon arrival

Permits

Most hunters arriving from outside of South Africa arrive in Johannesburg. Here, all declared or identified firearms may be collected directly from the firearm office just after immigration. Any firearms either not declared upon departure, or not identified by an appropriate label will be delivered to the normal baggage carousel for collection. Once you have collected your baggage, proceed to the SA Police Firearm Office, where all necessary import permits and other documentation will be finalized. This process can be quite time-consuming, especially if many other hunters have arrived on the flight with you, so if you have a connecting flight it is advisable to allow at least three hours in between.

If you have a domestic connecting flight, you must clear firearms and ammunition at the SA Police Firearm Office in your arrival airport before proceeding through customs. You will need to present your Temporary Import Permit to board your domestic flight. It’s important to note that firearms are accepted on domestic flights only to certain airports within South Africa; check with your outfitter or the Professional Hunters’ Association of South Africa (www.phasa.co.za) to ensure you will be able to check your firearm to your destination.

Hunting

Most hunts in South Africa are spot-and-stalk or safari style, with the hunters covering ground either on foot or by vehicle and, once an animal is spotted, completing a stalk on foot. Terrain varies dramatically from relatively flat savanna to rugged mountains, depending on the region of the country you’re hunting. Some safaris can require extensive walking; others require very little, so it’s a good idea to ask the professional hunter.

Clothing and Gear

Dark green or brown clothing is best, as are comfortable, well-broken-in boots with soft soles for quiet stalking. You’ll only need a couple of changes of clothing as laundry is done daily at most camps. Bring a wide-brimmed hat, sunblock, good optics, and a jacket for cool mornings and evenings. In some areas pepper ticks are a problem, so tick repellent is a good idea.

Rifles

Most professional hunters recommend rifles in the .300-caliber family for plains game and .375 for dangerous game, but the most important thing is to bring a rifle you are familiar with and can shoot well.

After the hunt

Tips

Tips are appreciated at most safari camps in South Africa; in addition to the professional hunter, tracker(s), driver, and skinner(s), there are usually staff members at camp who handle cooking and cleaning and other chores and help to make a hunter’s stay pleasant. The professional hunter or outfitter can advise the hunter how much is appropriate to tip each staff member.

Trophy preparation

Typically, animals are skinned at the safari headquarters and all skins are cleaned and salted; skulls and horns are cleaned and buried in salt. After a couple of days, the skins are hung to dry, cleaned once more, and folded and stored in a skinning shed. Skulls will be cleaned and placed on a rack. Before leaving camp, it’s a good idea to ensure the skulls and skins are properly tagged with the hunter’s name and contact information.

Taxidermy

Once the hunter departs, or sometimes at the end of the season, trophies will be taken to a taxidermist for professional cleaning and dipping, which is required for export. The taxidermist then contacts the hunter for instructions regarding preparation and shipment, and to arrange payment for these services. The taxidermist then contacts a shipping agent, who will handle the permits and shipping to the hunter’s home country, again after contacting the hunter. Hunters should check the latest regulations in order to make arrangements in advance if they are hunting species that require CITES permits or special export or import permits from the hunter’s home country. Many export and import requirements for these species have undergone dramatic changes in the past couple of years.

South Africa on map

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Reviews

Hunts All hunts (413)

South African Plains Game Hunt 1x1

South African Plains Game Hunt 1x1 South Africa

Take an exciting trip to South Africa and enjoy your hunting with us by choosing the number of guests and animals of your liking! Any game will be guided by a professional hunter.

Trip duration: 5 - 21 days

Trip available on: 1 April 2017 30 November 2017

$1,520 for 1 hunter
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Kudu Bull Hunt 1x1

Kudu Bull Hunt 1x1 South Africa

The package includes 6 days hunting, 1 trophy kudu bull as well as the taxidermy into a shoulder mount.

Trip duration: 6 days

Trip available on: 1 March 2017 30 November 2017

$3,680 for 1 hunter
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Plains Game Hunt 2x1 '18

Plains Game Hunt 2x1 '18 South Africa

The distances that we will be shooting can range between 70 and 200 meters. Calibers in the .270 Winchester – .300 Winchester Magnum range are preferable. Telescopic sights with a 4x - 6x magnification are more than adequate. Caracal and Duiker will be hunted with a shotgun. Most hunting is done by walking and stalking.

Trip duration: 5 - 14 days

Trip available on: 1 March 2018 31 October 2018

$4,225 for 2 hunters
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South Africa

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