Best Times of Day to Shoot
Your body clock may be all messed up in Africa. Depending on where you are coming from, you are going to be on a 7-10 hour time difference. That alone is challenging. Jet lag is jet lag. The bigger deal is when to get up and get going in the morning. You're on vacation and no one likes getting up early on vacation. But you have come to Africa to see and photograph animals. Many of them hunt at night and the rest of them are most active in the early hours. Under typical conditions I tell people to do most of their photography when the sun comes up and when the sun starts to set. But in the Serengeti you can't stay out until dark. You can thank the poachers for that. All safari vehicles have to be back in camp by 7pm. So you'll have to enjoy that sunset from the balcony or porch of your lodge or tent. It's not a bad thing. There is always a hot towel and cold drink waiting for you at camp. The food is great and the people are interesting. Enjoy it. You're in Africa. Breathe that in.
But trust me... get up early and get out there. What you will see in the early hours will dwarf what you will see midday when the heat kicks up. You have probably read that the light in Africa is amazing for photography. It is... like nowhere else I have ever been except maybe Alaska or the bottom of the world. Take advantage of that low angle morning light.
Africa Dream Safaris guides have ridden with some of the best photographers in the world. And they've learned a thing or two along the way. Not only can they get you into the best photographic positions with regards angle and backgrounds... they know light. Trust them. And if you want something a little different, just ask. They are with you to make your experience awesome. Some photographers like front light. It's easy and it makes nice photographs. Personally, I like backlight, where the animal is rimmed by the low horizon sun. You're not going to take bad pictures over there either way. Like I mentioned earlier, photography is about 70 percent opportunity and you are going to have some awesome opportunities.