Best Children’s Books With an African Wildlife Theme

Exploring the world of African wildlife in books, whether deep in the jungle or across the grassland, can be the ultimate experience. There are tracks to find, animals to see, and possibly even hazards to avoid! 

Here are some of our beloved children’s books and series that provide the thrills of African wildlife to every adventurous reader, anywhere, at any time.

1. We All Went on Safari: a Counting Journey Through Tanzania

By Laurie Krebs

Recommended for ages 4-8

Join these Maasai companions on a counting adventure in Tanzania’s grasslands. The youngsters meet various animals along the route, including lions, elephants, and monkeys, while counting from one to 10 in English and Swahili. The vibrant, rhyming narrative includes a map, an illustrated reference to counting in Swahili, and fun facts about Tanzania and the Maasai people.

2. The White Giraffe Series

By Lauren St John

Recommended for ages 9-11

Lauren St John’s award-winning White Giraffe Series is a collection of four books. Martine, an eleven-year-old girl, discovers her unusual ability of healing, saves the rarest leopard in Zimbabwe, rescues dolphins in Mozambique’s islands, and learns the secrets of Namibian elephants in these heartwarming stories.

3. Let’s Explore… Safari 


By Lonely Planet Kids

Recommended for ages 6-8

This Lonely Planet sticker activity book is a great way to keep your child occupied while learning about the different animals found on safari. There are puzzles to solve, fascinating facts to learn, and coloring pages to color. This book is ideal for car trip amusement or a flying trip to Africa!

4. My Africa Vacation

By Ozi Okaro

Recommended for ages 4-8

My Africa Adventure is a children’s book about Arinze, a five-year-old boy, and his elder sister Cheta, who embark on a family trip to ten African countries. They travel on a safari, climb Mount Kilimanjaro, and see the Victoria Falls, as well as learn about Africa’s architectural and historical wonders. This is an excellent book for teaching your youngster about Africa’s diversity and richness.

5. All Aboard for the Bobo Road

By Stephen Davies

Recommended for ages 3-7

While their father, Big Ali, drives the bus, Galo and Fatima load the luggage. As the bus goes past Gurunsi cottages, waterfalls, the hippo lake, and the jungle on its route to Bobo, kids can help count motorcycles, melons, rice sacks, and even hens and goats. This is a really fun introduction to a great culture for tiny children, with an authentic setting inspired by the author’s own experience.

6. Safari, So Good! 


By Bonnie Worth

Recommended for ages 4-8

The Cat in the Hat brings Sally and Nick to Africa to learn about the creatures, including elephants, zebras, hippos, giraffes, warthogs, baboons, buffalo, side-striped jackals, galagos, spotted hyenas, vipers, pythons, and six different types of antelope. Kids will discover fascinating facts such as why elephants prefer one tusk and how to distinguish between a black and a white rhino.

Living in… Series

By Chloe Perkins

Grade Level: K-2

The Living In… series has new, modern pictures and a wealth of geography, history, and cultural information in each book. Take a trip around the world with youngsters from all around the world.

7. Living in South Africa

Meet David, a young man from South Africa, a country rich in wonderful creatures, beautiful cities, and many cultures. Have you ever pondered on what life is like in South Africa? David will teach you all about it, and you’ll discover why South Africa is known as the Rainbow Nation!

8. Living in Egypt

Meet Amira, a young Egyptian girl who lives in Egypt, a country rich in gorgeous deserts, bustling cities, and some of the world’s most fascinating historic structures! Have you ever wondered what it’s like to live in Egypt? Amira will tell you everything!

Adventures of Riley Series

By Amanda Lumry

Grade Level: K-3

9. Adventures of Riley #1: Safari in South Africa

Riley goes on a fantastic South African safari with his uncle Max, a world-renowned biologist. Their goal is to research newborn wild animals and predator-prey interactions.

10. Adventures of Riley #5: Mission to Madagascar

Riley sets out on a quest to find the elusive aye-aye on the island of Madagascar.

Flat Stanley’s Worldwide Adventures Series


By Jeff Brown

Grade Level: 1-4

11. Flat Stanley’s Worldwide Adventures #2: The Great Egyptian Grave Robbery

Since a bulletin board flattened him, Stanley can get to places that no one else can. As a result, when Stanley receives a letter from an archaeologist, he rushes to Egypt via airmail to assist in the discovery of an ancient treasure hidden deep within the heart of a massive pyramid.

12. Flat Stanley’s Worldwide Adventures #6: The African Safari Discovery

After discovering a flat skull, Stanley decides to travel to Africa with his brother and father. Perhaps studying Stanley’s skull will reveal the truth about his flatness, but after arriving in Africa, the Lambchops are in for more fun and adventure than they bargained for. It’s the safari of a lifetime, with everything from lions to elephants to zebras!

13. Greetings From Somewhere: the Mystery of the Lion’s Tail

By Harper Paris

Grade Level: 1-4

Ella and Ethan travel to Kenya’s Maasai Mara with their parents in quest of the Big Five game animals in Book 5 of the Greetings from Somewhere series. Four of the five animals are discovered, but where are the lions? Locals provide Ella and Ethan with lion-spotting clues, and the twins use their detective abilities to solve the case.

14. The Mystery of Meerkat Hill

By Alexander McCall Smith

Grade Level: 2-5

Precious aspires to be a detective when she grows up, and she practices by inquiring about the lives of others. There are two new students in Precious’ class, a boy named Pontsho and a girl named Teb. Pontsho has a pet meerkat named Kosi, which she discovers.

When Pontsho and Teb’s family’s cow goes missing, Precious assists them in their search for clues. However, returning the cow home will necessitate quick thinking and assistance from an unexpected source.

15. The Mystery of the Missing Lion

By Alexander McCall Smith

Grade Level: 2-5

Precious, a teenage investigator, pays a visit to her Aunty Bee, who runs a safari resort in the Okavango Delta. She meets a new buddy, a guy named Khumo, and learns that a movie is being made. When an actor-lion named Teddy goes missing while filming, Precious and Khumo must brave crocodiles and hippos to find the missing lion.