Best Lenses for Safari Photography 2024: to capture wildlife photo

Discover the ideal camera lenses for safari photography that will ensure stunning shots on your African adventure.

You might have presumed that the best lenses for safari photography are exclusively the longest telephoto options available (or the longest ones within your budget). After all, telephoto lenses are the best way to get closer to faraway animals when you want to take pictures of them, right? Even though this is partly true, it’s not the whole story.

Having a long telephoto lens is important for safari photography, but it’s not the only thing you need. During a safari, you don’t just get to see the amazing animals you came to see. You also get to see the beautiful, once-in-a-lifetime landscapes that surround them. You should try to find a way to capture both sides of this one-of-a-kind experience. If you only use long telephoto lenses, it can be hard to see the whole picture and capture the beauty of the environment.

Because of this, superzoom bridge cameras have been popular with safari fans in the past. In particular, Sony’s RX10 cameras are made with safari fans in mind. These cameras have a wide range that lets you switch between telephoto and wide-angle settings. This lets you take pictures of beautiful animals and landscapes in all their glory. Below we have mentioned the best lenses for safari photography.

What is the best focal length for safari photography?

The best focal length for safari photography depends on a number of things, such as the kind of wildlife you want to photograph, how close you are to the animals, and your own preferences. Most of the time, it’s best to have a variety of focal lengths to cover different situations:

???? Telephoto Lens (200mm to 600mm+): For wildlife that is far away or moves quickly, you need a telephoto lens with a long focal length. This lets you fill the frame with your subject and get fine details even when you’re far away. This is best done with a lens that is 200mm to 600mm or longer. For the most reach, some wildlife photographers like 600mm or 800mm super-telephoto lenses.

???? Zoom Lens (70mm to 200mm): A zoom lens in this range can be used to take pictures of landscapes and animals at different distances. It’s especially helpful when animals get close to your car or when you want to get more of the surrounding area in your pictures.

???? Wide-Angle Lens (24mm to 35mm): Wildlife photography tends to focus on telephoto lenses, but don’t forget how beautiful it is to photograph animals in their natural environment. A wide-angle lens can be useful for taking pictures of the environment, like landscapes or animals in their natural habitat.

???? Mid-Range Prime Lenses (50mm to 85mm): These lenses aren’t usually associated with wildlife photography, but they can be useful for taking portraits of animals or close-up shots when animals are nearby and you want to separate them from the background.

Best Lenses for Safari Photography Comparison Table

The table below compares the best lenses for safari photography, taking into account things like telephoto reach, versatility, and the ability to take pictures of both animals and beautiful scenery. This site gives you information to help you choose the best option for your safari trip.

FeaturesCamera Lens DescriptionMaximum Focal LengthWeight
Fujifilm XF150-600mm86005.29 pounds
Fujifilm XF100-400mm400 month100-400 millimeters4.2 pounds
Sony FE 100-400mm910-0400mm3.08 pounds
Nikon AF-S 200-500mm4200-500 millimeters5.07 pounds
Nikkor Z 24-200mm24-200mm24-200 millimeters1.26 pounds

Fujifilm XF150-600mm

Best lenses for safari photography
Lens TypeTelephoto
Camera Lens Description8
Maximum Focal Length600
Dimensions16.2 x 8.3 x 8.2 inches
Weight5.29 pounds
Check Price

The APS-C crop factor of Fujifilm X plays to the strengths of this lens, making it the full-frame equivalent of a 229-914mm lens. On a full-frame Sony system, you’d need a 600mm lens and a 1.4x teleconverter to get the same effect, which makes the price and small maximum aperture of this lens seem a bit more reasonable. The XF150-600mm also has a “sensing and control system” that helps you control for movement when you’re using it at full zoom.

This really does make a difference in how sharp your shots are when you’re holding the camera by hand. This is very helpful, since you will already have to deal with a bit of softness at the longest focal length. Not enough to ruin shots, but something to keep in mind. Overall, this is one of the best lenses for safari photography you can buy right now.


  • Exceptional zoom range for distant wildlife.
  • Good image quality and sharpness.
  • Weather-sealed construction for outdoor use.


  • Heavier and bulkier than some other options.
  • Relatively expensive.
  • Limited low-light performance.

Fujifilm XF100-400mm

Best lenses for safari photography
Lens TypeTelephoto
Camera Lens Description400 month
Maximum Focal Length100-400 millimeters
Dimensions11.4 x 7.7 x 5.2 inches
Weight4.2 pounds
Check Price

Fujifilm has shown that it belongs in the big leagues by making powerful cameras like the X-H2S and the X-T5. This heavy lens is perfect for people who want to use Fujifilm’s top-of-the-line cameras for difficult tasks like taking photos on safari. It may be heavy for an APS-C lens, tipping the scales at just under 1.4kg and stretching out to 270mm when fully zoomed, but it has a focal range that is equivalent to 152-609mm on a full-frame camera. It’s also well sealed against the weather. Still, this is one of the best lenses for safari photography you can buy right now.


  • Excellent image quality and sharpness.
  • Versatile zoom range for various safari scenarios.
  • Relatively compact and lightweight for a telephoto lens.


  • Pricey compared to some competitors.
  • May require a tripod or stabilization for extended use.
  • Limited aperture range for low-light shooting.

Sony FE 100-400mm

Best lenses for safari photography
Lens TypeTelephoto
Camera Lens Description9
Maximum Focal Length10-0400mm
Dimensions11.93 x 5.47 x 5.67 inches
Weight3.08 pounds
Check Price

The “G Master” label is only given to Sony’s best lenses, which have an extremely high level of optical quality. So, the Sony FE 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 G Master OSS is a beautiful piece of equipment that is also expensive. It is especially good at making images with nice bokeh, which is the quality of the parts of an image that aren’t in focus. This means it’s a good lens to use if you want to take portraits of wildlife with a shallow depth of field. Overall, this is one of the best lenses for safari photography you can buy right now.


  • High image quality and sharpness.
  • Good build quality and weather-sealing.
  • Compatible with Sony’s full-frame mirrorless cameras.


  • On the expensive side.
  • Can be heavy for extended use.
  • Autofocus performance might not be as fast as some DSLR options.

Nikon AF-S 200-500mm

Best lenses for safari photography
Lens TypeTelephoto
Camera Lens Description4
Maximum Focal Length200-500 millimeters
Dimensions7.48 x 7.48 x 17.2 inches
Weight5.07 pounds
Check Price

The Nikon AF-S 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR is a great value for Nikon DSLR users because it is reasonably priced for a telephoto zoom like it. Nikon DSLRs are still some of the most popular wildlife cameras on the market. It takes clear, sharp pictures all the way through the zoom range, and both the autofocus and stabilization work well all the time. We would have liked a complete set of weather seals, but there is only a rubber mount around the gasket. Thus, this is one of the best lenses for safari photography you can buy right now.


  • Impressive zoom range for wildlife photography.
  • Good image quality and sharpness.
  • Relatively affordable for a telephoto lens.


  • Bulkier and heavier than other options.
  • May require a sturdy tripod for stability.
  • Limited low-light capabilities due to aperture range.

Nikkor Z 24-200mm

Best lenses for safari photography
Lens TypeTelephoto
Camera Lens Description24-200mm
Maximum Focal Length24-200 millimeters
Dimensions4.49 x 3.01 x 3.01 inches
Weight1.26 pounds
Check Price

This lens works with both full-frame and APS-C Nikon Z cameras, and each type has its own benefits. If you use it with full-frame cameras like the Z5 or Z7 II, the built-in Vibration Reduction stabilization can work with the in-body VR on those cameras to give you very good stabilization. Or, you can use it with DX-format cameras like the Nikon Z50 to get a focal length range of 26-300mm. In either case, you’ll get a zoom camera that’s good for traveling and can take pictures of both landscapes and wildlife up close. Overall, this is one of the best lenses for safari photography you can buy right now.


  • Versatile zoom range for different shooting situations.
  • Compact and lightweight, making it more portable.
  • Good image stabilization for handheld shooting.


  • Limited zoom compared to dedicated telephoto lenses.
  • Not ideal for capturing distant wildlife.
  • May not have the same level of image quality as specialized telephoto lenses.

Tips for using lenses for safari photography

Safari photography has its own challenges and chances to take pictures of beautiful animals and landscapes. Consider these tips for using lenses on safari to make the most of your trip and get great photos:

???? Zoom Lenses: For safari photography, you need a zoom lens with a wide focal range, like a 70-200mm or 100-400mm. This will let you take pictures of wildlife both far away and up close without having to change lenses often.

???? Telephoto Lens: A telephoto lens with a longer focal length, like 300mm, 400mm, or 600mm, can be very useful for getting close-up shots of faraway animals. It lets you fill the whole frame with your subject and get good shots of small details.

???? Fast Aperture: To let more light into the camera, choose lenses with a wide maximum aperture, like f/2.8. This is helpful for early morning or late afternoon safaris when there isn’t much light.

???? Image Stabilization: Look for lenses with image stabilization (IS or VR) to stop camera shake when shooting handheld with slower shutter speeds or longer focal lengths.

???? Lens Hood: Always use a lens hood to stop direct sunlight from causing lens flare. This will help your pictures keep their contrast and color.


Do I need a super-telephoto lens for safari photography?

It can be helpful to have a super-telephoto lens like a 400mm or 600mm if you want to take pictures of wildlife far away, but it’s not always necessary. A 200-400mm range lens is a good choice for many photographers because it gives them both range and flexibility.

Should I bring a wide-angle lens on a safari?

Yes, you should have a wide-angle lens in your kit so you can take pictures of landscapes and groups of people. A 16-35mm wide-angle zoom lens can help you capture the beauty of the safari environment.

Editorial Staff
Editorial Staff
The Bollyinside editorial staff is made up of tech experts with more than 10 years of experience Led by Sumit Chauhan. We started in 2014 and now Bollyinside is a leading tech resource, offering everything from product reviews and tech guides to marketing tips. Think of us as your go-to tech encyclopedia!


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