Watch newborn calves take their first steps
The white-eared kob calve in December and January, so this is the perfect time of year to watch the newborns take their first, wobbly steps. Get your camera at the ready and make sure you have a handkerchief to hand to wipe away an emotional tear.
Explore the Imatong Mountains
Secret Compass (www.secretcompass.com) leads a February tour to the summit of rarely climbed Mount Kinyeti, followed up with a five-day river expedition on the Nile.
(Photo: Hartebeest © Mogens Trolle, Shutterstock)
The greatest show on earth
Throughout the months of March and April, South Sudan bears witness to one of the most impressive wildlife migrations on earth as millions of animals are on the move from the floodplains of the Sudd to the confines of the Boma National Park.
Run the Juba Marathon
The annual Juba Marathon takes place in April each year, and determined competitors can run either five, 10 or 21km. A fundraising event for local charities, it’s a popular event for both local and expat runners.
Follow the herd
May is a great time of year to go on safari and spot some of the 5,000 elephants that roam wild in South Sudan. Boma National Park is a prime site for seeing wildlife, as is Elephant Island in Nimule.
African elephants © Villiers Steyn, Shutterstock
Remember the father of the nation on 23 June
The 23 June is the birthday of Dr John Garang, one of the most prominent figures in South Sudan’s recent history. Leader of the SPLA/M throughout the second civil war and vice president from January 2005 until his death six months later, he’s a true national hero.
Celebrate Independence Day
People across South Sudan erupt into celebration on 9 July, remembering the country’s secession from the Republic of Sudan in 2011. The world’s newest country may be young in years, but even at this tender age, it certainly knows how to party.
Despite the rains, it’s possible to venture into Bandingilo National Park and the southern reaches of the Sudd in August. Plan to travel by 4×4 and stay in a tented camp, then cruise up the Nile to see both wildlife and Dinka families living on floating islands of papyrus.
Fish for dinner
With the world’s most impressive river on your doorstep, there’s plenty of opportunity for angling. Nile perch can reach 2m long (certainly enough to feed the family) and you can also catch tiger fish and Nile tilapia.
Join in the wrestling
Although traditional wrestling takes place year round, the main competitions take place in the autumn months. Go to Bor for the most regular and high profile performances.
Wrestling in Bor © Levison Wood
Access all areas: dry season begins
Due to the poor road infrastructure, many of South Sudan’s remoter areas are inaccessible during the rains. Come November, however, the dry season begins and so you can once again reach parts of the national parks, as well as isolated villages, that have been cut off during the summer months.
Celebrate Christmas in Wau Cathedral
Join the congregation in Wau Cathedral, one of the largest places of worship in South Sudan, as they celebrate Christmas on 25 December. Christian missionaries have been active in the country since the 19th century and churches remain central to many communities.