An African themed nursery can take on so many forms and there are so many beautiful ways to decorate with the theme. Some might also call this type of decor a safari theme or an African animal nursery theme. Whatever you want to call your African-inspired nursery, there’s a good chance it will involve some jungle animals and be a precious way to decorate your new baby’s nursery.

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african themed nursery ideas


Different African Themed Nursery Ideas

There are many ways to go about designing an African themed nursery. In this post, we will discuss some of the most popular African-themed nursery ideas and we will also include some amazing pieces that you can include in your nursery to pull off that type of look. We will also go over how to set up the perfect African themed nursery step-by-step, no matter which style you choose.

First, let’s discuss a few different popular angles that you can take when designing an African themed nursery.


Focus on a Single African Animal

elephant african themed nursery

Many African themed nurseries focus on a single African animal. Elephant nurseries, lion nurseries, and zebra nurseries are just a few popular ideas that are easy to find decor and bedding for.

If you choose to feature elephants there are elephant crib sets in pink or blue, but really it’s the perfect opportunity for a gray nursery. Grey is a very popular nursery color due to how clean and calming it looks.


Safari Animals Theme

african safari themed nursery

African wildlife makes a perfect nursery theme. You can find crib sets, wall art, and accessories for a safari animals themed nursery in almost any color scheme.

Some popular color schemes for African themed nurseries are:

  • bold primary colors
  • neutral browns
  • pink or blue
  • or grey

You can find safari nursery prints for bedding and wall decor in any of the color schemes I’ve mentioned, and even sometimes more variations such as pastel colors or bright primary colors. 

When designing a safari-themed nursery keep in mind there are many more animals and terrains in Africa than what we initially think of when most of us initially think of Africa. Africa doesn’t only have lions and zebras as you would find in South Africa, but also contains a wide array of jungle animals and more.

Every time you step into your nursery you’ll feel like you’re stepping into an African safari.


Animal Prints Nursery Theme

animal print safari nursery theme

Another twist you can take on an African themed nursery is primarily designing with animal prints.

One notable thing about many African animals is that they have gorgeous printed coats. Envision the detailed prints of zebras, giraffes, and leopards just to name a few. There is no shortage of beautiful animal fur prints in Africa and no shortage of nursery decor with animal prints on it.

You could choose a single animal print such as zebra to work into your nursery decor, or incorporate them all. 

You can also choose to keep with animal print decor that is true to the color of the actual animals for a more neutral nursery or choose animal print decor in unrealistic colors that match your nursery design. An example would be pink zebra and leopard designs for your little girls’ nursery to add a touch of whimsy.


How to Set Up an African Themed Nursery

Start with the Wallpaper

Imagine starting the design of your African themed nursery with a blank canvas. Pick out themed wallpaper or paint depending on your color scheme preference for your new baby’s room. You may want to use either wallpaper, paint, or a mix of the two.

Wallpaper has become popular again over the past five years and can be a fun way to brighten up a room. While neural colors, clean lines, and minimalist rooms are en vogue right now, babies and children love bright colors and lots of prints and patterns.

While a plain clean mature design might be aesthetically pleasing to adults, children prefer bright and busy. Neither style is right, wrong, or better when choosing your nursery design.

Keep in mind the function of the nursery. It is most likely more for sleep than for play. Calm and simple is more conducive to sleep. But also, there is a good chance that you will be blacking out the windows fully when putting your baby to sleep, so keeping the nursery design plain isn’t that important if that is your plan.

There is a good chance YOU will be the one spending countless hours while exhausted in the nursery: rocking the baby to sleep, nursing, and changing diapers. Having a nursery design that you love is more important than you might think.

While the nursery IS your baby’s room, you need it to be a place of sanctuary for yourself postpartum as well. Perhaps some plain light earthy tones painted on the wall would better suit your liking and become a happy place for yourself and your baby alike.

African Print Fabric Seamless Tribal Traditional Ethnic Ornament for Peel & Stick Wallpaper Removable Self-Adhesive Large Wallpaper Roll 3D Wall Mural Sticker Home Decor for Living Room Bedroom


HueBurst Leopard Peel and Stick Wallpaper Leopard Contact Paper Self Adhesive Brown Wallpaper Removable Waterproof Contact Paper Art DIY Wallpaper for Bedroom Living Room Furniture 17.3"x118"


CHIHUT Jungle Animal Wallpaper 17.7”x100” Nursery Peel and Stick Wallpaper Kids Removable Leopard Bird Wallpaper Self Adhesive Tropical Palm Leaf Contact Paper Vinyl for Bedroom Walls Cabinets Shelves


If wallpaper on all four walls is too busy for your mind, consider a wallpaper accent wall with tribal print or jungle animals or even leopard print. Or consider painting a single brightly colored accent wall. 


Or Use African Wall Stickers

Watercolor Jungle Animal Wall Decals Tiger Elephant Giraffe Zebra Lion Wall Stickers Removable Animal Wall Decals Stickers Decor for Baby's Nursery Playroom Bedroom Classroom Kindergarten Wall Decor

If wallpaper seems like too much of a commitment for you when designing your nursery, consider African themed wall stickers.

Wall stickers can bring a lot of fun and color to a room while being extremely easy to change. If you want to redesign the room when your baby becomes a toddler you’ll simply have to peel the stickers off the wall instead of fully repainting the room. 

Yovkky Cheetah Leopard Wall Decals Stickers, Safari Jaguar Trunk Palm Leaves Home Bedroom Decor, Wild Jungle African Animal Tropical Flower Living Room Kitchen Decorations Art

There are lots of unique elements that you can simply peel and stick when decorating your nursery like a peel and stick cheetah. Or this huge set of African animal wall stickers. This is also a good choice if it is your first time having a child. If you are considering adding to your family in the future, there is a good chance that the nursery will change purpose as the years go by.


Choose a Crib Bedding Set

The crib bedding set is what most people decorate their entire nursery around. Do not take this decision lightly. Though your baby will never remember their cribs as they grow older, you will.

Finding the perfect crib bedding set is the perfect way to inspire the rest of your nursery design elements. Take note of the colors and images you wish to feature here.

Bed bath and Beyond has a wonderful selection of crib bedding sets with many different color schemes for any theme. You can find a lot of modern safari nursery decor there perfect for your new baby room. You can even pick up African themed crib sheets.  

There is also a great selection of African themed crib bedding sets you can pick up right from Amazon:

Cokouchyi Safari Animal Crib Bedding Set for Baby Boys Girls, 3-Piece Baby Crib Bedding Set, Standard Size Crib Set Including Crib Sheet, Comforter & Crib Skirt

Bedtime Originals Mighty Jungle 3Piece Crib Bedding Set, Multicolor (283003V)

4 Piece Woodland Forest Animals Crib Bedding Set, Including Jungle Safari Crib Skirt, Blanket, Crib Sheet and Diaper Stacker, Soft Neutral Nursery Standard Size Baby Bedding for Baby Girls and Boys


Choose an Area Rug for Your Nursery

Once your walls are designed and you’ve chosen the perfect crib bedding set, it’s time to pick out an area rug. If you are choosing to go with an Africa animal print themed nursery you can even get a faux hide rug like this leopard print rug.

Erin Gates by Momeni Acadia Cheetah Multi Faux Hide Area Rug 5'3" X 7'10" - Multicolor

Or this zebra hide rug from Amazon.

JINCHAN Zebra Print Area Rug Faux Skin Cowhide Animal Design Mat Faux Suede Indoor Floorcover for Bedroom Living Room 5x7 Safari Design

If featuring a faux animal hide is tacky in your opinion or simply not to your liking consider a neutral colored tribal print rug.

Lahome Farmhouse Moroccan 3x5 Throw Rugs,Washable Soft Black White Rugs for Bedroom Low-Pile Playroom Rug Carpet Non-Slip,Rustic Tribal Style Entryway Kitchen Laundry Room Area Rug

Another cute idea would be a fun rug featuring African animal heads or their full bodies.

Paco Home Nursery Rug for Kids - Jungle Animals Giraffe Lion Monkey in Beige, Size:5'3" x 7'7"


Nursery Wall Art

There are so many places where you can pick up extremely unique nursery wall art to pull your baby’s room together. Etsy is a wonderful platform with many made-to-order items and handmade pieces.

It’s a great place to find the perfect choice with some unique small shop art. I love buying things from Etsy because not only are you supporting small businesses, but you also get more unique pieces than you do at the bigger stores.

african themed nursery wall decor

You can find whimsical baby African animal wall art as you can see above or tribal wall art to fit with an African nursery with a more traditional vibe.

african animal wall cutouts for baby nursery

These African animal cutouts are look truly unique and hand-crafted yet professional. Very clearly showing the unique quality of items you can find to fill out your nursery decor on Etsy.

Of course stores like Target, Bed Bath and Beyond, Pottery Barn, and even Amazon have some great nursery wall art pieces that may be the perfect fit for your design as well.


Pull Together the Decorative Accents

By this point, your nursery is really coming together, but some of the decorative accents are what really puts the finishing touches on a room’s decor. While your theme will come across already at this point of nursery decorating, the accent pieces are what really make a bold statement.

Common nursery accessories to match your theme are a theme forward lamp, a mobile or other hanging decor like a wind chime that matches your theme, curtains, and knick-knacks.

African Nursery Lamp Ideas

Perfect lamps for an African nursery are

rattan lamps.

Table Lamp, 3 Way Dimmable Table Lamps Set of 2, Touch Control Lamp for Bedroom, Lamps for Night Stands with AC Outlet & USB C+A, Rattan Bedside lamp, Touch Lamp for Living Room, LED Bulbs Included


Lamps with cute animals on them like this elephant nursery lamp and this giraffe lamp.

Lambs & Ivy Me & Mama White/Gray Elephant Nursery Lamp with Shade & Bulb

Fantasy Fields - Sunny Safari Animals Thematic Kids Table Lamp, for Girls & Boys Rooms with Printed Zebra Lampshade & Sculpted Monkey, Giraffe, & Tiger Base, Jungle Lamp for Nurseries & Baby Rooms

African Themed Mobiles

Consider adding in a safari animal mobile or even bamboo wind chimes for African themed hanging decor. You can either pick a cute safari animal mobile or a more traditional tribal print mobile.

If you chose a tribal wallpaper accent wall and tribal rug, this mobile might be perfect. Tribal elements in an African themed nursery are perfect but so are adding safari animals into the mix, but is also a representation of a vibrant community of real people who live there.

Lucky Love Boho Baby Mobile & Boho Baby Decor for Boy & Girl Nursery - Hang Mobile for Crib or Ceiling

Safari Mobile for Crib Animal Jungle Mobile Baby Safari Nursery Room Decor Africa Safari Theme (Elephant, Lion, Zebra, Giraffe) Handmade

A bamboo wind chime gives off natural African vibes and can also give off a calming sound when placed near a window. Don’t place it too close if you live in a windy city or the sound will never cease. You’ll want to place it where there is a light breeze every so often.

VIREKM Wind Chimes for Outside, Sympathy Wind Chimes Bamboo Windchimes Outdoors with Natural Sounds, Gifts for Mom, Indoor Outdoor Decorations for Patio Porch Garden and Backyard

Consider Adding Curtains

Sometimes you can find curtains that match your crib bedding set, which can make choosing the right design very simple. But if you have a lot going on in your nursey decor already, consider using plain color curtains or even neutral white curtains. 

The main thing to consider when choosing the right curtains for your nursery is how much you want them to block out the light.

Many parents choose to fully black out the nursery windows because their babies don’t sleep at all without complete darkness. But on the other end of the spectrum, some parents choose to let their babies learn how to nap anywhere so that their lives aren’t controlled by their baby’s naptime for the first year or two.

Neither choice is right or wrong, but it is something you’ll want to consider when selecting curtains for the nursery.

Sometimes the amount of blackout ability that a curtain provides is more important than having the perfect color or design on it. ​


You’re Now Prepared to Design the Perfect African Nursery

​You now know step-by-step how to design the perfect African themed nursery. You are ready to find the perfect decor for your personal design desires. Whether you want to feature safari animals, tribal prints, animal prints, or a mix of African inspired designs, you should now have a great idea of how to set up a perfectly themed nursery.

custom african themed nursery name sign

The last decor item that I think really pulls together and customizes a modern nursery theme is a custom name sign with you baby’s name on it. There are so many choices that fit an African nursery theme. If you really want to make your African nursery fit your little one, add in  a custom name sign and hang it over their crib.


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