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African Safari

Written by  Karen Loftus

Africa-safari
If planning an African safari for yourself or for your clients, there are several directions to head in, and several safaris styles to consider. Here are six well worth ticking off your list.

South Africa - for The Hip and Historical Traveler
South Africa has several contemporary angles and offerings. From the hip city of Cape Town, to the neighboring Stellenbosch wine region, several South African surfing meccas and World Cup soccer stadiums, it’s a great place to start your African travels.
There is no better place to take in South Africa’s recent apartheid history than in Johannesburg. Visiting Nelson Mandela’s home, the Apartheid museum and the township of Soweto are essential. Finish off with a South African safari with andBeyond’s safaris and lodges. Their guides are exceptional and their properties are luxe. You can stay in iconic Kruger National Park, Sabi Sand or the idyllic Phinda Private Game Reserve. www.andbeyond.com For townships tours, contact Spirit of Africa, www.spiritofafrica.co.za

Zambia - for The Deep and Responsible Traveler
Zambia is as real as it gets. If you want to dig deeper into African culture and conservation, this is your sweet spot. Norman Carr initiated the far-reaching concept of conservation in the 1950’s, built the first ever game viewing camp and initiated walking safaris. Fill your itinerary with both Norman Carr and Robin Pope (Carr protege) safaris and camps. Kick off your adventure at Robin Pope’s Luangwa Safari House. Animal theatrics surround the property upon arrival. Bush beauty and animal activity aside, at each one of their evocative properties, you are privy to village visits where you meet the local people, see the property’s community outreach and you see where your safaris fees are going. Visit www.normancarrsafaris.com or www.robinpopesafaris.net

Botswana - for The Animal Loving Traveler
Everyone knows that the big five abounds in Botswana. So, buy or borrow the best camera and prepare for 24 hours of epic game viewing. Aardvark Safaris handles arrangements with Letaka’s mobile tented safaris. It is truly authentic African bush travel. Letaka’s typical itinerary is nine days, with three days each in three different camps. The food is fresh with bread being baked daily in the ground. The local staff (inclusive of driver and guide) of four are incredibly attentive. They’ll set up your bucket showers, sundowners and camp fires. This immersive experience includes being wooed to sleep by the sound of buffalo fighting, lions roaring and elephants grazing on the other side of your tent.
Visit www.aardvarksafaris.com

Namibia - For The Exotic Traveler
Namibia is usually not for first time African travelers. It’s typically for second or third timers, a great add-on to any South African and/or Botswana itinerary. It’s an exotic spot where you can climb the world’s tallest and rich red sand dunes in Sossusvlei, track black rhinos on foot, view desert adapted game and experience what looks like choreographed theatrics at any one of Etosha National Park’s watering holes. Wilderness Safaris has an array of soul-sating camps with staff that sing and dance at dinner and provide early rise surprises, such as bush breakfasts at the break of day. Namibia is a can’t miss and Wilderness Safaris is a pitch perfect fit.
www.wilderness-safaris.com

Tanzania - for The Luxury Traveler
If looking to take in Africa in the lap of luxury, Micato Safaris can sort out the details, as they know a thing or two about African travel. Micato’s proprietor, Felix Pinto, was once a ranking member of the ex-British Kenyan government before he started his own luxury safari company in the 60’s. For excellent game viewing and easy access to the Great Migration, stay in Singita’s opulent Sasakwa Lodge or their rustic chic Faru Faru Lodge in the Grumeti Reserve. For a Masai warrior moment, stay at The Four Seasons property in the Serengeti where elephants graze on site, and the Masai protect the property and you. Finish with a visit to the Ngorongoro Crater and a stay at Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge. Expect to be ridiculously spoiled throughout. www.micato.com

Kenya - for The Trailblazing Traveler
Iconic African travel and Abercrombie & Kent (A&K) are somewhat synonymous. It’s no wonder, as African travel is a natural for A&K’s founder and CEO, Geoffrey Kent. Kent was born while his parents were on safari in Kenya and was raised on their Kenyan farm. A&K was launched modestly by Geoffrey and his parents in 1962, but quickly became the go-to for stylish and bespoke travel in Kenya, throughout Africa and around the world. Kent still travels extensively today. He continues to push the travel envelope with private jet tours and more recent innovations like Extreme Adventures, where travellers come face to face with nature at its most uncompromising. Explore the Masai Mara Game Reserve, the Chyulus and Amboseli National Park where you will witness the largest breeding elephant bulls in all of Africa. Whatever the itinerary, any A&K adventure will prove to be anything but ordinary. www.abercrombiekent.com


Each of the above companies is incredibly active in giving back to the local communities. Check out their websites to find out more about their philanthropic interests.

 

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