African safaris are evolving. Guests are now opting to venture out of the traditional game viewing vehicles, and into big game country on foot.
These walks range from a few hours walk, to a hike spread over several days where starlit nights are spent at fly camps enroute.
A walking safari is an unforgettable adventure. Imagine walking through the vast plains, to the sound of birdsong, and coming across a herd of elephant, dead ahead. Or walking stealthily past a herd of buffalo down by the river, praying to the gods that the wind is in the right direction, favouring you.
Marvel at the smaller game – dung beetles, jeweled birds flitting around gaily colored flowers, and antelopes & zebra grazing peacefully, while your guide shares fascinating stories with you. End the day with welcome sundowners by a blazing fire, flame–cooked meals, and then snuggling down in your fly tent, listening to the night sounds all around you.
Everyone knows that the early mornings are the best time to see game. Add to this, the perspective of seeing game from a bird’s eye view, and you have yourself a balloon safari. The advantage of the hot air balloon, is that it can fly relatively low over the big herds and is one of the best ways to view the wildebeest migration.
The pre dawn air is charged with excitement, watching the great balloons fill up with air. Although the take off can be somewhat of a bumpy affair, it is soon smooth sailing over the quiet plains, where the animals are beginning to stir.
Sounds of the wind are punctuated by the roar of the heating flame, and the cries of wonder from fellow guests.
The finale is the champagne breakfast, served to you on the savannah plains, before you head back to your lodging….a morning well spent.
Imagine staring up at a velvety black sky strewn with shining stars – the only thing separating you from the African night, a gossamer net. Down below, you can hear the elephants feeding.
This is just you and nature……total bliss and a world away from the chaos of modern life as if you had travelled back in time to a gentler time. Sleeping under the stars is a magical experience, especially for the true adventurer and hopeless romantic, and is all the rage at the moment.
Horse riding in the conservancies is gaining popularity as one of the best ways to view game. Ride across the open plains filled with zebra, giraffe and gazelle, in the cool of an early African morning. The horse moves freely amongst the other animals, giving you a sense of freedom and of being one with nature. Suddenly, rounding the corner on a stretch of riverfront, you come upon the welcome sight of breakfast set up by the river. Enjoy the delicious breakfast, with the warmth of the sun on your face, savoring your cup of steaming coffee.
On your return, you may ride through a herd of eland, disturb a sleeping lion or spot a lonely topi atop a termite mound….each ride is different.
Immersing in community
Today community activities are an integral part of tourism, and most guests are eager to see the projects that their tourism dollars help support. These activities can range from simple activities like visits to community schools and clinics, water projects, to the more unusual activities like visits to female ranger groups, animal rescue centres run by community or the Singing Wells which is steeped in tradition.