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Namibia Explorer – The Smith Family
Itinerary
Overview
Countries Visited:
Namibia
Regions Visited:
Sossusvlei & Swakopmund, Damaraland & Etosha
Length of Trip:
12 days
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itinerary
highlights

  • Watch an incredible sunrise and sunset over Sossusvlei’s orange dunes.
  • Kayak amongst hundreds of seals at the Pelican Point seal colony near Swakopmund.
  • Head out with a guide to track desert-adapted elephant in Damaraland.
  • Enjoy a safari in Etosha National Park, watching lion, zebra and elephant drinking at waterholes.

Passenger Details

Booking Reference:
SMITH01/04/19
Passenger name:
The Smith Family
Adult passengers:
4

Travel Dates

From:
07 August 2019
To:
20 August 2019

Costs

Cost per adult:
£2,685.00
Total Cost:
£10,740.00

day-by-day Itinerary

Wednesday 7 August 2019

Depart London Heathrow on Virgin Atlantic Flight VS461 in Premium Economy Class departing 2230 hrs and arriving into Johannesburg O R Tambo International Airport at 1025 hrs on Thursday 8 August 2019.

Thursday 8 August

Depart Johannesburg O R Tambo International Airport on South African Airways Economy Class Flight SA0076 at 1315 hrs and arrive into Windhoek Hosea Kutako International Airport at 1510 hrs.
You will be met by a representative from our partners Namibia Tours & Safaris on arrival and be transferred to your Villa Vista Guesthouse.
We will arrange for the vehicle handover at your guesthouse and will meet with our local representative to provide all your travel documents.

Spend one night at Villa Vista Guesthouse including breakfast.

Friday 9 August

After breakfast at Villa Vista, pop into town for any supplies that you might need and then depart heading south from Windhoek – your self-drive adventure begins!

Windhoek to Sossusvlei – 350 km – approx 5 to 6 hours
Your self-drive will reveal the transition from Kalahari thornveld to the true desert of the Namib. Travel either via the beautiful Spreetshoogte or Remhoogte Pass, both showcasing the natural beauty of Namibia.

Spend 2 nights at Desert Homestead Lodge including dinner, bed & breakfast.
This welcoming lodge combines African style and Western comforts, the lodge makes an excellent base for exploring the towering dunes of Namib-Naukluft National Park.

Perhaps take a horse back ride into the desert for a truly unique once in a lifetime experience.

Saturday 10 August

Spend today making the most of your location within the Namib Desert’s largest dunes – Big Daddy is the highest at 325 m (1,066 ft). It’s worth rising early to see the sunrise transform the landscape.
Head to the entrance to Sossusvlei, the Sesriem Gate, Dune 45, Big Daddy, Elim Dune, Dead Vlei and the Sesriem Canyon.

Return to the lodge for lunch or arrange a lunch pack to enjoy in the dunes and return late afternoon for a well earned rest.
Optional extra activities: Guided Sossusvlei excursion, hot air balloon safari, nature drives, horse back riding and star gazing.

Sunday 11 August

Sossusvlei to Swakopmund – 350 km – Approx 5 to 6 hours
Depart Sossusvlei after breakfast and head north to Solitaire, then west crossing the Tropic of Capricorn, through the Gaub and Kuiseb Canyons via the Namib Gravel Plains to the coast.
Either via Walvis Bay to Swakopmund, or (recommended) detour via Ganab to the Welwitschia Plains and Moon Landscape. The Namibian coastline is generally known as The Skeleton Coast due to the barren areas, ship wrecks and, in days gone by, whale skeletons left on the beach.

Spend 2 nights at Swakopmund Luxury Suites including breakfast.

Swakopmund is a picturesque town on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean. The town’s colonial German past is evident in the many historic buildings and charming streets – perfect for a relaxing stroll and for a stop in a quaint cafe for a slice of Sachertorte!

We can make restaurant recommendations and book in advance is recommended.

Monday 12 August

One full day is set aside for this lovely area where Swakopmund and Walvis Bay offer a wide range of activities.
We can book your preferred activity whether that be the Sandwich harbour excursion, dolphin cruise, kayaking the open seas with a guide is a great way of getting close up views of cape fur seals, turtles and whales, quad biking in the nearby dunes, taking a light aircraft flight over the Skeleton Coast or join a Living Desert tour, where a guide takes you out to nearby dunes to show you some of the small creatures that manage to survive in the sand, such as shovel-nosed lizards and cartwheeling spiders

13 August & 14 August

Swakopmund to Brandberg – 245 km – Approx 4 to 5 hours
Head north along the Skeleton Coast, via Henties Bay to visit the Cape Cross seal colony. Along the way, stop at the Lichen Fields as well as the ship wreck between the colourful small town of Wlotskasbaken and Henties Bay
Backtrack to Henties Bay and head inland through wide open plains to the Brandberg area
Arrival at camp from 13h30 onwards (no lunch is served on this day). Time to check-in and acclimatise. This afternoon embark on a guided tour with a local farmer, who will give you an insight on farming in the area and the challenges they are facing in their daily lives by farming with free-roaming wildlife around. We then visit a village school and end of the afternoon with a short walk and sundowners before returning to camp for dinner and overnight.

Spend 2 nights at Ozondjou Trails Camp in tented accommodation, fully inclusive. Ozondjou Trails Camp set in an elevated position above the Ugab River in the Brandberg area of west Namibia.

14th August – Embark on an elephant drive in the Ugab River joining the EHRA team in their day to day patrol work searching for desert elephants and studying their behaviour. Also encounter plains game like zebra, kudu, oryx, springbok, ostrich and giraffe. A picnic lunch is included. Return to camp late afternoon for dinner.

Thursday 15 August

Brandberg to Erindi – 190 km – Approx 4 hours

Depart Ozondjou heading east on a 3-4 hour drive to Erindi Private Game Reserve located in the Otjiwarongo area.

Stay overnight at Erindi Elephant Camp, self catering.

Go on exploratory self-drive routes through the reserve, covering a total of 100 kilometers. These have been specially created for guests wishing to conduct their own game drives. Or as an optional extra take a guided game drive.

16 August

Erindi to Etosha (East) – 470 km – Approx 6 hours

Drive north to Onguma The Fort set in the Onguma Reserve to the east of the world famous Etosha National Park. Onguma The Fort is an upmarket and architecturally interesting option, with guest accommodation in 14 suites, a nice peaceful base from which to explore into Etosha, the main reserve.

Spend 2 nights in a Bush Suite with air conditioning including breakfast and dinner.

Activities are centred on self drive game drives into the main national park but you can arrange at the lodge to go with their open safari vehicle and guide (optional extra). Wildlife viewing in Etosha is best during this dry season (May to November).

17 August

Etosha National Park is one of Southern Africa’s best loved wildlife sanctuaries and one of Africa’s most easily accessible parks for a self drive game viewing experience. With 114 species of mammal and 340 bird species, you are sure to see a great variety of wildlife on your safari, including several rare and endangered species such as the black rhino and black-faced impala.

Look out for some of the key wildlife species that gather at the waterholes including elephant, giraffe, lion, springbok and wildebeest.

Sunday 18 August

Etosha (East) to Waterberg – 295 km – Approx 4 hours

Depart Etosha on an approximate 4 hour drive south to Frans Indongo Lodge set on farmland around 30km north of Otjiwarongo in north central Namibia.

Spend 1 night at Frans Indongo Lodge including breakfast.

Activities include some modest walking and optional extra an excursion to the Cheetah Conservation Fund.

Monday 19 August

After breakfast head out to the Cheetah Conservation Fund (payable locally).
Your stay at Frans Indongo Lodge is not complete without a visit to the Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF). Only situated 1 hour 15 minutes from the Lodge, you can enjoy your day amongst the fastest cats in Africa.

Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF)
CCF is the world’s leading organization dedicated to saving the Cheetah in the wild and has a set of integrated programs aimed at addressing the principal of threats to the Cheetah.

Waterberg to Windhoek – 295 km – Approx 4 hours

Arrive into Windhoek to spend one night at the Villa Vista Guesthouse including breakfast.

We can recommend a restaurant and make a booking in advance on your behalf.

Tuesday 20 August

After breakfast depart for Windhoek Hosea Kutako International Airport to drop off your car hire and check in for your flight departing at 1215 hrs.

Meet with flight SA75 travelling Economy Class Windhoek to Johannesburg departing 1215 hrs and arriving at 1400 hrs.
Depart Johannesburg on Virgin Atlantic VS450 in Premium Economy departing at 2020 hrs and arriving into London Heathrow at 0635 hrs on 21 August.

Where You'll Stay

Desert Homestead Lodge

Desert Homestead Lodge in Sossusvlei and Swakopmund

Desert Homestead is a stylish small lodge near Sossusvlei in Namibia’s Namib-Naukluft National Park. Located 30km south-east ...

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Desert Homestead is a stylish small lodge near Sossusvlei in Namibia’s Namib-Naukluft National Park.

Located 30km south-east of Sesriem, the Desert Homestead Lodge is the perfect starting point for tours to the Namib-Naukluft National Park, to the Sossusvlei and the Sesriem Canyon. And it is the perfect oasis after a day-trip to the world‘s highest dunes. The lodge is located in a private nature reserve close by the Unesco World Heritage site “Namib Sand Sea”.

There are 26 stone chalets with thatched roofs each with ensuite bathroom and a private deck area and constructed from local rock to seamlessly blend into the surroundings.  All rooms have mosquito nets and air conditioning.  Enjoy the impressive panoramic view either from the main house –  set on a hill and including restaurant, bar and lodge – or from the swimming pool.

Ozondjou Trails Camp

Ozondjou Trails Camp in Damaraland and Skeleton Coast

Ozondjou Trails is a tented safari camp on the Ugab River and one of Namibia's newest additions!  Ozondjou is the Herero ...

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Ozondjou Trails is a tented safari camp on the Ugab River and one of Namibia’s newest additions!  Ozondjou is the Herero word for “on the track of the desert elephants” and this is very fitting as the camp site is very close to the base camp of the Elephant Human Relations Aid (EHRA).

The camp consists of 7 twin tents and 1 family tent each with ensuite shower, wash basin and flush toilets.  There is a Mess tent with lounge area and dining table leading out to an outside sitting area at the fire pit with a fantastic view of the Ugab River.   Dinner is prepared over an open fire whilst you unwind with a drink sitting out under the stars. 

This off the beaten track camp is only accessible by 4×4.  Located 4 km off the C35 on the road between Uis and Khorixas.

 

Onguma The Fort

Onguma The Fort in Etosha National Park

Onguma The Fort is situated on the Eastern side of Etosha National Park on the private 34,000 hectare Onguma wilderness ...

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Onguma The Fort is situated on the Eastern side of Etosha National Park on the private 34,000 hectare Onguma wilderness Reserve.

The Fort is a stylish lodge with accommodation unlike any other and one of its kind, with probably one of the best sunset views in Namibia. Overlooking the beautiful Etosha Fisher’s Pan, accommodation consists of eleven Bush Suites, one Honeymoon Suite as well as a Sultan Suite. The Bush and Honeymoon Suites are equipped with fire places for the winter months and air coolers for the summer months. Each Bush and Honeymoon Suite has an indoor and outdoor shower and views that will enchant. With dramatic Moroccan details, there is something new to discover around every corner. 

This premier itinerary includes the following Camps:

Inclusions

Accommodation as indicated
Meals as indicated
Meet & Greet upon Arrival
Car Hire - 4x4 Toyota Fortuner or similar, manual transmission including GPS, Zero Excess - maximum insurance, tyre & windscreen cover, unlimited mileage, 2nd spare tyre, additional driver, cell phone with local sim
Airport Transfers
Tour File with detailed itinerary, map with route descriptions, vouchers etc
24 hour personal and friendly support

Exclusions

Items of a personal nature
Optional extra activities
International flights - Virgin and South African Airways
Holiday or personal insurance
Staff gratuities
Park entry fees
Fuel for vehicle rental

Quotation Notes & Conditions

The above quotation is valid for 48 hours.

Quotations are based on the flight rates available today. The flight costs may change and are subject to availability. Availability can only be confirmed at the time of booking.

If you would like to read our full terms and conditions before booking then please follow this link:

Terms & Conditions

Payment Options

A 35% deposit will be due if your booking is more than 65 days prior to departure. The balance is due 65 days before your date of travel.

Payment Options:

Debit Card or Bank Transfer are our preferred methods of payment.  However we will accept the 35% deposit payment by credit card.

Card Charges

*Please note there is no charge for debit or credit cards as long as the card is issued in the UK.  If the card is issued outside of the UK and Ireland there is a 2.5% card fee on each transaction for both debit and credit cards.   **Please note we do not accept any Amex or Corporate Credit Cards whether issued inside or outside of the UK.  ***Bank transfers from anywhere in the world attract no extra charges from Weekend a la Carte Ltd/Safari Addicts, but your bank may charge.

 

Travel Insurance

We would recommend you get your travel insurance soon after booking. Adequate travel insurance is vital for this trip for three reasons:

  1. These bookings are often taken a year in advance and if anything happens to a member of your party during that year which affects your ability to travel, you would then, be able to claim back any cancellation fees.
  2. You are travelling to the wilds of Africa and you want to make sure that if anything unforeseen was to happen whilst on your trip that you are protected.
  3. It is a condition of travelling with Weekend a la Carte that you have a policy in place.

We recommend TAGCONNECT for insurance as they are travel specialists.

To get an instant quote for comprehensive cover please call Travel & General on 0845 345 3456.

Or use the online quoting tool:

www.tgic-online.com/ti/jsp/start.jsp?AccountID=39644

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WHAT'S INCLUDED

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

Trusted in creating your life long memories

Ian & Julie – Coventry

South Africa -  To say our holiday was fantastic in every respect would be an under statement and would not do justice for it.  In every single respect and detail it was perfect from our moment of arrival until our sad departure home.  Each and every venue we stayed in was excellent, friendly, hospitable and welcoming. At Kwandwe we finished with our unbelievable safari which was ... Read More

Ian & Julie – Coventry

Ian & Julie – Coventry

South Africa – 

To say our holiday was fantastic in every respect would be an under statement and would not do justice for it. 
In every single respect and detail it was perfect from our moment of arrival until our sad departure home.  Each and every venue we stayed in was excellent, friendly, hospitable and welcoming. At Kwandwe we finished with our unbelievable safari which was absolutely fantastic and simply provided a level of service beyond our expectations.  We were treated so well by the Manager, his staff and especially our guide (Ivan) who passed on an amazing level of knowledge of the flora and fauna in such an informative and friendly manner – nothing was too much.
 
Once again (we travelled with you to Iceland in 2017) we have enjoyed the very best of help and support from your company and will undoubtedly be back with you in the near future to discuss our next plans (Norwegian Fjords holiday including cruise).
 
In the meantime I offer very sincere thanks from myself and my wife for the support you provided and the work in pulling together our wishes into a brilliant plan that was a brilliant way to celebrate my birthday.  A rating of 10 is so thoroughly deserved.
 
I have attached a couple of photographs captured during our trip that for us will forever provide great memories.
Mike & Lisa – Maidenhead

We had an absolutely wonderful time and can’t wait to return to Africa.    Cape Town - The complimentary pick up from the airport was great. The agent was there to meet us off the airplane and she helped guide us through the airport to the taxi.  We had one night at Mount Nelson hotel due to BA strike/flight changes. This hotel is just lovely - as is the afternoon tea. Would ... Read More

Mike & Lisa – Maidenhead

Mike & Lisa – Maidenhead

We had an absolutely wonderful time and can’t wait to return to Africa. 
 
Cape Town – The complimentary pick up from the airport was great. The agent was there to meet us off the airplane and she helped guide us through the airport to the taxi. 
We had one night at Mount Nelson hotel due to BA strike/flight changes. This hotel is just lovely – as is the afternoon tea. Would recommend this as an option. 
Manor House at the V&A Waterfront was also lovely and great location. It was actually nice having experienced both hotels. 
 
The Blue Train was fab…..
 
The hotel in Pretoria was amazing. Just so unusual in terms of the style. We also had a wonderful taxi driver who took us to Jo’burg Airport. He lived in Soweto and was so knowledgable about Nelson Mandela, it was really interesting.
 
Victoria Falls Safari Club was wonderful. The location is just fab and the rooms are spacious and comfortable. Staff really make the trip special. 
 
The breakfast cruise that you arranged was perfect. It was just the two of us with the skipper and chef. Really special.
 
Day trip to Chobe was unforgettable. Although  we then had to get back into Zimbabwe! After all the trips on our own it was a shame that we were sharing with so many people but I guess that’s just how it is with the Chobe trip. 
 
Thanks again for helping pull everything together to create such a wonderful holiday for us.
The Smith Family – Haslemere

Namibia Self Drive - Aug 2019 We had an absolutely amazing time in Namibia and certainly packed a lot in to the relatively brief time we were there.  The quality of the hire car, accommodation and meals booked was very high and all very much enjoyed.  All the game drives were quite different and so we learnt or saw something new each time and without exception the guides ... Read More

The Smith Family – Haslemere

The Smith Family – Haslemere

Namibia Self Drive – Aug 2019

We had an absolutely amazing time in Namibia and certainly packed a lot in to the relatively brief time we were there.  The quality of the hire car, accommodation and meals booked was very high and all very much enjoyed.  All the game drives were quite different and so we learnt or saw something new each time and without exception the guides were very knowledgeable and personable.The kayaking trip with cape fur seals was a lot of fun.  We had the good fortune to be driven to the lagoon by Craig, owner of the company, and he took a lot of time and trouble explaining about the flamingos, avocets, cape albatross and the other birdlife which we passed.  The actual kayaking was very well organised, with much care taken to ensure that we all had the right clothing and equipment, and we were escorted by Craig and one other on the water to the area where the seals frolic in the sea and were encouraged to interact with them.  Unfortunately, Craig said the seals were a little subdued because it had been fairly cold overnight and there had been a bit of a storm, but we all enjoyed it.  

Each time we were moving on to new accommodation, I warned everyone that it could not get better, but every time it did, though the Fort at Onguma has to be the peak as it was totally sublime.  We were assigned one guide, Victor, for each of the activities we did there and he was outstanding in his ability to identify birds and find the game.  Ozondjou Trails was another highlight and the staff (Jackson, Mona Lisa, the chef, Moses and Big Matias, the guide) were all delightful and very welcoming.

One thing we would have welcomed were suggestions of places to stop for pitstops and refreshments during our journeys.  As it happened, in addition to Solitaire, we managed to find some excellent coffee shops, but there were a couple of times when we failed to find a suitable stopping place.  

The scale of the country is somehow increased by the gravel roads, but we were lucky as the four of us shared the driving, so no-one had to take on too much.  I am not sure I would want to split the driving between just two of us over a fortnight. 

We had a fabulous time – and have nearly 5,000 photos to prove it!  Many thanks for helping us to achieve this wonderful trip, especially at relatively short notice.

Wendy & Rob – July/August 2019

Where to even begin to describe the trip we have just returned from?……..’WOW’ seemed to be the most used word!! Thank you so much for putting an amazing itinerary together for us. We now have a better understanding of what each ‘area’ involves and cannot wait to go back and explore some more - we are well and truly hooked! Despite not getting off to the best start (!) we are ... Read More

Wendy & Rob – July/August 2019

Wendy & Rob – July/August 2019

Where to even begin to describe the trip we have just returned from?……..’WOW’ seemed to be the most used word!!

Thank you so much for putting an amazing itinerary together for us. We now have a better understanding of what each ‘area’ involves and cannot wait to go back and explore some more – we are well and truly hooked!

Despite not getting off to the best start (!) we are grateful for your help in moving everything around at Vic Falls. The horse ride was fun and the owner of the stables (sorry name’s gone!) was really sweet arranging a driver and guide for us after the ride as we only had 2 hours to enjoy the Falls!!

Safari Club was excellent.

Throughout the entire trip transfers and flights were very efficient and seamless – it was a real treat to sit back and let someone else do the organising (that’s normally our job!!)

We absolutely loved Kwando! Staff were amazing, food and general comfort fantastic and the game viewing ridiculous! I think we had the most ‘fun’ at this camp.

Then onto Mapula Lodge. Once we had chatted through our ‘wants’ in terms of viewing, etc (making the most of the Delta) they could not have done anymore for us. Private drives, private dinner, always accommodating and always very friendly.

Only issue we had was being late to breakfast one morning because the lodge was surrounded by elephants!

This was definitely the most ‘relaxing’ camp……and had the best ‘view from a loo’ (the main throne room loo near the main lodge – photo attached!)

We also saw the most incredible birds. I remember telling you I wasn’t really in to birds…..well that’s changed!

The ‘time out’ here was truly next level – so beautiful and peaceful.

It seems very quiet at night now we are home – and we are already missing the sound of lions roaring, hippos ‘grunting’ and being woken by the dawn chorus.

We have given ourselves a problem – how do we better this holiday?!!!

So – thank you!

Gary & Peter – London

Visited Cape Town, Botswana & Zambia - May 2019 So what can one say about our trip but amazing and lots of pictures yet to be processed. We loved it from start to finish. We saw so much including a pride of 18 Lions at Lebala, Rhino, leopards, Elephants, Buffalo, Giraffes and so much more. Great meet at airport and transfer ok to wine lands as used a Mercedes without much AC. Only moan ... Read More

Gary & Peter – London

Gary & Peter – London

Visited Cape Town, Botswana & Zambia – May 2019

So what can one say about our trip but amazing and lots of pictures yet to be processed. We loved it from start to finish. We saw so much including a pride of 18 Lions at Lebala, Rhino, leopards, Elephants, Buffalo, Giraffes and so much more.

Great meet at airport and transfer ok to wine lands as used a Mercedes without much AC. Only moan of the entire trip. Guest house in Wine lands was To Die For and loved eating, cycling and late night drinking.

Great transfer to 12 Apostles and went straight to Table Mountain after arriving as lovely day. What a fantastic hotel and super staff. Good tour of the Cape and Seal Island was a great addition. Guide was good fun and kept us busy. We did pay for our lunch and cable car but that was only down to a simple error.
Transfer to Maun was great and flight gave us good food and a lounge so very happy. Good meet and greet
NO WATER on the Delta so lodge slightly struggled on what to do on Game Drives. Worst drought in 21 years but saw leopards and lions from the road.

Next Lodge was one of our favorites as relaxed and all drives went off road . Wow! Leopards and Lions so close to the truck that it was amazing, dead elephants and 100s of vultures, Towers of Giraffes and dazzles of Zebra. LBR till the cows come home and even started to get into bird watching.
Fantastic camp and managers. Will go back here.
Again great transfer on small planes and everything in place for us.
Chobe National park felt like Disneyland. Arrive and put on boat with lots of other people. Not inspirational. Fun at the bar with Cathy the bar maid who sorted us out super cocktails. Good room but no view of the water.
The morning drive was ok but saw nothing not even an elephant. Guide says you can only see elephants in the afternoon. Exited as we left the lodge as good transfer guy and found elephants on the was down to water  and made sure we had lots of time finding elephants. Best part of the visit was the exciting transfer and driver. Easy move to Zambia from Botswana and Irish passport holders don’t have to pay a fee.

And then Tongabezi. WOW!
Met by Rudy the manager and then passed to our Valet Dadu. What a truly nice man and looked after us so well for our 5 days. Captain Felix who had us on the river every day and went cycling with me one morning, Godfrey our driver who looked after us at the Falls and all land transfers. The Rhino hunt was a great fun and spotted 5 Rhino. The food and Boathouse was amazing. We never moved to Nut House as Plunge pool is twice the dept and I was very happy in the pool at Dog House.
Such a moving visit to the village and school. Really made us think about lots of things.
So Well done and so pleased moved and excited about the entire trip.

What more can we say but thank you.

Sean & Trudy – Bury St Edmunds

Travelled to Victoria Falls, South Luangwa & Lower Zambezi - Jul/Aug 2019 Just a quick note to say, Thank you for all your help to make our first safari a most memorable holiday for all the right reasons. It would be hard to fault or improve upon. Your expertise shone through the whole trip. Thanks again. Read More

Sean & Trudy – Bury St Edmunds

Sean & Trudy – Bury St Edmunds

Travelled to Victoria Falls, South Luangwa & Lower Zambezi – Jul/Aug 2019

Just a quick note to say, Thank you for all your help to make our first safari a most memorable holiday for all the right reasons.

It would be hard to fault or improve upon.

Your expertise shone through the whole trip.

Thanks again.

Rachel & Connor – Royal Leamington Spa

Rachel and I had an absolutely fantastic honeymoon, I'm not sure where to start! Everything went seamlessly and the planning from your end really helped us to enjoy our honeymoon without any stress or worries. Rachel and I will highly recommend you and will definitely look to book another African adventure with you in the future. The accommodation at nThambo, Umkumbe and Avani was ... Read More

Rachel & Connor – Royal Leamington Spa

Rachel & Connor – Royal Leamington Spa

Rachel and I had an absolutely fantastic honeymoon, I’m not sure where to start! Everything went seamlessly and the planning from your end really helped us to enjoy our honeymoon without any stress or worries. Rachel and I will highly recommend you and will definitely look to book another African adventure with you in the future. The accommodation at nThambo, Umkumbe and Avani was stunning and each delivered on every level. We can assure you that this was a honeymoon, and experience, of a lifetime that we will never forget. The safari drives were brilliant with the opportunity to get very close to the ‘Big 5’, ‘Ugly 5’ and other stunning wildlife.

We thoroughly enjoyed the Sundown river safari, Victoria Falls and the chance to swim in the Zambezi river and take a plunge into the Devils Pool in Zambia. We didn’t want to leave and want to keep reliving the experience. 

Rachel & Ron – Bournemouth

We arrived back home yesterday after an amazing time in Africa. What a stunning country, everyone so friendly & accommodating. All the staff at both lodges in South Africa made our stay so memorable an experience that will remain with us forever. The Avani in Zambia was also stunning got up close & personal with impala, zebra, mongoose, & resident crocodile. The baboons got a bit ... Read More

Rachel & Ron – Bournemouth

Rachel & Ron – Bournemouth

We arrived back home yesterday after an amazing time in Africa. What a stunning country, everyone so friendly & accommodating.
All the staff at both lodges in South Africa made our stay so memorable an experience that will remain with us forever.
The Avani in Zambia was also stunning got up close & personal with impala, zebra, mongoose, & resident crocodile. The baboons got a bit too close & personal coming into our room one afternoon whilst we were having a rest on the bed & stole our teabags & sugar must have been having a tea party on the roof we did laugh !!!!! 
 
Thank you for all your advice & professional help we look forward to travelling through you again one day.
Lyn & Keith – West Sussex

It would be very hard to rate our holiday anything but 10 it was fantastic and went really smoothly. Sindabezi was beautiful and we were very lucky to be given an upgrade to a lodge in Tongabezi for our last night, the accommodation there is out of this world! We loved Lebala and Little Kwara, the bedroom at Kwara looks tired in comparison, but the service was equally good and I believe they ... Read More

Lyn & Keith – West Sussex

Lyn & Keith – West Sussex

It would be very hard to rate our holiday anything but 10 it was fantastic and went really smoothly. Sindabezi was beautiful and we were very lucky to be given an upgrade to a lodge in Tongabezi for our last night, the accommodation there is out of this world!

We loved Lebala and Little Kwara, the bedroom at Kwara looks tired in comparison, but the service was equally good and I believe they are completely renovating it this June. In fact the customer service in Zambia and all 3 camps  was consistently exceptional I can not thank the staff enough, wherever we stayed, for giving us such a great holiday. 

Kath was really helpful too and very quick to respond to any concerns but the reason we went with you was because of Guy and Brianne’s recommendation, they recently went with you two years running and they convinced us it would be worth the money so they were great advocates, as we will be, if other friends are interested.

Hetal, Joanna & Jake – Towcester

We had a fantastic time thank you and would rate your service 10! The newly refurbished Ngala Safari Lodge was amazing, very high standard of finish and the team were brilliant. Kirkman's Camp was excellent too, our ranger (Jarryd) was really good and highly knowledgeable and informative.  Anantara Bazaruto in Mozambique was very good, the spa was fantastic with amazing views. Overall we ... Read More

Hetal, Joanna & Jake – Towcester

Hetal, Joanna & Jake – Towcester

We had a fantastic time thank you and would rate your service 10!
The newly refurbished Ngala Safari Lodge was amazing, very high standard of finish and the team were brilliant.
Kirkman’s Camp was excellent too, our ranger (Jarryd) was really good and highly knowledgeable and informative.  Anantara Bazaruto in Mozambique was very good, the spa was fantastic with amazing views.
Overall we had an amazing holiday and would recommend the route to anyone.  
Emily, Aidan, Alasdair & Harriet – Gloucestershire

Zimbabwe - September We had a truly wonderful holiday.  It all worked out so well and was the perfect mix of relaxation, national park and river.  We had a great selection of wildlife and some very near encounters which was exciting and terrifying.  We were sorry to miss the Elephant Express but it was rather a near miss as it was the group the day before us who had the ... Read More

Emily, Aidan, Alasdair & Harriet – Gloucestershire

Emily, Aidan, Alasdair & Harriet – Gloucestershire

Zimbabwe – September

We had a truly wonderful holiday.  It all worked out so well and was the perfect mix of relaxation, national park and river.  We had a great selection of wildlife and some very near encounters which was exciting and terrifying. 

We were sorry to miss the Elephant Express but it was rather a near miss as it was the group the day before us who had the derailment.  We had a very hot, bumpy but safe ride into camp instead and were well looked after by the team.

I would like to add quite how much we all appreciated the dedication of the Camelthorn & Zambezi Sands guides and team.  They were absolutely fantastic and went well above the call of duty to make it such a memorable stay.  

Thank you Big 5 Safaris again for setting up such a great programme for us.  We want to go back please!

Lynn – Slough

Zimbabwe & Botswana - We had a wonderful time, everything went off perfectly. The accommodation was excellent and all the transfers and pick up just happened seamlessly !  We loved Victoria falls our guide was very knowledgeable .  Our Riverboat stay was amazing , we even glimpsed a Leopard from the river bank plus Lions , hippos , crocs  and many other animals. ... Read More

Lynn – Slough

Lynn – Slough

Zimbabwe & Botswana –

We had a wonderful time, everything went off perfectly.

The accommodation was excellent and all the transfers and pick up just happened seamlessly !  We loved Victoria falls our guide was very knowledgeable .  Our Riverboat stay was amazing , we even glimpsed a Leopard from the river bank plus Lions , hippos , crocs  and many other animals.  The Safari lodge in Chobe was lovely and again we saw Lions and lots of Elephants , Zebra , Giraffe and buffalo.

We were amazed at how much we saw and did in 6 days.

Thank you for arranging such a wonderful time for us.

Norma – Berkshire

Zimbabwe & Botswana - We had an amazing time.  The Zambezi cruise was very enjoyable and a great start to our holiday. The lodge at Victoria Falls was fabulous with great accommodation and lovely food. We saw plenty of animals visiting the water hole from our room giving us a taste of what was to come.    Our transfer to Botswana and the Chobe Princess houseboat was well ... Read More

Norma – Berkshire

Norma – Berkshire

Zimbabwe & Botswana – We had an amazing time.  The Zambezi cruise was very enjoyable and a great start to our holiday. The lodge at Victoria Falls was fabulous with great accommodation and lovely food. We saw plenty of animals visiting the water hole from our room giving us a taste of what was to come. 
 
Our transfer to Botswana and the Chobe Princess houseboat was well organised and we were lucky enough to get the cabin in the front with its own balcony. The trips out to the river bank were great and the guide was very knowledgeable and always made every effort to make sure we could see as much as possible and get as close as we could. On our second day out we saw so much. We were lucky enough to glimpse a leopard walking along the ridge, appearing whenever there was a gap in the bush. As well as the numerous elephants, crocs, buffalo, hippos, giraffe, zebra, impala, etc, we, again, were very fortunate to be around to see lionesses feeding on an earlier kill. And not forgetting the beautiful birds that can be seen everywhere.
 
We arrived at our lodge in Chobe in time to settle in and have lunch before going out on our first game drive. The accommodation was again fantastic with wonderful views and everything we needed.  I’m not sure how much other travellers see in the time that they stay but I felt we were extremely fortunate and what we saw far surpassed my expectations.
 
All in all, it was a fabulous holiday which has left us with many wonderful memories of Africa and of the other travellers that we shared our time with. The venues were first class and there must be a great deal of organisation behind the scenes which enables everything to run so smoothly. I would certainly recommend your company and in fact I’ve already passed your details on to my friend who is very interested in going to Africa.
 
Thank you for making this a holiday to remember.
 
 
McGregor Family – Manchester

I'd always wanted to go on safari since I was a child and when my son said he'd love to go on safari, completely unprompted, my wife and I made a decision there and then. The only problem was who to book with!   We found The Big 5 Safari Company through a friend of a friend, and from the start it was clear their knowledge of Africa was extensive. Kath put together the most amazing ... Read More

McGregor Family – Manchester

McGregor Family – Manchester

I’d always wanted to go on safari since I was a child and when my son said he’d love to go on safari, completely unprompted, my wife and I made a decision there and then. The only problem was who to book with!
 
We found The Big 5 Safari Company through a friend of a friend, and from the start it was clear their knowledge of Africa was extensive. Kath put together the most amazing itinerary in South Africa for me and my family, and arranged everything from flights to Cape Town, to VIP meet and greets at the airport, to a stunning 4 night safari at the Shamwari Game Reserve, with amazing accommodation along the way. Tours and excursions were also arranged for us through their contacts, and we highly recommend the shark diving!
 
Nothing was too much trouble for Kath, despite my numerous questions via email, and I can’t recommend Kath and her team enough. Will definitely be getting back in touch again in a couple of years when we want to do it all again!
 
The most amazing holiday!
Helen & Jim – Derby

We loved EVERY moment of our Self Drive in South Africa! The accommodations were excellent from start to finish and we had absolutely no complaints about the facilities, service and food at each one. Starting with the V&A Waterfront, it couldn't have been better located, right there in the thick of things in such an historic building. Next on to the Winelands and the lovely guest house ... Read More

Helen & Jim – Derby

Helen & Jim – Derby

We loved EVERY moment of our Self Drive in South Africa! The accommodations were excellent from start to finish and we had absolutely no complaints about the facilities, service and food at each one.

Starting with the V&A Waterfront, it couldn’t have been better located, right there in the thick of things in such an historic building.

Next on to the Winelands and the lovely guest house La Fontaine in Franschhoek. Here we were to find a completely different atmosphere,but one which was just as warm and welcoming. Breakfast was excellent!

At De Zeekoe we had a lovely room overlooking the gardens. Here we had a meerkat experience – up at half past stupid to watch a family of the little cuties in the middle of a field. It was amazing and we got some great pictures.

Laird’s Lodge truly lived up to the description in the booklet you sent me. We had such a wonderful stay there.

We had another relaxing stay in Addo and our visits to Addo Elephant Park were so productive in terms of photography.

Next we went to Kwandwe for what was the most exhilarating experience of my life. We could have spent the whole month there, not just 3 nights. The food was first class, the surroundings unbeatable and the staff are possibly its greatest asset.  I am so glad that you offered the option to have our own vehicle, ranger and tracker for those 3 days. Yes, it was more expensive but, SO worth the extra money.

I have already recommended your company to friends and other photographers, as we were both highly satisfied with the service you provided for us.

Marriage Family – Barton on Sea

We met the team at the New Forest Show and were really impressed with their knowledge of Africa and all matters safari. Katharine then helped us to plan a bespoke family holiday for four in South Africa within a pre-agreed budget. Katharine took considerable time to research ideas and incorporate our suggestions, but also ensured that we had an amazing holiday in some fabulous accommodation by ... Read More

Marriage Family – Barton on Sea

Marriage Family – Barton on Sea

We met the team at the New Forest Show and were really impressed with their knowledge of Africa and all matters safari. Katharine then helped us to plan a bespoke family holiday for four in South Africa within a pre-agreed budget. Katharine took considerable time to research ideas and incorporate our suggestions, but also ensured that we had an amazing holiday in some fabulous accommodation by double checking everything in advance.. We felt the overall service delivered was first class and certainly a cut above that offered by your typical travel agent. We would certainly use their services again for any similar holiday and recommend Safari Addicts to others seeking to plan the holiday of a lifetime. Many thanks again – The Marriage family.

Penny, Jonathan & Family – Market Harborough

Just returned from amazing trip to Victoria Falls, Botswana and Mozambique, including our first safari experience. Katharine worked tirelessly to ensure that we were happy with every aspect of our holiday and helped us navigate the vast choice of accommodation to select the right camps for us.  The planning was excellent and everything worked perfectly.  We would highly recommend The Big 5 ... Read More

Penny, Jonathan & Family – Market Harborough

Penny, Jonathan & Family – Market Harborough

Just returned from amazing trip to Victoria Falls, Botswana and Mozambique, including our first safari experience.

Katharine worked tirelessly to ensure that we were happy with every aspect of our holiday and helped us navigate the vast choice of accommodation to select the right camps for us.  The planning was excellent and everything worked perfectly.  We would highly recommend The Big 5 Safari Company – a tailor-made holiday that delivered above expectation experiences.  Thank you all!

Lorna & Mario – York

I just wanted to let you know what a wonderful trip you organised for myself and my husband in July this year.  Our three destination trip worked seamlessly from pick up in Cape Town right through to our return.  Our hotel in Cape Town was excellent and well located (The One & Only).  The staff “on the ground” were excellent, especially in Cape Town and the excursions were ... Read More

Lorna & Mario – York

Lorna & Mario – York

I just wanted to let you know what a wonderful trip you organised for myself and my husband in July this year.  Our three destination trip worked seamlessly from pick up in Cape Town right through to our return.  Our hotel in Cape Town was excellent and well located (The One & Only).  The staff “on the ground” were excellent, especially in Cape Town and the excursions were first class.  Chitwa Chitwa Game Lodge was awesome and delivered in every respect – would definitely return – great accommodation, a surfeit of wonderful food and fabulous game viewing from friendly and experienced team.  Our trip was completed with a visit to Victoria Falls in Zambia where we stayed at the Royal Livingstone – the location was excellent both for the falls and all the activities in this region.  Again the pre-booked activities did not disappoint and the hotel was luxurious.  Thank you Big 5 Safaris – will be booking again and would not hesitate to recommend you to others.

Mark & Lisa – Holton Le Clay

I’ve just read your “Why travel with us?” statement and it has to be said you ticked all the boxes. Our special occasion was our honeymoon and you definitely applied the personal touch to the extent I referred to you simply as “Katharine” – not The Big 5 Safari Company - in all discussions at home. I have booked trips all over the world for the last 25 years and I don’t ... Read More

Mark & Lisa – Holton Le Clay

Mark & Lisa – Holton Le Clay

I’ve just read your “Why travel with us?” statement and it has to be said you ticked all the boxes. Our special occasion was our honeymoon and you definitely applied the personal touch to the extent I referred to you simply as “Katharine” – not The Big 5 Safari Company – in all discussions at home. I have booked trips all over the world for the last 25 years and I don’t think any one person has stood out like you have. The bespoke nature of our trip and some of the ideas and suggestions you came up with were truly inspirational e.g. Zambezi Sands. Discussions where you clearly captured our personalities of what would work and what wouldn’t were spot on and you clearly assessed us very well.

I would also like to share with you the note sent by Abercrombie & Kent in 2015, before I found your website: “We offer a similar range of accommodation to Audley and our prices should be broadly speaking in line. For a 14 night holiday with a week on safari and a week in Mozambique, I think the figure of £8k per person wouldn’t be too far wide of the mark so if you’re budget is closer to £4k per person, I don’t think we would be able to offer anything to match this budget from the accommodation that we choose to offer”. Suffice to say we did exactly what we planned to, add in some extras and you were still able to meet our budget whilst still staying in luxury … and possibly even the same places!

We will share some photos in due course but our honeymoon was truly memorable and Lisa and I would like to thank you for your efforts in making it happen. I have already started recommending Big 5 to my friends and family and we look forward to travelling with you again at some point.

Nick & Kellie-Marie – Old Hatfield

What an amazing trip to Zimbabwe!! I loved every minute from start to finish. We had a great safari experience, saw a huge range of wildlife and 3 of the big 5! And Victoria falls is simply breathtaking isn't it? I can't imagine how much more ferocious it is during the high season.   Staying in Bulawayo was also a wonderful experience, our host family were just so friendly and welcoming ... Read More

Nick & Kellie-Marie – Old Hatfield

Nick & Kellie-Marie – Old Hatfield

What an amazing trip to Zimbabwe!! I loved every minute from start to finish. We had a great safari experience, saw a huge range of wildlife and 3 of the big 5! And Victoria falls is simply breathtaking isn’t it? I can’t imagine how much more ferocious it is during the high season.
 
Staying in Bulawayo was also a wonderful experience, our host family were just so friendly and welcoming and just loved having us stay with them. Albeit underprivileged, they just get on with it and I suppose don’t know much different (especially the kids, who were all little rays of sunshine!).
 
Thank you so much for helping me plan the trip, it really was a great experience! If I ever do anything like this again I’ll be sure to come straight back to you.

Rob & Helen – Eastbourne

We had a lovely time in South Africa - many thanks for organising - we loved all our locations. Chitwa Chitwa in Sabi Sands exceeded expectations in terms of accommodation and game viewing - saw the Big 5 on many occasions and much more ... Also really liked Elephant Camp and Victoria Falls was as spectacular as we had imagined. No complaints and no regrets - just great ... Read More

Rob & Helen – Eastbourne

Rob & Helen – Eastbourne

We had a lovely time in South Africa – many thanks for organising – we loved all our locations.
Chitwa Chitwa in Sabi Sands exceeded expectations in terms of accommodation and game viewing – saw the Big 5 on many occasions and much more …
Also really liked Elephant Camp and Victoria Falls was as spectacular as we had imagined.
No complaints and no regrets – just great memories!
 
Many thanks again, especially for the treat at our last camp to mark my birthday celebrations – much appreciated.

Gordon & Gill – Nailsworth

Firstly thanks to The Big 5 Safari Company for your assistance in managing the changes resulting from our flight delay. Unfortunately, due to our outgoing flight delay we lost a day at the start of the holiday and at the end effectively lost half a day due to significant problems confirming our connecting flights from Livingstone - none of which was the responsibility of Big 5 as we booked our ... Read More

Gordon & Gill – Nailsworth

Gordon & Gill – Nailsworth

Firstly thanks to The Big 5 Safari Company for your assistance in managing the changes resulting from our flight delay.

Unfortunately, due to our outgoing flight delay we lost a day at the start of the holiday and at the end effectively lost half a day due to significant problems confirming our connecting flights from Livingstone – none of which was the responsibility of Big 5 as we booked our own flights and I think next time we would ask Big 5 to do this for us!

That’s the bad news, the good news is that despite these problems we had a fantastic time.  Victoria falls is simply spectacular and we did still manage to see the moonbow on the second evening and on the river safari we managed to not only see our first elephant, but managed to collide with a hippo under the water – all of which was great fun.

Our accommodation was very comfortable and of high quality.  Waking up to zebras on the lawn is the norm there but doesn’t half leave you delighted and bemused.

At the Zambezi Sun in Livingstone and at Camelthorn Lodge in Hwange National Park we were really impressed by the welcoming attitude of all the staff we met.  All of our drivers for the transfers were courteous and very helpful.  The only thing we are inclined to “complain” about would be that we found the transfer long and a little uncomfortable and would have preferred to take the recently introduced rail car through the park.

At Camelthorn our primary hosts/guides, Sibs and Vusa, were not only experienced and knowledgeable guides, but engaging and warm individuals which made for fun and interesting conversation over dinner.

As safari ‘virgins’ we did not really know what to expect from the drives, but quickly learned.  By that I mean that there are no guarantees about which animal species you may see and it can vary significantly between drives.  Despite the best efforts of our guide, we did not manage to find leopard or cheetah, but apart from this, during the short time we were in camp, we saw a good variety of animals and were thrilled by the experience.

We thank you Katharine for all of your early advice in selecting our venues as they all turned out to be great and the experience has left us with some great photos and memories. If it were not for family commitments in 2016 we would be looking to book our next safari now and will not hesitate to contact The Big 5 Safari Company for our next two location safari.

 

Sue & Alan Farmer

We had an amazing time in Zimbabwe and I would like to thank you for everything you did in organising this for us.  Our accommodation in both Hwange and Victoria Falls were lovely. I know you had some input as well into helping to organise the renewal of our wedding vows – a complete surprise to me but such a special day, so thank you again. Khulu Ivory Lodge was perfect, we all ... Read More

Sue & Alan Farmer

Sue & Alan Farmer

We had an amazing time in Zimbabwe and I would like to thank you for everything you did in organising this for us.  Our accommodation in both Hwange and Victoria Falls were lovely. I know you had some input as well into helping to organise the renewal of our wedding vows – a complete surprise to me but such a special day, so thank you again.

Khulu Ivory Lodge was perfect, we all absolutely loved the place, unfortunately animal sightings weren’t quite as much as we had hoped for but I think this may have been the time of year (as it wasn’t the real dry season the vegetation was still quite high so difficult to spot animals).  The team at the Lodge were fantastic, we couldn’t have asked for more, it really is a perfect setting.

So many special memories that will stay with us forever.

Brianne & Guy – Chichester

We were safari virgins ... we had however long harboured the thought that one day, when circumstances were right and finances permitted, we would visit the Okovango Delta in Botswana. Both of us having our 60th birthday made the time right.   In a flush of enthusiasm, my husband Googled madly and came up with a selection of 'budget' truck based safaris.  Not what I had in mind! I ... Read More

Brianne & Guy – Chichester

Brianne & Guy – Chichester

We were safari virgins … we had however long harboured the thought that one day, when circumstances were right and finances permitted, we would visit the Okovango Delta in Botswana. Both of us having our 60th birthday made the time right.
 
In a flush of enthusiasm, my husband Googled madly and came up with a selection of ‘budget’ truck based safaris.  Not what I had in mind! I Googled madly and came up with The Big 5 Safari Company.
 
How fortuitous, they put together a memorable itinerary, heeding our request for small camps in remote locations. From first contact through to detailed planning, the trip itself and the follow up, they were professional, efficient, and not least, willing and able to design a trip to meet our expressed desires and aspirations.
 
We travelled from the arid plains of the Central Kalahari (Tau Pan Camp), to the enchanting Okavango (Pom Pom Camp), to the lush and fertile Linyanti River (Lebala Camp) rounding off with some R & R at the stunning Falls (Victoria Falls Hotel).
 
All 3 camps offered stylish and characterful accommodation with friendly, attentive staff and professional management.  The guides and trackers were awesome in their knowledge of the wildlife, game, birds, nature and culture. We learnt so much from them.
 
The range and quality of the experience was fantastic.  Everything worked like clockwork. We thought this would be a one off high end experience but no … we booked a return trip within weeks of coming back! No excuse needed this time.
 
Thank you Big 5 for such a brilliant experience and in particular Katharine Hunt.
 
Guy and Brianne Perkins

Noel and Jean – Preston

Kevin this is our 4th safari with you and as ever the level of detail in the itinerary you put together for us made the trip very special. From the private meet and greet in Johannesburg to the unexpected bush dinner we had an unforgettable time. Experiencing the Kalahari for the first time certainly gave us a new perspective on Botswana, one of our favourite countries. Please pass our thanks on ... Read More

Noel and Jean – Preston

Noel and Jean – Preston

Kevin this is our 4th safari with you and as ever the level of detail in the itinerary you put together for us made the trip very special. From the private meet and greet in Johannesburg to the unexpected bush dinner we had an unforgettable time. Experiencing the Kalahari for the first time certainly gave us a new perspective on Botswana, one of our favourite countries. Please pass our thanks on to all the lodges and we look forward to going to South Luangwa on our next trip!

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