SEATTLE, WA, Aug. 8, 2014 – Four new private safaris available in 2015 through African Safari Company http://www.africansafarico.com/ include exploring three countries and four eco-systems in southern Africa, three seldom visited national parks in southern Tanzania, a safari in Zimbabwe which highlights the incredible return of the wildlife and offers a unique hands-on experience, and a program where clients can create bespoke safaris with private bush villa accommodations.
“We are especially excited to start supporting local camp owners and conservation in Zimbabwe in 2015, the first time in over a decade we’ve offered trips to this country. Zimbabwe today is once again a rising star in regard to the quality of the game viewing, and I am thrilled to be returning to a remarkable country where I spent many wonderful days visiting family as a child,” said Julia Nesbitt, African Safari Company director of sales and marketing.
The per person double occupancy rates for the new tours below reflect land costs only unless otherwise noted. Single lodging supplements are also available. African Safari Company carefully selects accommodations that reflect the unique culture and eco-systems of each region to secure the most meaningful experiences possible on the African continent.
Highlights of Southern Africa: http://www.africansafarico.com/safari/highlights-of-southern-africa/ embraces the culture of Cape Town (“the Mother City”) and surrounding viniculture before moving into Sabi Sands, Victoria Falls and Chobe National Park, together spanning three countries and four eco-systems. Boutique guest houses and safari lodges set in prime locations accommodate guests while touring Cape Peninsula and while on safari. Sabi Sands is renowned for the up-close leopard sightings, and the reserve allows night drives and walking safaris. A boat trip brings guests into Botswana’s Chobe Forest Reserve and Chobe National Park, home to the largest elephant herds in the world. Not included in the rate is a regional flight direct from Greater Kruger to Livingstone and Victoria Falls after exploring Sabi Sabi Sands Game Reserve. This minimizes travel time and can be scheduled when booking international air. The 11-day/10-night adventure available year-round begins in Cape Town and ends in Kasane. The rate is from $4,460.
Wilds of Southern Tanzania: http://www.africansafarico.com/safari/wilds-southern-tanzania/ combines Ruaha National Park, Selous Game Reserve and Saadani National Park. Guests overnight in Dar es Salaam, the economic and commercial hub of Tanzania and the most important port in East Africa, before transferring by light air to Ruaha National Park and an intimate six tent camp while enjoying one of the best kept big game secrets in East Africa. Then it’s on to Selous Game Reserve, the largest in Africa and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Rufiji River bisects the reserve and supports huge hippo and crocodile populations. After flying back to Dar es Salaam guests transfer to Saadani National Park on the shores of the Indian Ocean, which has only recently become a destination for international visitors with the opening of two upscale safari lodges. Wildebeest, antelope, duiker, reedbuck, zebra and giraffe amble the savannah plains as herds of buffalo and elephant laze in the shade of the surrounding trees. Lions, leopards, mongoose and other predators also relax in cool spots awaiting the sun to set before embarking on their nocturnal hunting. On the open sea, dolphins, crocodiles and hippos are all regular residents. Here guests can enjoy a safari game drive and snorkel from a deserted sand island in the Indian Ocean in the same day. This program does include light aircraft flights: Dar es Salaam/Ruaha/Selous/Saadani/Dar es Salaam. The program is available except March 16-May 31 (rainy season). For 11 nights and 12 days the rate is from $7,526.
Wild Zimbabwe Safari: http://www.africansafarico.com/safari/wild-zimbabwe/ begins in Victoria Falls with overnights at a brand-new (opened in 2014) Bedouin-style, luxury tented camp on the banks of the Zambezi River. Guests visit the falls, one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Hwange National Park is the next destination, offering ancient animal migration routes toward the Chobe River in northern Botswana. Hwange is the oldest and largest national park in Zimbabwe. Here there are no natural watercourses, which means the game are reliant upon the park’s network of artificially pumped waterholes when seasonal pans start to dry out. Accommodations here are at Camel Thorn Lodge, a striking bush retreat. Guests are invited to participate in pump runs, a monthly event which involves hitching a trailer behind a safari vehicle, loading it with diesel drums filled with water and visiting each watering hole to refill and check with the ranger who looks after that particular hole. It’s a great way for guests to be involved in conservation and meet some of the local people who are working hard to preserve this incredible park. Mana Pools National Park is the final destination. “Mana” means ‘four’ in the local Shona language, which applies to the four large pools (remnant ox-bow lakes) inland from the Zambezi River, where large populations of hippo, crocodile, elephant and a wide variety of aquatic birds are seen. This unique park has gained World Heritage Site status. With its excellent land and river location. Ruckomechi Camp offers land and water-based activities to explore Mana Pools which include game drives in the morning and afternoon, game viewing cruises in a pontoon or speed boat, canoeing, walking and fishing. (This last camp closes from Nov. 16, 2014, through Mar. 31, 2015, for the rainy season. Alternative itineraries are available during this time.) The rate, inclusive of intra-camp air, is from $6,530 for nine nights and ten days.
Private Bush Villas: http://www.africansafarico.com/safari/private-bush-villas/ provide families and friends exclusive use of private homes, camps and lodges, most of which have their own dedicated team including a host and private chef to ensure a completely personal service. A private vehicle, personal field guide and tracker ensure an equally bespoke safari experience. These accommodations can be incorporated into any custom safari. Accommodation, meals, game drives, walks, park fees and taxes are all included in pricing available upon request. African Safari Company can arrange these accommodations in South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya and Rwanda.
Reflecting the overall standards and quality of these private accommodations, here are two examples in South Africa: 1933 Lodge in Sabi Sands Reserve and Tarkuni in Tswalu Kalahari. The More family (owners of Lion Sands Game Reserve (think private reserve in Greater Kruger National Park) dates back to pioneering roots in 1933. The lodge comprises four spacious suites and a children’s dormitory that sleeps up to eight kids. Tarkuni is the Oppenheimer (think diamond mines) family’s personal home at Tswalu and the ultimate private sanctuary. Recently redesigned to uncompromising standards of comfort and elegance, Tarkuni is an exceptional choice with five luxurious suites, each with a magnificent en suite bathroom.
About African Safari Company & Small Ship Safaris
Mike Nesbitt, a native of South Africa, and daughter Julia bring an intimate knowledge of wildlife migrations, climate variables and cultural opportunities to the African Safari Company that he founded in 1998. Specializing in small group travel and custom safaris for the independent and inquisitive adventurer, the company carefully vets each lodge, camp and safari partner they work with in Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda & Rwanda, South Africa, Botswana, Zambia and Namibia.
A new division launched in 2013, Small Ship Safaris features a similar exotic adventure experience – on water instead of land. Expedition ships for between 16 and 210 guests transport wildlife and nature enthusiasts to remote areas of Alaska, Hawaii, Amazon, Polar Regions, Baja Sea of Cortez, Galapagos and Patagonia.
For more information, itineraries, availability and reservations please call: 1.800.414.3090 or 206.284.7682; or visit: http://www.africansafarico.com/ or http://www.smallshipsafaris.com/.