I feel closest to nature when I guide guests on a walking safari…
Jock Safari Lodge, where I have worked since 2010, was the first private concession in Kruger National Park. I grew up in the area and, as Assistant General Manager and Ranger Manager of the lodge, I meet all guests to find out if there is a particular animal on their wish list or if they have any special interests such as bird watching.
Our morning and afternoon game drives are in 4×4 Land Cruisers and we have 6,000 hectares of wilderness to explore. We often see the Big Five as well as giraffe, hyena and occasionally wild dog. I feel closest to nature when I guide guests on a walking safari as this gives me the opportunity to show them the diversity of our flora and fauna from tiny insects that are an integral part of our eco-system to a towering jackalberry tree favoured by baboons. We normally set off on our walk after a hearty breakfast and no two walks are the same. Without the noise of a vehicle, it can also get quite exciting if we approach mammals on foot.
The wildlife viewing sometimes continues back at the lodge as we often have elephants and buffaloes in the lodge grounds. On one occasion we had three lionesses denning on the rocks right in front of the lodge, so guests had incredible photographic opportunities.
After lunch there is time for our guests to relax. I recommend they try out the private sala where there is a day bed. It is so tranquil and the perfect place to absorb the sounds of nature. We continue to explore the concession on our afternoon game drive and as it starts to get dusk, we set up sundowners, the best time to reflect on what we have seen. As we return to the lodge for dinner, we may be fortunate to see some of Jock’s nocturnal creatures such as owls and bush babies.
The most rewarding part of my job is the appreciation I get from people when I have fulfilled a lifetime wildlife experience for them.
Your journey will start with one of our UK team – someone like Laura, who's travelled extensively in South Africa. They’ll shape your ideas into the trip of a lifetime. But they won't do it alone. They'll draw on the expertise of our contacts on the ground, connecting you to the people who'll make your holiday one you'll always remember - ex banker who can show you the hottest foodie spots in Cape Town, the award-winning young sommelier who can introduce you to Stellenbosch's finest wines and the walking safari ranger who can guide you to the best game.
Freephone an expert 01306 744 656