Galloping Gnus Newsletter

N E W S L E T T E R 2009

Dear Safari Traveler:

What a year it has been. We are celebrating our 23rd year in business and with it we have experienced the highs and lows that are inherent in the global travel industry.


As we welcomed in 2009, we couldn’t help but wonder what would be in store for The Africa Adventure Company in the coming months. For some, the current economic climate has forced travel plans to be put temporarily on hold. For others, they are embracing the unbelievable values the African safari camps are offering with many safari camps and lodges in eastern and southern Africa slashing prices for travel prior to July 1st and now making that once-in-a-lifetime safari a great value as seen in our 2009 trip specials. Time with family and friends has become more important than ever and we have dedicated two pages to our popular family safaris. Travel has to be affordable and so we have highlighted some NEW trips in the Ecotourism – Conservation and Community sector that reflect the enjoyment of staying longer in an area where you can do some research work and/or community volunteer work, and keep a two week trip in Africa more in line with budget travel!

“Adventure Travel” is showing steady growth and more experienced/ informed travelers – they know what they want and are more demanding in the experience they get. The Africa Adventure Company continues to strive to be a leader in service and outstanding trip organizing:

>> We have been recognized once again by Conde Nast Traveler as one of theWorld’s Top Travel Specialists for the 6th year in a row! What an honor and testament to the entire staff at The Africa Adventure Company.

>> National Geographic Adventure selected us as one of the Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth for 2009. The recognition that we outfit trips supporting eco-accommodations and community projects, and our clients’ feedback on the safari journey is an exceptional experience!

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>> The 7th Edition of my book, Africa’s Top Wildlife Countries is in bookstores now. It continues to be the quintessential guide book advising travelers how to plan an African adventure perfectly suited to their individual tastes. We are dedicated to giving you up to date information.

The value we add to your trip planning lies in our insider know-how of the places we specialize in based on our frequent and recent trips there. Read all the trip reports from our wonderful staff members who continue to bring in new and interesting ideas.

Taking an ecotourism trip to Africa is an investment in protecting this incredible continent’s amazing wildlife for future generations, while having the vacation of a lifetime.

Thank you for those who have traveled with us in the past, those who are traveling this year, and those we would love to hear from and see how we can make your African dream a reality.

 
Mark and Alison Nolting
 

Family Adventures
More and more parents and grandparents are taking their children and grandchildren on safari. Seeing nature in all its abundance as a child is an educational experience that cannot be underestimated. As of this writing, our son Miles is 15 years old, and has been on ten safaris; Nicholas is 12 and has been on eight safaris. We have thoroughly enjoyed experiencing Africa through their eyes. Traveling with children to Africa is an education and journey that affords them the opportunity to discover themselves in nature and in turn make positive changes happen when they come back to their home community.

Here is a selection of our favorite “family fun safaris” that can be found on our website or call us for the full itinerary program. Please remember we can customize a trip to match your style of travel and budget.

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EAST AFRICA
Tanzania offers spectacular scenery with Ngorongoro Crater – Mt. Kilimanjaro – and the Serengeti Plains.. 
 
Our 14-Day Family Wildlife and Wilderness Safari to Tanzania is a wonderful choice for those wanting to see wildlife and also to meet some of the unique and diverse tribes. The highlight for many is spending two nights at Lake Eyasi and visiting with Hadzabi bushmen, who are almost unchanged over the past 10,000 years. from $4695.00 per adult / $2350.00 child under 12

Adventure in Kenya for 14 days – Kenya is an ideal destination for a family safari and the importance of an excellent guide is paramount and is what sets this safari apart. The safari combines the ultimate in game viewing and culture, with a private guide and vehicle. from $4750.00 per adult / $2995.00 child under 12

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Family Participate in Community at Tsavo West
One of the latest trends in adventure travel is the expansion in volunteer tourism. For a week in Kenya, working hand in hand with the local communities, you can share that experience with research projects that may include studying  elephant behavior, assisting the local community with building schools, roads, touring schools and even teaching computer skills and English. Truly, every day is different and enlightening! from $2195.00 per adult / $1525.00 child under 12

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Additional Activities
Family Participate in Community at Tsavo West One of the latest trends in adventure travel is the expansion in volunteer tourism. For a week in Kenya, working hand in hand with the local communities, you can share that experience with research projects that may include studying elephant behavior, assisting the local community with building schools, roads, touring schools and even teaching computer skills and English. Truly, every day is different and enlightening! from $2195.00 per adult / $1525.00 child under 12
• Gorilla trekking – min. age is 15 years old
• Chimp trekking in Uganda and Tanzania
• Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro
• Walking with elephants in the Selous
• Masai guides on hikes in the Rift Valley Lakes
• Family villa stays in Laikipia region
• Interaction with Elephants at Daphne Sheldrick
• Balloon Safaris in the Masai Mara/Serengeti
• Snorkeling in Malindi and Lamu
• Camel Safaris in Samburu
• Local crafts – beading
• Egypt Pyramids, Oasis and Nile Cruises
• Madagascar Lemurs
• Morocco Kasbahs in Marrakech and the Atlas Mountains
 
SOUTHERN AFRICA
South Africa is the perfect destination for a short vacation and our 9-Day South African Family Safari and Cape Highlightsfits the bill. This itinerary includes the best of Big Five game viewing with three nights at one of Sabi Sands private game reserves near Kruger. Then it’s off to Cape Town where we have included a private Peninsula tour plus an extra day at leisure to enjoy some the sights and sounds including whale watching and penguins. from $2950.00 per adult / $2195.00 child U-12
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South Africa is the perfect destination for a short vacation and our 9-Day South African Family Safari and Cape Highlights fits the bill. This itinerary includes the best of Big Five game viewing with three nights at one of Sabi Sands private game reserves near Kruger. Then it’s off to Cape Town where we have included a private Peninsula tour plus an extra day at leisure to enjoy some the sights and sounds including whale watching and penguins. from $2950.00 per adult / $2195.00 child U-12
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Botswana is a dream destination for many with images of tracking lions and leopards in the Moremi Reserve, poling through the crystal clear water of the Okavango Delta in a dugout canoe, and elephants that fill the remote corner of the Linyanti reserve. Our 11-Day Botswana Family Safari highlights the best in permanent tented camps with connecting family suites. from $4695.00 per adult / $3575.00 child U-12
 
Additional Activities
• Elephant Back Safaris
• Walking with the Kalahari Bushmen
• Canoeing along the Zambezi River-Mana Pools
• Visiting local schools and community villages
• Mozambique Beaches, snorkeling and fishing
• Turtles on the Maputaland Coast
• Cheetah Conservation in South Africa and Namibia
• Quad biking on Sand Dunes in Cape Town/Swakopmund
• White-water rafting, high wire/bunjee jump in Victoria Falls
• Family Villas in Zambia
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Our 12-Day Family Best of Southern Africa Safari has it all! Why not a safari that combines a little bit of every thing – Cape Town – Private Game Reserve – Victoria Falls – Chobe. Begin in Cape Town and end your adventure in Chobe National Park where game viewing is by open vehicle as well as by boat, giving you a completely different perspective. from $3225.00 per adult / $2095.00 per child U12

South Africa’s GAP Program – Calling all teens finishing high school or in college! Introducing a 4 week training course that takes young explorers into nature and teaches them about the environment, and then they give a helping hand in the community! Based at Londolozi Game Reserve. from $2750.00 per person (max. 4)
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A TEENAGE PERSPECTIVE
Maria Theodosiou, Age 16, 10th Grade
When I was told, before my trip to Africa with my mother, that the experience I was about to have was going to be life changing, I never believed it. That is, until I got there. I spent the trip in a state of awe. My eyes wide and my senses tingling with things I’d never experienced before, the smell of wild sage and the bush, the dry heat, a real sunset, a star filled sky, clear fresh air, and the animals I had only ever seen in pictures and on TV. Leopards, cheetahs, lions, wild dogs, elephants, zebra, wildebeest, impala, and many other animals and birds filled my camera and my mind. 
 
Botswana offers everything I would ever have hoped to see. Leaving it was not easy. I spent the plane ride back to South Africa with tears spilling down my face. I know I will return to Botswana, be it in a year, two years, or after college to work. (Daughter of Elena Theodosiou/AAC Safari Consultant)
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