Embark on a fascinating game drive through &Beyond Phinda’s Seven World’s of Wonder. The reserve is famous for its sightings of the iconic Big Five and cheetah.
Enjoy a briefing and orientation session conducted by Les Carlisle, &Beyond’s Group Conservation Manager.
Day 2 – Guiding introduction
Get behind-the-scenes and discover what each &Beyond guide and tracker has to learn and experience in their unique &Beyond training programme.
Learn the art of photography and master skills that will be used throughout the rest of your safari.
Delve into the bush on a guided walk with the focus on tracking, and participate in track and sign exercises, as well as tree and plant identification.
Be captivated by a frogging expedition, (if frogs are active), and listen for distinct frog sounds, track them down, identify and photograph them.
Gaze up at the night sky, a blanket of infinite sparkling stars and learn to distinguish myriad stars and celestial constellations of the Southern Hemisphere.
Day 3 – Guiding practical
Get out your binoculars for a fantastic birding session. Take part in a bird ringing exercise, which entails netting and then recording measurements, and ringing (tagging) the birds before releasing them.
Strap on your walking boots for a bush walk. This adventure will show you the focus and awareness our rangers need in the bush, and offers practical ranger rifle training, with an exhilarating simulation of a lion charge!
Focus more on tracking and viewing nocturnal animals on an evening game drive. Enjoy an adventure-filled sleep out under the stars, and enjoy being out in the wild – under the protection of qualified night-security.
Day 4 – Walking Safari and Tracking
Embark on a walking safari from your sleep out camp, and navigate back to the lodge, recalling your birding, tracking and tree identification skills along the way.
Conduct a tracking exercise, using the skills you have learnt, and spot fresh elephant, buffalo or rhino tracks.
Delight in an afternoon game drive and focus on hospitality, with a fun-filled session of craft gin and tonic or beer tasting. There will also be a delicious food pairing to enjoy too.
Day 5 – A day in the local community
Spend an enjoyable day out in the local community and gain insight into projects that the Africa Foundation is undertaking.
Interact with members of the community and learn about their way of life as well as the fascinating Zulu culture.
Engage with students at Nkomo Primary School and assist in preparing lunch meals for children.
Teach a classroom of kids and present a short presentation, which is in line with their school curriculum.
Relish a delicious lunch in the community, and visit a craft market and local clinic.
Day 6 – Conservation Experiences
Meet up with a wildlife research technician from the reserve, and find out more about the wildlife monitoring and research programs currently in place.
Take part in the capture of a rhino for research purposes. Alongside the team, you will carry out either an ear notching exercise (for monitoring purposes) or collaring of a specific animal. If necessary, you may have the opportunity to participate in a rhino dehorning exercise, which will help protect the animal from poachers.
Learn to use telemetry equipment, which is essential for the research teams to locate wildlife.
Head out in search of elephant herds, and collect data which is used to inform the numerous research projects.
Day 7 – Farewell
Spend your last morning over breakfast engaging in a debrief session of the week’s activities with Les and Andrew, and delight in the handover of a photography canvas that has been taken with pictures of your journey.