Safari guides have a part to play when it comes to how fun or boring your tour of the game park or reserve wild will be. Knowing beforehand who can make your safari an amazing experience is one of the hardest tasks since in most cases Park officials will just assign any available guide to take you round the park.
Safari guides. [photo/blog.luxetravel.com]
After spending decades visiting various game reserves and park in different countries in Africa, Graham Boynton, British-born Zimbabwean journalist, consultant, travel writer and editor came up with a list of some of the most outstanding safari guides in Africa. SleepOut.com
highlights some of those safari guides below.
Keraetswe Bosigo (Madala K) – Little Vumbura Camp, Botswana
Bosigo’s nickname is Madala or Old K. Bosigo arrived in Okavango Delta when he was only 15 years old with his grandfather as a tracker at a hunting company before turning to guide photography safari.
Currently in his 50’s, Bosigo is equipped with knowledge and wisdom that will leave you wowed as he takes you around the wild in Botswana.
Paul Kiprono Kirui – Masai Mara, Kenya
Paul Kiprono Kirui is chairman of the Kenya Professional Safari Guides Association and one of fewer than ten accredited Gold Standard guides in Kenya.
Kirui is a skilled and knowledgeable guide in the Masai Mara with an outstanding personality and deep understanding of the African wild. Having grown up in the Mara as a Maasai herder, Kirui knows the eco system flora and fauna intimately and has even established a guiding school called Mwewe Guiding School in the Serengeti, the first of its kind in Kenya.
Christiaan Bakkes – Palmwag Conservancy, Namibia
Christian Bakkes is a writer, novelist and an amazing guide at the Kruger National Park in Namibia.
In the year 1994, Bakkes lost his left arm after he was attacked by two crocodiles inside the park but this has not deterred his efforts in the industry making his one of Africa’s best guides.
Bakkes has a keen understanding of flora and fauna and a poet’s eye of the wild. He is also known for his recitals of epic poems around the camp fire. He is passionate about wilderness and even though he is a warden of Palmwag conservancy and not a daily guide, he still finds an excuse to take visitors into the wilderness.
Gregg Hughes – Safari Footprints, Botswana
Gregg Hughes is not only a great tour guide but also a science graduate a quality that helps him unlock and explain the nature in precise style. Before becoming a tour guide in Botswana, Gregg visited Europe, South America, Middle Asia and Far East out of his love for adventure.
Gregg enjoys his job and takes pleasure in guiding tourists in and out of luxury camps in Jao and Mombo and recently he completed a 3 months motorbike safari through southern Africa.
Saigilu “Jackson” Ole Looseyia – Rekero Naboisho Camp, Kenya
Ole Looseyia is one of the most popular guides in Kenya due to his show The Big Cat Diary. His charm and incredible knowledge of Rekero Naboisho camp makes him just the person to take you through the camp.
As a young boy, Saigilu hunted with his father and in the 1980’s he started working for his mentor Ron Beaton, a conservationist and safari operator.
Pokkie Benadie – Samara Game Reserve, South Africa
Pokkie is the leading master tracker at Samara Game Reserve and there are only two more master trackers hence making him one of the most outstanding there is.
Pokkie was born in Beaufort West District currently known as the Karoo National Park. At a very young age he and his father would set traps for jackals and caracal for food, a practice that made a master not only in tracking but also in the ecosystem. He may not be a guide but Pokkie believes that he is living his dream as a teacher of all that is entails in game reserves, a half a day programmes that is aimed at helping tourists know their way around the wild.
Bill Winter – Bill Winter Safaris, Kenya
Bill winter grew up in Kenya but went to school in England before joining university in South Africa.
He specialises in mobile tented safaris in Ol Pejeta and has precise way of describing the flora and fauna that makes you understand how the eco system works.
Richard Knocker – Nomad Safaris, Tanzania
Richard was born and raised in Kenya. He is the founding member of Nomad safaris and is also the chief guide often found at Lamai Serengeti. He is an interesting story teller with a sense of humour and has an overwhelming love for the bush and wild.
Robin Pope – Liuwa Plain and Luangwa, Zambia
Robin Pope was born and bred in Copperbelt and grew up racing in the wild bushes with his pellet gun and fishing rod.
The accountant has undying love for nature that has made him a great safari companion with unrivalled knowledge of Zambia’s wildlife. He currently serves from Nsefu, Tena Tena, Nkwali, and Luangwa River Camp.
Andrew “Stretch” Ferreira – Mana Pools, Zimbabwe
Andrew is famously known as the elephant whisperer. He is seen in many YouTube clips standing calmly and courageously in front of charging elephants.
The former hunter no longer kills animals but instead learns more about animals in order to appreciate their behaviour and adaptation to nature. Currently Andrew owns his own safari operation called Goliath Safaris located along Zambezi River an area he is familiar with.
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