The ultimate safari
From the Great Migration to whale shark heaven
For their first trip to Africa, a 30-something couple from Los Angeles wanted to pair dramatic wildlife sightings with stays in some of the continent’s most exceptional properties. They also wanted to explore more than one country, so making efficient use of their valuable and limited free time was crucial to them. As with every trip we deliver, it was vital every element of the itinerary flowed seamlessly.
We hear time and again from clients that nothing they have ever done has surpassed the experience of meeting mountain gorillas in the wild. With the accommodations surrounding its gorilla habitats providing much better standards of safety, service and finish than those in neighbouring Uganda, Rwanda is undoubtedly the best place in the world to enjoy this very special encounter.
After taking a speedy, easy helicopter flight from the capital Kigali, our clients booked into Wilderness Destinations’ exceptional Bisate Lodge, whose six nest-like forest villas are among the most strikingly designed hotel rooms to be found in all of Africa. The team’s commitment to conservation and the gorillas’ wellbeing is absolute. Our clients were reassured to know every aspect of their experience was delivered to such an exacting standard, and they were delighted that we could arrange a completely exclusive tour for them so they could interact with these majestic animals in total privacy. It was an incredibly moving and impactful experience for them. To round off their Rwanda adventure, we arranged for a guide to accompany them as they hiked Mount Bisoke, an extinct volcano with a crater lake at its summit.
After being helicoptered back to Kigali, our couple travelled by private plane to Botswana to discover Xigera, an ultra-sustainable safari lodge comprising just 12 grand villas and rolling grounds studded with unique artworks formed from the trunks of fallen trees. This is a fairytale setting from which to enjoy the distinctive wildlife experiences that only Botswana provides, such as sailing aboard a mokoro canoe through tranquil waters that are carpeted with blossoming lilies, and our couple also enjoyed a night of stargazing and safe open-air slumber from atop Xigera’s sculptural treehouse suite.
After enjoying intimate wildlife encounters there, our clients moved onwards to the Okavango Delta’s Wilderness Mombo Camp, where the 12 tented lodges feature colonial-style vintage antiques, Chesterfield couches and terrace plunge pools that often provide direct views of ambling elephants, giraffes and zebras. Every day, private guided safari drives revealed even more exciting animal encounters. A morning observing lions hunting on a floodplain proved to be a particular highlight.