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Welcome
to the Big 5
Safari Company

You are about to embark on probably the most exciting, awe inspiring and life enriching holiday you have ever had. For those of you who have been fortunate to safari in Africa, you will know how the continent draws you into its heart and always leaves you yearning for more. If this is your first safari – prepare to be awed!

 

We specialise in the Countries of Southern Africa which in our view are home to the most spectacular and diverse landscapes and safari experiences imaginable.  The Golden Triangle of Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe house many of Africa’s finest National Parks whilst South Africa and Namibia offer incredible diversity and spectacular holiday experiences. To top it all, we offer the ability to relax in paradise in Mozambique or Malawi.

 

We are experts in safaris that involve combining two or more of the countries we offer and all our journeys are built around you. There are no two itineraries the same and we are happy to spend time working with you to create your perfect safari experience!

 

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TRIED & TESTED

We loved EVERY moment of our Self Drive in South Africa! The accommodations were excellent from start to finish and we had absolutely no complaints about the facilities, service and food at each one.

After Cape Town, Cape Winelands and The Garden Route, we went to Kwandwe Private Reserve for what was the most exhilarating experience of my life. I am so glad that you offered the option to have our own vehicle, ranger and tracker for those 3 days. Yes, it was more expensive but, SO worth the extra money.
I have already recommended your company to friends and other photographers, as we were both highly satisfied with the service you provided for us.

Helen & Jim - Derby

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Southern
Africa

For Yourself

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each country has to offer

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South Africa Namibia Botswana Zambia Zimbabwe Malawi <
< Malawi Zimbabwe Zambia Botswana Namibia South Africa

Safari Types

Walking Safaris

Walking Safaris

Walking Safaris

Walking Safaris

One of the most rewarding and exciting aspects of a walking safari is the chance to see the bush through the eyes of Africa’s wildlife.

Walking is at a leisurely pace allowing time to learn more about the smaller flora and fauna of the African bush and how to identify and interpret animal tracks.

Zambia is the home of the walking safari going back to the 1960’s particularly in the South Luangwa, a reserve that still today offers fabulous opportunities to walk between rustic bush camps, or even to spend a night out at a fly camp with just a simple bedroll and mosquito net between you and the stars.  Call us to incorporate the marvellous Luwi Camp into your itinerary.

Zimbabwe’s guides are second to none and relish the opportunity to share their love of the bush with you on foot.  Mana Pools National Park is a top destination for its great visibility over the floodplains and the guides willingness to get you close to the wildlife.  

In Botswana’s it’s even possible to walk with San Bushmen on an authentic experience that will reveal their hunting and survival skills and the culture and crafts of the San people.  We highly recommend Deception Valley Lodge as the walks are a real highlight.   Or even walk with expert trackers of the nomadic Himba tribe in the Kaokoland region of Namibia for a fascinating insight into their daily lives.

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Multi Country Safaris

Multi Country Safaris

Multi Country Safaris

Multi Country Safaris

We are specialists in Multi Country Safaris to Southern Africa covering Zambia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi, Namibia and South Africa.  This part of the world has such diverse habitats and wildlife that it would be a pity to travel that far and only see one country. 

A stay at the Victoria Falls whether it be on the Zimbabwean side or the Zambian side of the gorge, is surely at the top of most people’s wish lists.  From these two countries, combinations of travel into Botswana, South Africa, Malawi or Mozambique works seamlessly.

South Africa and Victoria Falls is highly recommended, with the first stop in Cape Town, then safari in Kruger, before finishing at the Victoria Falls.  This is an astounding adventure trip combining city chic, wild bush and awe inspiring thrills at the Falls.

Bush and Beach holidays are irresistible too. One of our Top Journeys would be to combine a safari in the Kruger with a paradise island within the Quirimbas and Bazaruto Archipelagos off the coast of Mozambique. 

Alternatively combine Zambia and Malawi – a classic safari in one of Zambia best wildlife parks and a stay at a romantic lodge on Lake Malawi for excellent water sports, cultural interest, nature and indulgence!

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Mobile Safaris

Mobile Safaris

Mobile Safaris

Mobile Safaris

A luxury mobile tented safari adds a nomadic twist to life in the bush. It is the most authentic form of safari providing an off the beaten track and at one with nature experience. Moreover, it provides an opportunity to explore untouched areas of wilderness with unrivalled access to game viewing.

In our opinion Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe offer some excellent Mobile Safaris. These are perfect for family travel or a small group of friends who want a wilderness experience and at less cost than staying in a more expensive lodge. 

We offer a range of set departure or tailor made options.  Accompanied by a professional guide, camp will generally move every 2 or 3 days to make the most of the diversity of these rich wildlife areas. 

Accommodation can range from comfortable sleeping in a dome tent, to the luxury of a Meru style tent with en-suite bathroom facilities. Guests arriving at a mobile campsite will find all the tents set up, cold drinks on hand and an abundance of delicious food will miraculously appear to tantalise your taste buds – it all makes for a relaxing and unbeatable experience in the bush.

Activities can include game drives, walking safaris and boating safaris. The sense of freedom and adventure will sustain you long after your adventure has ended.

See this video for a Zambian mobile safari experience.

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Self Drive Safaris

Self Drive Safaris

Self Drive Safaris

Self Drive Safaris

By far the two most popular southern African self-drive destinations are South Africa and Namibia.

South Africa is made for exploring by car. With excellent road networks even a 4×4 is not absolutely essential, even if you are visiting a game reserve or staying at a safari lodge.  One of the most popular self-drives is Cape Town, Cape Winelands and along the Garden Route.  This journey encompasses dramatic scenery of mountains, vineyards, arid (karoo) desert, bush and seashore.  Try Route 62 to experience all of this.  For more adventurous drivers, then the Kruger National Park offers you the opportunity to be your own safari guide, whilst strictly keeping to the tarred and gravel roads.

A self-drive journey in Namibia is an ideal adventure, exploring the country’s natural highlights, from its rich wildlife areas to its charming coastal towns and the wonders of the Namib Desert. It’s fun, the roads are in good condition and it is the cheapest and most popular option.  With the freedom to explore this extremely vast and beautiful country, there are plenty of sights to break up your journey.  And if you want the services of a guide, then most lodges can organise guided game viewing in 4×4 vehicles, scenic flights and dune adventures. 

 

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Unique Safari Experiences

Unique Safari Experiences

Unique Safari Experiences

Unique Safari Experiences

Whilst a Safari is about game viewing in 4×4 vehicles and the wonderful journey of discovery you’ll have in the bush with your guide and tracker – the experiences don’t have to end there.

Different countries offer their own unique experiences that will enhance your holiday.  Here are just a few unique experiences, that will turn your journey into an exceptional Safari:

  • Fly camping and Sleep Outs under the stars e.g. Savuti Camp as seen in our image
  • Helicopter  – Flights out of camp for exhilarating aerial views of the wildlife
  • Hot Air ballooning – for a bird’s eye view over majestic plains
  • Quad biking over the Salt Pans of Botswana’s Makgadikgadi
  • Meeting unique tribes – like the Himba in Namibia
  • Rhino notching with a Conservation team in the Eastern Cape
  • Photographic hides – stay in the same camps where the wildlife film makers get their footage.  Ask us about the options.
  • Photographic workshops to improve your photography whilst on safari
  • Up close encounters on foot – nerve rackingly close to bull eles, lion and African wild dogs in Zimbabwe – Vundu Camp is a great camp with a pro guide with more than 30 years experience
  • Meet the locals with school and community visits or walk with zU’hoasi san bushmen in the Kalahari and re-discover your hunter gatherer skills
  • See Africa by Rail. Experience Rovos Rail or the Blue Train for an opulent journey that can last from one day to two weeks across South Africa’s wilderness areas
  • Combine safari and history by discovering rock art and cave paintings with a geologist in Botswana’s Tuli Block

Tip:  3 night Wildlife Conservation Experience in Somkhanda Game Reserve, Northern KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.  Join an expert team of wildlife professionals on a rhino darting operation as they undertake their crucial and on-going conservation efforts to protect endangered and threatened species.  Call us for more details.

 

 

 

 

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Solo Travellers & Small Groups

Solo Travellers & Small Groups

Solo Travellers & Small Groups

Solo Travellers & Small Groups

For Solo Travellers contemplating an African safari, we can understand that first timers might have feelings of trepidation.  But please dispel any such concerns! 

Many single travellers prefer to join small groups and there are some excellent set departure itineraries available whether it’s on a mobile safari in Botswana or a walking safari in Zambia.  Departures are frequent throughout the year and the groups are typically no more than 9.  You will have a professional guide with you at all times as well as dedicated camp staff.

If you prefer a tailor-made itinerary just for you, then the choices are limitless and we can easily arrange a door to door service.  If you prefer to have your own private vehicle and guide, this will afford you the opportunity to safari at your own pace, but it is not essential and you will meet others by sharing a vehicle.  Many of our safari camps are small and intimate where guests usually dine together exchanging tales of the day’s sightings.  So all in all a safari is the perfect holiday for a single traveller.

Not all camps charge single supplements and we will offer these options to you when creating your trip.  

 

 

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Safari & Beach

Safari & Beach

Safari & Beach

Safari & Beach

A safari and beach holiday really is the best of both worlds. The thrill of exhilarating walks and game drives through the African bush followed by a relaxing wind down on a glorious beach is the perfect holiday combination.  This blend of experiences is a particular favourite amongst couples and honeymooners.

We usually recommend doing the safari part of your holiday first and ending your trip on the beach, so that you are fully enriched and chilled out in time for your return home.

South Africa is blessed with both phenomenal wildlife and stunning coastlines. We also highly recommend one of our Multi Country Top Journeys, combining a safari in the Kruger with a paradise island off mainland Mozambique.  But there are lots of other options, so please don’t hesitate to talk to us for more ideas.

 

 

 

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Special Occasion Safaris

Special Occasion Safaris

Special Occasion Safaris

Special Occasion Safaris

Southern Africa provides the perfect backdrop for a once in a lifetime holiday to mark a special occasion. We have been perfecting special occasion travel for more than 14 years and love the challenge of exceeding your expectations.

From organizing the perfect honeymoon adventure safaris combined with a romantic beach hideway, to small groups of family and friends gathering in private lodges and villas, the options for celebrating anything from a birthday to a retirement are endless.

We will assemble a travel plan around your particular interests to ensure that the occasion becomes a lifetime memory.

Do Get in Touch and we will use our expertise to plan your unique celebration.

 

 

 

 

 

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Special Interest Safaris

Special Interest Safaris

Special Interest Safaris

Special Interest Safaris

Apart from the exhilarating activities of game viewing whether it be on foot or in a 4 x4 vehicle, some clients may have specific interests that they want to include in their unique holiday.

Perhaps you would like to learn more about a specific animal species or take part in a conservation safari or a community development project, then we can organise this for you. 

Specialist Birding and Photographic Safaris are also superb options for nature enthusiasts who will appreciate guidance and tuition from experts in these fields.

Other options include: Vineyard Tours & Wine Tastings, Safari by luxury rail for train enthusiasts, Experience a Migration for example Zebra and Wildebeest or Bat migrations, Green Season River Safaris, joining a Carnivore Research Programme, combine Safari and Golfing, Tiger Fishing or Deep Sea Fishing….We will be delighted to incorporate these specialities into your trip, so do Get in Touch

 

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Horse Riding Safaris

Horse Riding Safaris

Horse Riding Safaris

Horse Riding Safaris

For nature lovers keen to get close to the amazing wildlife spectacle that is Africa, there can be no better way than on a horse back safari. A 4×4 may be fast and efficient, but the animals hear you coming and can disappear into the bush.

Southern Africa boasts several horse back safari operators, who will conduct rides for both novice and experienced riders in the bush.  

Botswana offers some fantastic opportunities to ride in the bush on safaris usually of a 3 to 7 night duration. The camp will own a string of horses, all are well schooled, well fed and cared for and acclimatised to the area and to the game that you will encounter.  

South Africa also offers some superb horse riding in malaria free areas, in family friendly camps that allow for safe riding in the bush for both novice and the more experienced rider.  Any non riders in the party can enjoy 4×4 game drives or bush walks.  Ant’s Hill & Ant’s Nest offer some of the most exciting game viewing in Africa on horseback.

Tip: – To suit all levels as the pace and riding can be tailored to suit individual needs – Book a 3 night Makgadikgadi Horse Safari, Makgadikgadi Pans National Park and explore this unspoilt wilderness old-school, the way many of the early explorers and hunters did – on horseback. Activities include game drives – Camp Kalahari – Call us for more details. 

 

 

 

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Canoe & Mokoro Safaris

Canoe & Mokoro Safaris

Canoe & Mokoro Safaris

Canoe & Mokoro Safaris

Exploring the waterways of Africa is perfect for the adventurous traveller who wants to spend time on Africa’s rivers and get deeper into the bush than is possible by vehicle.  Getting up close to game and viewing it from a different perspective is an added bonus.  

The Lower Zambezi is flanked by two national parks, one in Zambia and one in Zimbabwe.  Whilst Zambia tends to offer shorter half day canoe safaris, Vundu Camp in Mana Pools in Zimbabwe offers 3 day guided trips that are broken up by nature walks and game drives.  No previous canoe experience is required and paddlers are available should you prefer.  Each night you stop at a different campsite set up for you where you will enjoy firelit evenings under the stars listening to the calls of the wild.

Botswana’s Selinda spillway also offers canoe safaris, subject to the ebb and flow of the waterways.  This is a spectacular area for buffalo, elephants and amazing birdlife.

A Mokoro safari is unique to Botswana’s Okavango Delta.  A mokoro traditionally was a dugout wooden canoe, nowadays made out of fibreglass, it’s propelled along by an experienced punter who will also act as your guide.  Exploring the delta in this way is a peaceful and rewarding safari that gets you close to riverbank wildlife and jewel like birdlife such as the malachite kingfisher and often exotic painted reed frogs. 

 

 

 

 

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Family Safaris

Family Safaris

Family Safaris

Family Safaris

A Family Safari has got to be one of the most exciting and memorable holidays you could possibly experience. Mind blowing wildlife encounters on game drives, visiting local schools, climbing high sand dunes and experiencing the traditional ways of the San Bushmen will certainly broaden horizons.

South Africa has long been a child friendly safari destination with a whole host of activities, in addition to the abundant wildlife.  There are malaria free game reserves, kid’s bush programmes, special menus and not least safety conscious family accommodation; fenced to keep any dangers at bay.

In more recent years, Botswana and Zambia have joined in, offering luxury family tented units with private plunge pool where the kids can frolic under your watchful eye.  Activities to suit all ages are designed to educate and inspire.

Superb villas and private houses in the South Luangwa, Lower Zambezi and at Victoria Falls for your exclusive use provide a totally indulgent family experience. This is not as expensive as you might think and is ideal for a family celebration with several family generations joining the party. Your own chef, private vehicle and guide, along with baby sitter, will mean you live in the lap of luxury surrounded by the most amazing wildlife on the planet.

Not least Namibia is a superb family destination.  Value packed, self-drive adventures with unique activities thrown in make this a must-see destination with your kids.  See the video!

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Trusted in creating your life long memories

Rachel & Connor – Royal Leamington Spa

Rachel and I had an absolutely fantastic honeymoon, I'm not sure where to start! Everything went seamlessly and the planning from your end really helped us to enjoy our honeymoon without any stress or worries. Rachel and I will highly recommend you and will definitely look to book another African adventure with you in the future. The accommodation at nThambo, Umkumbe and Avani was ... Read More

Rachel & Connor – Royal Leamington Spa

Rachel & Connor – Royal Leamington Spa

Rachel and I had an absolutely fantastic honeymoon, I’m not sure where to start! Everything went seamlessly and the planning from your end really helped us to enjoy our honeymoon without any stress or worries. Rachel and I will highly recommend you and will definitely look to book another African adventure with you in the future. The accommodation at nThambo, Umkumbe and Avani was stunning and each delivered on every level. We can assure you that this was a honeymoon, and experience, of a lifetime that we will never forget. The safari drives were brilliant with the opportunity to get very close to the ‘Big 5’, ‘Ugly 5’ and other stunning wildlife.

We thoroughly enjoyed the Sundown river safari, Victoria Falls and the chance to swim in the Zambezi river and take a plunge into the Devils Pool in Zambia. We didn’t want to leave and want to keep reliving the experience. 

Rachel & Ron – Bournemouth

We arrived back home yesterday after an amazing time in Africa. What a stunning country, everyone so friendly & accommodating. All the staff at both lodges in South Africa made our stay so memorable an experience that will remain with us forever. The Avani in Zambia was also stunning got up close & personal with impala, zebra, mongoose, & resident crocodile. The baboons got a bit ... Read More

Rachel & Ron – Bournemouth

Rachel & Ron – Bournemouth

We arrived back home yesterday after an amazing time in Africa. What a stunning country, everyone so friendly & accommodating.
All the staff at both lodges in South Africa made our stay so memorable an experience that will remain with us forever.
The Avani in Zambia was also stunning got up close & personal with impala, zebra, mongoose, & resident crocodile. The baboons got a bit too close & personal coming into our room one afternoon whilst we were having a rest on the bed & stole our teabags & sugar must have been having a tea party on the roof we did laugh !!!!! 
 
Thank you for all your advice & professional help we look forward to travelling through you again one day.
Lyn & Keith – West Sussex

It would be very hard to rate our holiday anything but 10 it was fantastic and went really smoothly. Sindabezi was beautiful and we were very lucky to be given an upgrade to a lodge in Tongabezi for our last night, the accommodation there is out of this world! We loved Lebala and Little Kwara, the bedroom at Kwara looks tired in comparison, but the service was equally good and I believe they ... Read More

Lyn & Keith – West Sussex

Lyn & Keith – West Sussex

It would be very hard to rate our holiday anything but 10 it was fantastic and went really smoothly. Sindabezi was beautiful and we were very lucky to be given an upgrade to a lodge in Tongabezi for our last night, the accommodation there is out of this world!

We loved Lebala and Little Kwara, the bedroom at Kwara looks tired in comparison, but the service was equally good and I believe they are completely renovating it this June. In fact the customer service in Zambia and all 3 camps  was consistently exceptional I can not thank the staff enough, wherever we stayed, for giving us such a great holiday. 

Kath was really helpful too and very quick to respond to any concerns but the reason we went with you was because of Guy and Brianne’s recommendation, they recently went with you two years running and they convinced us it would be worth the money so they were great advocates, as we will be, if other friends are interested.

Hetal, Joanna & Jake – Towcester

We had a fantastic time thank you and would rate your service 10! The newly refurbished Ngala Safari Lodge was amazing, very high standard of finish and the team were brilliant. Kirkman's Camp was excellent too, our ranger (Jarryd) was really good and highly knowledgeable and informative.  Anantara Bazaruto in Mozambique was very good, the spa was fantastic with amazing views. Overall we ... Read More

Hetal, Joanna & Jake – Towcester

Hetal, Joanna & Jake – Towcester

We had a fantastic time thank you and would rate your service 10!
The newly refurbished Ngala Safari Lodge was amazing, very high standard of finish and the team were brilliant.
Kirkman’s Camp was excellent too, our ranger (Jarryd) was really good and highly knowledgeable and informative.  Anantara Bazaruto in Mozambique was very good, the spa was fantastic with amazing views.
Overall we had an amazing holiday and would recommend the route to anyone.  
Emily, Aidan, Alasdair & Harriet – Gloucestershire

Zimbabwe - September We had a truly wonderful holiday.  It all worked out so well and was the perfect mix of relaxation, national park and river.  We had a great selection of wildlife and some very near encounters which was exciting and terrifying.  We were sorry to miss the Elephant Express but it was rather a near miss as it was the group the day before us who had the ... Read More

Emily, Aidan, Alasdair & Harriet – Gloucestershire

Emily, Aidan, Alasdair & Harriet – Gloucestershire

Zimbabwe – September

We had a truly wonderful holiday.  It all worked out so well and was the perfect mix of relaxation, national park and river.  We had a great selection of wildlife and some very near encounters which was exciting and terrifying. 

We were sorry to miss the Elephant Express but it was rather a near miss as it was the group the day before us who had the derailment.  We had a very hot, bumpy but safe ride into camp instead and were well looked after by the team.

I would like to add quite how much we all appreciated the dedication of the Camelthorn & Zambezi Sands guides and team.  They were absolutely fantastic and went well above the call of duty to make it such a memorable stay.  

Thank you Big 5 Safaris again for setting up such a great programme for us.  We want to go back please!

Lynn – Slough

Zimbabwe & Botswana - We had a wonderful time, everything went off perfectly. The accommodation was excellent and all the transfers and pick up just happened seamlessly !  We loved Victoria falls our guide was very knowledgeable .  Our Riverboat stay was amazing , we even glimpsed a Leopard from the river bank plus Lions , hippos , crocs  and many other animals. ... Read More

Lynn – Slough

Lynn – Slough

Zimbabwe & Botswana –

We had a wonderful time, everything went off perfectly.

The accommodation was excellent and all the transfers and pick up just happened seamlessly !  We loved Victoria falls our guide was very knowledgeable .  Our Riverboat stay was amazing , we even glimpsed a Leopard from the river bank plus Lions , hippos , crocs  and many other animals.  The Safari lodge in Chobe was lovely and again we saw Lions and lots of Elephants , Zebra , Giraffe and buffalo.

We were amazed at how much we saw and did in 6 days.

Thank you for arranging such a wonderful time for us.

Norma – Berkshire

Zimbabwe & Botswana - We had an amazing time.  The Zambezi cruise was very enjoyable and a great start to our holiday. The lodge at Victoria Falls was fabulous with great accommodation and lovely food. We saw plenty of animals visiting the water hole from our room giving us a taste of what was to come.    Our transfer to Botswana and the Chobe Princess houseboat was well ... Read More

Norma – Berkshire

Norma – Berkshire

Zimbabwe & Botswana – We had an amazing time.  The Zambezi cruise was very enjoyable and a great start to our holiday. The lodge at Victoria Falls was fabulous with great accommodation and lovely food. We saw plenty of animals visiting the water hole from our room giving us a taste of what was to come. 
 
Our transfer to Botswana and the Chobe Princess houseboat was well organised and we were lucky enough to get the cabin in the front with its own balcony. The trips out to the river bank were great and the guide was very knowledgeable and always made every effort to make sure we could see as much as possible and get as close as we could. On our second day out we saw so much. We were lucky enough to glimpse a leopard walking along the ridge, appearing whenever there was a gap in the bush. As well as the numerous elephants, crocs, buffalo, hippos, giraffe, zebra, impala, etc, we, again, were very fortunate to be around to see lionesses feeding on an earlier kill. And not forgetting the beautiful birds that can be seen everywhere.
 
We arrived at our lodge in Chobe in time to settle in and have lunch before going out on our first game drive. The accommodation was again fantastic with wonderful views and everything we needed.  I’m not sure how much other travellers see in the time that they stay but I felt we were extremely fortunate and what we saw far surpassed my expectations.
 
All in all, it was a fabulous holiday which has left us with many wonderful memories of Africa and of the other travellers that we shared our time with. The venues were first class and there must be a great deal of organisation behind the scenes which enables everything to run so smoothly. I would certainly recommend your company and in fact I’ve already passed your details on to my friend who is very interested in going to Africa.
 
Thank you for making this a holiday to remember.
 
 
McGregor Family – Manchester

I'd always wanted to go on safari since I was a child and when my son said he'd love to go on safari, completely unprompted, my wife and I made a decision there and then. The only problem was who to book with!   We found The Big 5 Safari Company through a friend of a friend, and from the start it was clear their knowledge of Africa was extensive. Kath put together the most amazing ... Read More

McGregor Family – Manchester

McGregor Family – Manchester

I’d always wanted to go on safari since I was a child and when my son said he’d love to go on safari, completely unprompted, my wife and I made a decision there and then. The only problem was who to book with!
 
We found The Big 5 Safari Company through a friend of a friend, and from the start it was clear their knowledge of Africa was extensive. Kath put together the most amazing itinerary in South Africa for me and my family, and arranged everything from flights to Cape Town, to VIP meet and greets at the airport, to a stunning 4 night safari at the Shamwari Game Reserve, with amazing accommodation along the way. Tours and excursions were also arranged for us through their contacts, and we highly recommend the shark diving!
 
Nothing was too much trouble for Kath, despite my numerous questions via email, and I can’t recommend Kath and her team enough. Will definitely be getting back in touch again in a couple of years when we want to do it all again!
 
The most amazing holiday!
Helen & Jim – Derby

We loved EVERY moment of our Self Drive in South Africa! The accommodations were excellent from start to finish and we had absolutely no complaints about the facilities, service and food at each one. Starting with the V&A Waterfront, it couldn't have been better located, right there in the thick of things in such an historic building. Next on to the Winelands and the lovely guest house ... Read More

Helen & Jim – Derby

Helen & Jim – Derby

We loved EVERY moment of our Self Drive in South Africa! The accommodations were excellent from start to finish and we had absolutely no complaints about the facilities, service and food at each one.

Starting with the V&A Waterfront, it couldn’t have been better located, right there in the thick of things in such an historic building.

Next on to the Winelands and the lovely guest house La Fontaine in Franschhoek. Here we were to find a completely different atmosphere,but one which was just as warm and welcoming. Breakfast was excellent!

At De Zeekoe we had a lovely room overlooking the gardens. Here we had a meerkat experience – up at half past stupid to watch a family of the little cuties in the middle of a field. It was amazing and we got some great pictures.

Laird’s Lodge truly lived up to the description in the booklet you sent me. We had such a wonderful stay there.

We had another relaxing stay in Addo and our visits to Addo Elephant Park were so productive in terms of photography.

Next we went to Kwandwe for what was the most exhilarating experience of my life. We could have spent the whole month there, not just 3 nights. The food was first class, the surroundings unbeatable and the staff are possibly its greatest asset.  I am so glad that you offered the option to have our own vehicle, ranger and tracker for those 3 days. Yes, it was more expensive but, SO worth the extra money.

I have already recommended your company to friends and other photographers, as we were both highly satisfied with the service you provided for us.

Lesley & John – Basildon

We thoroughly enjoyed our safari holiday to Namibia arranged with The Big 5 Safari Company. There is nothing I would change, the trip was exactly what we wanted it to be.  We found the detailed itinerary particularly helpful, in fact invaluable, especially as it gave us detailed driving instructions, route co-ordinates for the SatNav and also estimated timings.  We were hugely impressed ... Read More

Lesley & John – Basildon

Lesley & John – Basildon

We thoroughly enjoyed our safari holiday to Namibia arranged with The Big 5 Safari Company. There is nothing I would change, the trip was exactly what we wanted it to be.  We found the detailed itinerary particularly helpful, in fact invaluable, especially as it gave us detailed driving instructions, route co-ordinates for the SatNav and also estimated timings.  We were hugely impressed by this document. We liked all the camps that Katharine chose for us, each was different in its own way and each experience at the respective camp was unique.  I would have no hesitation in recommending The Big 5 to anyone wishing to book a safari holiday and would like to make a comment to this effect on your website.  Is there an opportunity to do that?  In terms of your rating for our holiday I would give you a 10 without hesitation.

Marriage Family – Barton on Sea

We met the team from The Big 5 Safari Company at the New Forest Show and were really impressed with their knowledge of Africa and all matters safari. Katharine then helped us to plan a bespoke family holiday for four in South Africa within a pre-agreed budget. Katharine took considerable time to research ideas and incorporate our suggestions, but also ensured that we had an ... Read More

Marriage Family – Barton on Sea

Marriage Family – Barton on Sea

We met the team from The Big 5 Safari Company at the New Forest Show and were really impressed with their knowledge of Africa and all matters safari. Katharine then helped us to plan a bespoke family holiday for four in South Africa within a pre-agreed budget. Katharine took considerable time to research ideas and incorporate our suggestions, but also ensured that we had an amazing holiday in some fabulous accommodation by double checking everything in advance.. We felt the overall service delivered by Big 5 Safari was first class and certainly a cut above that offered by your typical travel agent. We would certainly use their services again for any similar holiday and recommend Big 5 to others seeking to plan the holiday of a lifetime. Many thanks again – The Marriage family.

Penny, Jonathan & Family – Market Harborough

Just returned from amazing trip to Victoria Falls, Botswana and Mozambique, including our first safari experience. Katharine worked tirelessly to ensure that we were happy with every aspect of our holiday and helped us navigate the vast choice of accommodation to select the right camps for us.  The planning was excellent and everything worked perfectly.  We would highly recommend The Big 5 ... Read More

Penny, Jonathan & Family – Market Harborough

Penny, Jonathan & Family – Market Harborough

Just returned from amazing trip to Victoria Falls, Botswana and Mozambique, including our first safari experience.

Katharine worked tirelessly to ensure that we were happy with every aspect of our holiday and helped us navigate the vast choice of accommodation to select the right camps for us.  The planning was excellent and everything worked perfectly.  We would highly recommend The Big 5 Safari Company – a tailor-made holiday that delivered above expectation experiences.  Thank you all!

Lorna & Mario – York

I just wanted to let you know what a wonderful trip you organised for myself and my husband in July this year.  Our three destination trip worked seamlessly from pick up in Cape Town right through to our return.  Our hotel in Cape Town was excellent and well located (The One & Only).  The staff “on the ground” were excellent, especially in Cape Town and the excursions were ... Read More

Lorna & Mario – York

Lorna & Mario – York

I just wanted to let you know what a wonderful trip you organised for myself and my husband in July this year.  Our three destination trip worked seamlessly from pick up in Cape Town right through to our return.  Our hotel in Cape Town was excellent and well located (The One & Only).  The staff “on the ground” were excellent, especially in Cape Town and the excursions were first class.  Chitwa Chitwa Game Lodge was awesome and delivered in every respect – would definitely return – great accommodation, a surfeit of wonderful food and fabulous game viewing from friendly and experienced team.  Our trip was completed with a visit to Victoria Falls in Zambia where we stayed at the Royal Livingstone – the location was excellent both for the falls and all the activities in this region.  Again the pre-booked activities did not disappoint and the hotel was luxurious.  Thank you Big 5 Safaris – will be booking again and would not hesitate to recommend you to others.

Mark & Lisa – Holton Le Clay

I’ve just read your “Why travel with us?” statement and it has to be said you ticked all the boxes. Our special occasion was our honeymoon and you definitely applied the personal touch to the extent I referred to you simply as “Katharine” – not The Big 5 Safari Company - in all discussions at home. I have booked trips all over the world for the last 25 years and I don’t ... Read More

Mark & Lisa – Holton Le Clay

Mark & Lisa – Holton Le Clay

I’ve just read your “Why travel with us?” statement and it has to be said you ticked all the boxes. Our special occasion was our honeymoon and you definitely applied the personal touch to the extent I referred to you simply as “Katharine” – not The Big 5 Safari Company – in all discussions at home. I have booked trips all over the world for the last 25 years and I don’t think any one person has stood out like you have. The bespoke nature of our trip and some of the ideas and suggestions you came up with were truly inspirational e.g. Zambezi Sands. Discussions where you clearly captured our personalities of what would work and what wouldn’t were spot on and you clearly assessed us very well.

I would also like to share with you the note sent by Abercrombie & Kent in 2015, before I found your website: “We offer a similar range of accommodation to Audley and our prices should be broadly speaking in line. For a 14 night holiday with a week on safari and a week in Mozambique, I think the figure of £8k per person wouldn’t be too far wide of the mark so if you’re budget is closer to £4k per person, I don’t think we would be able to offer anything to match this budget from the accommodation that we choose to offer”. Suffice to say we did exactly what we planned to, add in some extras and you were still able to meet our budget whilst still staying in luxury … and possibly even the same places!

We will share some photos in due course but our honeymoon was truly memorable and Lisa and I would like to thank you for your efforts in making it happen. I have already started recommending Big 5 to my friends and family and we look forward to travelling with you again at some point.

Nick & Kellie-Marie – Old Hatfield

What an amazing trip to Zimbabwe!! I loved every minute from start to finish. We had a great safari experience, saw a huge range of wildlife and 3 of the big 5! And Victoria falls is simply breathtaking isn't it? I can't imagine how much more ferocious it is during the high season.   Staying in Bulawayo was also a wonderful experience, our host family were just so friendly and welcoming ... Read More

Nick & Kellie-Marie – Old Hatfield

Nick & Kellie-Marie – Old Hatfield

What an amazing trip to Zimbabwe!! I loved every minute from start to finish. We had a great safari experience, saw a huge range of wildlife and 3 of the big 5! And Victoria falls is simply breathtaking isn’t it? I can’t imagine how much more ferocious it is during the high season.
 
Staying in Bulawayo was also a wonderful experience, our host family were just so friendly and welcoming and just loved having us stay with them. Albeit underprivileged, they just get on with it and I suppose don’t know much different (especially the kids, who were all little rays of sunshine!).
 
Thank you so much for helping me plan the trip, it really was a great experience! If I ever do anything like this again I’ll be sure to come straight back to you.

Rob & Helen – Eastbourne

We had a lovely time in South Africa - many thanks for organising - we loved all our locations. Chitwa Chitwa in Sabi Sands exceeded expectations in terms of accommodation and game viewing - saw the Big 5 on many occasions and much more ... Also really liked Elephant Camp and Victoria Falls was as spectacular as we had imagined. No complaints and no regrets - just great ... Read More

Rob & Helen – Eastbourne

Rob & Helen – Eastbourne

We had a lovely time in South Africa – many thanks for organising – we loved all our locations.
Chitwa Chitwa in Sabi Sands exceeded expectations in terms of accommodation and game viewing – saw the Big 5 on many occasions and much more …
Also really liked Elephant Camp and Victoria Falls was as spectacular as we had imagined.
No complaints and no regrets – just great memories!
 
Many thanks again, especially for the treat at our last camp to mark my birthday celebrations – much appreciated.

Gordon & Gill – Nailsworth

Firstly thanks to The Big 5 Safari Company for your assistance in managing the changes resulting from our flight delay. Unfortunately, due to our outgoing flight delay we lost a day at the start of the holiday and at the end effectively lost half a day due to significant problems confirming our connecting flights from Livingstone - none of which was the responsibility of Big 5 as we booked our ... Read More

Gordon & Gill – Nailsworth

Gordon & Gill – Nailsworth

Firstly thanks to The Big 5 Safari Company for your assistance in managing the changes resulting from our flight delay.

Unfortunately, due to our outgoing flight delay we lost a day at the start of the holiday and at the end effectively lost half a day due to significant problems confirming our connecting flights from Livingstone – none of which was the responsibility of Big 5 as we booked our own flights and I think next time we would ask Big 5 to do this for us!

That’s the bad news, the good news is that despite these problems we had a fantastic time.  Victoria falls is simply spectacular and we did still manage to see the moonbow on the second evening and on the river safari we managed to not only see our first elephant, but managed to collide with a hippo under the water – all of which was great fun.

Our accommodation was very comfortable and of high quality.  Waking up to zebras on the lawn is the norm there but doesn’t half leave you delighted and bemused.

At the Zambezi Sun in Livingstone and at Camelthorn Lodge in Hwange National Park we were really impressed by the welcoming attitude of all the staff we met.  All of our drivers for the transfers were courteous and very helpful.  The only thing we are inclined to “complain” about would be that we found the transfer long and a little uncomfortable and would have preferred to take the recently introduced rail car through the park.

At Camelthorn our primary hosts/guides, Sibs and Vusa, were not only experienced and knowledgeable guides, but engaging and warm individuals which made for fun and interesting conversation over dinner.

As safari ‘virgins’ we did not really know what to expect from the drives, but quickly learned.  By that I mean that there are no guarantees about which animal species you may see and it can vary significantly between drives.  Despite the best efforts of our guide, we did not manage to find leopard or cheetah, but apart from this, during the short time we were in camp, we saw a good variety of animals and were thrilled by the experience.

We thank you Katharine for all of your early advice in selecting our venues as they all turned out to be great and the experience has left us with some great photos and memories. If it were not for family commitments in 2016 we would be looking to book our next safari now and will not hesitate to contact The Big 5 Safari Company for our next two location safari.

 

Sue & Alan Farmer

We had an amazing time in Zimbabwe and I would like to thank you for everything you did in organising this for us.  Our accommodation in both Hwange and Victoria Falls were lovely. I know you had some input as well into helping to organise the renewal of our wedding vows – a complete surprise to me but such a special day, so thank you again. Khulu Ivory Lodge was perfect, we all ... Read More

Sue & Alan Farmer

Sue & Alan Farmer

We had an amazing time in Zimbabwe and I would like to thank you for everything you did in organising this for us.  Our accommodation in both Hwange and Victoria Falls were lovely. I know you had some input as well into helping to organise the renewal of our wedding vows – a complete surprise to me but such a special day, so thank you again.

Khulu Ivory Lodge was perfect, we all absolutely loved the place, unfortunately animal sightings weren’t quite as much as we had hoped for but I think this may have been the time of year (as it wasn’t the real dry season the vegetation was still quite high so difficult to spot animals).  The team at the Lodge were fantastic, we couldn’t have asked for more, it really is a perfect setting.

So many special memories that will stay with us forever.

Brianne & Guy – Chichester

We were safari virgins ... we had however long harboured the thought that one day, when circumstances were right and finances permitted, we would visit the Okovango Delta in Botswana. Both of us having our 60th birthday made the time right.   In a flush of enthusiasm, my husband Googled madly and came up with a selection of 'budget' truck based safaris.  Not what I had in mind! I ... Read More

Brianne & Guy – Chichester

Brianne & Guy – Chichester

We were safari virgins … we had however long harboured the thought that one day, when circumstances were right and finances permitted, we would visit the Okovango Delta in Botswana. Both of us having our 60th birthday made the time right.
 
In a flush of enthusiasm, my husband Googled madly and came up with a selection of ‘budget’ truck based safaris.  Not what I had in mind! I Googled madly and came up with The Big 5 Safari Company.
 
How fortuitous, they put together a memorable itinerary, heeding our request for small camps in remote locations. From first contact through to detailed planning, the trip itself and the follow up, they were professional, efficient, and not least, willing and able to design a trip to meet our expressed desires and aspirations.
 
We travelled from the arid plains of the Central Kalahari (Tau Pan Camp), to the enchanting Okavango (Pom Pom Camp), to the lush and fertile Linyanti River (Lebala Camp) rounding off with some R & R at the stunning Falls (Victoria Falls Hotel).
 
All 3 camps offered stylish and characterful accommodation with friendly, attentive staff and professional management.  The guides and trackers were awesome in their knowledge of the wildlife, game, birds, nature and culture. We learnt so much from them.
 
The range and quality of the experience was fantastic.  Everything worked like clockwork. We thought this would be a one off high end experience but no … we booked a return trip within weeks of coming back! No excuse needed this time.
 
Thank you Big 5 for such a brilliant experience and in particular Katharine Hunt.
 
Guy and Brianne Perkins

Mr G Brown – Glamorgan

I’m so glad I booked this visit to Zambia with you, it was a 5 star visit. The Rhino encounter was an out of this world experience. I’ve been on many safaris but have never met anyone who, on foot, has been that close to a wild Rhino. In fact I didn’t know you could get away with it. I honestly have no complaints and can think of nothing they, the staff, could add to or have done that would ... Read More

Mr G Brown – Glamorgan

Mr G Brown – Glamorgan

I’m so glad I booked this visit to Zambia with you, it was a 5 star visit. The Rhino encounter was an out of this world experience. I’ve been on many safaris but have never met anyone who, on foot, has been that close to a wild Rhino. In fact I didn’t know you could get away with it. I honestly have no complaints and can think of nothing they, the staff, could add to or have done that would have improved the quality or enjoyment of my visit.

I would like to say when I booked with you I felt it was a bit pricey, however, it turned out to be great value for the money.

Thank you for organizing this visit for me.

 

Dave & Minde – San Francisco

5 Stars for Big 5 Safaris. We recently returned from a fabulous trip to Zimbabwe, arranged by Katharine, having visited Hwange, Matusadona and Mana Pools National Parks. Her attention to detail and pre-planning facilitated flawless logistics, expert guiding and exceptional venues which optimized the sightings we were hoping for. We highly recommend Big 5 and will definitely be returning ... Read More

Dave & Minde – San Francisco

Dave & Minde – San Francisco

5 Stars for Big 5 Safaris. We recently returned from a fabulous trip to Zimbabwe, arranged by Katharine, having visited Hwange, Matusadona and Mana Pools National Parks. Her attention to detail and pre-planning facilitated flawless logistics, expert guiding and exceptional venues which optimized the sightings we were hoping for. We highly recommend Big 5 and will definitely be returning clients!

Dave and Minde, San Francisco

Noel and Jean – Preston

Kevin this is our 4th safari with you and as ever the level of detail in the itinerary you put together for us made the trip very special. From the private meet and greet in Johannesburg to the unexpected bush dinner we had an unforgettable time. Experiencing the Kalahari for the first time certainly gave us a new perspective on Botswana, one of our favourite countries. Please pass our thanks on ... Read More

Noel and Jean – Preston

Noel and Jean – Preston

Kevin this is our 4th safari with you and as ever the level of detail in the itinerary you put together for us made the trip very special. From the private meet and greet in Johannesburg to the unexpected bush dinner we had an unforgettable time. Experiencing the Kalahari for the first time certainly gave us a new perspective on Botswana, one of our favourite countries. Please pass our thanks on to all the lodges and we look forward to going to South Luangwa on our next trip!

The Story behind our Logo...

Boswell is a wild bull African Elephant who lives in the Lower Zambezi Valley. Boswell is a legend and has even featured in Africa Geographic.

At around 40 years of age Boswell is one of a select few bulls that have perfected the art of standing erect to browse on the African Winterthorn tree (Faidherbia albida).

The Big 5 Safari company is a supporter of the The Zambezi Society and support its vital conservation work and anti-poaching patrols.

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Visiting Mechline in South Africa with SOS Africa!

Visiting Mechline in South Africa with SOS Africa!

Gosh how lucky and excited were we?! We were off to meet Mechline the 12 year old girl we sponsor, to go to school in Grabouw in South Africa. Our daughter Kristyna had started our connection with the charity SOS Africa finding it on the internet and contacting them herself, and had specifically asked if we could sponsor a girl. The founder Matt Crowcombe suggested Mechline who is the same age as her so we were particularly thrilled to be actually meeting her. Mechline goes to School in ...

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Planning Your Safari

Planning Your Safari

Thank you for your enquiry for an African Safari and Welcome to the Big 5 Safari Company. At this point, we thought you would appreciate just a bit more information about us!  The Big 5 Safari Company founder Kevin Collins grew up in Zimbabwe We specialise in safaris in the Southern African region including the countries of Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Namibia, Malawi and Mozambique. We are experts in creating Multi Country safari adventures in Southern Africa ...

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