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Africa Odyssey Blog

Welcome to the Africa Odyssey Blog

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As a responsible tour operator we ask all our customers to consider making a donation to our chosen charity, the Travel Foundation 

Help us to help destinations

The Travel Foundation is a UK charity that exists to makes sure tourism benefits the destinations we visit on holiday. Its work is leading the way in improving the impacts of tourism – making sure local communities, the environment and tourists benefit from holidays around the world.

Its projects not only create vital economic opportunities for local people and protect the environment, but also support the creation of resilient, vibrant tourism destinations that people will want to visit now and in the future.

So far…

  • Local people have been supported to generate more than £1million in income
  • Over 6,000 local people have benefitted directly through improved access to business opportunities in tourism
  • More than 36,000 people have been trained in sustainability and conservation practices
  • More than 800 hotels have been helped to reduce their carbon footprint
  • More than 50,000 tourists have now been on improved, ‘greener’ excursions that have been developed by local people


Thank you!

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Say “I Do” to a Safari Honeymoon

Say “I Do” to a Safari Honeymoon

Getting down on one knee and popping the question is the easy part. The most important decision follows it though: Where will you honeymoon after your big day? 

Exotic island destinations always spring top of mind thinking “honeymoon”, but allow us to introduce an off-the-beaten track and utterly raw and wildly romantic paradise option. How about a safari honeymoon in Africa?

It’s all about the wild animals, captivating landscapes, technicolour sunsets, and experiencing something new for the first time together as husband and wife.

Here are five really big reasons why an African safari makes for the perfect honeymoon:

Say “I Do” to a Safari Honeymoon

Candlelit bush dinners, outdoors bubble baths, and sundowners in the company of elephants are only a game drive away. What are you waiting for? Say “I do” to a safari honeymoon.

A Poem: Wilderness by Ian McCallum

A Poem: Wilderness by Ian McCallum

Have we forgotten
that wilderness is not a place,
but a pattern of the soul
where every tree, every bird and beast
is a soul maker?

Have we forgotten
that wilderness is not a place
but a moving feast of the starts,
footprints, scales and beginnings?

Since when
did we become afraid of the night
and that only the bright starts count?
Or that our moon is not a moon
unless it is full?

By who’s command
were the animals
through groping fingers,
one for each hand,
reduced to the big and little five?

Have we forgotten
that every creature is within us
carried by tides
of earthly blood
and that we named them?

Have we forgotten
that wilderness is not a place
but a season
and that we are in its
final hour?

An exquisite poem by Ian McCallum from his anthology Wild Gifts. Ian has a diverse range of skills and talents, among them being a medical doctor, psychologist, psychiatrist, specialist wilderness guide, author and poet, as well as a director of the Wilderness Foundation. His passion for the wilderness and the African continent especially speak compounds through his colourful and inspiring poetry. His gift to put what many of us bush lovers feel into a soft but powerful string of words is a wild rarity. If you’re a lover of words, wilderness, and wildlife, Ian’s other works will not disappoint.

Submerse yourself into the real Africa, the authentic African wilderness that Ian speaks of, and let us know about your travel preferences so we can help plan your perfect African holiday.

Elephants March through Lodge Reception at Mfuwe

Elephants March through Lodge Reception at Mfuwe

To witness an elephant on safari is a privilege. To witness a group of elephants march through a lodge reception is an honour of a different kind. This is the true-life story that takes place at Mfuwe Lodge every year.

Each spring, between late October and mid December, an entire elephant herd ambles through the Zambian lodge’s reception enticed by the promise of fallen fruits from a large wild mango tree on the other side. In celebration of World Elephant Day on the 12th of August, we couldn’t resist sharing this unique story of a particular Mfuwe elephant family.

Elephants March through Lodge Reception at Mfuwe

The lodge was built in 1998 over an ancient elephant path. Rather than add a few metres to go around the lodge once the construction was complete, the elephants decided to stick to the route they knew best. Even if it meant taking a few steps through a tiled reception lobby!

While by no means tame, the elephants are extremely nonchalant during their seasonal visits. Guests are able to enjoy front row seats as the elephants’ journey to and from the mango tree located in the centre of the lodge grounds. It’s all about the ripe, delicious fruit within trunk’s reach at the end of the lobby.


The Bush Camp Company’s seasoned safari guide, Steve Mvula, explains the intriguing behaviour in a recent Africa Geographic blog:

“Elephants have a matriarchal family structure. Usually the oldest female, the matriarch decides where the family goes throughout the day and the rest follow her. The current matriarch of this family learned from the previous matriarch that a good source of food during the dry season is the wild mangos, so she leads the family back annually and they walk a circuit from one tree to the next, including the tree in the middle of the Mfuwe Lodge grounds.

This knowledge is passed from one generation to the next. The elephants can’t reach the fruit so they are helped by the monkeys and baboons. The monkeys and baboons are in the top of the tree and pick the fruit. If they pick one they don’t like, they throw it to the ground and the elephants then can get it.”

The elephant takeover has become a wildlife spectacle on such a grandiose scale and remains one of the safari lodge’s biggest draw cards.

Not only is Mfuwe Lodge famous for its jumbo-sized visitors, but a particular few elephants have been granted their ticket to stardom. Mfuwe elephant personalities, Wonky Tusk and Wellington, have been the focus of many TV documentaries, photographs, videos, and news articles.

You can learn more about the camp’s interaction with these lovable giants and meet Wonky Tusk and Wellington in the video below:

The Magic of Africa after Sunset

The Magic of Africa after Sunset

If there’s one thing we know for sure, it’s that your day doesn’t stop once the sun sets after a wild day in the African bush. The morning and afternoon game drives may have come to an end, but there’s a whole second half of the day ‘beyond the Big 5’ patiently waiting to unfold. It’s one of pure magic and it begins after sunset.

Here are 4 reasons why Africa is even better once the sun goes down:

1. Family style dinner

After an exciting and adventurous day on safari, a homemade meal is exactly what you need to refuel. At most camps and lodges, meals are enjoyed around a big family style table where guests reminisce about the day’s sightings with family and new friends. It’s a chance to get acquainted with the other guests from around the world while picking the brain of your game ranger who’s had more close encounters with elephant and rhino than you’d probably want to know!

The Magic of Africa after Sunset

Image by Three Tree Hill.

The workings of a bush kitchen will totally amaze you, as will the food. A hearty soup to start, a scrumptious beef filet made from a solar cooker to follow, and a decadent dessert will leave your tummy as happy as an elephant surrounded by hundreds of camel thorn pods.

2. Boma Banter

Many camps and lodges have traditional bomas where you can either enjoy dinner under the stars or sip on a nightcap after your meal with good company. Historically, bomas were enclosed fences used to house livestock overnight to protect them from predators. However, in modern day safari luxury, they have transformed into an atmospheric and inviting setting to absorb the night sounds of the bush while enjoying a cup of tea or Amarula around a crackling fire.

Image by Garonga Safari Camp.

Image by Garonga Safari Camp.

3. Stargazing

The skies are bigger and the stars shine brighter in Africa. Camps in remote wilderness areas have the pleasure to witness the twinkling sensations in complete solitude at night. A tilt of the head and you could see more stars than you’d ever hope to count. Stargazers can enjoy the beauty of the unclouded galaxies and learn a few of the night sky tall tales from the guides who know them best.

Image by microtoxic photographic.

Image by microtoxic photographic.

4. Drifting to sleep in luxury

Safaris, sunset views, family style dinners, boma banter, and stargazing – at the end of the day you’ll need a soft pillow and warm bed to drift off to sleep. Reset your exhausted body and sleep like a king and queen in total luxury knowing you get to do it all again tomorrow.

Image by Tongabezi Lodge.

Image by Tongabezi Lodge.

A safari holiday is not all about the wildlife. When the sun sets after a full day of games drives, Africa part two begins and it’s a sequel that’s utterly magical. Get in touch if this sounds like the Africa you’d like to experience.