We planned this trip with the intention that it would be a once in a lifetime vacation for our family of 4 travelling with our two teenage kids; daughter 15 & son 14. We cannot say enough about how wonderful & pleased we were with our pick of this travel company. At the beginning of the travel process, Zicasso sent us two potential travel companies to consider who best suited our vacation goals. While both companies were equally interesting and serviceable, we ultimately chose this travel team. Their expression, passion and love for Africa was contagious. Both also had a very personal and comforting manner in how they communicated information. The solace in knowing the two of them are American who had previously worked and lived life as residents for severalyears in South Africa was reassuring. Each could provide a sincere overview of their own life experiences which assisted them in communicating effectively with us on any concerns or questions that we had while planning our trip.
The attention from our travel company did not end here. They walked us through every step along the planning process and were always available to chat or email regarding any questions or concerns. Near the end of our trip we had a little blip out of anyone’s control. Our flight was delayed from Livingstone to Johannesburg which meant we would possibly miss our connection to Istanbul. The was on top of it following up with Turkish Airlines to advise them that we were on route for our connection but would be slightly delayed. They arranged to have a representative meet us at the arrival point to quickly escort us through passport control, to the check-in desk and through security to board the Istanbul flight as we were the last people to board the plane. Ultimately, we did not have time to check our luggage and make it on time to the gate, so we had to leave without checking our bags but the service took care of that. While we were in the air, the company continued to follow-up on our luggage to ensure we would eventually receive it when we reached our final destination back home in Miami.
I could rave on and on about this safari travel company and how vested they were in making our trip a pleasure but I don’t know if that would even do them justice. I would highly encourage all potential travelers to consider this company if planning their dream holiday in Africa. You will not be disappointed. Finally, our overall locations, accommodations, cuisine, service and personal attention from lodging hosts met and exceeded our expectations. It indeed provided us with once in a life time adventure we and our kids will never forget.
Some of the most memorable and enjoyable moments of our trip was our visit to Camp Jabulani. The Game drives were very entertaining with our awesome Game Ranger . The kids particularly loved the engaging nature of our Game Ranger. He made the drives especially fun and educational at the same time. We learned so much about the big 5, the vegetation and so much more. We were also very lucky to have spotted the big 5 all in one day as well as many more wild animals during our drives.
Our family really enjoyed the Elephant Experience. I would recommend that every visitor take time to learn about the elephants and experience them in their true habitat. They are truly remarkable animals are now my favorite animal. We also thoroughly enjoyed our visit to the Hoedpsruit Endangered Species Center. Many animals have been saved and rescued and brought back to good health. We had the opportunity to meet and pet Crunchy the Cheetah. Again our game driver brought us around the center and gave us the history on each animal and what brought them to the center. He was never short on the details or the stories behind the animals. I think all children have a soft spot for animals and would encourage all parents to bring their kids to Hoedspruit when visiting South Africa. Another highlight for us was taking the helicopter ride over Victoria Falls and into the gorge. After we landed we also walked on foot around the Falls and experienced one of the seven wonders of the world up close. I would also encourage every visitor to see the Falls as they are breath-taking.
If we were to take this trip again, there is not much we would do differently. Honestly, there are somany places to visit and with our short time frame of only 10 nights in Africa we limited ourselves to so many additional locations. We almost need to plan to go back to see even more. Although we thoroughly enjoyed all of our 5+ star accommodations, each in very remote game reserves with small lodging with sometimes less than 12 suites, it can be quiet in the evenings. Parts of the day can also be quiet when you are not on a game drive or doing an activity. We chose intimate locations for our lodging but other guests travelling with young teens or younger may consider a busier location so their kids could interact with other children their age when they have down time. Our teens were able to keep themselves busy with some social media updates so they still felt connected to the world. My husband and I noticed they really grew closer as brother and sister having spent so much quality time together and sharing a room. This trip truly offered ample quality family time with little distractions, three sit-down meal times which allowed for each of us to talk and enjoy each other’s company and reconnect as a family.
Each review is written by a verified traveler who was matched by Zicasso to the reviewed agency. Traveler must have purchased and traveled.
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