Frequently asked questions
When Is The Best Time To Visit Africa?
The correct answer is is ALL YEAR ROUND. We just need to plan that the specific areas that you will be traveling to are suited for unforgettable experiences and superceed all expectations. Considering the climatic conditions of the different seasons, animal habitats, and the varying geographical environments, all becoming extremely important, as they will all impact the planning process. As you can imagine, no two trips are ever the same. Repeat travelers have joined us at different times of the year specifically to enjoy the variations mentioned above.
How Do I Prepare For My Adventure?
We will provide travelers with a customized packing list for each particular season of travel and type of adventure. You will be given a detailed itinerary with a Journeys Unforgettable Travel Wallet that will include your travel vouchers and detailed e-tickets for all pre- paid flights, tours, and accommodations, as well as contact and emergency information for friends and family at home.
*A special photographic gear/equipment list will be provided for those traveling on a Unforgettable Photo Adventure
What Is A ‘Typical’ Day Like During My African Safari Experience?
The middle part of the day is yours to enjoy as you wish. As most of the animals are also taking their siesta in the shady areas during this hottest time of the day, you too can relax with a book, take a plunge in the lodge pool, or nap in a hammock in the shade.
After this relaxing siesta time, guests will return to the main lodge area for afternoon tea, which includes drinks, savory snacks and sometimes a customary sweet treat! For groups we often arrange a special ‘bush’ lecture during tea time. The afternoon activity will begin approximately at four o’clock and you will go out on another game drive or activity. This will continue on until sunset when guests enjoy a ‘sundowner’ while at the same time admiring a magnificent African sunset!
After guests return to camp, they will be given a chance to freshen up and then return to the bar for a drink and then enjoy a full candle lit safari dinner. On colder winter nights, guests may want to sit around the campfire while enjoying an after-dinner drink, and marveling of the stars of the African sky. After a full day’s activities, you will most likely be tired from all the excitement and be ready for bed by ten o’clock to get well rested for yet another glorious day in Africa.
What Is Included/Excluded In The Cost Of My Journey?
All Land Costs and Internal Non Scheduled Flights/Ground Transportation
All camp activities
Accommodation on a shared basis
All meals and drinks in all the camps Excluded/Extras:
Meals in Larger Towns/Cities whilst not on safari
Special Airport/Visa Taxes
International Flights To/From South Africa
Internal Scheduled Flights
Solo Guests Pay a Single Supplement (unless part of a group and willing to share)
You just need to pack your bags and gear and we will take
care of the rest!
Where In Africa Can I Travel To With Journeys Unforgettable?
Our past travelers and trips have visited the following countries: South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Namibia, Kenya, Tanzania, and the Seychelle Islands (including North Island)
How Long Should I Travel To Africa For?
Your travel budget will have a significant impact on the answer to this question. With most camps and lodges, we recommend staying at least three nights per camp. This will afford you a good opportunity to see what characterizes the area and partake in all the activities offered at an enjoyable pace.
Africa is a distant and remote destination for most travelers–this might be one of few, if not the journey of a lifetime so we encourage you to spend as much time as you can afford in this amazing part of the world.
What Is The Difference Between The Custom Safaris And The Unforgettable Photo Adventures?
Although both safaris follow Journey Unforgettable’s philosophy, there are differences between the two.
The custom made safaris can be arranged for individuals or groups of any size and are planned a la carte to suit your specific interests and time of travel. These trips can be arranged at any time of the year allowing for various experiences and travel opportunities.
The speciality of the photo adventures is that they are led by photographic professionals and the accommodations on the photo workshops are specifically chosen in areas to maximize your photographic experience while enhancing the safari itself.
Our photographic workshop safaris are uniquely designed to accommodate the special requirements of digital photographers, including extra baggage allowance for camera gear and special arrangements for electronic power in each camp, extras which participants would not find or would need to pay extra for on a traditional safari. We have also arranged for special flights between camps to facilitate this.
We restrict the photographic workshop trips to include a maximum of 12 guests which allows us to arrange the vehicles to have a ratio of 3 or 4 guests plus a specialist guide and professional photographer per vehicle for each game ride or activity. This allows for a wonderful safari experience at the same time allowing for customized learning and adequate space on the vehicle for all of your photographic gear.
The ‘typical’ day on a Photo Adventure Safari will include sunrise and sunset photographic opportunities to maximize those ‘golden hours’. Midday educational workshops which take place after the morning game drive and before the afternoon drive or activity, will allow for both group and one-on-one tutoring sessions. Depending on specific requests that group participants have, we can make any accommodation. At this time and also during the evening depending on the day’s events, we will organize slide shows which will help those learn from the day’s activities. Sometimes we will have more formal lectures, in which one of the photographic professionals will discuss a specific topic such as composition or editing techniques. We will also have the guests volunteering to submit photos taken during the trip for peer review and critique, which will provide for a greater learning experience of yourself and everyone.
We will have a projector and screen with us and will be providing instruction on a daily basis detailing many photographic and editing techniques. We suggest that in order to get the most of out of this workshop, travelers are encouraged to bring any necessary photographic accessories to optimize your learning and experience. Once you register for an Unforgettable Photo Adventure, we will send out a complete list of suggestions regarding equipment to bring along.
*Non-photographic spouses, companions, and/or guests of those joining us are therefore most welcome as they will still benefit from all the expertise and bush knowledge to enjoy a most unforgettable safari experience.
What Is My Travel Style…Rustic Elegant Or Luxurious?
The level of accommodation that you are expecting on safari is important to consider when planning your journey. Do you want lush fixtures and amenities or do you prefer a more hands-on interactive experience?
While this is very much a function of personal style and preference, as well as budget, we prefer to design an itinerary with consistent levels of service. It is possible, and our personal recommendation to combine different levels of accommodation on different parts of your trip, ensuring that you have the right expectations for each place you travel to. You want to ‘feel’ Africa when on safari…
Is It Safe To Travel To The Wilds Of Africa?
Part of the attraction of visiting these remote areas of Africa’s wilderness, is to be able to enjoy the wild animals in their natural habitat. All the camps and lodges are built within the confines of this natural environment, and are not surrounded by fences. Hence the animals are free to wonder and roam freely in their natural surroundings.
The animals do roam through the camps during the day and night. However, as long as you remain aware of your surroundings, and adhere strictly to your guides’ and camp managers’ instructions, you will be safe.
The guides and managers will always escort you back to your rooms or tents at night and they are trained professionally to handle any situations that arise.
All game drives are conducted in open air land rovers or vehicles which provides you, the guest, the privilege of viewing and photographing the animals up close in their natural habitat. The animals after time do become habituated to the vehicles and become keenly aware of the human presence. Here again, as long as you adhere strictly to your guides’ instructions, you will always be safe and will be able to view and enjoy the animals exhibiting their natural behavior for hours at a time.
On our Kenya and Tanzania safaris other types of vehicles may be utilized.
We should always remember that we are the privileged ones to be invited into this awe-inspiring wilderness–home of these astonishing animals and habitats.
What Is The Food Like In Africa?
The cuisine of southern Africa and neighboring countries is sometimes called ‘rainbow cuisine’ and rightly so as the foods of South Africa and countries around have largely been influenced by the indigenous Black people as well as several waves of immigrants which included Indians, Malaysians, and Europeans. Thus the food here is a blend of many cultures.
The Malay influence has brought spicy curries, chutneys, pickled fish and curry marinated beef and lamb kebabs. The Indians have introduced a different line of culinary practices, including a variety of sweets and savories. The Afrikaners have their succulent stews of maize with tomato and onion sauce, with or without rice. There are many contributions like Dutch fried koeksister (type of donut) and milk pies. During the pioneering days of the 19th century new foods such as biltong (dried meat) and droe wors (dried sausage) and rusks evolved locally out of necessity.
Basic ingredients include seafood, meat products (including wild game), poultry, as well as grains, fresh fruit and vegetables. Last but not least, there are also several types of traditional and modern alcoholic beverages including many European-style wine and beers (Please ask us if you are interested in visiting the famous Stellenbosch and Paarl Winelands near Cape Town).
Most foreign visitors are very impressed with the quality and variety of food served in the different establishments and especially on the safari itself. Some of the premier camps provide food, service, and presentation that would rival that of any top class hotel or restaurant anywhere in the world.
When on safari, most of the camps are able to cater for all food types with special dietary requirements, as long as they are notified of these at the time of booking, as all necessary supplies have to be flown in.
The most common complaint coming from guests after having been on one of our safaris is that they ate too much food!
Is There Power And Electricity In Safari Camps?
The beauty and thrill of visiting these remote areas is to get away from it all–to become one and part of the African wilderness. You will leave the TV’s, cell phones, pagers, and e-mails behind.
The camps and lodges are often situated in the most remote areas, where there is no access to conventional electrical power. Most of the camps, however, do have generators on-site with 220v electricity (don’t forget to pack your adapters). Alternatively they make use of solar panels, which supplies most of the energy for the camps running water heaters, which is always hot when needed.
The electricity derived from the generators is used to operate the refrigerators, ice machine and freezers that keep all the perishables fresh, and drinks cool at all times. The generators also charge the batteries that provide power in the form lights and overhead fans in the guests’ rooms. There is ample power to recharge batteries for cameras and laptops, however there will not be enough power to operate devices such as hairdryers.
Some of the more rustic and mobile tented camps do not run on generators. Lighting is by paraffin lamps and campfires, and the efficient camp staff will provide the traditional ‘hot bucket’ showers.
While there is no communication with the outside world while on safari, the camps operate via radio communication with the town offices and also the head office in Johannesburg, South Africa, so contact can be made immediately when necessary in the case of an emergency.
What Happens To My Dirty Clothes?
All laundry is done on a daily basis, except in some remote camps in Namibia (home of the world’s oldest desert) where water is in great shortage. Some camp staff will not wash undergarments, due to local customs and traditions, but washing powder is always provided in the guests’ rooms for that purpose. Laundry that is left in the basket before you leave for your early morning game drive or activity, is usually back in the guests’ room that same evening, neatly pressed and folded.
What Are The Passport And Visa Requirements?
All travelers visiting Africa require a current passport that is valid for six months beyond the intended length of stay. At the present time, all holders of United State passports do not require any visa for South Africa, Botswana and Namibia. They do require visas for Zimbabwe and Zambia, but these can be purchased at the point of entry for a current fee of $135 per person, which is subject to change. For Kenya and Tanzania the current fee for entry is roughly $100 per person.