My 12-night safari in Tanzania, Zimbabwe and Botswana, by solo traveller Donna Watson
“If you do nothing else in life you have to go to Africa – it’s an adventure of a lifetime. I loved working with Gen and the team at Encompass Africa, and I’d describe their service as über-excellent!”
Why did you choose Encompass Africa?
“I chose Encompass Africa for their personal service – nothing beats connecting with people who know Africa well, and they had superior knowledge, itinerary quality and price. Talking about and planning my African trip was exciting, but nothing compared to actually experiencing it.”
How do you describe your entire experience?
“When my friends ask me how was my trip, there are two words I can’t help but use – absolutely awesome!! Those words sum up the total experience.”
What was the highlight of your solo Africa trip?
“No words can describe the feeling you get seeing the wild animals – that you have only ever seen on TV or read about – in the flesh and up-close. My solo Africa trip was truly magical.”
Where did you go?
“I stayed in Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Botswana and passed through Kenya and Zambia. All the African people I met along the way (staff or strangers) were lovely, warm, friendly and very helpful. All my expectations for my adventure were met and exceeded, making my experiences well and truly wonderful.”
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Any advice for others considering Africa?
“If you do nothing else in life, you have to go to Africa – it’s an adventure of a lifetime.”
“There was only one hiccup, but I wouldn’t call it a negative, I’d call it part of the adventure. Due to airline agreements and regulations and the different airlines I was travelling with, my luggage couldn’t be checked through to Tanzania from Brisbane. It meant I might need a visa before I could go through customs in Kenya (transiting through). So would I need a single-entry visa, transit or no visa? I decided to purchase the single-entry visa, which was a little more money but also more days as I didn’t want any unintentional issues with immigration.”
[EA – We always recommend transit visas and proof of your onward arrangements be at hand. Also, make sure you have cash on you, don’t rely on card payments anywhere in Africa.]
How would you summarise your solo Africa trip?
“My holiday far far exceeded my expectations. I’ve been on holidays where the hype doesn’t meet the actual experience but this time was different. Having said that words do not do it justice – you have to actually feel the experience which is mind-blowing. I was so happy with all of my guides! They were wonderful people, warm, patient and friendly. I have great respect for their abilities as I couldn’t see many of the animals they spotted from long distances until they pointed them out. Even my transfer drivers were friendly, helpful and informative about the area we were driving through. They were like your own personal guides giving you information about what you were seeing along the way – how the people of the area live, make their living, landscapes, crops growing and the animals.”
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Gen from Encompass Africa says:
“I loved working with Donna. She is such a wonderful woman and really knew the experiences that interested her most. I was able to provide some great options and activities to get Donna exactly what she was looking for and a little more!”
Gen’s suggestion for Donna’s next African adventure:
“I know Donna is keen to return to Tanzania and slow down the pace to savour every moment all over again. But I think I’d love to see her exploring Kenya. It’s such a wonderful experience with landscapes, cultures and wildlife that would impress Donna and many of our solo travellers. It’s also fun flying from place to place and a little less time in transit.”
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