As a first time traveler to South Africa, a stop at one of the many wildlife reserves for a guided safari is on the top of the must-do list. But what if you want to get really close and personal with nature and its wildlife?382623_2678737334712_1723430310_n

My first encounter with the South African wildlife was from volunteering. Working on a private game reserve, located only 1 hour away from the Kruger Park, I had the opportunity to not only watch, but to get close to and develop a special bond with animals like lion, elephant, rhino, leopard and hyenas.

From being part of locating the animals, to actually being the one that finds them, is a very special feeling that you couldn’t get from any 4 or 5 star safari lodge in South Africa.

With SW Africa, you can now book a 2 week stay at the volunteer project “Limpopo Eco operations”. Here, you will get involved in the conservation itself, get to know the stories behind the animals and the work that the project put into protecting them and maintaining their natural habitat – all made possible through 429167_3146793355820_233005595_nthe time and money that YOU put into the program. Can you imagine a more satisfying feeling than to actually be able to see where your money goes and to be there first hand to experience it?

Going out on game drives twice every day, with qualified guides that will teach you everything they know about nature and wildlife, you will get firsthand experience and knowledge to take home with you – along with amazing photographs of course!

Limpopo Eco Operations is located inside the Selati Game Reserve, a privately owned reserve that is home to four of the big five. The reserve is located only 1 hour away from the Kruger Park, so you can easily combine your volunteer trip with a day at the world famous park, along with many other day trips around the Hoedspruit/Phalaborwa area.1016095_518013681599709_656070069_n

The program is focused on a pride of lions that is being monitored daily with GPS collars. With the help of a telemetry device, you will go out and locate them twice every day and from getting visuals of them – you and your fellow volunteers will be able to record their behavior and physical well being, and keep track of every individual in the pride. You will also come across elephants, hyenas, rhinos and many other wild animals that live on the reserve. The major advantage here is that the reserve is private with no commercial lodges, and therefore not open to any tourists. So you will be able to enjoy your sightings with the animals without having to fight for the best spot or make way for any other viewers. 48160_466156580118753_1894665880_n

How about experience the wildlife up close and personal? We can help you book your volunteer adventure in the African bush, and be the first step to your very own contribution to the animal and nature conservation in South Africa.

For the more adventurous traveler, that wants to make a difference to the South African conservation and wildlife – a volunteer project is the perfect way to go!

Louise Fagerström