Contact No:+27 (0)82 497 5330 USA : 18442283527 UK : 03308083851 Email: Info@live4africa.com

In light of current media reports concerning the situation in Zimbabwe, we would like to reassure you that it is business as usual in Victoria Falls and Zimbabwe. There has been no report of violence or civil unrest. All flights are arriving & departing timeously and guests are enjoying their stay in Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls and Bulawayo are running as per usual, and all other border posts are open. Zimbabweans have been reassured
that there is no threat to the people of the country, and no threat to tourists visiting the country. Access to and from Victoria
Falls continues without a hitch, and there is a prevailing sense of calm in the area. The Zimbabwe Army is peacefully managing
the City of Harare’, quoted by Tourism Update, 16.11.2017.
Should there be any reason to avoid Zimbabawe and Victoria Falls, Livingstone in Zambia is the alternative access point for the Falls. Tours can depart or terminate in Kasane, Botswana, where necessary. We will continue to closely monitor the situation, and update you if there are any further developments.

Gelle,

We can’t thank you enough for creating such a personalized and unforgettable experience for us.  From your selection of diverse game camps, culturally-rich accommodations, and guides that melded with us perfectly, you did a remarkable job of understanding our individual and collective interests and style.

We had exceptional guides in each game camp.  We had fun with Charlene who became a friend by the end of 4 days.  Active Africa’s biking operation was very well-organized, making even a novice cyclist like me feel very comfortable.  Dom was a fountain of information about the ecosystem of Cape Town.  We are so pleased the rescheduled hike was possible.  Djuma gave us a glimpse into an aspect of Cape Town life he was uniquely capable of offering.  He made us comfortable in places we could never have ventured alone.

Pot Luck was delicious fun.  Lynn and I were seated just across from the sous-chef shouting orders to the cooks.  We heard some didn’t like that table, but we thought it was perfect.  The sous-chef came out to talk with us when she recognized we were enjoying the show.

Leeu Estates was perhaps the most comfortable of accommodations and such a beautiful property.  Lynn took full advantage of the spa in lieu of a half-day of cycling and loved it.  The manager looked after us very well.  Our dinner there was the only disappointment.

Mary inquired at each restaurant about use of soy, given her intolerance.  Two places gave her a problem:  Leeu and Creation, despite assurances.  Leeu more seriously than Creation.  The camps were all very accommodating, no issues at any.

The views from the Silo were superb. Cape Grace was a good place to end our adventure, giving us an opportunity to see the waterfront.  They offered shower rooms so we could clean up before our long flight home.  Nothing could out-do the Ellerman, however.  I’m happy we had two nights there.

I’m so glad we had a chance to meet you at Vergelegen.  Thank you again for everything.  You’ve left us with an indelible impression.

Best,

Linda    (  USA )

Luxury Kruger , Zambia , Botswana and Cape Town Africa Vacation  Oct 2017

Hello Gelle!!! I apologize for being slow in responding and in thanking you. I returned home to a rather hectic week after being gone for so long.

I feel very fortunate indeed to have participated in the Linda/Lynn/Mary Beth African Adventure. I considered my last visit to that part of the world, 17 years ago, to be one of my very favorite trips and can scarcely believe my good fortune in being able to visit southern Africa again. You orchestrated a magnificent itinerary for us, providing luxury, adventure, diverse activities and venues. In every way this trip exceeded my expectations and also my previous experiences. The camps were even more vibrant and certainly more luxurious. The animals were closer to us than in any of my previous viewings. (It is clear that the descendants of the animals that I encountered have become even more adapted to photo taking visitors in Land Rovers)! The cuisine was significantly more delightful and elegant, though we three were always so pleased to partake of any dishes that were unique to us and representative of the region. The accommodations were fabulous, often elegant and yet equally appealing to me when we were within nature on our own island at Sandebezi. The staff at each location was gracious, attentive and knowledgeable. I find myself thinking of them all with such fond memories.

It was a particular highlight for me that we could finally meet you in person over lunch. You are as delightful as I imagined!!

You specifically inquired about the Cape Town and beyond experiences. We found the area of Hermanus so beautiful and relaxing. What a stellar location. Our time at Leeu Estates was relaxing. The staff was quite gracious and the accommodations were divine. I absolutely loved our cycling day through the countryside. Cameron and Eckhardt created a wonderful experience, pausing to savor delights and also explaining nature and our surroundings. They left me with a very favorable opinion of their company. Charlene took wonderful care of us and was a complete pleasure to be with no matter what our agenda included. We felt so grateful to you and to Dominic that our hike was rescheduled. It could not have been more perfect weather and visibility and he was fun and charming. I was very glad for the opportunity to walk through the Woodstock area within Cape Town with the assurance of Juma leading us through the neighborhood. It seemed he knew everyone that passed by…sort of the unofficial mayor! We would never have had that experience on our own, or with Charlene. Juma brought a completely unique perspective.

It is always difficult to speak of favorite selections within such an amazing list of venues, yet there are some that I want to mention to you because I know it is helpful in your business.

Everything and everyone at Sweni Lodge was exemplary and completely amazing. Daniel, Logic, Walter, Howard, Sirtana (?) and the chefs were all just the best! I would recommend that location to anyone!

For a unique and more rustic experience Sindabezi cannot be beat. Seeing their Trust School for the children and their sustainable garden was such a bonus, and seeing Victoria Falls from the Zambia side was much more thrilling!

Wilderness Safaris is a company that I applaud for their emphasis on eco-tourism and supporting the local communities. I had visited their locations in my trip 17 years ago and I would say that they have just continued to improve. Our guide Go was just exceptional in every way and I smile each time I look at the beautiful baskets that the lovely women within Vumbura Plains created with their hard working hands.

The Ellerman House was the most impressive location within the Cape Town region for me. They provide the very height of elegance and yet each and every staff member clearly wants their guests to feel like family. I was pleased in every way, service, room, views, staff, art and definitely cusine!

And, as stated before, Active Africa was great.

 

I also want to assure you that although I did have two rough nights with food related issues, I do not hold anyone accountable for that. It can be very difficult in the kitchen to determine where that sneaky soybean is hiding!

 

Thank you again Gelle!  I hope that our paths may cross again.

 

Mary Beth  ( October 2017 )

Luxury Kruger , Zambia , Botswana and Cape Town Adventure

 

Good morning,

I have finished the tour and i had a wonderful time !  Massai Mara park was incredible and we were incredibly lucky , we saw a lioness take down a wilderbeest, and the Gorila experience was outstanding ! We had a juvenile silver back barreled thru our group and send two of us flying thru the air, it doesn’t get much closer an encounter than that !!

And dont get me stated on the white water rafting experience on the Nile River where i almost died (but since i didn’t, ill do it all over again! !!).

This tour was the experience i was hoping for, thank you very much.

My Regards

 

Maria  ( USA August 2017 )

New Queuing system at the Lower Station
As of November 2017 the queuing system at the Lower Station will change. There will still be two queues at the Lower Station, one for Ticket Holders’ (i.e. those who have purchased online tickets) and one for visitors who need to purchase at the Ticket Office.

New queuing system: Visitors who purchase tickets at the Ticket Office must now join the Ticket Holders’ queue first before accessing the ramp queue for the lifts (i.e. they will no longer be able to join the ramp queue once they have purchased tickets at the Ticket Office as had been the practice). This new system ensures that online ticket holders are given preference when accessing the cable cars. You are, therefore, advised to purchase tickets online for your guests.
Reminder of annual
Cableway rates increase
Our annual rates increase takes place on 1 October 2017. In order to spread demand throughout the day we are introducing morning and afternoon tickets for the Tour Operator Ticketing portal as well.

Our 2017/18 rates (valid from 1 October 2017 – 30 September 2018) are:

Ticket office and public online ticket for 2017/18 rates:

Morning Peak (8am – 1pm)

Adult return R290
Child return R140
Afternoon (1pm onwards)
Adult return R275
Child return R135

Please note that Morning Peak tickets can be used throughout the day. Afternoon tickets can only be used in the afternoons.
Cableway Tour Operator

 

One of the more serious aspects of international travel is what you need to know about your passport, visa(s) and medical requirements. It’s serious information because if any of your documents are not in order, it can ruin your safari (or end it prematurely), and that’s definitely not an outcome we want for you.

PASSPORTS
• You must possess a valid machine-readable passport issued by the country of which you are a citizen.
• Your passport must be valid for at least six months after your return date – you cannot enter another country if your passport expires in less than six months.
• Your passport must contain at least two consecutive blank pages for each of the countries you visit (i.e. if you are visiting three countries, your passport must have six consecutive blank pages). Airlines can refuse to let you board you and immigration officials can refuse to let you enter a country if you have insufficient blank pages.
• Make two certified copies of your passport identification page and relevant visa page(s) when you travel, leaving one set with your emergency contact at home and keeping one set in a safe place. For absolute peace of mind, email yourself a digital copy that you can access online.

The South African government has implemented new travel regulations to better protect children under the age of 18 from being taken in or out of South Africa without their parents’ permission. The new regulations affect travel to and from South Africa and Botswana only.

From 1 June 2015, children under 18 must have the documentation of birth issued by their home country (translated into English if necessary) as well as their own valid passport to enter or leave South Africa.

Quick checklist:
• The documentation of birth must be an unabridged birth certificate that confirms both parents’ names. (unabridged means ‘full or detailed document of birth)
• A valid passport has a blank page available for the arrival and departure stamps and does not expire for at least six (6) months after you leave South Africa.
• If both parents are not accompanying the child, you must have legal documentation to prove that the missing parent gave permission, a court ruling allows you to travel without that permission (eg custody ruling) or the missing parent’s death certificate.
• Any official documents in a language other than English must be translated into English and certified as a true copies of the original.
• Any copies of original documents must be certified as a true copies of the original.
• A commissioner of oaths can certify your documents and this certification must be recent – less than 90 days before your travel dates ie if you visit South Africa during August, get your documents certified in June or July.

If you have any questions, please speak to us  or consult your nearest South African consulate or embassy.

VISAS
• Live 4 Africa  does not arrange visas. You must contact the relevant issuing authorities in good time (ideally, three to four months in advance of travel) to check the entry requirements to each country on your itinerary and arrange the necessary permits and visas.
• We are  not responsible if your visa application is denied for any reason. We are also not responsible for any changes in the cost of your safari, the visa requirements, or any delays or loss of passports caused by the issuing authorities. Obtaining the necessary travel visa or permit is your responsibility. Have a look at www.projectvisa.com for more detailed info with regards to visa requirements for Africa

MEDICAL ADVICE
• In addition to valid passports, visas and entry permits, some countries require proof of vaccination against diseases such as yellow fever. Be sure to check with the issuing authorities when you apply for any additional medical requirements.
• If you are travelling in a malaria zone, please consult your doctor or an appropriate healthcare practitioner to make an informed decision about the best malarial prophylactics for you. Be sure to inform your doctor if you intend to scuba dive while on holiday as this may affect the type of medication prescribed to you.
• Keep all your medications in their original, labelled containers.
• Bring copies of your prescriptions and the generic names for the drugs – this is critical in case you need medical attention while on vacation. If possible, also carry a letter from your doctor outlining your condition and whatever treatment you are currently undergoing along with an original script.
Being back-up supplies of items like asthma inhalers, prescription spectacles, contact lenses and cleaning solutions, and diabetic drugs as these may be difficult to procure in an emergency.

Many travellers feel uneasy about tipping because they do not know the local custom or are afraid of giving offence. We would like to stress that this is a guideline for gratuities only. We firmly believe a gratuity is not obligatory or mandatory; they are, however, customarily given throughout Africa. We recommend that tipping be done directly – simply hand the person who helped you the money – or through a staff tip-box, whichever you feel more comfortable with.

It’s helpful to have a small supply of low-denomination notes in the local currency handy but staff outside South Africa and Namibia are generally also very happy to receive US dollars, Euros or pounds sterling. In South Africa and Namibia, it’s best to tip in rands (ZAR) or to add the gratuity to your bill.

HOW MUCH TO TIP:
The following are guidelines only – please feel free to increase or decrease your tip according to the level of service that was provided to you:

Transfers
Budget about ZAR 30 / USD 3 / EURO 2 per person per transfer to hand to the driver at the end of your journey. If he or she has helped extensively with your luggage, consider increasing the tip.

Restaurants
Bills for parties of fewer than eight people generally do NOT include a service fee – it is up to you to add it at about 10 percent of the total for good service or 15 percent for exceptional service. Some establishments may automatically add a service day for parties larger than eight people. This will be stated on your bill.

Bars
It is customary to tip bar staff about ZAR 5 a time if you order directly from the bar or to add a 10 to 15 percent fee if you are running a tab and a waiter has been serving you.

Hotels
Bar and waitering staff in hotels expect the same as those in restaurants. For bellhops or porters, consider ZAR5-10 / USD1 per bag.

Garages
If you are self-driving in South Africa and Namibia, please bear in mind that you are not allowed to fill your own tank at service station. Only petrol attendants are permitted to do so in accordance with safety regulations. Tip about ZAR 5 – 10 for having your tank filled and about ZAR 15 – 20 if they also pump your tyres, check your oil and water, and wash your windscreen.

On safari
The following guidelines apply throughout Southern and East Africa:

Game lodge staff ZAR 110 / USD 15 / EURO 10 per couple per day
Ranger or guide ZAR 150 / USD 20 / EURO 15 per couple per day
Tracker ZAR 110 / USD 15 / EURO 10 per couple per day
Butler ZAR 90 / USD 15 / EURO 10 per couple per day
Game lodge staff such as kitchen staff, gardeners, guards and cleaners can be tipped in the ‘staff tip box’ where the gratuities will be shared among them.

TIPPING GUIDELINES FOR COUNTRY
BOTSWANA/KENYA/MALAWI/ZAMBIA/ZIMBABWE/RWANDA/CONGO
• Gratuities are not obligatory but they are customary throughout Botswana /Kenya /Malawi /Zambia /Zimbabwe /Rwanda /Congo
• Tips can be handed to the relevant member of staff in cash directly or placed in a staff ‘tip box’, if there is one.
• It is customary to tip taxi or shuttle drivers; hotel and airport porters; waitering and bar staff; chambermaids; tour guides; game rangers and trackers.
• For restaurants and bars, 10% to 15% of your total bill is customary, although some establishments may add an automatic service fee for groups larger than eight.
• For transfers, consider tipping about US$3 per person in your group to the driver.
• Game lodge staff can be tipped about US$15 per couple per day, and rangers and trackers about US$20 per couple per day.

MAURITIUS
•  Gratuities are not obligatory but they are generally customary throughout Mauritius.
• Tipping in restaurants is optional, especially if sales tax has already been added to the bill. If in doubt, enquire discreetly with the manager.
• Airport porters and hotel workers expect to be tipped but taxi drivers do not.

MOZAMBIQUE
• Gratuities are not obligatory but they are customary throughout Mozambique
• Tips can be handed to the relevant member of staff in cash directly or placed in a staff ‘tip box’, if there is one.
• It is customary to tip taxi or shuttle drivers; hotel and airport porters; waitering and bar staff; chambermaids; tour guides; game rangers and trackers; skippers and PADI staff
• For restaurants and bars, 10% to 15% of your total bill is customary, although some establishments may add an automatic service fee for groups larger than eight.
• For transfers, consider tipping about US$3 per person in your group to the driver.
• Game lodge staff can be tipped about US$15 per couple per day, and rangers and trackers about US$20 per couple per day.

NAMIBIA
• Gratuities are not obligatory but they are customary throughout Namibia.
• Tips can be handed to the relevant member of staff in cash directly or placed in a staff ‘tip box’, if there is one.
• It is customary to tip taxi or shuttle drivers; hotel and airport porters; waitering and bar staff; chambermaids; tour guides; game rangers and trackers; and petrol attendants.
• For restaurants and bars, 10% to 15% of your total bill is customary, although some establishments may add an automatic service fee for groups larger than eight.
• For transfers, consider tipping about US$3 per person in your group to the driver.
• Game lodge staff can be tipped about US$15 per couple per day, and rangers and trackers about US$20 per couple per day.

SOUTH AFRICA
• Gratuities are not obligatory but they are customary throughout South Africa.
• Tips can be handed to the relevant member of staff in cash directly or placed in a staff ‘tip box’, if there is one.
• It is customary to tip taxi or shuttle drivers; hotel, railway and airport porters; waitering and bar staff; chambermaids; tour guides; game rangers and trackers; golf caddies and ‘car guards’ (if you hire a car, informal guards may offer to keep an eye on it while you are away).
• For restaurants and bars, 10% to 15% of your total bill is customary, although some establishments may add an automatic service fee for groups larger than eight.
• For transfers, consider tipping about US$3 per person in your group to the driver.
• Game lodge staff can be tipped about US$15 per couple per day, and rangers and trackers about US$20 per couple per day.

SEYCHELLES
• Gratuities are not obligatory but they are customary throughout Seychelles.
• Tips can be handed to the relevant member of staff in cash directly or placed in a staff ‘tip box’, if there is one.
• It is customary to tip taxi or shuttle drivers; hotel and airport porters; waitering and bar staff; chambermaids; tour guides; skippers and dive staff; and golf caddies.
• For restaurants and bars, 10% to 15% of your total bill is customary, although some establishments may add an automatic service fee for groups larger than eight.
TAKE NOTE A sales tax of seven percent will be added to the bill.
• For transfers, consider tipping about US$3 per person in your group to the driver.
• Resort staff can be tipped about US$15 per couple per day.

TANZANIA
• Gratuities are not obligatory but they are customary throughout Tanzania.
• Tips can be handed to the relevant member of staff in cash directly or placed in a staff ‘tip box’, if there is one.
• It is customary to tip taxi or shuttle drivers; hotel and airport porters; waitering and bar staff; chambermaids; tour guides; game rangers and trackers.
• For restaurants and bars, 10% to 15% of your total bill is customary, although some establishments may add an automatic service fee for groups larger than eight.
• For transfers, consider tipping about US$3 per person in your group to the driver.
• Game lodge staff can be tipped about US$15 per couple per day, and rangers and trackers about US$20 per couple per day.
• On Kilimanjaro, tip your guide US$15 to US$20 per couple per day and camp staff (such as porters or assistant guides) about US$10 per day. At the end of the hike, hand all the tips to the head guide in front of all the staff for him to divide in private later. (see detailed information below)
TAKE NOTE If you’ve climbed Kili, guides and porters will appreciate any items you didn’t use, like spare batteries, socks, gloves, toiletries, head lamps, food and so on. If you can, leave bigger items like boots or backpacks too as these are difficult to come by in Tanzania.

Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

Tips make up a large proportion of the income of the mountaineering crew. If you are happy with the work that they have done, naturally you can give a little more. As a group of climbers, ask your guide for a list consisting of all the names of the team that also indicates the number of guides, porters, assistants etc. Among yourselves, decide how much they should receive and collect the total amount. During the leaving ceremony, read out aloud what each member of the team receives. This way, everyone knows his or her dues and no arguments can arise. You can give the entire amount to the chief guide who will then divide the monies accordingly.

The crew will also appreciate receiving items like spare head lamps, batteries, gloves, buffs, socks, beanies, toiletries, energy sachets, mosquito repellent and even sleeping bags and hiking boots. Consider leaving behind these items if you can as they will definitely be used on the mountain.

The guidelines below based on a group (not per person):

Marangu route
• Guide USD 15-18 per day
• Assistant guide USD 12-15 per day
• Cook USD 8-10 per day
• Waiter USD 7-9 per day
• Summit Porter USD 8-12 per day
• Porter USD 6-7 per day

Machame route
• Guide: USD 15-18 / day
• Assistant Guide: USD 12-15 / day
• Cook: USD 8-10 / day
• Waiter: USD 7-9 / day
• Summit Porter: USD 8-12 / day
• Porter: USD 6-7 / day
• Tent Crew: USD 8-7 / day

Lemosho Route:
After the climb, it is customary to give tips to all the members of the mountaineering crew. Below are guidelines based upon a group (not per person):
• Guide: USD 15-18 / day
• Assistant Guide: USD 12-15 / day
• Cook: USD 8-10 / day
• Waiter: USD 7-9 / day
• Summit Porter: USD 8-12 / day
• Porter: USD 6-7 / day
• Tent Crew: USD 8-7 / day

Rongai Route:
After the climb, it is customary to give tips to all the members of the mountaineering crew. Below are guidelines based upon a group (not per person):
• Guide: USD 15-18 / day
• Assistant Guide: USD 12-15 / day
• Cook: USD 8-10 / day
• Waiter: USD 7-9 / day
• Summit Porter: USD 8-12 / day
• Porter: USD 6-7 / day
• Tent Crew: USD 8-7 / day

ZANZIBAR
• Gratuities are not obligatory but they are customary throughout Zanzibar.
• Tips can be handed to the relevant member of staff in cash directly or placed in a staff ‘tip box’, if there is one.
• It is customary to tip taxi or shuttle drivers; hotel and airport porters; waitering and bar staff; chambermaids; tour guides; and skippers or dive assistants.
• For restaurants and bars, 10% to 15% of your total bill is customary, although some establishments may add an automatic service fee for groups larger than eight.
• For transfers, consider tipping about US$3 per person in your group to the driver.
• Resort staff can be tipped about US$15 per couple per day.

UGANDA
• Gratuities are not obligatory but they are customary throughout Uganda where many workers may be sole breadwinners or supporting extended families. Tips can be handed to the relevant member of staff in cash directly or placed in a staff ‘tip box’, if there is one. It is customary to tip taxi or shuttle drivers; hotel and airport porters; waitering and bar staff; chambermaids; tour guides; and game rangers and trackers.
• For restaurants and bars, 10% to 15% of your total bill is customary, although some establishments may add an automatic service fee for groups larger than eight.
• For transfers, consider tipping about US$3 per person in your group.
• Game lodge staff can be tipped about US$15 per couple per day, and rangers and trackers about US$20 per couple per day.

 

• ALL luggage should be in SOFT-SIDED bags only. We have seen an increase in the number of hard suitcases which do not fit into the small storage area of the aircraft. If guests arrive with hard suitcases, it delays the flight and all subsequent flights for them and other passengers throughout that day. Therefore, if guests travel with hard suitcases they are required to unpack and leave the hard suitcase in storage in Maun or pay for an additional seat or charter which we can accommodate at the time if there is availability. If there is not availability, the luggage will have to catch up with guests at a later time or destination. Please ensure your clients are aware of this before they travel.

• ALL luggage (including hand luggage and camera bags) should weigh no more than 20kg in total per person. If the suitcase does weigh more than 20kgs an extra seat or charter will have to be purchased for the additional luggage. This is a safety issue and by law we must comply with the Civil Aviation Authority of Botswana in all issues of weight restriction.

• Flight timings cannot be specified unless an individual charter flight is booked. Please note  scheduling is done  48 hours before the day of departure and they are committed to keep waiting times to a minimum.

 

BOTSWANA TOURISM DEVELOPMENT LEVY

The Levy Background
• The Ministry of Environment Natural Resources’ Conservation and Tourism through the Botswana Tourism Organisation wishes to announce the introduction of an obligatory Tourism Development Levy (TDL)

Purpose of the Levy
• The objective of the Levy is to raise funds for conservation and national tourism development in order to support the growth of the industry and broaden the tourism base, resultantly improving the lives of the people of Botswana.

Who is eligible to pay?
• All visitors to Botswana in exception of residents and citizens of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) member states

Where is the levy collected?
• The Levy is payable at all ports of entry including airports and border posts, starting 1st June 2017

How is the payment done?
• Payments are done at the ports of entry through cash (US Dollars). After the payment, a unique receipt corresponding to the passport will be generated. The receipt should then be presented to Immigration Officials. The passport and the receipt will be stamped and handed back to the traveller. The receipt will valid for a 30 day period and can be used for multiple entry.

How much is the levy
• Travellers to Botswana will pay USD30.00.
• The Botswana Government remains committed to growing the contribution of tourism to the national economy as well as economic diversification and employment creation.

For further information please visit the BTO website www.botswanatourism.co.bw/tourismlevy. For enquiries please email: tdl@botswanatourism.co.bw or call +267 391 3111

HEY!!

 

It was fantastic, Drifters is amazing! Parents were super happy. If you send me a link, I am happy to write you and drifters a review!

 

Defs coming back to Africa! 🙂

 

Rucha  and family  ( Austalia )

May 2017