Veterinary Wildlife Care
Is it safe to travel to Africa?
Africa is a large continent (twice the size of the United States) consisting of some 46 independent countries. Certain countries experience civil unrest or are at war, but a number of African countries are stable and popular tourist destinations. Safety is one of our top priorities and destinations are chosen with client safety in mind. Our destinations and itineraries are based on our knowledge of the political situations in the host countries and by closely heeding warnings from the US Department of State, Current Travel Warnings (http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/tw/tw_1764.html), the CIA ( https://www.cia.gov) and the local media in those countries. We cannot guarantee absolute safety, as no country can claim to be absolutely safe. However, we continuously strive to minimize the inherent risks associated with world-wide travel. To ensure the safety of all group members, our clients are expected to act responsibly and to heed any guidance and warnings given by the tour leader and guides.
Clients are also reminded that foreign countries do not always offer the conveniences, services, and/or protections, including medical and legal services they may associate with or be accustomed to in their home country.
When is the best time to go?
Traditionally, wildlife viewing while on safari in southern Africa is best during the dry season (May to October) and winter (June to August). The mild climate during this time makes travelling more comfortable. The water scarcity during these periods also forces animals to congregate near available water and are therefore easier to view.
What size are the groups and who joins the tours?
Our scheduled tours typically have small groups of less than 10 people to maximize your experience and to minimize environmental impact. Group members are from all walks of life sharing the same interest and enthusiasm for nature and adventure. To get the most out of your travelling experience, cooperation and harmony with fellow passengers is essential.
Yes we cater for single people, pairs, families and groups. All tours are sold on a per person sharing basis. If you book a tour as an individual, we will pair you with another person of the same sex. Should a suitable match not be found, the single supplement will be charged. If you wish to have guaranteed single accommodation (room or tent) a single supplement will be charged. This must be requested when making your reservation, and is subject to availability.
Accommodation includes a combination of hotels, lodges, guesthouses, chalets, bungalows, rondavels, or occasionally large luxury permanent tents on platforms. All have comfortable beds with en-suite bathrooms. Lodges in the African bush are luxurious, where you can experience the wonders of the natural world right on your doorstep without leaving the luxuries of life behind.
Luxury Tented Safaris
When you arrive at camp, large tents furnished with beds and blankets and typically en-suite bathroom are set up for you in a natural setting, close to the wildlife and other attractions you have come to see. Experience the luxury found only in classic African safari style, where all the camping chores are taken care of and meals are prepared by an accomplished bush chef for your convenience. Leave all the work to others while you enjoy the safari.
Sleep under the stars in dome-shaped tents on comfortable mattresses in your sleeping bag, and be surrounded by the night sounds. While the food is being prepared by an accomplished bush chef on an open fire, you can relax around the campfire. Get close to nature on these tours, an adventure you will never forget.
Do I need to be fit and healthy?
If you enjoy the outdoors, adventure and are active, your fitness level should be sufficient. Participation in one of our Africa tours requires that you be in a state of general good health. It is essential that persons with any medical problems and/or related dietary restrictions make them known to us well before departure.
Is there an age limit?
A minimum age of 12 applies to all tours, while a maximum age of 75 applies to the arranged group tours by Eko Tracks. For those over 75 who wish to travel with us, we can arrange a fly-in safari for you. If anyone misrepresents their age, we reserve the right to terminate their tour without refund. Eko Tracks cannot be held responsible for a refund in this situation.
Vegetarians can be catered for on most tours. For other special dietary needs please contact our office beforehand. The food varies from country to country, but is typically based on Western style meals. Occasionally some local dishes will be served. A local cook with experience in catering for Western groups prepares the meals while on tour.
A short description of the daily activities can be found in the itinerary of each tour. On each tour there are some opportunities for clients to relax or choose their own activities.
Our tours are all conducted in English. It is therefore required that all participants on the tour can communicate in English, for compatibility with others and for safety reasons.
Our policy is to respect the customs and laws of the host nation and to be least disturbing or offensive to local people. Your tour leader and the local driver/guides will brief you on this and you should refer to them if you are ever in any doubt.
Do I need to take Malaria prophylaxis or any other health precautions?
For overseas travel to Africa, anti-malaria precautions should be taken, and these are the sole responsibility of the client. For other health precautions and vaccinations please consult the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov or your local doctor.
Do you offer customized or special interest tours?
Yes, we do offer tours with customized itineraries for private groups (minimum size of 8 people) which allows clients the opportunity to design their own tour in co-operation with Eko Tracks.
We also provide tours for groups with a special interest in birding, photography, adventure , culture/anthropology, geology or ecology. To explore these opportunities please view the examples under Tours or contact us for more detail. We will gladly help you with the numerous options available across southern Africa.
Our clients are those with an interest and passion for nature, wildlife, adventure and the outdoors. We offer you the best of an African tour, enhanced by professional guides. Join us and see for yourself!
There are several sections on our website where you can read more about our tours. The itinerary with a short description of our tours is a good starting point. You can also go to Travel Information. If you have further questions, please contact our office.
The sooner you secure a place, the better your chance of joining a tour. Because of our small group sizes, tours tend to fill up quickly. Booking early also gives you time to prepare for the tour and ensure your travel documents and vaccinations are up to date. Keep in mind overseas flights need to be booked well in advance, which is crucial during high season – June to September and around the Christmas/New Year period.
To reserve a space on a tour, go to Reservations, and send the completed forms with the deposit to our office. The full balance will be due 2 months before departure. You can pay by cheque or bank transfer.
You will receive a Letter of Notification confirming your place on the tour and a Tour Dossier. Prior to, and not later than 2 months before your departure date, your full balance is due. Provided you have paid and are on time at the meeting point, you’ll be off on a magnificent holiday.
Each client is responsible for booking his/her own flights. Please make sure you book your flights well in advance for overseas travel.
We do not sell air tickets. This will give you the opportunity to search for the best flights available. Some clients may also want to use their frequent flyer miles, while other clients may come from other countries. The most important point to remember is that you must be at the meeting point in time! To ensure this, please confirm your flights at least 72 hours prior to flying and allow for sufficient check-in time.
Where does the tour start?
The tour starts officially at the meeting point in the host country as stated in the itinerary, where you will be met by a representative of the local tour operator. If you arrive a day earlier, you have to make your own arrangements for pre-tour transportation and accommodation.
It is compulsory for each client to have a comprehensive travel insurance policy for overseas travel which covers any medical expenses, flights, and all the activities detailed in the tour itinerary. Examples of coverage include:
- Medical (Emergency medical transportation, Emergency medical/dental expenses, Hospitalization, Medical repatriation, 24 hour hotline)
- Trip (Trip delay/interruption, Trip cancellation, Travel accident, Evacuation)
- Flight (Flight coverage, Missed connections, Flight accident, Baggage damage, Baggage delay, Baggage loss)
Your airfare to and from the host country is not covered in the tour price. Additional costs may include passport, visa(s), vaccinations, airport fees, personal gear and preparations. You will also have to purchase a suitable travel and medical insurance. Other obvious expenses like buying souvenirs, personal expenses, additional activities not listed in the scheduled tour, and gratuities are not included in the price. Once you have arrived at the meeting point in the host country and the tour has started, activities listed in the tour itinerary are included in the price.
Once you have signed up for a tour, you will receive a detailed Tour Dossier with a list of personal items you need to bring.
Yes, you can. Depending on the time of cancellation before departure, you will be charged a certain percentage of the outstanding amount. A summary of the cancellation policy is (for more detail refer to the Terms and Conditions Agreement):
|Less than 2 months notice||Deposit is not refunded upon cancellation|
|2 – 1 month notice prior to departure||50% of tour fee refunded upon cancellation|
|4 – 2 weeks notice prior to departure||25% of tour fee refunded upon cancellation|
|Less than 2 weeks notice prior to departure||No refund|
Why Travel With Eko Tracks
Variety: Our large variety of products, offer great travel opportunities for adventurers and outdoor enthusiasts with a passion for nature.
Expertise: With an intimate scientific knowledge of the African savanna and its wildlife, first-hand personal travel experiences and destination expertise, we offer a wealth of information to our clients.
Network: Having lived in Africa for more than 40 years and drawing on extensive long term business relationships we provide you with specially selected quality products.
Dedication: We are passionate about Africa with its large vistas, a plethora of wildlife unmatched anywhere else, and a diversity of cultures unique to this continent. But above all, we are dedicated to conservation through education.
“I learned so much and the interactive field work and labs were especially beneficial. Amazing! The best choice I’ve ever made with my life. It opened my eyes to everything going on here and was life changing. Samantha, Veterinary Field Study 2018.”
“I learned a lot about conservation that I didn’t before especially about the elephant problem, and the effects of game farming, hunting, poaching in SA. Mary, Veterinary Field Study 2018
“This was an amazing program and I would do it 10,000 times if I could. I learned so much and got to participate and see so much that I never would have in any other program. Amanda, Veterinary Field Study 2018
Wildlife Veterinary Course