Client Feedback

Client Feedback

J. Stotsky                                                             Traveled to:  South Africa

September 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Richard Schwartzel 

Richard was a delight to work with! My clients LOVED the South African trip! The transfers, hotels, private tours and flights were excellent. I wouldn’t book with anyone else. Will definitely use Richard again. Thank you.

J. & P.  Mitchell                                                              Traveled to:  South Africa

September 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski 

John and I decided to take this trip at the last minute. We were truly amazed at hoe quickly Kristina was able to develop and provide our itinerary. She arranged ALL of the activities that we wanted to see and provided us with the ultimate South African vacation. She went beyond the call of duty to ensure that we had her contact information and her colleagues(Karym Lopez, Jessica Acosta, Lorraine Yoyo and Maritza Valenzuela) when she was herself aboard a long international flight. She made sure that all of our questions and concerns were answered and she made sure that we received all our tickets and necessary documents even in the short amount of time that we had to prepare! Outstanding customer Service Kristina. John posted amazing pictures of our trip and many of our friends and family members are interested in visiting South Africa now! Thanks Kristina and all the staff at SAA for your outstanding customer service.

H. Byrd                                                               Traveled to:  South Africa

September 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Richard Schwartzel 

I requested that a tour be tailored to meet my interests and everything I desired was built into the tour for the two of us travelers. Drivers were waiting for us at each airport and transported us to the airports. Excellent tour guides were provided for us. As requested, Robben Island, the Mandela Museum, Soweto, and Victoria Falls were built in our tour as well as several other historical sites in Cape Coast, Johannesburg and Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe.
All of the people were friendly and the service was excellent. We had a great time. Thank you very much.

P. Woodard                                                               Traveled to:  South Africa

September 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Valenzuela 

Leigh Ann Simpson was my agent and she did an outstanding job ensuring we received everything we wanted from this South African trip we took starting Sept 5, 2019 until Sep 14, 2019. All the places we wanted to go and see, experience, she made it happen in an itinerary specific to our desires.

This was a once in a lifetime trip for us and she made it exceptional.

I will be in touch with her again if we save enough money to go to Africa again.

I wholeheartedly recommend her excellent services.

Thank you Leigh Ann. God bless you and yours!

T. Gibbs                                                               Traveled to:  South Africa

September 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Hallah Karaman 

We’re in the lounge in Johannesburg right now waiting on our flight later this evening.

This trip has been AMAZING!!! From start to finish, it has been nothing but spectacular and exceeded my wildest expectations. Cape Town was gorgeous and the tours included were perfect. We serendipitously got on the waterfront ferris wheel at sunset the night we arrived in Cape Town – the views and sunset were breathtaking, there couldn’t have been a better welcome to Africa. We went to the top of Table Mountain on the best weather day.

Chapungu tented camp was the perfect safari resort. The staff were so nice and very attentive to every guest. It was definitely luxury – from accommodations to food to relaxing! Our game drives were always eventful, as was the animal activity right outside our tent at night. We quickly checked off the “big 5” and were lucky to even get the “elite 7”.

In Johannesburg we had a long layover, so we jumped on the train and went to Mandela Square for lunch before settling into the lounge. And to put the cherry on top, SAA accepted our upgrade bid!

I can’t thank you enough for the experience you put together for us!! It is a trip I will never forget (and hopefully get to do again!).

B. Clayton                                                               Traveled to:  South Africa

August 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Valenzuela 

Just wanted to let you know how much we enjoyed our wonderful our trip to South Africa. Everything exceeded our expectations and it was so well organized with the tours, hotels and lodging, that it couldn’t have been a better trip. Christine Stevens and I want to commend you and everyone else that made it so memorable. I will surely recommend it to everyone interested in such a vacation!

D. Benz                                                               Traveled to:  South Africa

August 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Richard Schwartzel

My wife and I were celebrating our 30th wedding anniversary. We worked with Richard on our itinerary to South Africa and Zimbabwe and it worked out perfectly. All 3 legs of our trip (Cape Town, Kapama Private Game Reserve and Victoria Falls) were unique and memorable. Our accommodates and tours were top notch and Rich went out of his way to make sure we got into the exclusive Elephant Camp at Victoria Falls. Having grown up in South Africa, Richard was a wealth of information and recommended a number of places to visit and eat. We would definitely recommend SAA and Richard to our family and friends.

Calhoun                                                               Traveled to:  East Africa

August 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Richard Schwartzel

This was by far the most amazing vacation we have ever done. Our travel specialist, Richard Schwartzel, was responsive, knowledgeable, patient, put together our vacation from start to finish, picked the best companies to take care of us along the way, and went above and beyond to make this a fantastic experience. We give Richard a super A++++ and will use him in the future. We could not have had better service from a Travel Specialist or any of the companies used.

Pitterson Family                                                               Traveled to: South Africa

August 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Lacy Hill

Good afternoon. Thank you so much for arranging such an awesome trip for our family. It was truly amazing. We enjoyed every minute of it. The tours were great and the tour guides were excellent and super knowledgeable. We were surprised by the stop at the Little Bees Daycare ……It was heart warming and my entire family just loved the children. We embraced them with all our hearts and plan to adopt them. I’m in contact with the Principal. Robben Island’s trip was cancelled on the scheduled day, as the boats were not sailing but we were able to fit it in on one of our leisure days. We also visited the Table Mountain on one of our leisure days. That was very good planning on your part to leave a few free days for us to decided what to do and we thank you wholeheartedly. Please convey our thanks to the drivers and everyone involved who made these activities possible, The hotels were very accommodating and the service excellent. Travelling on South African Air was comfortable and incident free. On behalf of my family, I say 100 times thank you.

Reno-Munro                                                             Traveled to:South Africa

August 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Richard Schwartzel 

Every aspect of this vacation met or exceeded our expectations. The pace was perfect, the hotel in Cape Town was modern and the breakfasts were unbelievable. The Shepherd’s Tree lodge was perfect, with huge California King beds and mosquito nets draping from the ceiling to the floor, very romantic in an “Out of Africa” kind of way. The guides were extremely knowledgeable and led us on a wonderful adventure where we saw the Big Five and more. We have already given Richard the names of some friends who we know with his guidance would be in excellent hands. Thank you.

Gibbs                                                                     Traveled to: South Africa

July 2019

Trip Created by Africa Specialist Hallah Karaman

We’re in the lounge in Johannesburg right now waiting on our flight later this evening.

This trip has been AMAZING!!! From start to finish, it has been nothing but spectacular and exceeded my wildest expectations. Cape Town was gorgeous and the tours included were perfect. We serendipitously got on the waterfront ferris wheel at sunset the night we arrived in Cape Town – the views and sunset were breathtaking, there couldn’t have been a better welcome to Africa. We went to the top of Table Mountain on the best weather day.

Chapungu tented camp was the perfect safari resort. The staff were so nice and very attentive to every guest. It was definitely luxury – from accommodations to food to relaxing! Our game drives were always eventful, as was the animal activity right outside our tent at night. We quickly checked off the “big 5” and were lucky to even get the “elite 7”.

In Johannesburg we had a long layover, so we jumped on the train and went to Mandela Square for lunch before settling into the lounge. And to put the cherry on top, SAA accepted our upgrade bid!

I can’t thank you enough for the experience you put together for us!! It is a trip I will never forget (and hopefully get to do again!).

I’ll get some pics to send when I have better WiFi.

Thank you again!

Clayton                                                               Traveled to: South Africa

July 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Valenzuela

Just wanted to let you know how much we enjoyed our wonderful our trip to South Africa. Everything exceeded our expectations and it was so well organized with the tours, hotels and lodging, that it couldn’t have been a better trip. Christine Stevens and I want to commend you and everyone else that made it so memorable. I will surely recommend it to everyone interested in such a vacation.

Conway                                                              Traveled to: South Africa

July 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Traveling was executed perfectly, the accommodations were exemplary, the attention to details was exquisite and we even experienced activities and pleasures (like a bottle of sherry in our room) that were unexpected. Thank you for a most beautiful vacation experience!

Cohen                                             Traveled to: South Africa

June 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Nicki Bechtol

The hotel was perfectly located in Cape Town which made it very easy for us to book our own adventures in the area for the several days we had on our own. The lodge for our safari was incredible, the food was outstanding and the service was terrific except for our checkout day. Besides that we would highly recommend South African Airways, Nicki was an absolute pleasure to work with and we would definitely call her again and recommend her in the future.

 

 

Sheila and Michael                                        traveled to: South Africa

June 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Lacy Hill

It has been very busy since we arrived home. We loved our trip to Africa and would love to go back. The people are wonderful and it is an amazing place. The most amazing part of our trip was the time at the private reserve in Thornybush. It was perfect in almost every way. The couple who run the lodge, Chewy and Monica were wonderful. We felt like they were welcoming us into their home. They made you feel so comfortable. Chewy was an excellent ranger and we always felt safe. He took time to find out what we wanted from this adventure and made it come true. We tracked a leopard the first night and it was exciting to be so close. In Thornybush, you can go off road which we did quite a bit so the animal were up close. You really need to be able to trust your ranger and tracker, which we did. We saw almost every animal in Thornybsh except the wild dogs which are rarely seen. The only thing I would change about that experience was a later flight out the day we left. We were unable to go on the last game drive the morning of our flight as we were booked on the early flight. We did not get tired of going out in the truck at all.

We enjoyed Capetown. The Cape tour was very informative and we loved seeing the Ostrich and penguins. We booked our own wine tour and would recommend that also. We met so many new friends from all over the world on these tours. They were small groups on each so we really got to know each other. Next time, I would prefer a hotel closer to the water front. It seemed to be more tourist friendly with more activities and restaurants to walk to in the evening. The breakfast at our hotel was incredible. The room was also very nice.

Our last adventure was Zimbabwe. The Victoria Falls hotel was so iconic. We enjoyed staying there. The location and views were great. The staff were very friendly. We had a small problem with the room as it was two twin beds and it was our 35 year wedding anniversary. When we called down to try to get this rectified, they had no other rooms. We found out two nights later that they could make it into a King. HAHA. Apparently the only staff who knows this tidbit of information is housekeeping. It is a funny story and the hotel was apologetic and gave us a free dinner with African dancing to entertain us. The sunset cruise made our anniversary so much more special. The falls were magnificent. We also enjoyed the day in Botsawana with the cruise and the afternoon safari. It allowed us to see more animals including crocodiles and hippos. The safari drive was a little more commercial than Thornybush but very enjoyable.

You may want to warn your clients about the beggars in Capetown and Victoria Falls. They are fairly harmless but very persistent and annoying.

It was so nice not to worry about all the transfers and these worked out so well. We also appreciated the guidance that your agency gave us prior to our vacation especially the amount to tip. Fellow travelers were asking us if we knew how much to tip and we were able to show them your recommendations.

We are recommending this vacation to everyone we know.

Thank you,

Sheila and Michael

Griffitt

June 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Lacy Hill

Amazing experience. Wonderful, life-changing interactions with the Serondella Game Lodge staff – especially Chewie (guide) and Monica (host) – during our stay and on our safari game drives. Great support from SAA (Lacy Hill) throughout.

Without getting political, would recommend providing travelers with some fact-based information regarding poaching and the problems caused by patronizing big cat “petting zoos”. Would be good to let them know how / where they can get involved to support anti-poaching efforts…

June 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Hi Mark – I apologize for not writing earlier, but I wanted to let you know we had an AMAZING time on our trip. Cape Town was beautiful and the safari was just a dream come true. I couldn’t believe how close we got to the animals. All of our transfers worked out perfectly, our guides in Cape Town were great and the staff at the lodge in Sabi Sands were wonderful. I didn’t want to leave!
I’m hoping I’m able to get back to Africa some day soon. I’d love to do Tanzania next!
Thanks again for all you help putting this trip together. It was perfect!

Ramphal                                                       Traveled to: South Africa
June 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Richard Schwartzel

We are back from our vacation to SA and Victoria Falls.
We had a great time and appreciate you putting together the package for us.
You and your team made this a special vacation for us.
At the Thornybush Serondella Lodge, Monica, Chewie made us feel like  house guest visiting and not like paying customers.
Love the interaction with Chewie and Jeffrey on game drives. Having an evening cocktail or morning coffee in the SA bush is a life memory.
At Victoria Falls, we felt like honored guest. We feel like we got the best tables for our meals. At the BOMA we had front seats to the show. The most pleasant people ever.
This vacation was a long time in planning. At 4 years old, our first trip to Disney World, we did the Safari at the Animal Kingdom Park.
Told my son then I’d take him to a real African Safari one day. May 2019, he graduated college, this was his college graduation trip.
We had a great time.
Farnsworth/Divine                             Traveled to: South Africa

June 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Cathy Lenox

Safely home and I know we can all say this trip exceeded our expectations! It was everything we had hoped for and more. Thank you so much for making the arrangements. We especially enjoyed the Ngoma Lodge at Chobe. It’s the perfect safari setting and we got up close and personal with four of the big 5. Didn’t see a leopard, but did find an impala hanging in a tree where one had left it. I have a couple of information items to pass along for future travelers when we get settled. But we had a perfect time from our first day and I got all the research info I needed for my current books!

 

May 2019                                                        Traveled to: East Africa

Trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

We just got back from our Botswana trip yesterday and I wanted to thank you for helping us plan this most epic trip!  This was our favorite vacation ever and we just fell in love with Botswana.  Every step of the trip was executed perfectly and no detail was missed.  The lodges were all incredible and the staff were amazing.  The guides were especially outstanding and we saw so many animals and learned so much.  Thank you again for helping us with this dream trip!  We will definitely return to Africa and will use South African Airways Vacations again!!

Chrysogellos                                                           Traveled to: South Africa
May 2019
Trip created by Africa Specialist Kari Boys
I wanted to say Thank You 🙏 to her for setting up this amazing trip of a lifetime!  It not only met but exceeded our expectations!  Everything was wonderful and the icing on the cake was they upgraded us from Chisomo to Becks Safari Resort which was only a couple years old and top of the line!  5 Stars 🌟 in my opinion, from the resort, people, Safari, customer service, you name it!  I’m highly recommending Becks!  Also the breakfast as Sun Gardens was excellent but the staff wasn’t as friendly or helpful!Most incredible trip I could imagine! Everything went just perfectly… you gave us what we were hoping for:  THE TRIP OF A LIFETIME!Thanks so very much for your excellent help!!!!


		

Wooden                                                                              Traveled to: South Africa

May 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Kari Boys 

Good Morning!

Got your gift on Saturday, with pictures better than and I could have taken.  Thanks!
I would rate my trip 4 of 5 stars and recommend it readily.  Logistics were good and reliable, the accommodations fine and even better than expected, and the activities what I wanted.
Why not 5 stars, then?  Small things that were likely unknown to you and me.
For example, both hotels had very limited wifi – not access but limited to 350-500 MG daily of data which goes by real fast.
The Cradle of Humankind deserves more time, and perhaps a visit to Stenkfontein as well. The Lesedi Cultural Tour would probable be better in the afternoon, and might include a night’s lodging there.  (I also found it disconcerting as it involves black people in tribal clothes, which in the US would be seen as racist. But this was South Africa after all.)
Let me lift up the tour of Soweto as very effective, marred only by having too little time to take on the Apartheid Museum which truly requires 3 hours.  Consider a day that starts with a gold mine, which is why so many migrated to the city, and then Soweto.  Bundle the Museum with the Constitutional Court and Prison 4 (which my guide added and was fascinating and had too little time to take in).
District 6 in Cape Town, worked well with the Townships as they were related.  A little more context would have helped bring it all together.  On my own I went to the Slave House which added to that story in helpful ways.  Doing all three in one trip would make a full day.  The Cape Peninsula was very good, well paced and would have been enough without Kirstenbosch, which we saw very late and could only taste.  It deserves more.  Maybe pairing it with Lion’s Head or the Company Garden would work better. I took myself to Pretoria for a day, just to walk around and had a fine time. The Sandton hotel was close to the Gautrain and it took less than 40 minutes to get there. The Natural History Museum is small and easy, but also very dated. The Burgers Garden is beautiful and Melrose House across the street would have been fun but it is closed on Mondays, which is when I went.
I think that covers the bits and pieces.  It was a memorable and very enriching visit, perhaps my only one to Southern Africa.  The toughest part was flying there and back, as that is one loooooong flight.  Of course, any others flights would be longer. South Africa is far away!
Thanks for the cards and all the help. If you need a recommendation, I will happily supply one!

Lehr

May 2019                                                                                              Travelled to:

Trip created by Africa Specialist Lacy Hill                                         South Africa

Hello Lacy,It has been very busy since we arrived home. We loved our trip to Africa and would love to go back. The people are wonderful and it is an amazing place.  The most amazing part of our trip was the time at the private reserve in Thornybush. It was perfect in almost every way.  The couple who run the lodge, Chewy and Monica were wonderful. We felt like they were welcoming us into their home. They made you feel so comfortable. Chewy was an excellent ranger and we always felt safe. He took time to find out what we wanted from this adventure and made it come true. We tracked a leopard the first night and it was exciting to be so close. In Thornybush, you can go off road which we did quite a bit so the animal were up close.  You really need to be able to trust your ranger and tracker, which we did. We saw almost every animal in Thornybsh except the wild dogs which are rarely seen. The only thing I would change about that experience was a later flight out the day we left. We were unable to go on the last game drive the morning of our flight as we were booked on the early flight. We did not get tired of going out in the truck at all. We enjoyed Capetown. The Cape tour was very informative and we loved seeing the Ostrich and penguins. We booked our own wine tour and would recommend that also. We met so many new friends from all over the world on these tours. They were small groups on each so we really got to know each other. Next time, I would prefer a hotel closer to the water front. It seemed to be more tourist friendly with more activities and restaurants to walk to in the evening.  The breakfast at our hotel was incredible.  The room was also very nice. Our last adventure was Zimbabwe.  The Victoria Falls hotel was so iconic. We enjoyed staying there. The location and views were great. The staff were very friendly. We had a small problem with the room as it was two twin beds and it was our 35 year wedding anniversary. When we called down to try to get this rectified, they had no other rooms.  We found out two nights later that they could make it into a King.  HAHA. Apparently the only staff who knows this tidbit of information is housekeeping.  It is a funny story and the hotel was apologetic and gave us a free dinner with African dancing to entertain us.  The sunset cruise made our anniversary so much more special. The falls were magnificent. We also enjoyed the day in Botsawana with the cruise and the afternoon safari.  It allowed us to see more animals including crocodiles and hippos. The safari drive was a little more commercial than Thornybush but very enjoyable. You may want to warn your clients about the beggars in Capetown and Victoria Falls. They are fairly harmless but very persistent and annoying.  It was so nice not to worry about all the transfers and these worked out so well. We also appreciated the guidance that your agency gave us prior to our vacation especially the amount to tip. Fellow travelers were asking us if we knew how much to tip and we were able to show them your recommendations. We are recommending this vacation to everyone we know. Thank you, Sheila and Michael

 Koch

May 2019                                                                                              Travelled to:

Trip created by Africa Specialist Lacy Hill                                         South Africa

Lacy was extremely accommodating trying to figure out the perfect travel plan for us. She was very quick to respond to any questions and made sure we were taken care of before, during, and after! We will definitely try to use her again for other vacations in the future. The international flight on the way to South Africa was wonderful and flight attendants came around often to serve us. However, on the way back to New York we didn’t have air conditioning throughout the cabin to the point a woman passed out and everyone was sweating for 15 HOURS. The flight attendants told us they knew there was a problem but continued to be rude to everyone that inquired about it. We barely saw them during the flight and I was super disappointed with the experience back. The transfers throughout our trip were awesome! The drivers were so nice, knowledgeable, and very prompt. The accommodations were way better than we were expecting! The Cape Town hotel was new, beautiful, and very clean. The lodge at Thornybush was SO nice and we had the best view! The entire trip was more than we could have imagined. All the activities provided so many memories for us. The only thing I would suggest is we heard other people that went through a different travel company were offered a night in Franschhoek and I think that would have been a great option to add to the itinerary.

 Jansen/Van Etten

May 2019                                                                                              Travelled to:

Trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski                South Africa

Just wanted to let you know what an absolutely wonderful trip we had. It was a dream come true for all of us.  Each day we thought it couldn’t possibly get better, but it did!  Thank you so much for you expertise….. transfers went incredibly smooth, accommodations were superb, tours were beyond amazing… not to mention your assistance with the spa which could not have been more perfect with timing. Please know we greatly appreciate how you went above and beyond to help us plan.

N. Van Etten

April 2019                                                                                              Travelled to:

Trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski                South Africa

 

Our African adventure was beyond amazing! Kristina was there every step of the way assisting us with our plans. Her expertise and guidance was invaluable… from accommodations, to transfers, activities and even best times to visit the spa. Each day we thought could not possibly get any better, and it did! If I could give her a 10 on a scale of 1-5, I would. Our room At Thornybush was upgraded to a 3 bedroom, 3 bath unit. It was beautiful!!! Our dream trip was above and beyond anything we ever imagined.

Hi Kristina,

Just wanted to let you know what an absolutely wonderful trip we had. It was a dream come true for all of us.  Each day we thought it couldn’t possibly get better, but it did!  Thank you so much for you expertise….. transfers went incredibly smooth, accommodations were superb, tours were beyond amazing… not to mention your assistance with the spa which could not have been more perfect with timing. Please know we greatly appreciate how you went above and beyond to help us plan.

Saunders

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Lacy Hill

Travelled to:

South Africa

 Dear Lacy,
Thank you for your email. We arrived back home safe and sound after thoroughly enjoying our holiday. Ligia was an excellent guide, punctual and with a wealth of information. She was great with our children and we loved her company. 
We had hoped we would be closer to beach and would actually have enjoyed more time at Boschendal. Hopefully next time!
Thanks and Regards,
A. Saunders

Young

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

Each leg of the trip was more impressive than the next. Victoria Falls, Cape Town and Timbavati accomodations, staff, meals and tours were all at least what was promised if not moreso. South African Airways surely sets a new standard in providing a pleasant experience for an extraordinary amount of travel. We were never so well cared for nor so well fed. And I’m writing this after having just arrived home upon completing 40 plus hours of travel!
Bravo!

A. Saunders

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Lacy Hill

Travelled to:

Mozambique

Dear Lacy,

Thank you for your email. We arrived back home safe and sound after thoroughly enjoying our holiday.
Ligia was an excellent guide, punctual and with a wealth of information. She was great with our children and we loved her company.
We had hoped we would be closer to beach and would actually have enjoyed more time at Boschendal. Hopefully next time!

Thanks and Regards,

Amanda Saunders

D & A Ripley

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Richard Schwartzel

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hello, Richard,
We returned from our cruise and South Africa trip last Thursday. I just wanted to tell you how much we appreciated and enjoyed all the arrangements you made for us in South Africa. Everything was perfect and we had a wonderful time. We definitely want to return for a longer South African visit but need to decompress from the most recent  experience before deciding on details, etc.
Best wishes,
Doug and Arlene Ripley 

M. Cabalona

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

Fantastic from start to finish.  Accommodations were great, unique boutique style.  Loved Cape Town, wine country and safari.  Kristina created a vacation that checked every box on our South African vacation.

L. Pineda

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was awesome, the best vacation I have had. SAA kept us moving (great landings) and on time departures. The varied experiences were great as well. The safari was fabulous. Hands down – it was the highlight of our trip. Kristina was fantastic to work with and she gave us a very good vacation plan. She was flexible and always ready to assist. Will definitely do another safari.


M. Moore

March 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Cathy Lenox

Travelled to:

South Africa

Please excuse this belated thank you. I had the best time on my trip to SA! You did a wonderful job. Found great hotels that were convenient, fun and safe. The airport transfers also provided ease and comfort. Great tours and the safari was amazing. I couldn’t have done it without you! I will always be grateful for this once in a lifetime experience.
Many thanks,
Megan

M. Lampedecchio

March 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

Fantastic from start to finish.  Accommodations were great, unique boutique style.  Loved Cape Town, wine country and safari.  Kristina created a vacation that checked every box on our South African vacation.

Roger & Stephany

February 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Cathy Lenox

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Cathy,
We just wanted to thank you for planning such a wonderful trip for us. Beck’s safari was fantastic. The guide, the room, the personnel, the food, the setting…..everything was unbelievable. We saw the Big 5 all on one day!! The wild life was unforgettable. And the Victoria Falls Safari Lodge was such a wonderful location. We were disappointed at first because there were no animals at the water hole. However….the next day the elephants came, and came and came and came!!! We counted 70!! What a thrill. And everything there was great too.

This is the first time we have ever used a travel agent to plan a trip for us and we are so glad we did. The flights were also very good with the exception that the flight home had a plane with a different configuration so we were in the very back with the seats that were very close together unlike the flight over where we were in the next section up with a little more room.

In any event. we will certainly recommend you to anyone that asks us about planning a trip to Africa!!

Thanks for your patience with us and for providing us with one memorable trip!!

Roger & Stephany


Stewart

February 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Valenzuela

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was incredible! Thank you so much for all your work. The safari was amazing, we saw the big 5 multiple times, Beck’s Safari Lodge was 5 star! Lovely, people, service and facilities. We could not have done this trip without your help. Having the guide from Johannesburg airport to get us on our connecting flight to Cape Town was crucial… I don’t think we would have made our flight with out him. Also, we took your advice and stayed in the Bidvest Lounge at Johannesburg on the way home. It was really worth it to have a place to lounge before our long flight home. We had such an terrific time, I’ve been sad to be home.

E. Feuer

July 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaBotswana

Just as she did 2 years ago, Kristina did a wonderful job customizing this trip for us, and we had a great time. Staff at camps were great, from the guides to the waitstaff. Chefs did an admirable job accommodating my dietary issues.
E. Feuer

Jones

June 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

This experience was great. The lodges we stayed in and the excursions we’re awesome. All my wife and I had to do was wake up, eat and be at a certain place at a certain time and the rest of the day handled itself. I would definitely like to travel to Africa again and I would definitely use Kristina and SAA. I appreciate you making this trip for my wife and I the best ever…
-Jones

D. Thompson

May 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Cheryle,
I wanted to thank you for the “best” trip ever!
I was taken back by my experiences and just loved South Africa.
– D. Thompson

Christie & Peter

April 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!!  Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in it’s own way.  We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time.  Both lodges were wonderful.  The rooms were great and the staff so helpful.  Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet.  All the food  was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it.  The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were  also a lot of fun to spend time with.  My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old!  Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us.  It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
Christie and Peter

J. Mackin

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

For me, it was a little daunting travelling to South Africa and Zimbabwe with my family. Mostly, because of the unknown. Upon arrival however, EVERYTHING worked out flawlessly. The hotels were great, the guides were personable and interesting, the transfers were all there when we arrived. I am sure you have an idea of how comforting this is for a traveler(s) far from home. I would also like to point out that whenever I emailed Kristina (with all of my questions over the course of 6+ months), her responses were lighting fast. It was clear that she truly had our best interests at heart. I would recommend her in a heartbeat.
Thank you to SAA Vacations for contributing to a lifetime of good memories!
Best Regards,
J. Mackin

Holly

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hey Mark,
Thank you so much for everything! I know I’ve said that many times before but I really do mean it. You have been so invaluable. I reached out to several companies for quotes but none of them felt right and provided me with the level of service you did!
Thanks!
Holly

C. Rutherford

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sylvia,
Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!! Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in its own way. We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time. Both lodges were wonderful. The rooms were great and the staff so helpful. Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet. All the food was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it. The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were also a lot of fun to spend time with. My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old! Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us. It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
C. Rutherford

T. Rosengart

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
Stan and I are back from our incredible trip to South Africa. Thanks for all of your help putting it together. Everything went very well and all the details worked seamlessly. We were very pleased with the accommodations, transfers and tours that you arranged. Thanks again. The Cape Grace Hotel and Thornybush Waterside Lodge, both far exceeded our expectations.
Incredible pictures, great memories!
T. Rosengart

Barbara

February 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
We are having the most fabulous time. As you said it would be, everything has been seamless. The people are the warmest, kind and helpful I have ever met. The game drives are incredible. Yesterday, was a banger day. Even the guides had never seen anything like it and couldn’t stop talking amongst themselves. We ran to see a zebra giving birth. When we got there on the other side of our jeep, sat two cheetahs. Within minutes they took off on a kill of another young zebra. It was the full cycle of life; birth on one side and death on another of the same species.
So hard to leave the tented camps, each camp is better than the next… We are now off to Ngorongoro.
Thanks for everything.
Best, Barbara

Laura W

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Hilari!!
Just finally settling in to being back home after the most amazing vacation I have ever had. I want to first thank you for your help with this trip. From start to finish every detail of this trip was perfect. The arrangements you put in place for us, could not be better organized. We actually cannot pick a favorite moment, since it was all so perfect. Cape Town was the most beautiful city I have ever traveled too and WILL visit again at some point in my life. The Kwa Maritane Bush Lodge was a lifetime adventure. My husband, who normally is very low key was like a little kid all over again, upon our arrival and with every Safari Drive we were on it just became more exciting. The guides could not be more inviting or knowledgeable. We all were truly satisfied with every aspect of our vacation. I cannot thank you enough for making our arrangements so perfectly!! I will forward pictures as soon as I get my act together. If you ever need a recommendation please feel free to use myself or any of my travel companions.
Regards Laura Williams

Lee

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful trip if a lifetime! Hilari did a great job making arrangements and booking our itinerary. The flights to SA were no problem. We did have a glitch from Phoenix to JFK where they split up our seats so we were all sitting separately (includlng the kids sitting by themselves next to strangers) so we had to purchase upgraded seats at the last minute to get us all together. Our experiences in Cale Town and Shameari were exceptional. The Accomodations at both locations were terrific and we would recommend them again. Our driver for our Cape Tour was one of the best we have ever had. We are recommending him to others we know who will be traveling there. Our safari guide was also fabulous – became like a family member to us. We loved the whole experience. Only downside was on the way home, SAA flight was subpar- seats were broken including my husband’s entertainment system which made a long flight a lot longer. Otherwise, we cannot wait for the day when we are able to go back!!

Buckley

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We couldn’t be happier with you and your company’s service and the trip as a whole! Have already passed your name on to a few others! Truly was the trip of a lifetime and should be on everyone’s bucket list that loves to travel. Every step of the way exceeded our expectations and the service was top notch at all accommodations, tours, tour guides, etc. We also felt your suggested must-do’s as well as suggested time-frames at each spot to get the most out of the trip were right on. We really appreciated all of the special little “honeymoon” touches that you and the various accommodations set up for us! It made everything that much more special and romantic, so thank you SO much for that. And in general for just working through the modifications to the itinerary with us, being so responsive to our inquiries, etc.
Our one suggestion with regard to Cape Town would be to tell the travelers in advance that the tour companies you pair with offer both half day and full day tours. For our wine day and cape peninsula day, we did not know that half days were an option and would have chosen a half day at one or both to enable us to have a bit more “free time” in Cape Town.
I forwarded a number of pictures to Kristina. Feel free to use! We have a ton more, so if you are looking for something specific, just let me know.
Thank you again! Should we ever safari again we would certainly work with you to plan it.

Pam P

November 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We got home last night as we spent overnight in NY recovering from the flight. We had a wonderful time and my husband describes it as “one of the best trips he has ever been on.” That says it all. The hotel One&Only was outstanding and the location was great. We were spoiled. On arrival they gave us a glass of sparkling wine and that set the tone for the whole trip. Thorny Bush Lodge was great and the animals we saw seemed almost surreal.
Thanks Sherry for all your help. We have done a lot of travelling over our lifetime but you have to be the best travel agent we have ever dealt with. In a short time you managed to put together a fabulous trip and answer every question we had with speed and efficiency. We would recommend your services to anyone who might ask and have already told our kids to put South Africa on their ‘to do and must see’ list.

Morris

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari planned the perfect customized trip for me to South Africa and Mauritius. We chatted by phone twice, and by email a couple of times, yet she knew precisely what kinds of tours and accommodations would suit my personality and tastes. What an amazing adventure I had! Something I have been thinking about doing for many years has been realized. I will never forget the experience. Thank you, Hilari!

Lani & Matt B

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Elizabeth,
Thank you so much for the sweet package in the mail!
We wanted to tell you how appreciative we are for your hard work to make our trip as special and amazing as it was. Every day was exciting and successful, making it truly a trip to remember. All hotels were luxurious and had great service, far exceeding our expectations.
Sending you all our thanks,
Lani and Matt Bettinger

Strunk

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience traveling in South Africa. It was truly one of the best vacations of all time. Elizabeth did a wonderful job putting the itinerary together. She was endlessly patient with us as we tweaked here and there and added on more experiences to maximize our trip. All of the accommodations were brilliant – top notch. We especially loved the Kariega Game Reserve. It was a perfect first safari experience for our children. We also loved Oddshorrn and the ostrich farm more than we expected – we could have spent another night in that area. We can’t wait to go back to South Africa again and would definitely book through you guys. All of the services and recommendations were fantastic. Special thanks to Elizabeth for putting it all together for us!

Stachiw

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

It was a trip of a lifetime. Elizabeth is a fantastic consultant who worked closely with me to put together the perfect itinerary for our family. Cape Town was wonderful and we absolutely loved Rovos Rail. We ended the trip with a safari that exceeded our expectations. All of the transfers and tours were on time with no issues. I could not have imagined a better vacation. Thank you SAA!

Scott F

July 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa Zambia

Hi Elizabeth,
Well, we are finally back home, recovering from our AWESOME  South Africa trip!!
I just want to let you know that the trip you put together for all of us was OUT OF THIS WORLD!!  It was probably our best trip that we have been on in our life!!
I want to THANK YOU for putting this trip together!!!  Everything that you suggested, we did, and glad that we did it!!  There is not one thing that we can complain about!!  That is how smooth and great the trip was.
It was a trip of many “FIRSTS”: First time in South Africa, First time on safari, First time seeing many of the animals that we did, First time at the Falls, First time on a big vacation with Bruce and Mel (and they still like to hang with us), First time I had to carry around an additional 35lb sculptor where-ever we traveled to that Jo bought the 2nd day of our trip, etc…..and the list goes on and on!! All of it a great time!!
All the accommodations, from the hotel in Cape Town and Joburg, to the unbelievable Buffalo Camp in Kruger, to the hotel in walking distance to Victoria Falls, these were way above what we expected!!  Especially at the Camp!!  Besides the awesome cabins they put us in and the safaris we participated in, the food was out of this world as well!!  Everyone there treated us like royalty. We are not use to that at all and it was such a wonderful experience!! All of the transportation to and from hotels, airports, even on the tours in Cape Town, were again tremendous and all ON TIME!!  Amazing!!
You really out did yourself and we appreciate all the time and effort you put into making this an AWESOME trip for all of us!!!  One that we will never, ever forget!
Thank YOU…THANK YOU….THANK YOU!!!

Dunn

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was AWESOME! Sherry did a fantastic job tayloring the tours to our varied interests. The only thing I would do differently next time would be to add more days in Cape Town and slow down the pace, to afford more free time for exploration!
Thanks Sherry!

Vicki S

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark–we have arrived home safely from our incredible trip. Now trying to adjust body clocks 🙂
Just had a little something emailed to you from Starbucks to say thanks for all you did for the last six months to get us organized and ready to go! Please let me know it arrives safely in your “inbox.”
We now face the daunting task of going through all the photos we took so that our friends will indulge us when we ask, “Want to see our pictures from Africa?”
Both my husband and I agree that we want to make a return trip to another part of the continent someday and will certainly be in touch if you are still available to help!
Thanks again for everything!

Adams

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great experience due to Kristina doing such ardent planning to meet our financial goals as well as making sure that we were seeing what we wanted to see in Africa. She was delightful in her delivery of the itinerary that met our needs and expectations. The properties were great and most important the people of Africa were welcoming and most helpful. Her choice of properties made the trip memorable as we had some fine dining under the stars on many occasions. The safari program was superb with an excellent guide for just the two of us with our own tracker as well. We saw the big five and much more. South African Airways was a superb airline in service and in hospitality. They truly served good meals in the air as well as making us comfortable. I will in the next few weeks upload to Kristina some photos of our experiences.
Thanks to Kristina for her dedication and love for Africa.

Judy H

May 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Mark,
Thank you for the thoughtful gift of safari note cards……another way to remember our fabulous trip.
The vacation was perfect. We saw so much and learned so much. The staff at all the lodges we stayed at couldn’t have been more welcoming and fun. I will remember this trip always.
Also we owe a big debt to you. You were so very helpful before we went and thoroughly prepared us for the trip. So all in all thank you so much. If we decide to do another African trip you will be the first person we talk to.

Flavio A

April 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari,
WOW WOW WOW, My wife and I have set foot in four Continents and have visited 17 different Countries and other than my Native Country if I were to recommend one it will be SOUTH Africa.
What a beautiful Country not only for the Breathless and Speechless moments over and over we had for the Beaches , the mountains, the wild animals but more importantly their people.
If I were to rate my experience from one to ten, one being the lowest rating and ten the highest I would give an ELEVEN to South Africa.
Did I say that the food quality and presentation is great and the prices are even better????? Well they simply are.
I went to do the South Africa IRONMAN in Port Elizabeth and the prices I paid for one week at the Radisson Blue, wouldn’t even have three days in USA, needless to say that the service is the best.
While riding my bike the day of the event a monkey got across the road in front of me and in my way back there were two little monkeys sitting at the edge of the road watching us go by. What a spectacle. I was expecting to see wild life until I went to the Safari not knowing that on race day we had them as spectators.
Gino The Tour Guide in our City tour in Cape Town was very knowledgeable, very friendly and had us in AWE for the entire day.
I was thinking that that was the best thing we were going to have in our trip not knowing that Tyrone our Safari Tour Driver was ten times better than Gino.
We went four times in the Safari and every single time we got to see the Wild Animals over and over, but every single time was like a completely new show.

Tony D

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Elizabeth,
Before I say anything else about how great the trip was–at the Portswood we were greeted with a bottle of champagne on ice with a 40th anniversary congratulation handwritten note, yellow roses on the bed and in the room on turn down, and at the Monwana reserve, Emma upgraded us to the Zulu suite, offering us congratulations on our 40th.
So special, thanks to you and to everyone else who was so thoughtful!

Angie T

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Cheryle,
We had a wonderful time. It was more than we could have hoped for. All of the arrangements that you made were terrific.  Thank you again.

Juby B

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark, we came back  on Sunday and just wanted to let you know, trip was great we had a blast. I will get back to you as there are many other places I would like to visit. Tks for putting together a great itinerary and the hotels and the service was incredible.

Janice & Dirk J

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Hi Maritza:
Dirk and I wanted to let you know about our wonderful trip. Unfortunately due to the storm in New York we missed a day in Cape Town, but all in all it was a fabulous vacation. The hotel in Cape Town was very nice and we enjoyed some time on the nice patio. The day trip to Cape of Good Hope was excellent and the penguins were fun to watch. We also visited the water front and Table Mountain.
The highlight of our trip was our stay at Thornybush Serondella Lodge. We were amazed at how close we were able to get to the animals and we saw the Big 5 within 1 day.! The lodge itself is very luxurious and we were fortunate to have a room overlooking the watering hole and saw many animals there every day.
The Safari Lodge in Victoria Falls was very nice. We enjoyed our dinners overlooking the valley and the watering hole.
We were so impressed at the level of organization. All our flights were on time and we were met everywhere as arranged. We would certainly recommend SAAV to anyone looking for a great holiday. Thanks for all your assistance in putting this together for us.

Daniel C

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience. We loved Cape Town and everything that was arranged for us there from the hotel to the tour, which was a lovely experience. The transfers were prompt and delivered us where we needed to be. The Pilanesberg reserve was incredible and we got to see so many animals up close! The hotel that we stayed at their was so gorgeous and the service was perfect.

Andrew H

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Thanks to Hilari and her efficiency and knowledge, we enjoyed a trip that was a once in a lifetime experience.
The resorts and events set up, especially at the Bakubung Bush Lodge and the Victoria Falls Safari and Lodge were unforgettable.
Thanks again for everything and would definitely look to you again for future destinations.

Janet H

January 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

Our guide made our time in Tanzania perfect; he was so knowledgable, helpful, cheerful, and we were SO impressed by his information, his driving skill (in conditions that were kind of challenging), and his alertness helped us spot the animals frequently. He really made our safari the truly spectacular experience.

Catherine F

January 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

This was a terrific trip! Lori Visser, our agent, helped us in a thousand ways–sometimes in areas where we didn’t even know we needed help.
Our guide, SP, was the best: he knows about the land, the animals, and the birds and wants to continue learning. He’s also personable and an excellent driver. Please give him a raise! In your publicity, include the absolute necessity of having an experienced guide.
Also, include the Masai in what you say about the trip! We enjoyed them (the men) so much, also liked how the Lake Natron lodge was situated between two Masai villages. We could see people going about their business, children going to school, etc. Sadly, the women were more difficult to relate to. We had no language in common. They were interested only in selling us their beadwork.
I liked the variety in the lodging. Please encourage the people at Lake Natron to upgrade their facilities. They don’t need to be fancy, but put the thatch on the roofs, fix the broken lights, install safer showers/baths. Toilets are new–nice. One over-the-top place was more than enough (Serena Serengeti). Acacia Farm Lodge is stunningly beautiful, but details need to be attended to. I don’t need rose petals on my bath mat. I’d rather have the blown-out bulb replaced in the bathroom, an electrical outlet there, and an adapter so I could use the hairdryer provided. The staff was most welcoming.
Again, a trip of a lifetime!

Jim & Hazel S

December 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Sherry
 Hazel and I wanted to thank you for organizing our recent, wonderful vacation in South Africa. Everything worked out perfectly travel wise and we really enjoyed it. Cape Town is a beautiful city and the three tours you set up for us were really excellent, we saw a lot and learned a lot. The subsequent time on Safari also was excellent. The accommodation was small and outstanding, the ranger and other staff were excellent and looked after us well. We saw lots of animals including all of the “big five” and enough giraffes to keep even Hazel happy (she loves them!)  Many thanks once again.
 Jim and Hazel S.

Latasha F

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Gabe Greenberg

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Gabe,
Thank you so much for the cards.  They were the bees knees.  It was comforting to have you walk me through my trip after I missed my flight.  By you rearranging everything, I didn’t miss a beat.  I know I will visit South Africa again and will be sure to use your vacation services.  I will also tell my friends to contact you if they travel to Africa.
Matter of fact, do you plan trips to Gahna?  My sister wants to go in the month of June.  I will copy her on this e-mail to possibly help with her planning.
Cheers!
Latasha

Linda H

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark! I wanted to thank you for the AMAZING South African adventure you planned for my family! It was PERFECT in every way! I honestly could not believe that with so many moving parts, that everything went off without a hitch! All the transfer pick-ups arrived EARLY to meet us.  There was never question about what was happening next. The shark dive was cancelled due to poor weather and boating conditions.  But they were quickly able to accommodate us on the following day.  What an amazing adventure!  We LOVED the Sun Cullinan hotel and its perfect location to the waterfront. The tour guide, Jason, who led us on the full day Cape Tour was AWESOME. And we met some cool families along the way following in our footsteps! The Serondella Lodge was so wonderful, that we literally cried when we left! Chewie, the Ranger, and his partner, Monica, the hostess, were some of the most wonderful people we have ever met, and they found a place in our heart forever!  The Victoria Falls Hotel was a perfect finish.  Thank you! thank you! I will be back to have you book my clients on this same adventure.  It was truly a trip of a lifetime and I appreciate all your insights to make it happen!
Happy new year!

Pinakin S

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a marvelous time one of the best holidays after a long time, everything without an exception was great Thanks to Hillari Ross who got us the perfect combination to stay, travel and commute. Will be recommending this unique experience to others as well. Keep up the good work and am tempted to do it again.
Thank you all once again and do keep me in the loop for any new offerings.
Pinakin

Castelo

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

What a great value for the two weeks!!
Your sending us to Thornybush was EXCELLENT and the staff at that site was incredible.  Would definitely return to enjoy Cape Town and the environs further east.

Ernesto L

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks Tom, this is the best experience in my life.  Never encounter so much thrill with those wildlife especially walk with the Lion. Please inform me any especial offer for next year, will bring my son with me. Thanks

Sveum

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

This was an amazing trip! We loved every aspect of it! Staying at Thornybush Game Lodge was the highlight of the trip. The staff at Thornybush were amazingly attentive!

Crystal K

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you very much for helping us to plan the best vacation ever!  I’m still basking in the glory of our trip to South Africa.  It was truly amazing!  Everything was first class and exceeded our expectations.
Arlene and her husband Hilton were amazing.  They took excellent care of us from the time we arrived until the time we left. For example, one day after our tours we were in the mood for a good hamburger.  Arlene and Hilton told us about a great restaurant that had excellent burgers and milk shakes; but they didn’t stop there, they actually drove us to the restaurant, and allowed us to go in and check the menu to see if it was something we wanted to come back for later.  When we checked in at the airport, Arlene stood at the security line until each of us made it through and waved at us as we headed to the gate.  The little touches were special, and will never be forgotten.
The Waterfront hotel in Cape Town was fantastic.  The staff learned our names, and were extremely pleasant.  The breakfast they serve is awesome as well as the cooks and servers.  The Kapama Lodge really exceeded our expectations.  From IP who picked us up at the airport, to Daron that checked us in, to our housekeeper Gift, and our safari driver Shanae and Stanley, we were never disappointed.  The food was great and the spa was amazing!!!
By far the most exciting point of the trip was the school visit.  The children at Moshesh will forever be in our hearts.  It was a blessing to be a blessing to the students and teachers.  We had so much fun, and made lasting relationships.  Arlene and Hilton made the experience even better by helping us to select the appropriate things for the school, and making sure we met their needs.  They even took us back to the school on our way to the airport so that we could hand deliver our cash donation.
As you can see, I can elaborate for hours about this trip.  I have shared the highlights with anyone who is willing to listen and look at my pictures.  We would be proud for you to share our photos, and will most definitely be a solid reference for SAA.  I will definitely complete the survey.
Crystal, I would like to personally thank you for helping to make our dream come true.  You were always professional and patient, even when my own patience was challenged.  I will definitely call you when I have the opportunity to plan another South African vacation, which may be soon.  My father-in-law was so impressed he has offered to take our family back to Cape Town.  I will let you know when we are able to secure dates 🙂
Best regards / Mit freundlichen Grüßen,
Crystal K

Ron M

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was terrific!  All the arrangements were impeccable.  Every driver who was supposed to show up did so at the right time.  The accommodations were luxurious.  We have nothing but good things to say about the places where we stayed.  We had a wonderful time at the Thornybush Reserve and got to see all the animals we hoped to see.  The Cape Town and the Victoria Falls tours were also excellent.
We would rate the trip a 10 out of 10 and are happy to recommend SAA Vacations to our friends.
Thanks again.
Ron M.

Ed & Sue

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Mark, Thanks to you and Maritza for putting together a trip of a lifetime for us. The flights were great, as were the tours. Our thanks to both Hylton and Wild Horizons, as well as Magic Bus. The hotels and lodges chosen were perfect for our needs. As you promised, the pickups were all on time and all waiting for us. The tour options chosen provided a perfect introduction/overview, for first time visitors. We did ride the elephants in Zambia.
We will glad to give you organization and both of you a five star rating for a job well done. In the future, if you have any clients or potential clients who our on the fence or apprehensive about the trip, we would be glad to talk to them on your behalf.
We are already starting to plan our next trip to South Africa.
Again thanks for all your help.
Sincerely,
Ed O. & Sue D.

Joyce B

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

My note is to express my appreciation for the patient, courteous, and informed help that I received from Mr. Mark Black.
He listened to my requests, regarading travel, and planned an interesting trip for me and my four, teenaged Grandchildren.
Mr. Black has excellent Customer Relation Skills.
Peace,  Joyce B  (AKA Grammy Joyce!)

Susan L

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

It truly was a trip of a lifetime, down to the very last detail!!! Thank you so much for all your planning and for the good care you took of all of us.

Arthur O

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hello Tom, Yes, we made it back safe and sound. Overall we would rate our journey as a “trip of a lifetime”.  We confirmed our memory that the South African people are the most genuine, open, caring people in the world!  We met people from all walks of life and found them all to be very gracious.  Our waistlines also attest to the fact that the food in South Africa is the world’s best!  The scenery, wildlife flowers, etc. all exceeded our expectations. Best regards,  Arthur O.

Tom & Holly S

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sherry! We had a GREAT trip!  Thanks so much for all that you did.  We will certainly refer you to friends, family, and colleagues.  In fact, around the water cooler today in the office I started to do just that. We did the “Devils Pool” excursion and the helicopter excursion over the falls.  Both were well worth it!  The Kariega Reserve was great too.  The guide, Victor, did an excellent job finding the elephants, rhinos, lions, etc for us.  A few photos are attached. The drivers were all on time, and the accommodations beat expectations! We thank you again and we’ll remember you and SAA the next time we go to Africa…maybe the East side next time, to see the migration from the Serengeti?  We’ll see…. Best Regards, Tom & Holly S.

Peter C

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, I wanted to thank you for the great work you did on arranging our tours and hotel in South Africa.  The tours where great, the guides excellent, the transportation perfect, and the hotel was awesome! Thank you so much for taking such great care of us! -Peter

Bob and Mary-Ann J

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, What a nice surprise. The notecards arrived to-day and they just brought back wonderful memories of our trip. Thank you so much. Of all the trips we have taken, this last trip to South Africa was the best. I cannot rave enough about the hotels, having our own personal driver and tour guide, and of course Kapama. Being in our 70’s and both being two times survivors of Cancer makes us especially appreciative of being able to go back to South Africa. Don’t know how many more Big trips we will be able to take, but the memories of this one will last forever. I will recommend you highly. Again, thank you for setting up our wonderful trip and again for the notecards – Bob and Mary Ann J

 

Carolyn D

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Crystal, Want to thank you for arranging the most glorious trip to SA.  Everything was perfect. I feel as though I spent 2 weeks being transported from place to place on a velvet pillow!! Every accommodation was excellent, every tour was fabulous. Would not hesitate to recommend.  Again, thank you!!

Steve H

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Just want to thank you for all your help with our  wonderful Africa trip.  Flights were all on time, drivers prompt.  Nice treat to have transfers prearranged.  Breakfasts all excellent everywhere.  Victoria and Albert offered upgrade to presidential suite for last 2 nights in Cape Town for small up-charge.  That was very nice – huge apartment.  Weather lousy in Cape Town but nice the day we drove out to Cape Point – beautiful.  Serondella was fabulous in every respect – service, personal attention, food, game drives.  Could not have been better.  Victoria Falls was gorgeous as expected.

Gregg C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for everything!  We had a fantastic time, and thought the trip was great. I wanted to say that our guide, Chris, at Tour D’Afrique, was fantastic…  he deserves some recognition… All the best! Gregg

Isabelli D.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesburg and Joburg.Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation. We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger. Again Thank you.

Jonathan H.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We just got back this morning. We had such an incredible time. We saw some fantastic things over there. Thanks for all your help getting this set up. -Jonathan.

Woodward Family

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

On the whole, our trip was wonderful. All of the places we stayed were nice and the guides assigned to us were wonderful.

Albin C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

The holiday was outstanding in every way!  Certainly there was the exoticism of the destination; the natural beauty of SA, catching a glimpse of the fauna — baboons, ostriches, kudu, et al (safe to say, there are none of these wandering around Miller Place) and simply the constant shift of the landscape were all winners. The Table Bay was an excellent hotel with exceptional staff.  The three of us were especially impressed by the quality of our guides; Enrico and Avril.  They were both knowledgeable with delightful personalities.  It was a pleasure to spend a day with them. In addition, everything was on time.  From the pick up for our tours, to the transfer driver there to greet us at CPT. We all know that SA has had a difficult history, but one leaves there with hope for tomorrow and a deep desire to return. As I’ve said many times before, you and Maritza are first rate professionals; knowledgeable, efficient, helpful and unfailing pleasant.  I hope your boss knows he/she is lucky to have both of you.

Len R.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks to your help, our trip was truly epic! The itinerary was perfect and the accommodations were 4 to 5 star with great value. Our 7 and 9 year old grandchildren were enthralled throughout! We saw all the big 5, plus hippos, jackals, hyenas, cheetah, and even a civet on a nighttime safari! We also saw about 150 species of birds! The boat rides in Chobe and at Victoria Falls were amazing! This is a great time to travel to South Africa because of the very favorable exchange rate — many meals were included on our trip, but now a reasonable restaurant meal is only about $10 U.S. — we had ostrich, zebra etc. in waterfront restaurants in Cape Town. Cape Town is an amazingly beautiful and sophisticated city, and our trips to visit a township, Mandela’s prison cell, and the Botanical Garden were all great.  Two small issues were quickly resolved by your South African counterparts and all the connections and pick-ups were seamless, in spite of the fact that we had 5 internal flights! We travel frequently, but this trip ranks at the top! Please express our gratitude to all involved! -Len

Michelle F.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Trip was fantastic! Everything was set up perfectly! Hotels were great, transportation was always perfectly on time! Great job! Thank you!I will recommend you to anyone wanting to go to SA! Best, Michelle

Chris H.

June 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great time in South Africa and I want to Thank you for your diligence in the planning of our itinerary – there were no issues at all! Everything went according to the plan and everyone was on time and ready to pick us up when they were supposed to. I was very impressed
The food and wine tour was GREAT – the guide was very knowledgeable about the area and shared some art places with us as well as the local food places. I would highly recommend that for first timers to South Africa. You may also want to look into adding the drumming/restaurant into your planned itinerary because it was so awesome. Besides the drumming lesson, they fed us traditional African food and entertained you with African song and dance throughout dinner.
Thank you again for planning our trip and being available to answer ALL my questions!

Jill K.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for the notecards!  We had a wonderful time in South Africa, everything went exactly as planned, no problems at all.  We enjoyed all of it but I think my favorite thing in Cape Town was a cooking class that my daughter and I took in the Langa township.  It was also nice to be so close to the waterfront.  We took the shuttle there every night to eat and buy gifts.  I managed to bring back 7 bottles of wine 🙂
We saw so many animals on safari, it was incredible!  The first time we went out we saw so many lions including cubs and we also saw lions hunting.
I guess I have to save up my money for another trip, I’d love to go back.  Thanks so much for all your help in making it possible.

E.L.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely notecards. We did see all the animals in the pictures. It was very wonderful vacation but much too short. Everything was perfect, accommodates were wonderful tours were great and on time, even the weather cooperated. Looking forward to more material from you about Botswana and Victoria Falls.
Thanks again,
E. L.

T. Ortega

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

All the guides, crew and staff were very knowledgeable. Their guide (Chris) in Cape Town provided an excellent overall insight into the history of South Africa. He was very accommodating and took the time to answer all their questions, took their pictures, etc.. The shark cage dive was also an excellent experience with friendly crew and staff. They have outstanding knowledge of the great white sharks and seals. Their safari guide (Owen) and his assistant (Federica) were also excellent and did their best to show them as many animals as they could find. They were very accommodating and knowledgeable about the animals and the terrain. Owen even gave them a lesson in star gazing and showed them the constellations that could be seen in South Africa. The accommodations were very nice and comfortable. They would highly recommend this trip to families and friends.

I. Desrosiers

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesberg and Joburg.
Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation.
We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger.
Again Thank you.

J&E Rock

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Eli and I want to THANK YOU so much for everything! Our trip was absolutely INCREDIBLE, and all of the plans were perfect, down to every detail!

South African Airways was by far the best airline we have ever flown, and the flight attendants were so friendly and went out of their way to make sure everyone was comfortable. The hotels were absolutely amazing, the staff went above and beyond to make us feel special on our honeymoon. The Victoria Falls hotel was beautiful, and the staff were so friendly to us. We thoroughly enjoyed all of our activities, especially the tour of the falls and the sundowner cruise. The One and Only surprised us with an upgrade to a suite, and with Champagne, chocolates and wine in our room upon arrival. We also had the most gorgeous view of Table Mountain. The second night we were there, we came back to a room with rose petals, candles and a note just saying they hope we were enjoying our stay. The staff was so genuine and always greeted us by name when coming and going. The concierge was extremely helpful with arranging plans and transportation on our free day, which we went up to Table Mountain and also did the Robbin Island tour. Katie our driver/guide for the wine tour and the tour of the Cape was FANTASTIC. She was so knowledgeable of the area and took us to a lot of great spots, both touristy and local. We had so much fun exploring Capetown and the wine lands with her. We did not think our trip could possibly get any better after Capetown, but Simbambali proved us wrong. From the time we arrived, everything was incredible – the food, the staff, the lodge and the game drives. They even surprised us with a private dinner in our room! We did not want to leave!

We truly enjoyed every second, and cannot thank you enough for helping us plan the most perfect honeymoon that neither of us will ever forget! We look forward to planning another trip to South Africa in the next few years with your help!


T. Deery

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black 

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Mark, your planning was fabulous.  Monwana was perfect, Chobe river safari/cruise was fabulous.   In KwaZulu Natal we spent our first night in Durban with a great view of the ocean, 3 days in St.Lucia ( Cape Vidal, kayaked with Hippos and Crocs, visited a Zulu school ), one night in Ballito at Salt rocks. Will send some photos when  we get them together. Please use us for referral.

S. Benito

May 2015
trip created by Africa specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

The whole trip was absolutely amazing in every respect – everything we saw and experienced, the accommodations, the food, the transportation- air, land and sea-, the weather and the people. Your professionalism and responsiveness in working with us to arrange all that was magnificent and Robin, the boys and I thank you so much for your patience and hard work in making it all happen.

Pam B.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

You did a fantastic job on all our accommodations.  Our drivers, Sun City, the lodge, the safaris were all fantastic and we had a wonderful time.   Thanks so much for everything.  I would highly recommend your services.

Diana W.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely cards…what a great surprise!  The trip was incredible and I want to take my husband.
Everything about the trip was wonderful.  I needed one last day to rest up.  We did see the Big Five in a day and a half.  I did have a treatment the last day at the spa which was half what I pay in the U.S.
All of the day trips were great. We had only one other couple with us.  Weather was wonderful.
Best trip we have taken.

D & R Rice

April 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

To all you at SAAV, thank you for planning a fabulous trip.
A few comments: all the transfer, pickups, hotels were great. Everyone was on time, courteous and knowledgeable. We could have spent more time in Cape Town. Beautiful city. The tours were great; small and intimate. Shark dive was amazing, although we had to leave hotel at 2:30AM to do the trip because of the weather.
The accommodations chosen for us were perfect. We enjoyed Serondella the most. The folks there were spectacular. The food in every accommodation was over the top!
I will recommend you all to friends planning a SA adventure.
Again, thank to you all.

Nicole C.

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline 

Travelled to:

South Africa

I am writing to express my appreciation of one of your employees. Tom Cline was very patient with me as I planned my trip to Africa. He suggested several safari lodges that were small upgrades to the lodge that was included in our package. After reviewing the options I was so pleased Tom went out of his way to make this suggestion since the lodges he chose will be a much more intimate and luxurious experience. He also was always kind when I needed to make changes in the dates of the trip. He called me to provide the opportunity to respond to questions I had about the itinerary. If I was expecting a quote to be prepared that was not finished he always sent me a message communicating the delay.
 In comparison to other travel specialists I’ve worked with Tom Cline is one of the best. He has excellent communication and interpersonal skills and has worked hard to make our anniversary trip to South Africa and Seychelles memorable.

William B. & Harold H.

February 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

I would like to echo the sentiments that Harold expressed in his email noted below.  The trip was simply amazing.  Everything went off as planned.  We did not encounter any difficulties.  I will share photographs as soon as possible.
Mark, as I have mentioned to you previously, you did an outstanding job and provided excellent customer service while planning the vacation package for Harold and myself.  I appreciate all of the timely responses and efforts you put forth in making sure we were satisfied with the details of the vacation.
Thank you so much putting together an incredible vacation package for William and myself.  The trip was exhilarating and filled with adventure and wonder.  There wasn’t one snag in the itinerary that you put together for us.  The hotels were fabulous and our driver/van was waiting to pick us up at every location.   I will tell friends about SAA and definitely use your service again when I travel to South Africa.
I have pictures and videos that I cannot wait to share with friends and family.

S. Greenwood

January 2015
trip created by Mark Black and Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South Africa

The Southern Sun in Cape Town was perfect: friendly staff, great room and breakfast, and the location was perfect for walks to both City Center and the Waterfront.
The two tours were also perfect. We were able to get up to Table Mt on the cable car, and then it closed for 2 days due to high winds so we were very lucky. We loved the full day Cape tour. We had the same guide, Iggy, for both days and he did a great job. We really enjoyed our 3rd day on our own since there were many places we learned about and wanted to visit: Castle of Good Hope, District Six Museum, Slave Lodge, Company’s Garden, and lots of time and bargaining fun at Green Market Square and then dinner at the Waterfront.
Monwana Game Lodge was really great. Jacques, Morris, Emma, Kelly and the rest of the team were incredible. We loved the size (only 8 guests) and the daily routine of safari, breakfast, rest, high tea, safari and cocktails before dinner. The food was superb. They made a special fireside New Year’s Eve dinner on the back deck. Jacque was a great host and educator on safari. We saw the Big 5 and plenty of other wildlife. Each outing was different and special.  We filled two cameras daily.
We would have loved to have been able to spend another day at Monwana ( our decision), but other than that, the mix of 4 nights in Cape Town and 2 at Monwana was perfect. We hope to return again, perhaps during August for even better viewing.
We would like to thank Mark and everyone at SAAV for putting such a memorable trip together for us

Sable S.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We visited Cornelia’s friend’s place in SA, the weather was great! We could not take the cable car to view the mountain as it was very windy. The hotel in Cape Town was not great, the rooms were very small, in fact Susan asked to move; I should have asked too as sharing the tiny room with Aziza my sister was very cramped.
The trip to Mowana was GREAT! We enjoyed the game and the meals at the lodge. That was a great place you recommended. I highly recommend it for other travelers.
Zambia was beautiful! We visited Livingstone but the waterfalls were not at peak. The Zambezi Sun was GREAT! My brother sent a driver with an SUV, we drove to Lusaka, stayed a night there and then drove to Sinda where my family stays. We spend a night there, and then drove to Chichele lodge at Mfuwe in Eastern province. We stayed there 2 nights. My brother paid for the trip!
Cornelia and Susan took the flight to Lusaka from Mfuwe; they stayed one night in Lusaka before they came back.
I want to thank you and your staff for the tremendous patience and all your help with all our trip coordination. You were particularly patient with us as we made all our changes. The trip was expensive but worth it.
Thanks again!

Elizabeth C.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Upon conducting an internet search for South Africa vacation planners, I randomly and happily connected with Sherry Lankin, beginning what was a wonderful experience in creating a first trip to this part of the world for my family.
We returned from our adventures last week, having had an incredible time. I called Sherry today, to thank her for her stellar work and excellent recommendations. However, I felt compelled to reach out to you, to commend your organization and to sing the praises of Sherry.
In her quiet way, she guided me through the intricacies of planning such a trek. She really listened to me when I talked about where I wanted to spend money and where I wanted to conserve money. She shared her experiences and made recommendations. I felt as though I was working with a friend, rather than an employee out to make a buck for the company. It became very natural to trust her judgement.
She is an effective communicator; I knew that a return phone call or email would be quickly forthcoming. Again, her dependability was impressive.
Kudos to Sherry Lankin. She is the first person I will call when we schedule our next trip to that part of the world.

A. Jones

November 2014 
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline  

Travelled to:

South Africa

Tom _ thank you for your welcome note. I must tell you that everything went so very well on our African trip, thanks to you. As for worries about ebola, thank goodness there was no trouble at all with stopping in Senegal. They certainly have it all under control.

The safaris went beyond our expectations — we saw a live game oil of a Bull by 5 lions — talk about learning about the killer instinct up cole! WOW is all I can say. The staff at Simbambili knows me, and We were greeted at the airport and the service at the lodge couldn’t have been better. As for the Chobe Game Lodge, well, I have a big fan there, and we were treated a bit like royalty, especially on my birthday, which they somehow already knew about!
All is all, it was the best trip we’ve ever taken to Africa and John and I wish to thank you for all of your efforts !!!!
PS: I also did TV & radio while in JoBurg so the Sandton Sun was the right call!

James and Ellen

trip created by Travel Expert Maritza Valenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Hi – we are back from South Africa/Zambia. It was the best vacation EVER!!! We loved every minute of it – the accommodations, food, Safari, Cape Town, and Victoria Falls. It was a vacation to remember.
Apparently, I can only send you six pictures at a time, so I will send you too additional emails. These pictures are from the Cape of Good Hope. We took (no kidding) over 1,000 pictures. Our only disappointment (very minor) was that, other than the mist in the distance, we couldn’t see Victoria Falls from Stanley Safari Lodge. The Lodge was further from the falls than we had expected. The falls were spectacular and a must see this time of year.
We had dropped Johannesburg from our trip (except for one night), and that was a good idea. Johannesburg, from the little we saw of it, was disappointing and a bit scary as security accompanied us from our car to the restaurant.
Thank you so much for putting this once-in-a-lifetime vacation together. It was perfect. If you have another must see vacation, please give me a call. We are ready for the next one of your adventures. Thanks again for all your work and for the beautiful cards.

Kristen M

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South Africa

Joanne Elam and Maritza were fantastic to work with. Joanne listened carefully to our thoughts and ideas for our honeymoon and planned the perfect trip for us. Joanne was always very responsive and explained all of our package in detail. Everything in South Africa went very smoothly and just as she had described. The arranged tours in Cape Town were great and very informative but the highlight was our safari at Monwana Game Lodge. We cannot rate Monwana and its staff highly enough. We plan on going back for our five-year wedding anniversary!
Thank you, Joanne, for planning a honeymoon for us that exceeded all of our expectations.

M Smith

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We would like to thank Joanne Elam for having organized the trip of a lifetime! Everything went according to schedule from the moment we landed to the time we departed. In two weeks we were able to experience 3 different unique places, each with its own distinct feel. Not having to worry about any aspect of the organization allowed us to enjoy our African adventure to the full. Joanne’s grand finale was our stay at the Stanley Safari Lodge in Zambia, a place of mystical beauty with open views to the mist rising from the Victoria Falls! The only disappointment of our trip was having to say farewell to Africa, a place we have fallen in love with. Thanks again Joanne, already looking forward to working with you to plan our next trip.

Mr & Mrs Hochberg

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Will write you later with more info but to summarize, I must say it was an awesome experience…from Shamwari to Cape Town!!! Every voucher pickup was on time, professional and helpful. Radisson Blu was fabulous and Shamwari makes us want to go back again next April. Thank you for all you did to facilitate this wonderful experience for us. Mickey Hochberg

Penelope A

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our group, all seasoned travelers, had a wonderful time. The venues were better than we expected. The service provided by the guides were exceptional. We were very very happy. And Crystal Allen was great as our overall advisor. I will definitely work with her again. Thank you!

Donna L

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialst Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a fantastic trip to South Africa. Thanks to you, everyone at South African Airways Vacations, Tour d’Afrique, Monwana Game Lodge and Hylton Ross for a wonderful trip.
South Africa was a truly gorgeous country, with friendly people. The Cape Town area was fantastically clean with no litter, which is unusual for a major city and very nice. He real highlight of the trip was the Monwana Game Lodge. It was fantastic. It is very small, the entire staff greats you when you arrive and they go to great lengths to make sure your visit is wonderful. Our room was very large with our own deck looking out on the watering hole which had lions, antelopes (not at the same time!), and a variety of other animals which we could watch from our chairs. The Game Drives were wonderful, the tracker and ranger were very good and we saw lions, leopards, rhinos, giraffes, water buffalos, hippos, and many, many other animals. We stopped for tea in the morning and a sun downer in the evening during the game drives, which was fun.
I cannot recommend Monwana highly enough. I think everyone should experience it. The food was fantastic and Emma took great care of us.
It was a perfect trip. The only thing we missed was Robbins Island since we planned to do it on our own and it was sold out so the advice is to buy tickets to it ahead of time if you intent to do it independently. It gives us something to add to our next trip.
Thanks for all your efforts for a flawless trip.

Margaret H

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

The March trip was awesome & special memories for a lifetime! I would like to thank you for your efforts in coordinating So Africa Zambia & Botswana for us. Honestly, the safari exceeded my expectations! The owners & staff at Shumbalala were exceptional…our guide Wayne & tracker Herman were first class & the meals delicious. Loved the outdoor shower & fireplace every night.
In Zambia my guided walk to the wettest part of Victoria Falls was magnificent just the two of us. I really liked Stanley Lodge open air concept …again warm service from staff. Finally Chobe was the frosting on the cake … Enjoyed buffet food concept at all meals & the game rides & Chobe River boat expedition were great fun. Also the free laundry service was a nice surprise. I enjoyed a massage & relaxed for the trip home…unbelievable terrific weather all 2 weeks. My ONLY suggestion would be the direct flight on Sat from Shumbalala area to Livingstone avoiding Joberg night & airport transfer. Mark, I would like to close my thoughts by stating the crews on ALL my So African Airways flights were professional & the JHB to JFK crew a 10!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

E. Feuer

July 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaBotswana

Just as she did 2 years ago, Kristina did a wonderful job customizing this trip for us, and we had a great time. Staff at camps were great, from the guides to the waitstaff. Chefs did an admirable job accommodating my dietary issues.
E. Feuer

Jones

June 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

This experience was great. The lodges we stayed in and the excursions we’re awesome. All my wife and I had to do was wake up, eat and be at a certain place at a certain time and the rest of the day handled itself. I would definitely like to travel to Africa again and I would definitely use Kristina and SAA. I appreciate you making this trip for my wife and I the best ever…
-Jones

D. Thompson

May 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Cheryle,
I wanted to thank you for the “best” trip ever!
I was taken back by my experiences and just loved South Africa.
– D. Thompson

Christie & Peter

April 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!!  Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in it’s own way.  We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time.  Both lodges were wonderful.  The rooms were great and the staff so helpful.  Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet.  All the food  was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it.  The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were  also a lot of fun to spend time with.  My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old!  Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us.  It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
Christie and Peter

J. Mackin

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

For me, it was a little daunting travelling to South Africa and Zimbabwe with my family. Mostly, because of the unknown. Upon arrival however, EVERYTHING worked out flawlessly. The hotels were great, the guides were personable and interesting, the transfers were all there when we arrived. I am sure you have an idea of how comforting this is for a traveler(s) far from home. I would also like to point out that whenever I emailed Kristina (with all of my questions over the course of 6+ months), her responses were lighting fast. It was clear that she truly had our best interests at heart. I would recommend her in a heartbeat.
Thank you to SAA Vacations for contributing to a lifetime of good memories!
Best Regards,
J. Mackin

Holly

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hey Mark,
Thank you so much for everything! I know I’ve said that many times before but I really do mean it. You have been so invaluable. I reached out to several companies for quotes but none of them felt right and provided me with the level of service you did!
Thanks!
Holly

C. Rutherford

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sylvia,
Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!! Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in its own way. We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time. Both lodges were wonderful. The rooms were great and the staff so helpful. Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet. All the food was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it. The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were also a lot of fun to spend time with. My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old! Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us. It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
C. Rutherford

T. Rosengart

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
Stan and I are back from our incredible trip to South Africa. Thanks for all of your help putting it together. Everything went very well and all the details worked seamlessly. We were very pleased with the accommodations, transfers and tours that you arranged. Thanks again. The Cape Grace Hotel and Thornybush Waterside Lodge, both far exceeded our expectations.
Incredible pictures, great memories!
T. Rosengart

Barbara

February 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
We are having the most fabulous time. As you said it would be, everything has been seamless. The people are the warmest, kind and helpful I have ever met. The game drives are incredible. Yesterday, was a banger day. Even the guides had never seen anything like it and couldn’t stop talking amongst themselves. We ran to see a zebra giving birth. When we got there on the other side of our jeep, sat two cheetahs. Within minutes they took off on a kill of another young zebra. It was the full cycle of life; birth on one side and death on another of the same species.
So hard to leave the tented camps, each camp is better than the next… We are now off to Ngorongoro.
Thanks for everything.
Best, Barbara

Laura W

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Hilari!!
Just finally settling in to being back home after the most amazing vacation I have ever had. I want to first thank you for your help with this trip. From start to finish every detail of this trip was perfect. The arrangements you put in place for us, could not be better organized. We actually cannot pick a favorite moment, since it was all so perfect. Cape Town was the most beautiful city I have ever traveled too and WILL visit again at some point in my life. The Kwa Maritane Bush Lodge was a lifetime adventure. My husband, who normally is very low key was like a little kid all over again, upon our arrival and with every Safari Drive we were on it just became more exciting. The guides could not be more inviting or knowledgeable. We all were truly satisfied with every aspect of our vacation. I cannot thank you enough for making our arrangements so perfectly!! I will forward pictures as soon as I get my act together. If you ever need a recommendation please feel free to use myself or any of my travel companions.
Regards Laura Williams

Lee

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful trip if a lifetime! Hilari did a great job making arrangements and booking our itinerary. The flights to SA were no problem. We did have a glitch from Phoenix to JFK where they split up our seats so we were all sitting separately (includlng the kids sitting by themselves next to strangers) so we had to purchase upgraded seats at the last minute to get us all together. Our experiences in Cale Town and Shameari were exceptional. The Accomodations at both locations were terrific and we would recommend them again. Our driver for our Cape Tour was one of the best we have ever had. We are recommending him to others we know who will be traveling there. Our safari guide was also fabulous – became like a family member to us. We loved the whole experience. Only downside was on the way home, SAA flight was subpar- seats were broken including my husband’s entertainment system which made a long flight a lot longer. Otherwise, we cannot wait for the day when we are able to go back!!

Buckley

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We couldn’t be happier with you and your company’s service and the trip as a whole! Have already passed your name on to a few others! Truly was the trip of a lifetime and should be on everyone’s bucket list that loves to travel. Every step of the way exceeded our expectations and the service was top notch at all accommodations, tours, tour guides, etc. We also felt your suggested must-do’s as well as suggested time-frames at each spot to get the most out of the trip were right on. We really appreciated all of the special little “honeymoon” touches that you and the various accommodations set up for us! It made everything that much more special and romantic, so thank you SO much for that. And in general for just working through the modifications to the itinerary with us, being so responsive to our inquiries, etc.
Our one suggestion with regard to Cape Town would be to tell the travelers in advance that the tour companies you pair with offer both half day and full day tours. For our wine day and cape peninsula day, we did not know that half days were an option and would have chosen a half day at one or both to enable us to have a bit more “free time” in Cape Town.
I forwarded a number of pictures to Kristina. Feel free to use! We have a ton more, so if you are looking for something specific, just let me know.
Thank you again! Should we ever safari again we would certainly work with you to plan it.

Pam P

November 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We got home last night as we spent overnight in NY recovering from the flight. We had a wonderful time and my husband describes it as “one of the best trips he has ever been on.” That says it all. The hotel One&Only was outstanding and the location was great. We were spoiled. On arrival they gave us a glass of sparkling wine and that set the tone for the whole trip. Thorny Bush Lodge was great and the animals we saw seemed almost surreal.
Thanks Sherry for all your help. We have done a lot of travelling over our lifetime but you have to be the best travel agent we have ever dealt with. In a short time you managed to put together a fabulous trip and answer every question we had with speed and efficiency. We would recommend your services to anyone who might ask and have already told our kids to put South Africa on their ‘to do and must see’ list.

Morris

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari planned the perfect customized trip for me to South Africa and Mauritius. We chatted by phone twice, and by email a couple of times, yet she knew precisely what kinds of tours and accommodations would suit my personality and tastes. What an amazing adventure I had! Something I have been thinking about doing for many years has been realized. I will never forget the experience. Thank you, Hilari!

Lani & Matt B

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Elizabeth,
Thank you so much for the sweet package in the mail!
We wanted to tell you how appreciative we are for your hard work to make our trip as special and amazing as it was. Every day was exciting and successful, making it truly a trip to remember. All hotels were luxurious and had great service, far exceeding our expectations.
Sending you all our thanks,
Lani and Matt Bettinger

Strunk

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience traveling in South Africa. It was truly one of the best vacations of all time. Elizabeth did a wonderful job putting the itinerary together. She was endlessly patient with us as we tweaked here and there and added on more experiences to maximize our trip. All of the accommodations were brilliant – top notch. We especially loved the Kariega Game Reserve. It was a perfect first safari experience for our children. We also loved Oddshorrn and the ostrich farm more than we expected – we could have spent another night in that area. We can’t wait to go back to South Africa again and would definitely book through you guys. All of the services and recommendations were fantastic. Special thanks to Elizabeth for putting it all together for us!

Stachiw

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

It was a trip of a lifetime. Elizabeth is a fantastic consultant who worked closely with me to put together the perfect itinerary for our family. Cape Town was wonderful and we absolutely loved Rovos Rail. We ended the trip with a safari that exceeded our expectations. All of the transfers and tours were on time with no issues. I could not have imagined a better vacation. Thank you SAA!

Scott F

July 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa Zambia

Hi Elizabeth,
Well, we are finally back home, recovering from our AWESOME  South Africa trip!!
I just want to let you know that the trip you put together for all of us was OUT OF THIS WORLD!!  It was probably our best trip that we have been on in our life!!
I want to THANK YOU for putting this trip together!!!  Everything that you suggested, we did, and glad that we did it!!  There is not one thing that we can complain about!!  That is how smooth and great the trip was.
It was a trip of many “FIRSTS”: First time in South Africa, First time on safari, First time seeing many of the animals that we did, First time at the Falls, First time on a big vacation with Bruce and Mel (and they still like to hang with us), First time I had to carry around an additional 35lb sculptor where-ever we traveled to that Jo bought the 2nd day of our trip, etc…..and the list goes on and on!! All of it a great time!!
All the accommodations, from the hotel in Cape Town and Joburg, to the unbelievable Buffalo Camp in Kruger, to the hotel in walking distance to Victoria Falls, these were way above what we expected!!  Especially at the Camp!!  Besides the awesome cabins they put us in and the safaris we participated in, the food was out of this world as well!!  Everyone there treated us like royalty. We are not use to that at all and it was such a wonderful experience!! All of the transportation to and from hotels, airports, even on the tours in Cape Town, were again tremendous and all ON TIME!!  Amazing!!
You really out did yourself and we appreciate all the time and effort you put into making this an AWESOME trip for all of us!!!  One that we will never, ever forget!
Thank YOU…THANK YOU….THANK YOU!!!

Dunn

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was AWESOME! Sherry did a fantastic job tayloring the tours to our varied interests. The only thing I would do differently next time would be to add more days in Cape Town and slow down the pace, to afford more free time for exploration!
Thanks Sherry!

Vicki S

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark–we have arrived home safely from our incredible trip. Now trying to adjust body clocks 🙂
Just had a little something emailed to you from Starbucks to say thanks for all you did for the last six months to get us organized and ready to go! Please let me know it arrives safely in your “inbox.”
We now face the daunting task of going through all the photos we took so that our friends will indulge us when we ask, “Want to see our pictures from Africa?”
Both my husband and I agree that we want to make a return trip to another part of the continent someday and will certainly be in touch if you are still available to help!
Thanks again for everything!

Adams

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great experience due to Kristina doing such ardent planning to meet our financial goals as well as making sure that we were seeing what we wanted to see in Africa. She was delightful in her delivery of the itinerary that met our needs and expectations. The properties were great and most important the people of Africa were welcoming and most helpful. Her choice of properties made the trip memorable as we had some fine dining under the stars on many occasions. The safari program was superb with an excellent guide for just the two of us with our own tracker as well. We saw the big five and much more. South African Airways was a superb airline in service and in hospitality. They truly served good meals in the air as well as making us comfortable. I will in the next few weeks upload to Kristina some photos of our experiences.
Thanks to Kristina for her dedication and love for Africa.

Judy H

May 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Mark,
Thank you for the thoughtful gift of safari note cards……another way to remember our fabulous trip.
The vacation was perfect. We saw so much and learned so much. The staff at all the lodges we stayed at couldn’t have been more welcoming and fun. I will remember this trip always.
Also we owe a big debt to you. You were so very helpful before we went and thoroughly prepared us for the trip. So all in all thank you so much. If we decide to do another African trip you will be the first person we talk to.

Flavio A

April 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari,
WOW WOW WOW, My wife and I have set foot in four Continents and have visited 17 different Countries and other than my Native Country if I were to recommend one it will be SOUTH Africa.
What a beautiful Country not only for the Breathless and Speechless moments over and over we had for the Beaches , the mountains, the wild animals but more importantly their people.
If I were to rate my experience from one to ten, one being the lowest rating and ten the highest I would give an ELEVEN to South Africa.
Did I say that the food quality and presentation is great and the prices are even better????? Well they simply are.
I went to do the South Africa IRONMAN in Port Elizabeth and the prices I paid for one week at the Radisson Blue, wouldn’t even have three days in USA, needless to say that the service is the best.
While riding my bike the day of the event a monkey got across the road in front of me and in my way back there were two little monkeys sitting at the edge of the road watching us go by. What a spectacle. I was expecting to see wild life until I went to the Safari not knowing that on race day we had them as spectators.
Gino The Tour Guide in our City tour in Cape Town was very knowledgeable, very friendly and had us in AWE for the entire day.
I was thinking that that was the best thing we were going to have in our trip not knowing that Tyrone our Safari Tour Driver was ten times better than Gino.
We went four times in the Safari and every single time we got to see the Wild Animals over and over, but every single time was like a completely new show.

Tony D

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Elizabeth,
Before I say anything else about how great the trip was–at the Portswood we were greeted with a bottle of champagne on ice with a 40th anniversary congratulation handwritten note, yellow roses on the bed and in the room on turn down, and at the Monwana reserve, Emma upgraded us to the Zulu suite, offering us congratulations on our 40th.
So special, thanks to you and to everyone else who was so thoughtful!

Angie T

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Cheryle,
We had a wonderful time. It was more than we could have hoped for. All of the arrangements that you made were terrific.  Thank you again.

Juby B

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark, we came back  on Sunday and just wanted to let you know, trip was great we had a blast. I will get back to you as there are many other places I would like to visit. Tks for putting together a great itinerary and the hotels and the service was incredible.

Janice & Dirk J

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Hi Maritza:
Dirk and I wanted to let you know about our wonderful trip. Unfortunately due to the storm in New York we missed a day in Cape Town, but all in all it was a fabulous vacation. The hotel in Cape Town was very nice and we enjoyed some time on the nice patio. The day trip to Cape of Good Hope was excellent and the penguins were fun to watch. We also visited the water front and Table Mountain.
The highlight of our trip was our stay at Thornybush Serondella Lodge. We were amazed at how close we were able to get to the animals and we saw the Big 5 within 1 day.! The lodge itself is very luxurious and we were fortunate to have a room overlooking the watering hole and saw many animals there every day.
The Safari Lodge in Victoria Falls was very nice. We enjoyed our dinners overlooking the valley and the watering hole.
We were so impressed at the level of organization. All our flights were on time and we were met everywhere as arranged. We would certainly recommend SAAV to anyone looking for a great holiday. Thanks for all your assistance in putting this together for us.

Daniel C

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience. We loved Cape Town and everything that was arranged for us there from the hotel to the tour, which was a lovely experience. The transfers were prompt and delivered us where we needed to be. The Pilanesberg reserve was incredible and we got to see so many animals up close! The hotel that we stayed at their was so gorgeous and the service was perfect.

Andrew H

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Thanks to Hilari and her efficiency and knowledge, we enjoyed a trip that was a once in a lifetime experience.
The resorts and events set up, especially at the Bakubung Bush Lodge and the Victoria Falls Safari and Lodge were unforgettable.
Thanks again for everything and would definitely look to you again for future destinations.

Janet H

January 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

Our guide made our time in Tanzania perfect; he was so knowledgable, helpful, cheerful, and we were SO impressed by his information, his driving skill (in conditions that were kind of challenging), and his alertness helped us spot the animals frequently. He really made our safari the truly spectacular experience.

Catherine F

January 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

This was a terrific trip! Lori Visser, our agent, helped us in a thousand ways–sometimes in areas where we didn’t even know we needed help.
Our guide, SP, was the best: he knows about the land, the animals, and the birds and wants to continue learning. He’s also personable and an excellent driver. Please give him a raise! In your publicity, include the absolute necessity of having an experienced guide.
Also, include the Masai in what you say about the trip! We enjoyed them (the men) so much, also liked how the Lake Natron lodge was situated between two Masai villages. We could see people going about their business, children going to school, etc. Sadly, the women were more difficult to relate to. We had no language in common. They were interested only in selling us their beadwork.
I liked the variety in the lodging. Please encourage the people at Lake Natron to upgrade their facilities. They don’t need to be fancy, but put the thatch on the roofs, fix the broken lights, install safer showers/baths. Toilets are new–nice. One over-the-top place was more than enough (Serena Serengeti). Acacia Farm Lodge is stunningly beautiful, but details need to be attended to. I don’t need rose petals on my bath mat. I’d rather have the blown-out bulb replaced in the bathroom, an electrical outlet there, and an adapter so I could use the hairdryer provided. The staff was most welcoming.
Again, a trip of a lifetime!

Jim & Hazel S

December 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Sherry
 Hazel and I wanted to thank you for organizing our recent, wonderful vacation in South Africa. Everything worked out perfectly travel wise and we really enjoyed it. Cape Town is a beautiful city and the three tours you set up for us were really excellent, we saw a lot and learned a lot. The subsequent time on Safari also was excellent. The accommodation was small and outstanding, the ranger and other staff were excellent and looked after us well. We saw lots of animals including all of the “big five” and enough giraffes to keep even Hazel happy (she loves them!)  Many thanks once again.
 Jim and Hazel S.

Latasha F

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Gabe Greenberg

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Gabe,
Thank you so much for the cards.  They were the bees knees.  It was comforting to have you walk me through my trip after I missed my flight.  By you rearranging everything, I didn’t miss a beat.  I know I will visit South Africa again and will be sure to use your vacation services.  I will also tell my friends to contact you if they travel to Africa.
Matter of fact, do you plan trips to Gahna?  My sister wants to go in the month of June.  I will copy her on this e-mail to possibly help with her planning.
Cheers!
Latasha

Linda H

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark! I wanted to thank you for the AMAZING South African adventure you planned for my family! It was PERFECT in every way! I honestly could not believe that with so many moving parts, that everything went off without a hitch! All the transfer pick-ups arrived EARLY to meet us.  There was never question about what was happening next. The shark dive was cancelled due to poor weather and boating conditions.  But they were quickly able to accommodate us on the following day.  What an amazing adventure!  We LOVED the Sun Cullinan hotel and its perfect location to the waterfront. The tour guide, Jason, who led us on the full day Cape Tour was AWESOME. And we met some cool families along the way following in our footsteps! The Serondella Lodge was so wonderful, that we literally cried when we left! Chewie, the Ranger, and his partner, Monica, the hostess, were some of the most wonderful people we have ever met, and they found a place in our heart forever!  The Victoria Falls Hotel was a perfect finish.  Thank you! thank you! I will be back to have you book my clients on this same adventure.  It was truly a trip of a lifetime and I appreciate all your insights to make it happen!
Happy new year!

Pinakin S

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a marvelous time one of the best holidays after a long time, everything without an exception was great Thanks to Hillari Ross who got us the perfect combination to stay, travel and commute. Will be recommending this unique experience to others as well. Keep up the good work and am tempted to do it again.
Thank you all once again and do keep me in the loop for any new offerings.
Pinakin

Castelo

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

What a great value for the two weeks!!
Your sending us to Thornybush was EXCELLENT and the staff at that site was incredible.  Would definitely return to enjoy Cape Town and the environs further east.

Ernesto L

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks Tom, this is the best experience in my life.  Never encounter so much thrill with those wildlife especially walk with the Lion. Please inform me any especial offer for next year, will bring my son with me. Thanks

Sveum

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

This was an amazing trip! We loved every aspect of it! Staying at Thornybush Game Lodge was the highlight of the trip. The staff at Thornybush were amazingly attentive!

Crystal K

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you very much for helping us to plan the best vacation ever!  I’m still basking in the glory of our trip to South Africa.  It was truly amazing!  Everything was first class and exceeded our expectations.
Arlene and her husband Hilton were amazing.  They took excellent care of us from the time we arrived until the time we left. For example, one day after our tours we were in the mood for a good hamburger.  Arlene and Hilton told us about a great restaurant that had excellent burgers and milk shakes; but they didn’t stop there, they actually drove us to the restaurant, and allowed us to go in and check the menu to see if it was something we wanted to come back for later.  When we checked in at the airport, Arlene stood at the security line until each of us made it through and waved at us as we headed to the gate.  The little touches were special, and will never be forgotten.
The Waterfront hotel in Cape Town was fantastic.  The staff learned our names, and were extremely pleasant.  The breakfast they serve is awesome as well as the cooks and servers.  The Kapama Lodge really exceeded our expectations.  From IP who picked us up at the airport, to Daron that checked us in, to our housekeeper Gift, and our safari driver Shanae and Stanley, we were never disappointed.  The food was great and the spa was amazing!!!
By far the most exciting point of the trip was the school visit.  The children at Moshesh will forever be in our hearts.  It was a blessing to be a blessing to the students and teachers.  We had so much fun, and made lasting relationships.  Arlene and Hilton made the experience even better by helping us to select the appropriate things for the school, and making sure we met their needs.  They even took us back to the school on our way to the airport so that we could hand deliver our cash donation.
As you can see, I can elaborate for hours about this trip.  I have shared the highlights with anyone who is willing to listen and look at my pictures.  We would be proud for you to share our photos, and will most definitely be a solid reference for SAA.  I will definitely complete the survey.
Crystal, I would like to personally thank you for helping to make our dream come true.  You were always professional and patient, even when my own patience was challenged.  I will definitely call you when I have the opportunity to plan another South African vacation, which may be soon.  My father-in-law was so impressed he has offered to take our family back to Cape Town.  I will let you know when we are able to secure dates 🙂
Best regards / Mit freundlichen Grüßen,
Crystal K

Ron M

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was terrific!  All the arrangements were impeccable.  Every driver who was supposed to show up did so at the right time.  The accommodations were luxurious.  We have nothing but good things to say about the places where we stayed.  We had a wonderful time at the Thornybush Reserve and got to see all the animals we hoped to see.  The Cape Town and the Victoria Falls tours were also excellent.
We would rate the trip a 10 out of 10 and are happy to recommend SAA Vacations to our friends.
Thanks again.
Ron M.

Ed & Sue

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Mark, Thanks to you and Maritza for putting together a trip of a lifetime for us. The flights were great, as were the tours. Our thanks to both Hylton and Wild Horizons, as well as Magic Bus. The hotels and lodges chosen were perfect for our needs. As you promised, the pickups were all on time and all waiting for us. The tour options chosen provided a perfect introduction/overview, for first time visitors. We did ride the elephants in Zambia.
We will glad to give you organization and both of you a five star rating for a job well done. In the future, if you have any clients or potential clients who our on the fence or apprehensive about the trip, we would be glad to talk to them on your behalf.
We are already starting to plan our next trip to South Africa.
Again thanks for all your help.
Sincerely,
Ed O. & Sue D.

Joyce B

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

My note is to express my appreciation for the patient, courteous, and informed help that I received from Mr. Mark Black.
He listened to my requests, regarading travel, and planned an interesting trip for me and my four, teenaged Grandchildren.
Mr. Black has excellent Customer Relation Skills.
Peace,  Joyce B  (AKA Grammy Joyce!)

Susan L

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

It truly was a trip of a lifetime, down to the very last detail!!! Thank you so much for all your planning and for the good care you took of all of us.

Arthur O

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hello Tom, Yes, we made it back safe and sound. Overall we would rate our journey as a “trip of a lifetime”.  We confirmed our memory that the South African people are the most genuine, open, caring people in the world!  We met people from all walks of life and found them all to be very gracious.  Our waistlines also attest to the fact that the food in South Africa is the world’s best!  The scenery, wildlife flowers, etc. all exceeded our expectations. Best regards,  Arthur O.

Tom & Holly S

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sherry! We had a GREAT trip!  Thanks so much for all that you did.  We will certainly refer you to friends, family, and colleagues.  In fact, around the water cooler today in the office I started to do just that. We did the “Devils Pool” excursion and the helicopter excursion over the falls.  Both were well worth it!  The Kariega Reserve was great too.  The guide, Victor, did an excellent job finding the elephants, rhinos, lions, etc for us.  A few photos are attached. The drivers were all on time, and the accommodations beat expectations! We thank you again and we’ll remember you and SAA the next time we go to Africa…maybe the East side next time, to see the migration from the Serengeti?  We’ll see…. Best Regards, Tom & Holly S.

Peter C

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, I wanted to thank you for the great work you did on arranging our tours and hotel in South Africa.  The tours where great, the guides excellent, the transportation perfect, and the hotel was awesome! Thank you so much for taking such great care of us! -Peter

Bob and Mary-Ann J

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, What a nice surprise. The notecards arrived to-day and they just brought back wonderful memories of our trip. Thank you so much. Of all the trips we have taken, this last trip to South Africa was the best. I cannot rave enough about the hotels, having our own personal driver and tour guide, and of course Kapama. Being in our 70’s and both being two times survivors of Cancer makes us especially appreciative of being able to go back to South Africa. Don’t know how many more Big trips we will be able to take, but the memories of this one will last forever. I will recommend you highly. Again, thank you for setting up our wonderful trip and again for the notecards – Bob and Mary Ann J

 

Carolyn D

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Crystal, Want to thank you for arranging the most glorious trip to SA.  Everything was perfect. I feel as though I spent 2 weeks being transported from place to place on a velvet pillow!! Every accommodation was excellent, every tour was fabulous. Would not hesitate to recommend.  Again, thank you!!

Steve H

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Just want to thank you for all your help with our  wonderful Africa trip.  Flights were all on time, drivers prompt.  Nice treat to have transfers prearranged.  Breakfasts all excellent everywhere.  Victoria and Albert offered upgrade to presidential suite for last 2 nights in Cape Town for small up-charge.  That was very nice – huge apartment.  Weather lousy in Cape Town but nice the day we drove out to Cape Point – beautiful.  Serondella was fabulous in every respect – service, personal attention, food, game drives.  Could not have been better.  Victoria Falls was gorgeous as expected.

Gregg C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for everything!  We had a fantastic time, and thought the trip was great. I wanted to say that our guide, Chris, at Tour D’Afrique, was fantastic…  he deserves some recognition… All the best! Gregg

Isabelli D.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesburg and Joburg.Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation. We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger. Again Thank you.

Jonathan H.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We just got back this morning. We had such an incredible time. We saw some fantastic things over there. Thanks for all your help getting this set up. -Jonathan.

Woodward Family

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

On the whole, our trip was wonderful. All of the places we stayed were nice and the guides assigned to us were wonderful.

Albin C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

The holiday was outstanding in every way!  Certainly there was the exoticism of the destination; the natural beauty of SA, catching a glimpse of the fauna — baboons, ostriches, kudu, et al (safe to say, there are none of these wandering around Miller Place) and simply the constant shift of the landscape were all winners. The Table Bay was an excellent hotel with exceptional staff.  The three of us were especially impressed by the quality of our guides; Enrico and Avril.  They were both knowledgeable with delightful personalities.  It was a pleasure to spend a day with them. In addition, everything was on time.  From the pick up for our tours, to the transfer driver there to greet us at CPT. We all know that SA has had a difficult history, but one leaves there with hope for tomorrow and a deep desire to return. As I’ve said many times before, you and Maritza are first rate professionals; knowledgeable, efficient, helpful and unfailing pleasant.  I hope your boss knows he/she is lucky to have both of you.

Len R.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks to your help, our trip was truly epic! The itinerary was perfect and the accommodations were 4 to 5 star with great value. Our 7 and 9 year old grandchildren were enthralled throughout! We saw all the big 5, plus hippos, jackals, hyenas, cheetah, and even a civet on a nighttime safari! We also saw about 150 species of birds! The boat rides in Chobe and at Victoria Falls were amazing! This is a great time to travel to South Africa because of the very favorable exchange rate — many meals were included on our trip, but now a reasonable restaurant meal is only about $10 U.S. — we had ostrich, zebra etc. in waterfront restaurants in Cape Town. Cape Town is an amazingly beautiful and sophisticated city, and our trips to visit a township, Mandela’s prison cell, and the Botanical Garden were all great.  Two small issues were quickly resolved by your South African counterparts and all the connections and pick-ups were seamless, in spite of the fact that we had 5 internal flights! We travel frequently, but this trip ranks at the top! Please express our gratitude to all involved! -Len

Michelle F.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Trip was fantastic! Everything was set up perfectly! Hotels were great, transportation was always perfectly on time! Great job! Thank you!I will recommend you to anyone wanting to go to SA! Best, Michelle

Chris H.

June 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great time in South Africa and I want to Thank you for your diligence in the planning of our itinerary – there were no issues at all! Everything went according to the plan and everyone was on time and ready to pick us up when they were supposed to. I was very impressed
The food and wine tour was GREAT – the guide was very knowledgeable about the area and shared some art places with us as well as the local food places. I would highly recommend that for first timers to South Africa. You may also want to look into adding the drumming/restaurant into your planned itinerary because it was so awesome. Besides the drumming lesson, they fed us traditional African food and entertained you with African song and dance throughout dinner.
Thank you again for planning our trip and being available to answer ALL my questions!

Jill K.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for the notecards!  We had a wonderful time in South Africa, everything went exactly as planned, no problems at all.  We enjoyed all of it but I think my favorite thing in Cape Town was a cooking class that my daughter and I took in the Langa township.  It was also nice to be so close to the waterfront.  We took the shuttle there every night to eat and buy gifts.  I managed to bring back 7 bottles of wine 🙂
We saw so many animals on safari, it was incredible!  The first time we went out we saw so many lions including cubs and we also saw lions hunting.
I guess I have to save up my money for another trip, I’d love to go back.  Thanks so much for all your help in making it possible.

E.L.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely notecards. We did see all the animals in the pictures. It was very wonderful vacation but much too short. Everything was perfect, accommodates were wonderful tours were great and on time, even the weather cooperated. Looking forward to more material from you about Botswana and Victoria Falls.
Thanks again,
E. L.

T. Ortega

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

All the guides, crew and staff were very knowledgeable. Their guide (Chris) in Cape Town provided an excellent overall insight into the history of South Africa. He was very accommodating and took the time to answer all their questions, took their pictures, etc.. The shark cage dive was also an excellent experience with friendly crew and staff. They have outstanding knowledge of the great white sharks and seals. Their safari guide (Owen) and his assistant (Federica) were also excellent and did their best to show them as many animals as they could find. They were very accommodating and knowledgeable about the animals and the terrain. Owen even gave them a lesson in star gazing and showed them the constellations that could be seen in South Africa. The accommodations were very nice and comfortable. They would highly recommend this trip to families and friends.

I. Desrosiers

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesberg and Joburg.
Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation.
We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger.
Again Thank you.

J&E Rock

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Eli and I want to THANK YOU so much for everything! Our trip was absolutely INCREDIBLE, and all of the plans were perfect, down to every detail!

South African Airways was by far the best airline we have ever flown, and the flight attendants were so friendly and went out of their way to make sure everyone was comfortable. The hotels were absolutely amazing, the staff went above and beyond to make us feel special on our honeymoon. The Victoria Falls hotel was beautiful, and the staff were so friendly to us. We thoroughly enjoyed all of our activities, especially the tour of the falls and the sundowner cruise. The One and Only surprised us with an upgrade to a suite, and with Champagne, chocolates and wine in our room upon arrival. We also had the most gorgeous view of Table Mountain. The second night we were there, we came back to a room with rose petals, candles and a note just saying they hope we were enjoying our stay. The staff was so genuine and always greeted us by name when coming and going. The concierge was extremely helpful with arranging plans and transportation on our free day, which we went up to Table Mountain and also did the Robbin Island tour. Katie our driver/guide for the wine tour and the tour of the Cape was FANTASTIC. She was so knowledgeable of the area and took us to a lot of great spots, both touristy and local. We had so much fun exploring Capetown and the wine lands with her. We did not think our trip could possibly get any better after Capetown, but Simbambali proved us wrong. From the time we arrived, everything was incredible – the food, the staff, the lodge and the game drives. They even surprised us with a private dinner in our room! We did not want to leave!

We truly enjoyed every second, and cannot thank you enough for helping us plan the most perfect honeymoon that neither of us will ever forget! We look forward to planning another trip to South Africa in the next few years with your help!


T. Deery

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black 

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Mark, your planning was fabulous.  Monwana was perfect, Chobe river safari/cruise was fabulous.   In KwaZulu Natal we spent our first night in Durban with a great view of the ocean, 3 days in St.Lucia ( Cape Vidal, kayaked with Hippos and Crocs, visited a Zulu school ), one night in Ballito at Salt rocks. Will send some photos when  we get them together. Please use us for referral.

S. Benito

May 2015
trip created by Africa specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

The whole trip was absolutely amazing in every respect – everything we saw and experienced, the accommodations, the food, the transportation- air, land and sea-, the weather and the people. Your professionalism and responsiveness in working with us to arrange all that was magnificent and Robin, the boys and I thank you so much for your patience and hard work in making it all happen.

Pam B.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

You did a fantastic job on all our accommodations.  Our drivers, Sun City, the lodge, the safaris were all fantastic and we had a wonderful time.   Thanks so much for everything.  I would highly recommend your services.

Diana W.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely cards…what a great surprise!  The trip was incredible and I want to take my husband.
Everything about the trip was wonderful.  I needed one last day to rest up.  We did see the Big Five in a day and a half.  I did have a treatment the last day at the spa which was half what I pay in the U.S.
All of the day trips were great. We had only one other couple with us.  Weather was wonderful.
Best trip we have taken.

D & R Rice

April 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

To all you at SAAV, thank you for planning a fabulous trip.
A few comments: all the transfer, pickups, hotels were great. Everyone was on time, courteous and knowledgeable. We could have spent more time in Cape Town. Beautiful city. The tours were great; small and intimate. Shark dive was amazing, although we had to leave hotel at 2:30AM to do the trip because of the weather.
The accommodations chosen for us were perfect. We enjoyed Serondella the most. The folks there were spectacular. The food in every accommodation was over the top!
I will recommend you all to friends planning a SA adventure.
Again, thank to you all.

Nicole C.

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline 

Travelled to:

South Africa

I am writing to express my appreciation of one of your employees. Tom Cline was very patient with me as I planned my trip to Africa. He suggested several safari lodges that were small upgrades to the lodge that was included in our package. After reviewing the options I was so pleased Tom went out of his way to make this suggestion since the lodges he chose will be a much more intimate and luxurious experience. He also was always kind when I needed to make changes in the dates of the trip. He called me to provide the opportunity to respond to questions I had about the itinerary. If I was expecting a quote to be prepared that was not finished he always sent me a message communicating the delay.
 In comparison to other travel specialists I’ve worked with Tom Cline is one of the best. He has excellent communication and interpersonal skills and has worked hard to make our anniversary trip to South Africa and Seychelles memorable.

William B. & Harold H.

February 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

I would like to echo the sentiments that Harold expressed in his email noted below.  The trip was simply amazing.  Everything went off as planned.  We did not encounter any difficulties.  I will share photographs as soon as possible.
Mark, as I have mentioned to you previously, you did an outstanding job and provided excellent customer service while planning the vacation package for Harold and myself.  I appreciate all of the timely responses and efforts you put forth in making sure we were satisfied with the details of the vacation.
Thank you so much putting together an incredible vacation package for William and myself.  The trip was exhilarating and filled with adventure and wonder.  There wasn’t one snag in the itinerary that you put together for us.  The hotels were fabulous and our driver/van was waiting to pick us up at every location.   I will tell friends about SAA and definitely use your service again when I travel to South Africa.
I have pictures and videos that I cannot wait to share with friends and family.

S. Greenwood

January 2015
trip created by Mark Black and Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South Africa

The Southern Sun in Cape Town was perfect: friendly staff, great room and breakfast, and the location was perfect for walks to both City Center and the Waterfront.
The two tours were also perfect. We were able to get up to Table Mt on the cable car, and then it closed for 2 days due to high winds so we were very lucky. We loved the full day Cape tour. We had the same guide, Iggy, for both days and he did a great job. We really enjoyed our 3rd day on our own since there were many places we learned about and wanted to visit: Castle of Good Hope, District Six Museum, Slave Lodge, Company’s Garden, and lots of time and bargaining fun at Green Market Square and then dinner at the Waterfront.
Monwana Game Lodge was really great. Jacques, Morris, Emma, Kelly and the rest of the team were incredible. We loved the size (only 8 guests) and the daily routine of safari, breakfast, rest, high tea, safari and cocktails before dinner. The food was superb. They made a special fireside New Year’s Eve dinner on the back deck. Jacque was a great host and educator on safari. We saw the Big 5 and plenty of other wildlife. Each outing was different and special.  We filled two cameras daily.
We would have loved to have been able to spend another day at Monwana ( our decision), but other than that, the mix of 4 nights in Cape Town and 2 at Monwana was perfect. We hope to return again, perhaps during August for even better viewing.
We would like to thank Mark and everyone at SAAV for putting such a memorable trip together for us

Sable S.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We visited Cornelia’s friend’s place in SA, the weather was great! We could not take the cable car to view the mountain as it was very windy. The hotel in Cape Town was not great, the rooms were very small, in fact Susan asked to move; I should have asked too as sharing the tiny room with Aziza my sister was very cramped.
The trip to Mowana was GREAT! We enjoyed the game and the meals at the lodge. That was a great place you recommended. I highly recommend it for other travelers.
Zambia was beautiful! We visited Livingstone but the waterfalls were not at peak. The Zambezi Sun was GREAT! My brother sent a driver with an SUV, we drove to Lusaka, stayed a night there and then drove to Sinda where my family stays. We spend a night there, and then drove to Chichele lodge at Mfuwe in Eastern province. We stayed there 2 nights. My brother paid for the trip!
Cornelia and Susan took the flight to Lusaka from Mfuwe; they stayed one night in Lusaka before they came back.
I want to thank you and your staff for the tremendous patience and all your help with all our trip coordination. You were particularly patient with us as we made all our changes. The trip was expensive but worth it.
Thanks again!

Elizabeth C.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Upon conducting an internet search for South Africa vacation planners, I randomly and happily connected with Sherry Lankin, beginning what was a wonderful experience in creating a first trip to this part of the world for my family.
We returned from our adventures last week, having had an incredible time. I called Sherry today, to thank her for her stellar work and excellent recommendations. However, I felt compelled to reach out to you, to commend your organization and to sing the praises of Sherry.
In her quiet way, she guided me through the intricacies of planning such a trek. She really listened to me when I talked about where I wanted to spend money and where I wanted to conserve money. She shared her experiences and made recommendations. I felt as though I was working with a friend, rather than an employee out to make a buck for the company. It became very natural to trust her judgement.
She is an effective communicator; I knew that a return phone call or email would be quickly forthcoming. Again, her dependability was impressive.
Kudos to Sherry Lankin. She is the first person I will call when we schedule our next trip to that part of the world.

A. Jones

November 2014 
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline  

Travelled to:

South Africa

Tom _ thank you for your welcome note. I must tell you that everything went so very well on our African trip, thanks to you. As for worries about ebola, thank goodness there was no trouble at all with stopping in Senegal. They certainly have it all under control.

The safaris went beyond our expectations — we saw a live game oil of a Bull by 5 lions — talk about learning about the killer instinct up cole! WOW is all I can say. The staff at Simbambili knows me, and We were greeted at the airport and the service at the lodge couldn’t have been better. As for the Chobe Game Lodge, well, I have a big fan there, and we were treated a bit like royalty, especially on my birthday, which they somehow already knew about!
All is all, it was the best trip we’ve ever taken to Africa and John and I wish to thank you for all of your efforts !!!!
PS: I also did TV & radio while in JoBurg so the Sandton Sun was the right call!

James and Ellen

trip created by Travel Expert Maritza Valenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Hi – we are back from South Africa/Zambia. It was the best vacation EVER!!! We loved every minute of it – the accommodations, food, Safari, Cape Town, and Victoria Falls. It was a vacation to remember.
Apparently, I can only send you six pictures at a time, so I will send you too additional emails. These pictures are from the Cape of Good Hope. We took (no kidding) over 1,000 pictures. Our only disappointment (very minor) was that, other than the mist in the distance, we couldn’t see Victoria Falls from Stanley Safari Lodge. The Lodge was further from the falls than we had expected. The falls were spectacular and a must see this time of year.
We had dropped Johannesburg from our trip (except for one night), and that was a good idea. Johannesburg, from the little we saw of it, was disappointing and a bit scary as security accompanied us from our car to the restaurant.
Thank you so much for putting this once-in-a-lifetime vacation together. It was perfect. If you have another must see vacation, please give me a call. We are ready for the next one of your adventures. Thanks again for all your work and for the beautiful cards.

Kristen M

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South Africa

Joanne Elam and Maritza were fantastic to work with. Joanne listened carefully to our thoughts and ideas for our honeymoon and planned the perfect trip for us. Joanne was always very responsive and explained all of our package in detail. Everything in South Africa went very smoothly and just as she had described. The arranged tours in Cape Town were great and very informative but the highlight was our safari at Monwana Game Lodge. We cannot rate Monwana and its staff highly enough. We plan on going back for our five-year wedding anniversary!
Thank you, Joanne, for planning a honeymoon for us that exceeded all of our expectations.

M Smith

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We would like to thank Joanne Elam for having organized the trip of a lifetime! Everything went according to schedule from the moment we landed to the time we departed. In two weeks we were able to experience 3 different unique places, each with its own distinct feel. Not having to worry about any aspect of the organization allowed us to enjoy our African adventure to the full. Joanne’s grand finale was our stay at the Stanley Safari Lodge in Zambia, a place of mystical beauty with open views to the mist rising from the Victoria Falls! The only disappointment of our trip was having to say farewell to Africa, a place we have fallen in love with. Thanks again Joanne, already looking forward to working with you to plan our next trip.

Mr & Mrs Hochberg

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Will write you later with more info but to summarize, I must say it was an awesome experience…from Shamwari to Cape Town!!! Every voucher pickup was on time, professional and helpful. Radisson Blu was fabulous and Shamwari makes us want to go back again next April. Thank you for all you did to facilitate this wonderful experience for us. Mickey Hochberg

Penelope A

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our group, all seasoned travelers, had a wonderful time. The venues were better than we expected. The service provided by the guides were exceptional. We were very very happy. And Crystal Allen was great as our overall advisor. I will definitely work with her again. Thank you!

Donna L

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialst Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a fantastic trip to South Africa. Thanks to you, everyone at South African Airways Vacations, Tour d’Afrique, Monwana Game Lodge and Hylton Ross for a wonderful trip.
South Africa was a truly gorgeous country, with friendly people. The Cape Town area was fantastically clean with no litter, which is unusual for a major city and very nice. He real highlight of the trip was the Monwana Game Lodge. It was fantastic. It is very small, the entire staff greats you when you arrive and they go to great lengths to make sure your visit is wonderful. Our room was very large with our own deck looking out on the watering hole which had lions, antelopes (not at the same time!), and a variety of other animals which we could watch from our chairs. The Game Drives were wonderful, the tracker and ranger were very good and we saw lions, leopards, rhinos, giraffes, water buffalos, hippos, and many, many other animals. We stopped for tea in the morning and a sun downer in the evening during the game drives, which was fun.
I cannot recommend Monwana highly enough. I think everyone should experience it. The food was fantastic and Emma took great care of us.
It was a perfect trip. The only thing we missed was Robbins Island since we planned to do it on our own and it was sold out so the advice is to buy tickets to it ahead of time if you intent to do it independently. It gives us something to add to our next trip.
Thanks for all your efforts for a flawless trip.

Margaret H

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

The March trip was awesome & special memories for a lifetime! I would like to thank you for your efforts in coordinating So Africa Zambia & Botswana for us. Honestly, the safari exceeded my expectations! The owners & staff at Shumbalala were exceptional…our guide Wayne & tracker Herman were first class & the meals delicious. Loved the outdoor shower & fireplace every night.
In Zambia my guided walk to the wettest part of Victoria Falls was magnificent just the two of us. I really liked Stanley Lodge open air concept …again warm service from staff. Finally Chobe was the frosting on the cake … Enjoyed buffet food concept at all meals & the game rides & Chobe River boat expedition were great fun. Also the free laundry service was a nice surprise. I enjoyed a massage & relaxed for the trip home…unbelievable terrific weather all 2 weeks. My ONLY suggestion would be the direct flight on Sat from Shumbalala area to Livingstone avoiding Joberg night & airport transfer. Mark, I would like to close my thoughts by stating the crews on ALL my So African Airways flights were professional & the JHB to JFK crew a 10!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

N. Van Etten

April 2019                                                                                              Travelled to:

Trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski                South Africa

 

Our African adventure was beyond amazing! Kristina was there every step of the way assisting us with our plans. Her expertise and guidance was invaluable… from accommodations, to transfers, activities and even best times to visit the spa. Each day we thought could not possibly get any better, and it did! If I could give her a 10 on a scale of 1-5, I would. Our room At Thornybush was upgraded to a 3 bedroom, 3 bath unit. It was beautiful!!! Our dream trip was above and beyond anything we ever imagined.

Hi Kristina,

Just wanted to let you know what an absolutely wonderful trip we had. It was a dream come true for all of us.  Each day we thought it couldn’t possibly get better, but it did!  Thank you so much for you expertise….. transfers went incredibly smooth, accommodations were superb, tours were beyond amazing… not to mention your assistance with the spa which could not have been more perfect with timing. Please know we greatly appreciate how you went above and beyond to help us plan.
Best,
Noel

 

N. Van Etten

Saunders

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Lacy Hill

Travelled to:

South Africa

 Dear Lacy,
Thank you for your email. We arrived back home safe and sound after thoroughly enjoying our holiday. Ligia was an excellent guide, punctual and with a wealth of information. She was great with our children and we loved her company. 
We had hoped we would be closer to beach and would actually have enjoyed more time at Boschendal. Hopefully next time!
Thanks and Regards,
A. Saunders

Young

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

Each leg of the trip was more impressive than the next. Victoria Falls, Cape Town and Timbavati accomodations, staff, meals and tours were all at least what was promised if not moreso. South African Airways surely sets a new standard in providing a pleasant experience for an extraordinary amount of travel. We were never so well cared for nor so well fed. And I’m writing this after having just arrived home upon completing 40 plus hours of travel!
Bravo!

A. Saunders

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Lacy Hill

Travelled to:

Mozambique

Dear Lacy,

Thank you for your email. We arrived back home safe and sound after thoroughly enjoying our holiday.
Ligia was an excellent guide, punctual and with a wealth of information. She was great with our children and we loved her company.
We had hoped we would be closer to beach and would actually have enjoyed more time at Boschendal. Hopefully next time!

Thanks and Regards,

Amanda Saunders

D & A Ripley

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Richard Schwartzel

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hello, Richard,
We returned from our cruise and South Africa trip last Thursday. I just wanted to tell you how much we appreciated and enjoyed all the arrangements you made for us in South Africa. Everything was perfect and we had a wonderful time. We definitely want to return for a longer South African visit but need to decompress from the most recent  experience before deciding on details, etc.
Best wishes,
Doug and Arlene Ripley 

M. Cabalona

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

Fantastic from start to finish.  Accommodations were great, unique boutique style.  Loved Cape Town, wine country and safari.  Kristina created a vacation that checked every box on our South African vacation.

L. Pineda

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was awesome, the best vacation I have had. SAA kept us moving (great landings) and on time departures. The varied experiences were great as well. The safari was fabulous. Hands down – it was the highlight of our trip. Kristina was fantastic to work with and she gave us a very good vacation plan. She was flexible and always ready to assist. Will definitely do another safari.


M. Moore

March 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Cathy Lenox

Travelled to:

South Africa

Please excuse this belated thank you. I had the best time on my trip to SA! You did a wonderful job. Found great hotels that were convenient, fun and safe. The airport transfers also provided ease and comfort. Great tours and the safari was amazing. I couldn’t have done it without you! I will always be grateful for this once in a lifetime experience.
Many thanks,
Megan

M. Lampedecchio

March 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

Fantastic from start to finish.  Accommodations were great, unique boutique style.  Loved Cape Town, wine country and safari.  Kristina created a vacation that checked every box on our South African vacation.

Roger & Stephany

February 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Cathy Lenox

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Cathy,
We just wanted to thank you for planning such a wonderful trip for us. Beck’s safari was fantastic. The guide, the room, the personnel, the food, the setting…..everything was unbelievable. We saw the Big 5 all on one day!! The wild life was unforgettable. And the Victoria Falls Safari Lodge was such a wonderful location. We were disappointed at first because there were no animals at the water hole. However….the next day the elephants came, and came and came and came!!! We counted 70!! What a thrill. And everything there was great too.

This is the first time we have ever used a travel agent to plan a trip for us and we are so glad we did. The flights were also very good with the exception that the flight home had a plane with a different configuration so we were in the very back with the seats that were very close together unlike the flight over where we were in the next section up with a little more room.

In any event. we will certainly recommend you to anyone that asks us about planning a trip to Africa!!

Thanks for your patience with us and for providing us with one memorable trip!!

Roger & Stephany


Stewart

February 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Valenzuela

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was incredible! Thank you so much for all your work. The safari was amazing, we saw the big 5 multiple times, Beck’s Safari Lodge was 5 star! Lovely, people, service and facilities. We could not have done this trip without your help. Having the guide from Johannesburg airport to get us on our connecting flight to Cape Town was crucial… I don’t think we would have made our flight with out him. Also, we took your advice and stayed in the Bidvest Lounge at Johannesburg on the way home. It was really worth it to have a place to lounge before our long flight home. We had such an terrific time, I’ve been sad to be home.

E. Feuer

July 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaBotswana

Just as she did 2 years ago, Kristina did a wonderful job customizing this trip for us, and we had a great time. Staff at camps were great, from the guides to the waitstaff. Chefs did an admirable job accommodating my dietary issues.
E. Feuer

Jones

June 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

This experience was great. The lodges we stayed in and the excursions we’re awesome. All my wife and I had to do was wake up, eat and be at a certain place at a certain time and the rest of the day handled itself. I would definitely like to travel to Africa again and I would definitely use Kristina and SAA. I appreciate you making this trip for my wife and I the best ever…
-Jones

D. Thompson

May 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Cheryle,
I wanted to thank you for the “best” trip ever!
I was taken back by my experiences and just loved South Africa.
– D. Thompson

Christie & Peter

April 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!!  Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in it’s own way.  We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time.  Both lodges were wonderful.  The rooms were great and the staff so helpful.  Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet.  All the food  was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it.  The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were  also a lot of fun to spend time with.  My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old!  Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us.  It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
Christie and Peter

J. Mackin

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

For me, it was a little daunting travelling to South Africa and Zimbabwe with my family. Mostly, because of the unknown. Upon arrival however, EVERYTHING worked out flawlessly. The hotels were great, the guides were personable and interesting, the transfers were all there when we arrived. I am sure you have an idea of how comforting this is for a traveler(s) far from home. I would also like to point out that whenever I emailed Kristina (with all of my questions over the course of 6+ months), her responses were lighting fast. It was clear that she truly had our best interests at heart. I would recommend her in a heartbeat.
Thank you to SAA Vacations for contributing to a lifetime of good memories!
Best Regards,
J. Mackin

Holly

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hey Mark,
Thank you so much for everything! I know I’ve said that many times before but I really do mean it. You have been so invaluable. I reached out to several companies for quotes but none of them felt right and provided me with the level of service you did!
Thanks!
Holly

C. Rutherford

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sylvia,
Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!! Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in its own way. We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time. Both lodges were wonderful. The rooms were great and the staff so helpful. Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet. All the food was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it. The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were also a lot of fun to spend time with. My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old! Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us. It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
C. Rutherford

T. Rosengart

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
Stan and I are back from our incredible trip to South Africa. Thanks for all of your help putting it together. Everything went very well and all the details worked seamlessly. We were very pleased with the accommodations, transfers and tours that you arranged. Thanks again. The Cape Grace Hotel and Thornybush Waterside Lodge, both far exceeded our expectations.
Incredible pictures, great memories!
T. Rosengart

Barbara

February 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
We are having the most fabulous time. As you said it would be, everything has been seamless. The people are the warmest, kind and helpful I have ever met. The game drives are incredible. Yesterday, was a banger day. Even the guides had never seen anything like it and couldn’t stop talking amongst themselves. We ran to see a zebra giving birth. When we got there on the other side of our jeep, sat two cheetahs. Within minutes they took off on a kill of another young zebra. It was the full cycle of life; birth on one side and death on another of the same species.
So hard to leave the tented camps, each camp is better than the next… We are now off to Ngorongoro.
Thanks for everything.
Best, Barbara

Laura W

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Hilari!!
Just finally settling in to being back home after the most amazing vacation I have ever had. I want to first thank you for your help with this trip. From start to finish every detail of this trip was perfect. The arrangements you put in place for us, could not be better organized. We actually cannot pick a favorite moment, since it was all so perfect. Cape Town was the most beautiful city I have ever traveled too and WILL visit again at some point in my life. The Kwa Maritane Bush Lodge was a lifetime adventure. My husband, who normally is very low key was like a little kid all over again, upon our arrival and with every Safari Drive we were on it just became more exciting. The guides could not be more inviting or knowledgeable. We all were truly satisfied with every aspect of our vacation. I cannot thank you enough for making our arrangements so perfectly!! I will forward pictures as soon as I get my act together. If you ever need a recommendation please feel free to use myself or any of my travel companions.
Regards Laura Williams

Lee

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful trip if a lifetime! Hilari did a great job making arrangements and booking our itinerary. The flights to SA were no problem. We did have a glitch from Phoenix to JFK where they split up our seats so we were all sitting separately (includlng the kids sitting by themselves next to strangers) so we had to purchase upgraded seats at the last minute to get us all together. Our experiences in Cale Town and Shameari were exceptional. The Accomodations at both locations were terrific and we would recommend them again. Our driver for our Cape Tour was one of the best we have ever had. We are recommending him to others we know who will be traveling there. Our safari guide was also fabulous – became like a family member to us. We loved the whole experience. Only downside was on the way home, SAA flight was subpar- seats were broken including my husband’s entertainment system which made a long flight a lot longer. Otherwise, we cannot wait for the day when we are able to go back!!

Buckley

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We couldn’t be happier with you and your company’s service and the trip as a whole! Have already passed your name on to a few others! Truly was the trip of a lifetime and should be on everyone’s bucket list that loves to travel. Every step of the way exceeded our expectations and the service was top notch at all accommodations, tours, tour guides, etc. We also felt your suggested must-do’s as well as suggested time-frames at each spot to get the most out of the trip were right on. We really appreciated all of the special little “honeymoon” touches that you and the various accommodations set up for us! It made everything that much more special and romantic, so thank you SO much for that. And in general for just working through the modifications to the itinerary with us, being so responsive to our inquiries, etc.
Our one suggestion with regard to Cape Town would be to tell the travelers in advance that the tour companies you pair with offer both half day and full day tours. For our wine day and cape peninsula day, we did not know that half days were an option and would have chosen a half day at one or both to enable us to have a bit more “free time” in Cape Town.
I forwarded a number of pictures to Kristina. Feel free to use! We have a ton more, so if you are looking for something specific, just let me know.
Thank you again! Should we ever safari again we would certainly work with you to plan it.

Pam P

November 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We got home last night as we spent overnight in NY recovering from the flight. We had a wonderful time and my husband describes it as “one of the best trips he has ever been on.” That says it all. The hotel One&Only was outstanding and the location was great. We were spoiled. On arrival they gave us a glass of sparkling wine and that set the tone for the whole trip. Thorny Bush Lodge was great and the animals we saw seemed almost surreal.
Thanks Sherry for all your help. We have done a lot of travelling over our lifetime but you have to be the best travel agent we have ever dealt with. In a short time you managed to put together a fabulous trip and answer every question we had with speed and efficiency. We would recommend your services to anyone who might ask and have already told our kids to put South Africa on their ‘to do and must see’ list.

Morris

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari planned the perfect customized trip for me to South Africa and Mauritius. We chatted by phone twice, and by email a couple of times, yet she knew precisely what kinds of tours and accommodations would suit my personality and tastes. What an amazing adventure I had! Something I have been thinking about doing for many years has been realized. I will never forget the experience. Thank you, Hilari!

Lani & Matt B

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Elizabeth,
Thank you so much for the sweet package in the mail!
We wanted to tell you how appreciative we are for your hard work to make our trip as special and amazing as it was. Every day was exciting and successful, making it truly a trip to remember. All hotels were luxurious and had great service, far exceeding our expectations.
Sending you all our thanks,
Lani and Matt Bettinger

Strunk

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience traveling in South Africa. It was truly one of the best vacations of all time. Elizabeth did a wonderful job putting the itinerary together. She was endlessly patient with us as we tweaked here and there and added on more experiences to maximize our trip. All of the accommodations were brilliant – top notch. We especially loved the Kariega Game Reserve. It was a perfect first safari experience for our children. We also loved Oddshorrn and the ostrich farm more than we expected – we could have spent another night in that area. We can’t wait to go back to South Africa again and would definitely book through you guys. All of the services and recommendations were fantastic. Special thanks to Elizabeth for putting it all together for us!

Stachiw

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

It was a trip of a lifetime. Elizabeth is a fantastic consultant who worked closely with me to put together the perfect itinerary for our family. Cape Town was wonderful and we absolutely loved Rovos Rail. We ended the trip with a safari that exceeded our expectations. All of the transfers and tours were on time with no issues. I could not have imagined a better vacation. Thank you SAA!

Scott F

July 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa Zambia

Hi Elizabeth,
Well, we are finally back home, recovering from our AWESOME  South Africa trip!!
I just want to let you know that the trip you put together for all of us was OUT OF THIS WORLD!!  It was probably our best trip that we have been on in our life!!
I want to THANK YOU for putting this trip together!!!  Everything that you suggested, we did, and glad that we did it!!  There is not one thing that we can complain about!!  That is how smooth and great the trip was.
It was a trip of many “FIRSTS”: First time in South Africa, First time on safari, First time seeing many of the animals that we did, First time at the Falls, First time on a big vacation with Bruce and Mel (and they still like to hang with us), First time I had to carry around an additional 35lb sculptor where-ever we traveled to that Jo bought the 2nd day of our trip, etc…..and the list goes on and on!! All of it a great time!!
All the accommodations, from the hotel in Cape Town and Joburg, to the unbelievable Buffalo Camp in Kruger, to the hotel in walking distance to Victoria Falls, these were way above what we expected!!  Especially at the Camp!!  Besides the awesome cabins they put us in and the safaris we participated in, the food was out of this world as well!!  Everyone there treated us like royalty. We are not use to that at all and it was such a wonderful experience!! All of the transportation to and from hotels, airports, even on the tours in Cape Town, were again tremendous and all ON TIME!!  Amazing!!
You really out did yourself and we appreciate all the time and effort you put into making this an AWESOME trip for all of us!!!  One that we will never, ever forget!
Thank YOU…THANK YOU….THANK YOU!!!

Dunn

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was AWESOME! Sherry did a fantastic job tayloring the tours to our varied interests. The only thing I would do differently next time would be to add more days in Cape Town and slow down the pace, to afford more free time for exploration!
Thanks Sherry!

Vicki S

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark–we have arrived home safely from our incredible trip. Now trying to adjust body clocks 🙂
Just had a little something emailed to you from Starbucks to say thanks for all you did for the last six months to get us organized and ready to go! Please let me know it arrives safely in your “inbox.”
We now face the daunting task of going through all the photos we took so that our friends will indulge us when we ask, “Want to see our pictures from Africa?”
Both my husband and I agree that we want to make a return trip to another part of the continent someday and will certainly be in touch if you are still available to help!
Thanks again for everything!

Adams

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great experience due to Kristina doing such ardent planning to meet our financial goals as well as making sure that we were seeing what we wanted to see in Africa. She was delightful in her delivery of the itinerary that met our needs and expectations. The properties were great and most important the people of Africa were welcoming and most helpful. Her choice of properties made the trip memorable as we had some fine dining under the stars on many occasions. The safari program was superb with an excellent guide for just the two of us with our own tracker as well. We saw the big five and much more. South African Airways was a superb airline in service and in hospitality. They truly served good meals in the air as well as making us comfortable. I will in the next few weeks upload to Kristina some photos of our experiences.
Thanks to Kristina for her dedication and love for Africa.

Judy H

May 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Mark,
Thank you for the thoughtful gift of safari note cards……another way to remember our fabulous trip.
The vacation was perfect. We saw so much and learned so much. The staff at all the lodges we stayed at couldn’t have been more welcoming and fun. I will remember this trip always.
Also we owe a big debt to you. You were so very helpful before we went and thoroughly prepared us for the trip. So all in all thank you so much. If we decide to do another African trip you will be the first person we talk to.

Flavio A

April 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari,
WOW WOW WOW, My wife and I have set foot in four Continents and have visited 17 different Countries and other than my Native Country if I were to recommend one it will be SOUTH Africa.
What a beautiful Country not only for the Breathless and Speechless moments over and over we had for the Beaches , the mountains, the wild animals but more importantly their people.
If I were to rate my experience from one to ten, one being the lowest rating and ten the highest I would give an ELEVEN to South Africa.
Did I say that the food quality and presentation is great and the prices are even better????? Well they simply are.
I went to do the South Africa IRONMAN in Port Elizabeth and the prices I paid for one week at the Radisson Blue, wouldn’t even have three days in USA, needless to say that the service is the best.
While riding my bike the day of the event a monkey got across the road in front of me and in my way back there were two little monkeys sitting at the edge of the road watching us go by. What a spectacle. I was expecting to see wild life until I went to the Safari not knowing that on race day we had them as spectators.
Gino The Tour Guide in our City tour in Cape Town was very knowledgeable, very friendly and had us in AWE for the entire day.
I was thinking that that was the best thing we were going to have in our trip not knowing that Tyrone our Safari Tour Driver was ten times better than Gino.
We went four times in the Safari and every single time we got to see the Wild Animals over and over, but every single time was like a completely new show.

Tony D

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Elizabeth,
Before I say anything else about how great the trip was–at the Portswood we were greeted with a bottle of champagne on ice with a 40th anniversary congratulation handwritten note, yellow roses on the bed and in the room on turn down, and at the Monwana reserve, Emma upgraded us to the Zulu suite, offering us congratulations on our 40th.
So special, thanks to you and to everyone else who was so thoughtful!

Angie T

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Cheryle,
We had a wonderful time. It was more than we could have hoped for. All of the arrangements that you made were terrific.  Thank you again.

Juby B

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark, we came back  on Sunday and just wanted to let you know, trip was great we had a blast. I will get back to you as there are many other places I would like to visit. Tks for putting together a great itinerary and the hotels and the service was incredible.

Janice & Dirk J

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Hi Maritza:
Dirk and I wanted to let you know about our wonderful trip. Unfortunately due to the storm in New York we missed a day in Cape Town, but all in all it was a fabulous vacation. The hotel in Cape Town was very nice and we enjoyed some time on the nice patio. The day trip to Cape of Good Hope was excellent and the penguins were fun to watch. We also visited the water front and Table Mountain.
The highlight of our trip was our stay at Thornybush Serondella Lodge. We were amazed at how close we were able to get to the animals and we saw the Big 5 within 1 day.! The lodge itself is very luxurious and we were fortunate to have a room overlooking the watering hole and saw many animals there every day.
The Safari Lodge in Victoria Falls was very nice. We enjoyed our dinners overlooking the valley and the watering hole.
We were so impressed at the level of organization. All our flights were on time and we were met everywhere as arranged. We would certainly recommend SAAV to anyone looking for a great holiday. Thanks for all your assistance in putting this together for us.

Daniel C

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience. We loved Cape Town and everything that was arranged for us there from the hotel to the tour, which was a lovely experience. The transfers were prompt and delivered us where we needed to be. The Pilanesberg reserve was incredible and we got to see so many animals up close! The hotel that we stayed at their was so gorgeous and the service was perfect.

Andrew H

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Thanks to Hilari and her efficiency and knowledge, we enjoyed a trip that was a once in a lifetime experience.
The resorts and events set up, especially at the Bakubung Bush Lodge and the Victoria Falls Safari and Lodge were unforgettable.
Thanks again for everything and would definitely look to you again for future destinations.

Janet H

January 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

Our guide made our time in Tanzania perfect; he was so knowledgable, helpful, cheerful, and we were SO impressed by his information, his driving skill (in conditions that were kind of challenging), and his alertness helped us spot the animals frequently. He really made our safari the truly spectacular experience.

Catherine F

January 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

This was a terrific trip! Lori Visser, our agent, helped us in a thousand ways–sometimes in areas where we didn’t even know we needed help.
Our guide, SP, was the best: he knows about the land, the animals, and the birds and wants to continue learning. He’s also personable and an excellent driver. Please give him a raise! In your publicity, include the absolute necessity of having an experienced guide.
Also, include the Masai in what you say about the trip! We enjoyed them (the men) so much, also liked how the Lake Natron lodge was situated between two Masai villages. We could see people going about their business, children going to school, etc. Sadly, the women were more difficult to relate to. We had no language in common. They were interested only in selling us their beadwork.
I liked the variety in the lodging. Please encourage the people at Lake Natron to upgrade their facilities. They don’t need to be fancy, but put the thatch on the roofs, fix the broken lights, install safer showers/baths. Toilets are new–nice. One over-the-top place was more than enough (Serena Serengeti). Acacia Farm Lodge is stunningly beautiful, but details need to be attended to. I don’t need rose petals on my bath mat. I’d rather have the blown-out bulb replaced in the bathroom, an electrical outlet there, and an adapter so I could use the hairdryer provided. The staff was most welcoming.
Again, a trip of a lifetime!

Jim & Hazel S

December 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Sherry
 Hazel and I wanted to thank you for organizing our recent, wonderful vacation in South Africa. Everything worked out perfectly travel wise and we really enjoyed it. Cape Town is a beautiful city and the three tours you set up for us were really excellent, we saw a lot and learned a lot. The subsequent time on Safari also was excellent. The accommodation was small and outstanding, the ranger and other staff were excellent and looked after us well. We saw lots of animals including all of the “big five” and enough giraffes to keep even Hazel happy (she loves them!)  Many thanks once again.
 Jim and Hazel S.

Latasha F

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Gabe Greenberg

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Gabe,
Thank you so much for the cards.  They were the bees knees.  It was comforting to have you walk me through my trip after I missed my flight.  By you rearranging everything, I didn’t miss a beat.  I know I will visit South Africa again and will be sure to use your vacation services.  I will also tell my friends to contact you if they travel to Africa.
Matter of fact, do you plan trips to Gahna?  My sister wants to go in the month of June.  I will copy her on this e-mail to possibly help with her planning.
Cheers!
Latasha

Linda H

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark! I wanted to thank you for the AMAZING South African adventure you planned for my family! It was PERFECT in every way! I honestly could not believe that with so many moving parts, that everything went off without a hitch! All the transfer pick-ups arrived EARLY to meet us.  There was never question about what was happening next. The shark dive was cancelled due to poor weather and boating conditions.  But they were quickly able to accommodate us on the following day.  What an amazing adventure!  We LOVED the Sun Cullinan hotel and its perfect location to the waterfront. The tour guide, Jason, who led us on the full day Cape Tour was AWESOME. And we met some cool families along the way following in our footsteps! The Serondella Lodge was so wonderful, that we literally cried when we left! Chewie, the Ranger, and his partner, Monica, the hostess, were some of the most wonderful people we have ever met, and they found a place in our heart forever!  The Victoria Falls Hotel was a perfect finish.  Thank you! thank you! I will be back to have you book my clients on this same adventure.  It was truly a trip of a lifetime and I appreciate all your insights to make it happen!
Happy new year!

Pinakin S

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a marvelous time one of the best holidays after a long time, everything without an exception was great Thanks to Hillari Ross who got us the perfect combination to stay, travel and commute. Will be recommending this unique experience to others as well. Keep up the good work and am tempted to do it again.
Thank you all once again and do keep me in the loop for any new offerings.
Pinakin

Castelo

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

What a great value for the two weeks!!
Your sending us to Thornybush was EXCELLENT and the staff at that site was incredible.  Would definitely return to enjoy Cape Town and the environs further east.

Ernesto L

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks Tom, this is the best experience in my life.  Never encounter so much thrill with those wildlife especially walk with the Lion. Please inform me any especial offer for next year, will bring my son with me. Thanks

Sveum

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

This was an amazing trip! We loved every aspect of it! Staying at Thornybush Game Lodge was the highlight of the trip. The staff at Thornybush were amazingly attentive!

Crystal K

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you very much for helping us to plan the best vacation ever!  I’m still basking in the glory of our trip to South Africa.  It was truly amazing!  Everything was first class and exceeded our expectations.
Arlene and her husband Hilton were amazing.  They took excellent care of us from the time we arrived until the time we left. For example, one day after our tours we were in the mood for a good hamburger.  Arlene and Hilton told us about a great restaurant that had excellent burgers and milk shakes; but they didn’t stop there, they actually drove us to the restaurant, and allowed us to go in and check the menu to see if it was something we wanted to come back for later.  When we checked in at the airport, Arlene stood at the security line until each of us made it through and waved at us as we headed to the gate.  The little touches were special, and will never be forgotten.
The Waterfront hotel in Cape Town was fantastic.  The staff learned our names, and were extremely pleasant.  The breakfast they serve is awesome as well as the cooks and servers.  The Kapama Lodge really exceeded our expectations.  From IP who picked us up at the airport, to Daron that checked us in, to our housekeeper Gift, and our safari driver Shanae and Stanley, we were never disappointed.  The food was great and the spa was amazing!!!
By far the most exciting point of the trip was the school visit.  The children at Moshesh will forever be in our hearts.  It was a blessing to be a blessing to the students and teachers.  We had so much fun, and made lasting relationships.  Arlene and Hilton made the experience even better by helping us to select the appropriate things for the school, and making sure we met their needs.  They even took us back to the school on our way to the airport so that we could hand deliver our cash donation.
As you can see, I can elaborate for hours about this trip.  I have shared the highlights with anyone who is willing to listen and look at my pictures.  We would be proud for you to share our photos, and will most definitely be a solid reference for SAA.  I will definitely complete the survey.
Crystal, I would like to personally thank you for helping to make our dream come true.  You were always professional and patient, even when my own patience was challenged.  I will definitely call you when I have the opportunity to plan another South African vacation, which may be soon.  My father-in-law was so impressed he has offered to take our family back to Cape Town.  I will let you know when we are able to secure dates 🙂
Best regards / Mit freundlichen Grüßen,
Crystal K

Ron M

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was terrific!  All the arrangements were impeccable.  Every driver who was supposed to show up did so at the right time.  The accommodations were luxurious.  We have nothing but good things to say about the places where we stayed.  We had a wonderful time at the Thornybush Reserve and got to see all the animals we hoped to see.  The Cape Town and the Victoria Falls tours were also excellent.
We would rate the trip a 10 out of 10 and are happy to recommend SAA Vacations to our friends.
Thanks again.
Ron M.

Ed & Sue

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Mark, Thanks to you and Maritza for putting together a trip of a lifetime for us. The flights were great, as were the tours. Our thanks to both Hylton and Wild Horizons, as well as Magic Bus. The hotels and lodges chosen were perfect for our needs. As you promised, the pickups were all on time and all waiting for us. The tour options chosen provided a perfect introduction/overview, for first time visitors. We did ride the elephants in Zambia.
We will glad to give you organization and both of you a five star rating for a job well done. In the future, if you have any clients or potential clients who our on the fence or apprehensive about the trip, we would be glad to talk to them on your behalf.
We are already starting to plan our next trip to South Africa.
Again thanks for all your help.
Sincerely,
Ed O. & Sue D.

Joyce B

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

My note is to express my appreciation for the patient, courteous, and informed help that I received from Mr. Mark Black.
He listened to my requests, regarading travel, and planned an interesting trip for me and my four, teenaged Grandchildren.
Mr. Black has excellent Customer Relation Skills.
Peace,  Joyce B  (AKA Grammy Joyce!)

Susan L

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

It truly was a trip of a lifetime, down to the very last detail!!! Thank you so much for all your planning and for the good care you took of all of us.

Arthur O

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hello Tom, Yes, we made it back safe and sound. Overall we would rate our journey as a “trip of a lifetime”.  We confirmed our memory that the South African people are the most genuine, open, caring people in the world!  We met people from all walks of life and found them all to be very gracious.  Our waistlines also attest to the fact that the food in South Africa is the world’s best!  The scenery, wildlife flowers, etc. all exceeded our expectations. Best regards,  Arthur O.

Tom & Holly S

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sherry! We had a GREAT trip!  Thanks so much for all that you did.  We will certainly refer you to friends, family, and colleagues.  In fact, around the water cooler today in the office I started to do just that. We did the “Devils Pool” excursion and the helicopter excursion over the falls.  Both were well worth it!  The Kariega Reserve was great too.  The guide, Victor, did an excellent job finding the elephants, rhinos, lions, etc for us.  A few photos are attached. The drivers were all on time, and the accommodations beat expectations! We thank you again and we’ll remember you and SAA the next time we go to Africa…maybe the East side next time, to see the migration from the Serengeti?  We’ll see…. Best Regards, Tom & Holly S.

Peter C

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, I wanted to thank you for the great work you did on arranging our tours and hotel in South Africa.  The tours where great, the guides excellent, the transportation perfect, and the hotel was awesome! Thank you so much for taking such great care of us! -Peter

Bob and Mary-Ann J

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, What a nice surprise. The notecards arrived to-day and they just brought back wonderful memories of our trip. Thank you so much. Of all the trips we have taken, this last trip to South Africa was the best. I cannot rave enough about the hotels, having our own personal driver and tour guide, and of course Kapama. Being in our 70’s and both being two times survivors of Cancer makes us especially appreciative of being able to go back to South Africa. Don’t know how many more Big trips we will be able to take, but the memories of this one will last forever. I will recommend you highly. Again, thank you for setting up our wonderful trip and again for the notecards – Bob and Mary Ann J

 

Carolyn D

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Crystal, Want to thank you for arranging the most glorious trip to SA.  Everything was perfect. I feel as though I spent 2 weeks being transported from place to place on a velvet pillow!! Every accommodation was excellent, every tour was fabulous. Would not hesitate to recommend.  Again, thank you!!

Steve H

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Just want to thank you for all your help with our  wonderful Africa trip.  Flights were all on time, drivers prompt.  Nice treat to have transfers prearranged.  Breakfasts all excellent everywhere.  Victoria and Albert offered upgrade to presidential suite for last 2 nights in Cape Town for small up-charge.  That was very nice – huge apartment.  Weather lousy in Cape Town but nice the day we drove out to Cape Point – beautiful.  Serondella was fabulous in every respect – service, personal attention, food, game drives.  Could not have been better.  Victoria Falls was gorgeous as expected.

Gregg C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for everything!  We had a fantastic time, and thought the trip was great. I wanted to say that our guide, Chris, at Tour D’Afrique, was fantastic…  he deserves some recognition… All the best! Gregg

Isabelli D.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesburg and Joburg.Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation. We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger. Again Thank you.

Jonathan H.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We just got back this morning. We had such an incredible time. We saw some fantastic things over there. Thanks for all your help getting this set up. -Jonathan.

Woodward Family

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

On the whole, our trip was wonderful. All of the places we stayed were nice and the guides assigned to us were wonderful.

Albin C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

The holiday was outstanding in every way!  Certainly there was the exoticism of the destination; the natural beauty of SA, catching a glimpse of the fauna — baboons, ostriches, kudu, et al (safe to say, there are none of these wandering around Miller Place) and simply the constant shift of the landscape were all winners. The Table Bay was an excellent hotel with exceptional staff.  The three of us were especially impressed by the quality of our guides; Enrico and Avril.  They were both knowledgeable with delightful personalities.  It was a pleasure to spend a day with them. In addition, everything was on time.  From the pick up for our tours, to the transfer driver there to greet us at CPT. We all know that SA has had a difficult history, but one leaves there with hope for tomorrow and a deep desire to return. As I’ve said many times before, you and Maritza are first rate professionals; knowledgeable, efficient, helpful and unfailing pleasant.  I hope your boss knows he/she is lucky to have both of you.

Len R.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks to your help, our trip was truly epic! The itinerary was perfect and the accommodations were 4 to 5 star with great value. Our 7 and 9 year old grandchildren were enthralled throughout! We saw all the big 5, plus hippos, jackals, hyenas, cheetah, and even a civet on a nighttime safari! We also saw about 150 species of birds! The boat rides in Chobe and at Victoria Falls were amazing! This is a great time to travel to South Africa because of the very favorable exchange rate — many meals were included on our trip, but now a reasonable restaurant meal is only about $10 U.S. — we had ostrich, zebra etc. in waterfront restaurants in Cape Town. Cape Town is an amazingly beautiful and sophisticated city, and our trips to visit a township, Mandela’s prison cell, and the Botanical Garden were all great.  Two small issues were quickly resolved by your South African counterparts and all the connections and pick-ups were seamless, in spite of the fact that we had 5 internal flights! We travel frequently, but this trip ranks at the top! Please express our gratitude to all involved! -Len

Michelle F.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Trip was fantastic! Everything was set up perfectly! Hotels were great, transportation was always perfectly on time! Great job! Thank you!I will recommend you to anyone wanting to go to SA! Best, Michelle

Chris H.

June 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great time in South Africa and I want to Thank you for your diligence in the planning of our itinerary – there were no issues at all! Everything went according to the plan and everyone was on time and ready to pick us up when they were supposed to. I was very impressed
The food and wine tour was GREAT – the guide was very knowledgeable about the area and shared some art places with us as well as the local food places. I would highly recommend that for first timers to South Africa. You may also want to look into adding the drumming/restaurant into your planned itinerary because it was so awesome. Besides the drumming lesson, they fed us traditional African food and entertained you with African song and dance throughout dinner.
Thank you again for planning our trip and being available to answer ALL my questions!

Jill K.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for the notecards!  We had a wonderful time in South Africa, everything went exactly as planned, no problems at all.  We enjoyed all of it but I think my favorite thing in Cape Town was a cooking class that my daughter and I took in the Langa township.  It was also nice to be so close to the waterfront.  We took the shuttle there every night to eat and buy gifts.  I managed to bring back 7 bottles of wine 🙂
We saw so many animals on safari, it was incredible!  The first time we went out we saw so many lions including cubs and we also saw lions hunting.
I guess I have to save up my money for another trip, I’d love to go back.  Thanks so much for all your help in making it possible.

E.L.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely notecards. We did see all the animals in the pictures. It was very wonderful vacation but much too short. Everything was perfect, accommodates were wonderful tours were great and on time, even the weather cooperated. Looking forward to more material from you about Botswana and Victoria Falls.
Thanks again,
E. L.

T. Ortega

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

All the guides, crew and staff were very knowledgeable. Their guide (Chris) in Cape Town provided an excellent overall insight into the history of South Africa. He was very accommodating and took the time to answer all their questions, took their pictures, etc.. The shark cage dive was also an excellent experience with friendly crew and staff. They have outstanding knowledge of the great white sharks and seals. Their safari guide (Owen) and his assistant (Federica) were also excellent and did their best to show them as many animals as they could find. They were very accommodating and knowledgeable about the animals and the terrain. Owen even gave them a lesson in star gazing and showed them the constellations that could be seen in South Africa. The accommodations were very nice and comfortable. They would highly recommend this trip to families and friends.

I. Desrosiers

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesberg and Joburg.
Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation.
We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger.
Again Thank you.

J&E Rock

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Eli and I want to THANK YOU so much for everything! Our trip was absolutely INCREDIBLE, and all of the plans were perfect, down to every detail!

South African Airways was by far the best airline we have ever flown, and the flight attendants were so friendly and went out of their way to make sure everyone was comfortable. The hotels were absolutely amazing, the staff went above and beyond to make us feel special on our honeymoon. The Victoria Falls hotel was beautiful, and the staff were so friendly to us. We thoroughly enjoyed all of our activities, especially the tour of the falls and the sundowner cruise. The One and Only surprised us with an upgrade to a suite, and with Champagne, chocolates and wine in our room upon arrival. We also had the most gorgeous view of Table Mountain. The second night we were there, we came back to a room with rose petals, candles and a note just saying they hope we were enjoying our stay. The staff was so genuine and always greeted us by name when coming and going. The concierge was extremely helpful with arranging plans and transportation on our free day, which we went up to Table Mountain and also did the Robbin Island tour. Katie our driver/guide for the wine tour and the tour of the Cape was FANTASTIC. She was so knowledgeable of the area and took us to a lot of great spots, both touristy and local. We had so much fun exploring Capetown and the wine lands with her. We did not think our trip could possibly get any better after Capetown, but Simbambali proved us wrong. From the time we arrived, everything was incredible – the food, the staff, the lodge and the game drives. They even surprised us with a private dinner in our room! We did not want to leave!

We truly enjoyed every second, and cannot thank you enough for helping us plan the most perfect honeymoon that neither of us will ever forget! We look forward to planning another trip to South Africa in the next few years with your help!


T. Deery

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black 

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Mark, your planning was fabulous.  Monwana was perfect, Chobe river safari/cruise was fabulous.   In KwaZulu Natal we spent our first night in Durban with a great view of the ocean, 3 days in St.Lucia ( Cape Vidal, kayaked with Hippos and Crocs, visited a Zulu school ), one night in Ballito at Salt rocks. Will send some photos when  we get them together. Please use us for referral.

S. Benito

May 2015
trip created by Africa specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

The whole trip was absolutely amazing in every respect – everything we saw and experienced, the accommodations, the food, the transportation- air, land and sea-, the weather and the people. Your professionalism and responsiveness in working with us to arrange all that was magnificent and Robin, the boys and I thank you so much for your patience and hard work in making it all happen.

Pam B.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

You did a fantastic job on all our accommodations.  Our drivers, Sun City, the lodge, the safaris were all fantastic and we had a wonderful time.   Thanks so much for everything.  I would highly recommend your services.

Diana W.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely cards…what a great surprise!  The trip was incredible and I want to take my husband.
Everything about the trip was wonderful.  I needed one last day to rest up.  We did see the Big Five in a day and a half.  I did have a treatment the last day at the spa which was half what I pay in the U.S.
All of the day trips were great. We had only one other couple with us.  Weather was wonderful.
Best trip we have taken.

D & R Rice

April 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

To all you at SAAV, thank you for planning a fabulous trip.
A few comments: all the transfer, pickups, hotels were great. Everyone was on time, courteous and knowledgeable. We could have spent more time in Cape Town. Beautiful city. The tours were great; small and intimate. Shark dive was amazing, although we had to leave hotel at 2:30AM to do the trip because of the weather.
The accommodations chosen for us were perfect. We enjoyed Serondella the most. The folks there were spectacular. The food in every accommodation was over the top!
I will recommend you all to friends planning a SA adventure.
Again, thank to you all.

Nicole C.

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline 

Travelled to:

South Africa

I am writing to express my appreciation of one of your employees. Tom Cline was very patient with me as I planned my trip to Africa. He suggested several safari lodges that were small upgrades to the lodge that was included in our package. After reviewing the options I was so pleased Tom went out of his way to make this suggestion since the lodges he chose will be a much more intimate and luxurious experience. He also was always kind when I needed to make changes in the dates of the trip. He called me to provide the opportunity to respond to questions I had about the itinerary. If I was expecting a quote to be prepared that was not finished he always sent me a message communicating the delay.
 In comparison to other travel specialists I’ve worked with Tom Cline is one of the best. He has excellent communication and interpersonal skills and has worked hard to make our anniversary trip to South Africa and Seychelles memorable.

William B. & Harold H.

February 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

I would like to echo the sentiments that Harold expressed in his email noted below.  The trip was simply amazing.  Everything went off as planned.  We did not encounter any difficulties.  I will share photographs as soon as possible.
Mark, as I have mentioned to you previously, you did an outstanding job and provided excellent customer service while planning the vacation package for Harold and myself.  I appreciate all of the timely responses and efforts you put forth in making sure we were satisfied with the details of the vacation.
Thank you so much putting together an incredible vacation package for William and myself.  The trip was exhilarating and filled with adventure and wonder.  There wasn’t one snag in the itinerary that you put together for us.  The hotels were fabulous and our driver/van was waiting to pick us up at every location.   I will tell friends about SAA and definitely use your service again when I travel to South Africa.
I have pictures and videos that I cannot wait to share with friends and family.

S. Greenwood

January 2015
trip created by Mark Black and Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South Africa

The Southern Sun in Cape Town was perfect: friendly staff, great room and breakfast, and the location was perfect for walks to both City Center and the Waterfront.
The two tours were also perfect. We were able to get up to Table Mt on the cable car, and then it closed for 2 days due to high winds so we were very lucky. We loved the full day Cape tour. We had the same guide, Iggy, for both days and he did a great job. We really enjoyed our 3rd day on our own since there were many places we learned about and wanted to visit: Castle of Good Hope, District Six Museum, Slave Lodge, Company’s Garden, and lots of time and bargaining fun at Green Market Square and then dinner at the Waterfront.
Monwana Game Lodge was really great. Jacques, Morris, Emma, Kelly and the rest of the team were incredible. We loved the size (only 8 guests) and the daily routine of safari, breakfast, rest, high tea, safari and cocktails before dinner. The food was superb. They made a special fireside New Year’s Eve dinner on the back deck. Jacque was a great host and educator on safari. We saw the Big 5 and plenty of other wildlife. Each outing was different and special.  We filled two cameras daily.
We would have loved to have been able to spend another day at Monwana ( our decision), but other than that, the mix of 4 nights in Cape Town and 2 at Monwana was perfect. We hope to return again, perhaps during August for even better viewing.
We would like to thank Mark and everyone at SAAV for putting such a memorable trip together for us

Sable S.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We visited Cornelia’s friend’s place in SA, the weather was great! We could not take the cable car to view the mountain as it was very windy. The hotel in Cape Town was not great, the rooms were very small, in fact Susan asked to move; I should have asked too as sharing the tiny room with Aziza my sister was very cramped.
The trip to Mowana was GREAT! We enjoyed the game and the meals at the lodge. That was a great place you recommended. I highly recommend it for other travelers.
Zambia was beautiful! We visited Livingstone but the waterfalls were not at peak. The Zambezi Sun was GREAT! My brother sent a driver with an SUV, we drove to Lusaka, stayed a night there and then drove to Sinda where my family stays. We spend a night there, and then drove to Chichele lodge at Mfuwe in Eastern province. We stayed there 2 nights. My brother paid for the trip!
Cornelia and Susan took the flight to Lusaka from Mfuwe; they stayed one night in Lusaka before they came back.
I want to thank you and your staff for the tremendous patience and all your help with all our trip coordination. You were particularly patient with us as we made all our changes. The trip was expensive but worth it.
Thanks again!

Elizabeth C.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Upon conducting an internet search for South Africa vacation planners, I randomly and happily connected with Sherry Lankin, beginning what was a wonderful experience in creating a first trip to this part of the world for my family.
We returned from our adventures last week, having had an incredible time. I called Sherry today, to thank her for her stellar work and excellent recommendations. However, I felt compelled to reach out to you, to commend your organization and to sing the praises of Sherry.
In her quiet way, she guided me through the intricacies of planning such a trek. She really listened to me when I talked about where I wanted to spend money and where I wanted to conserve money. She shared her experiences and made recommendations. I felt as though I was working with a friend, rather than an employee out to make a buck for the company. It became very natural to trust her judgement.
She is an effective communicator; I knew that a return phone call or email would be quickly forthcoming. Again, her dependability was impressive.
Kudos to Sherry Lankin. She is the first person I will call when we schedule our next trip to that part of the world.

A. Jones

November 2014 
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline  

Travelled to:

South Africa

Tom _ thank you for your welcome note. I must tell you that everything went so very well on our African trip, thanks to you. As for worries about ebola, thank goodness there was no trouble at all with stopping in Senegal. They certainly have it all under control.

The safaris went beyond our expectations — we saw a live game oil of a Bull by 5 lions — talk about learning about the killer instinct up cole! WOW is all I can say. The staff at Simbambili knows me, and We were greeted at the airport and the service at the lodge couldn’t have been better. As for the Chobe Game Lodge, well, I have a big fan there, and we were treated a bit like royalty, especially on my birthday, which they somehow already knew about!
All is all, it was the best trip we’ve ever taken to Africa and John and I wish to thank you for all of your efforts !!!!
PS: I also did TV & radio while in JoBurg so the Sandton Sun was the right call!

James and Ellen

trip created by Travel Expert Maritza Valenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Hi – we are back from South Africa/Zambia. It was the best vacation EVER!!! We loved every minute of it – the accommodations, food, Safari, Cape Town, and Victoria Falls. It was a vacation to remember.
Apparently, I can only send you six pictures at a time, so I will send you too additional emails. These pictures are from the Cape of Good Hope. We took (no kidding) over 1,000 pictures. Our only disappointment (very minor) was that, other than the mist in the distance, we couldn’t see Victoria Falls from Stanley Safari Lodge. The Lodge was further from the falls than we had expected. The falls were spectacular and a must see this time of year.
We had dropped Johannesburg from our trip (except for one night), and that was a good idea. Johannesburg, from the little we saw of it, was disappointing and a bit scary as security accompanied us from our car to the restaurant.
Thank you so much for putting this once-in-a-lifetime vacation together. It was perfect. If you have another must see vacation, please give me a call. We are ready for the next one of your adventures. Thanks again for all your work and for the beautiful cards.

Kristen M

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South Africa

Joanne Elam and Maritza were fantastic to work with. Joanne listened carefully to our thoughts and ideas for our honeymoon and planned the perfect trip for us. Joanne was always very responsive and explained all of our package in detail. Everything in South Africa went very smoothly and just as she had described. The arranged tours in Cape Town were great and very informative but the highlight was our safari at Monwana Game Lodge. We cannot rate Monwana and its staff highly enough. We plan on going back for our five-year wedding anniversary!
Thank you, Joanne, for planning a honeymoon for us that exceeded all of our expectations.

M Smith

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We would like to thank Joanne Elam for having organized the trip of a lifetime! Everything went according to schedule from the moment we landed to the time we departed. In two weeks we were able to experience 3 different unique places, each with its own distinct feel. Not having to worry about any aspect of the organization allowed us to enjoy our African adventure to the full. Joanne’s grand finale was our stay at the Stanley Safari Lodge in Zambia, a place of mystical beauty with open views to the mist rising from the Victoria Falls! The only disappointment of our trip was having to say farewell to Africa, a place we have fallen in love with. Thanks again Joanne, already looking forward to working with you to plan our next trip.

Mr & Mrs Hochberg

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Will write you later with more info but to summarize, I must say it was an awesome experience…from Shamwari to Cape Town!!! Every voucher pickup was on time, professional and helpful. Radisson Blu was fabulous and Shamwari makes us want to go back again next April. Thank you for all you did to facilitate this wonderful experience for us. Mickey Hochberg

Penelope A

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our group, all seasoned travelers, had a wonderful time. The venues were better than we expected. The service provided by the guides were exceptional. We were very very happy. And Crystal Allen was great as our overall advisor. I will definitely work with her again. Thank you!

Donna L

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialst Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a fantastic trip to South Africa. Thanks to you, everyone at South African Airways Vacations, Tour d’Afrique, Monwana Game Lodge and Hylton Ross for a wonderful trip.
South Africa was a truly gorgeous country, with friendly people. The Cape Town area was fantastically clean with no litter, which is unusual for a major city and very nice. He real highlight of the trip was the Monwana Game Lodge. It was fantastic. It is very small, the entire staff greats you when you arrive and they go to great lengths to make sure your visit is wonderful. Our room was very large with our own deck looking out on the watering hole which had lions, antelopes (not at the same time!), and a variety of other animals which we could watch from our chairs. The Game Drives were wonderful, the tracker and ranger were very good and we saw lions, leopards, rhinos, giraffes, water buffalos, hippos, and many, many other animals. We stopped for tea in the morning and a sun downer in the evening during the game drives, which was fun.
I cannot recommend Monwana highly enough. I think everyone should experience it. The food was fantastic and Emma took great care of us.
It was a perfect trip. The only thing we missed was Robbins Island since we planned to do it on our own and it was sold out so the advice is to buy tickets to it ahead of time if you intent to do it independently. It gives us something to add to our next trip.
Thanks for all your efforts for a flawless trip.

Margaret H

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

The March trip was awesome & special memories for a lifetime! I would like to thank you for your efforts in coordinating So Africa Zambia & Botswana for us. Honestly, the safari exceeded my expectations! The owners & staff at Shumbalala were exceptional…our guide Wayne & tracker Herman were first class & the meals delicious. Loved the outdoor shower & fireplace every night.
In Zambia my guided walk to the wettest part of Victoria Falls was magnificent just the two of us. I really liked Stanley Lodge open air concept …again warm service from staff. Finally Chobe was the frosting on the cake … Enjoyed buffet food concept at all meals & the game rides & Chobe River boat expedition were great fun. Also the free laundry service was a nice surprise. I enjoyed a massage & relaxed for the trip home…unbelievable terrific weather all 2 weeks. My ONLY suggestion would be the direct flight on Sat from Shumbalala area to Livingstone avoiding Joberg night & airport transfer. Mark, I would like to close my thoughts by stating the crews on ALL my So African Airways flights were professional & the JHB to JFK crew a 10!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

E. Feuer

July 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaBotswana

Just as she did 2 years ago, Kristina did a wonderful job customizing this trip for us, and we had a great time. Staff at camps were great, from the guides to the waitstaff. Chefs did an admirable job accommodating my dietary issues.
E. Feuer

Jones

June 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

This experience was great. The lodges we stayed in and the excursions we’re awesome. All my wife and I had to do was wake up, eat and be at a certain place at a certain time and the rest of the day handled itself. I would definitely like to travel to Africa again and I would definitely use Kristina and SAA. I appreciate you making this trip for my wife and I the best ever…
-Jones

D. Thompson

May 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Cheryle,
I wanted to thank you for the “best” trip ever!
I was taken back by my experiences and just loved South Africa.
– D. Thompson

Christie & Peter

April 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!!  Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in it’s own way.  We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time.  Both lodges were wonderful.  The rooms were great and the staff so helpful.  Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet.  All the food  was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it.  The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were  also a lot of fun to spend time with.  My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old!  Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us.  It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
Christie and Peter

J. Mackin

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

For me, it was a little daunting travelling to South Africa and Zimbabwe with my family. Mostly, because of the unknown. Upon arrival however, EVERYTHING worked out flawlessly. The hotels were great, the guides were personable and interesting, the transfers were all there when we arrived. I am sure you have an idea of how comforting this is for a traveler(s) far from home. I would also like to point out that whenever I emailed Kristina (with all of my questions over the course of 6+ months), her responses were lighting fast. It was clear that she truly had our best interests at heart. I would recommend her in a heartbeat.
Thank you to SAA Vacations for contributing to a lifetime of good memories!
Best Regards,
J. Mackin

Holly

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hey Mark,
Thank you so much for everything! I know I’ve said that many times before but I really do mean it. You have been so invaluable. I reached out to several companies for quotes but none of them felt right and provided me with the level of service you did!
Thanks!
Holly

C. Rutherford

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sylvia,
Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!! Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in its own way. We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time. Both lodges were wonderful. The rooms were great and the staff so helpful. Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet. All the food was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it. The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were also a lot of fun to spend time with. My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old! Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us. It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
C. Rutherford

T. Rosengart

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
Stan and I are back from our incredible trip to South Africa. Thanks for all of your help putting it together. Everything went very well and all the details worked seamlessly. We were very pleased with the accommodations, transfers and tours that you arranged. Thanks again. The Cape Grace Hotel and Thornybush Waterside Lodge, both far exceeded our expectations.
Incredible pictures, great memories!
T. Rosengart

Barbara

February 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
We are having the most fabulous time. As you said it would be, everything has been seamless. The people are the warmest, kind and helpful I have ever met. The game drives are incredible. Yesterday, was a banger day. Even the guides had never seen anything like it and couldn’t stop talking amongst themselves. We ran to see a zebra giving birth. When we got there on the other side of our jeep, sat two cheetahs. Within minutes they took off on a kill of another young zebra. It was the full cycle of life; birth on one side and death on another of the same species.
So hard to leave the tented camps, each camp is better than the next… We are now off to Ngorongoro.
Thanks for everything.
Best, Barbara

Laura W

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Hilari!!
Just finally settling in to being back home after the most amazing vacation I have ever had. I want to first thank you for your help with this trip. From start to finish every detail of this trip was perfect. The arrangements you put in place for us, could not be better organized. We actually cannot pick a favorite moment, since it was all so perfect. Cape Town was the most beautiful city I have ever traveled too and WILL visit again at some point in my life. The Kwa Maritane Bush Lodge was a lifetime adventure. My husband, who normally is very low key was like a little kid all over again, upon our arrival and with every Safari Drive we were on it just became more exciting. The guides could not be more inviting or knowledgeable. We all were truly satisfied with every aspect of our vacation. I cannot thank you enough for making our arrangements so perfectly!! I will forward pictures as soon as I get my act together. If you ever need a recommendation please feel free to use myself or any of my travel companions.
Regards Laura Williams

Lee

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful trip if a lifetime! Hilari did a great job making arrangements and booking our itinerary. The flights to SA were no problem. We did have a glitch from Phoenix to JFK where they split up our seats so we were all sitting separately (includlng the kids sitting by themselves next to strangers) so we had to purchase upgraded seats at the last minute to get us all together. Our experiences in Cale Town and Shameari were exceptional. The Accomodations at both locations were terrific and we would recommend them again. Our driver for our Cape Tour was one of the best we have ever had. We are recommending him to others we know who will be traveling there. Our safari guide was also fabulous – became like a family member to us. We loved the whole experience. Only downside was on the way home, SAA flight was subpar- seats were broken including my husband’s entertainment system which made a long flight a lot longer. Otherwise, we cannot wait for the day when we are able to go back!!

Buckley

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We couldn’t be happier with you and your company’s service and the trip as a whole! Have already passed your name on to a few others! Truly was the trip of a lifetime and should be on everyone’s bucket list that loves to travel. Every step of the way exceeded our expectations and the service was top notch at all accommodations, tours, tour guides, etc. We also felt your suggested must-do’s as well as suggested time-frames at each spot to get the most out of the trip were right on. We really appreciated all of the special little “honeymoon” touches that you and the various accommodations set up for us! It made everything that much more special and romantic, so thank you SO much for that. And in general for just working through the modifications to the itinerary with us, being so responsive to our inquiries, etc.
Our one suggestion with regard to Cape Town would be to tell the travelers in advance that the tour companies you pair with offer both half day and full day tours. For our wine day and cape peninsula day, we did not know that half days were an option and would have chosen a half day at one or both to enable us to have a bit more “free time” in Cape Town.
I forwarded a number of pictures to Kristina. Feel free to use! We have a ton more, so if you are looking for something specific, just let me know.
Thank you again! Should we ever safari again we would certainly work with you to plan it.

Pam P

November 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We got home last night as we spent overnight in NY recovering from the flight. We had a wonderful time and my husband describes it as “one of the best trips he has ever been on.” That says it all. The hotel One&Only was outstanding and the location was great. We were spoiled. On arrival they gave us a glass of sparkling wine and that set the tone for the whole trip. Thorny Bush Lodge was great and the animals we saw seemed almost surreal.
Thanks Sherry for all your help. We have done a lot of travelling over our lifetime but you have to be the best travel agent we have ever dealt with. In a short time you managed to put together a fabulous trip and answer every question we had with speed and efficiency. We would recommend your services to anyone who might ask and have already told our kids to put South Africa on their ‘to do and must see’ list.

Morris

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari planned the perfect customized trip for me to South Africa and Mauritius. We chatted by phone twice, and by email a couple of times, yet she knew precisely what kinds of tours and accommodations would suit my personality and tastes. What an amazing adventure I had! Something I have been thinking about doing for many years has been realized. I will never forget the experience. Thank you, Hilari!

Lani & Matt B

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Elizabeth,
Thank you so much for the sweet package in the mail!
We wanted to tell you how appreciative we are for your hard work to make our trip as special and amazing as it was. Every day was exciting and successful, making it truly a trip to remember. All hotels were luxurious and had great service, far exceeding our expectations.
Sending you all our thanks,
Lani and Matt Bettinger

Strunk

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience traveling in South Africa. It was truly one of the best vacations of all time. Elizabeth did a wonderful job putting the itinerary together. She was endlessly patient with us as we tweaked here and there and added on more experiences to maximize our trip. All of the accommodations were brilliant – top notch. We especially loved the Kariega Game Reserve. It was a perfect first safari experience for our children. We also loved Oddshorrn and the ostrich farm more than we expected – we could have spent another night in that area. We can’t wait to go back to South Africa again and would definitely book through you guys. All of the services and recommendations were fantastic. Special thanks to Elizabeth for putting it all together for us!

Stachiw

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

It was a trip of a lifetime. Elizabeth is a fantastic consultant who worked closely with me to put together the perfect itinerary for our family. Cape Town was wonderful and we absolutely loved Rovos Rail. We ended the trip with a safari that exceeded our expectations. All of the transfers and tours were on time with no issues. I could not have imagined a better vacation. Thank you SAA!

Scott F

July 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa Zambia

Hi Elizabeth,
Well, we are finally back home, recovering from our AWESOME  South Africa trip!!
I just want to let you know that the trip you put together for all of us was OUT OF THIS WORLD!!  It was probably our best trip that we have been on in our life!!
I want to THANK YOU for putting this trip together!!!  Everything that you suggested, we did, and glad that we did it!!  There is not one thing that we can complain about!!  That is how smooth and great the trip was.
It was a trip of many “FIRSTS”: First time in South Africa, First time on safari, First time seeing many of the animals that we did, First time at the Falls, First time on a big vacation with Bruce and Mel (and they still like to hang with us), First time I had to carry around an additional 35lb sculptor where-ever we traveled to that Jo bought the 2nd day of our trip, etc…..and the list goes on and on!! All of it a great time!!
All the accommodations, from the hotel in Cape Town and Joburg, to the unbelievable Buffalo Camp in Kruger, to the hotel in walking distance to Victoria Falls, these were way above what we expected!!  Especially at the Camp!!  Besides the awesome cabins they put us in and the safaris we participated in, the food was out of this world as well!!  Everyone there treated us like royalty. We are not use to that at all and it was such a wonderful experience!! All of the transportation to and from hotels, airports, even on the tours in Cape Town, were again tremendous and all ON TIME!!  Amazing!!
You really out did yourself and we appreciate all the time and effort you put into making this an AWESOME trip for all of us!!!  One that we will never, ever forget!
Thank YOU…THANK YOU….THANK YOU!!!

Dunn

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was AWESOME! Sherry did a fantastic job tayloring the tours to our varied interests. The only thing I would do differently next time would be to add more days in Cape Town and slow down the pace, to afford more free time for exploration!
Thanks Sherry!

Vicki S

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark–we have arrived home safely from our incredible trip. Now trying to adjust body clocks 🙂
Just had a little something emailed to you from Starbucks to say thanks for all you did for the last six months to get us organized and ready to go! Please let me know it arrives safely in your “inbox.”
We now face the daunting task of going through all the photos we took so that our friends will indulge us when we ask, “Want to see our pictures from Africa?”
Both my husband and I agree that we want to make a return trip to another part of the continent someday and will certainly be in touch if you are still available to help!
Thanks again for everything!

Adams

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great experience due to Kristina doing such ardent planning to meet our financial goals as well as making sure that we were seeing what we wanted to see in Africa. She was delightful in her delivery of the itinerary that met our needs and expectations. The properties were great and most important the people of Africa were welcoming and most helpful. Her choice of properties made the trip memorable as we had some fine dining under the stars on many occasions. The safari program was superb with an excellent guide for just the two of us with our own tracker as well. We saw the big five and much more. South African Airways was a superb airline in service and in hospitality. They truly served good meals in the air as well as making us comfortable. I will in the next few weeks upload to Kristina some photos of our experiences.
Thanks to Kristina for her dedication and love for Africa.

Judy H

May 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Mark,
Thank you for the thoughtful gift of safari note cards……another way to remember our fabulous trip.
The vacation was perfect. We saw so much and learned so much. The staff at all the lodges we stayed at couldn’t have been more welcoming and fun. I will remember this trip always.
Also we owe a big debt to you. You were so very helpful before we went and thoroughly prepared us for the trip. So all in all thank you so much. If we decide to do another African trip you will be the first person we talk to.

Flavio A

April 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari,
WOW WOW WOW, My wife and I have set foot in four Continents and have visited 17 different Countries and other than my Native Country if I were to recommend one it will be SOUTH Africa.
What a beautiful Country not only for the Breathless and Speechless moments over and over we had for the Beaches , the mountains, the wild animals but more importantly their people.
If I were to rate my experience from one to ten, one being the lowest rating and ten the highest I would give an ELEVEN to South Africa.
Did I say that the food quality and presentation is great and the prices are even better????? Well they simply are.
I went to do the South Africa IRONMAN in Port Elizabeth and the prices I paid for one week at the Radisson Blue, wouldn’t even have three days in USA, needless to say that the service is the best.
While riding my bike the day of the event a monkey got across the road in front of me and in my way back there were two little monkeys sitting at the edge of the road watching us go by. What a spectacle. I was expecting to see wild life until I went to the Safari not knowing that on race day we had them as spectators.
Gino The Tour Guide in our City tour in Cape Town was very knowledgeable, very friendly and had us in AWE for the entire day.
I was thinking that that was the best thing we were going to have in our trip not knowing that Tyrone our Safari Tour Driver was ten times better than Gino.
We went four times in the Safari and every single time we got to see the Wild Animals over and over, but every single time was like a completely new show.

Tony D

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Elizabeth,
Before I say anything else about how great the trip was–at the Portswood we were greeted with a bottle of champagne on ice with a 40th anniversary congratulation handwritten note, yellow roses on the bed and in the room on turn down, and at the Monwana reserve, Emma upgraded us to the Zulu suite, offering us congratulations on our 40th.
So special, thanks to you and to everyone else who was so thoughtful!

Angie T

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Cheryle,
We had a wonderful time. It was more than we could have hoped for. All of the arrangements that you made were terrific.  Thank you again.

Juby B

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark, we came back  on Sunday and just wanted to let you know, trip was great we had a blast. I will get back to you as there are many other places I would like to visit. Tks for putting together a great itinerary and the hotels and the service was incredible.

Janice & Dirk J

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Hi Maritza:
Dirk and I wanted to let you know about our wonderful trip. Unfortunately due to the storm in New York we missed a day in Cape Town, but all in all it was a fabulous vacation. The hotel in Cape Town was very nice and we enjoyed some time on the nice patio. The day trip to Cape of Good Hope was excellent and the penguins were fun to watch. We also visited the water front and Table Mountain.
The highlight of our trip was our stay at Thornybush Serondella Lodge. We were amazed at how close we were able to get to the animals and we saw the Big 5 within 1 day.! The lodge itself is very luxurious and we were fortunate to have a room overlooking the watering hole and saw many animals there every day.
The Safari Lodge in Victoria Falls was very nice. We enjoyed our dinners overlooking the valley and the watering hole.
We were so impressed at the level of organization. All our flights were on time and we were met everywhere as arranged. We would certainly recommend SAAV to anyone looking for a great holiday. Thanks for all your assistance in putting this together for us.

Daniel C

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience. We loved Cape Town and everything that was arranged for us there from the hotel to the tour, which was a lovely experience. The transfers were prompt and delivered us where we needed to be. The Pilanesberg reserve was incredible and we got to see so many animals up close! The hotel that we stayed at their was so gorgeous and the service was perfect.

Andrew H

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Thanks to Hilari and her efficiency and knowledge, we enjoyed a trip that was a once in a lifetime experience.
The resorts and events set up, especially at the Bakubung Bush Lodge and the Victoria Falls Safari and Lodge were unforgettable.
Thanks again for everything and would definitely look to you again for future destinations.

Janet H

January 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

Our guide made our time in Tanzania perfect; he was so knowledgable, helpful, cheerful, and we were SO impressed by his information, his driving skill (in conditions that were kind of challenging), and his alertness helped us spot the animals frequently. He really made our safari the truly spectacular experience.

Catherine F

January 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

This was a terrific trip! Lori Visser, our agent, helped us in a thousand ways–sometimes in areas where we didn’t even know we needed help.
Our guide, SP, was the best: he knows about the land, the animals, and the birds and wants to continue learning. He’s also personable and an excellent driver. Please give him a raise! In your publicity, include the absolute necessity of having an experienced guide.
Also, include the Masai in what you say about the trip! We enjoyed them (the men) so much, also liked how the Lake Natron lodge was situated between two Masai villages. We could see people going about their business, children going to school, etc. Sadly, the women were more difficult to relate to. We had no language in common. They were interested only in selling us their beadwork.
I liked the variety in the lodging. Please encourage the people at Lake Natron to upgrade their facilities. They don’t need to be fancy, but put the thatch on the roofs, fix the broken lights, install safer showers/baths. Toilets are new–nice. One over-the-top place was more than enough (Serena Serengeti). Acacia Farm Lodge is stunningly beautiful, but details need to be attended to. I don’t need rose petals on my bath mat. I’d rather have the blown-out bulb replaced in the bathroom, an electrical outlet there, and an adapter so I could use the hairdryer provided. The staff was most welcoming.
Again, a trip of a lifetime!

Jim & Hazel S

December 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Sherry
 Hazel and I wanted to thank you for organizing our recent, wonderful vacation in South Africa. Everything worked out perfectly travel wise and we really enjoyed it. Cape Town is a beautiful city and the three tours you set up for us were really excellent, we saw a lot and learned a lot. The subsequent time on Safari also was excellent. The accommodation was small and outstanding, the ranger and other staff were excellent and looked after us well. We saw lots of animals including all of the “big five” and enough giraffes to keep even Hazel happy (she loves them!)  Many thanks once again.
 Jim and Hazel S.

Latasha F

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Gabe Greenberg

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Gabe,
Thank you so much for the cards.  They were the bees knees.  It was comforting to have you walk me through my trip after I missed my flight.  By you rearranging everything, I didn’t miss a beat.  I know I will visit South Africa again and will be sure to use your vacation services.  I will also tell my friends to contact you if they travel to Africa.
Matter of fact, do you plan trips to Gahna?  My sister wants to go in the month of June.  I will copy her on this e-mail to possibly help with her planning.
Cheers!
Latasha

Linda H

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark! I wanted to thank you for the AMAZING South African adventure you planned for my family! It was PERFECT in every way! I honestly could not believe that with so many moving parts, that everything went off without a hitch! All the transfer pick-ups arrived EARLY to meet us.  There was never question about what was happening next. The shark dive was cancelled due to poor weather and boating conditions.  But they were quickly able to accommodate us on the following day.  What an amazing adventure!  We LOVED the Sun Cullinan hotel and its perfect location to the waterfront. The tour guide, Jason, who led us on the full day Cape Tour was AWESOME. And we met some cool families along the way following in our footsteps! The Serondella Lodge was so wonderful, that we literally cried when we left! Chewie, the Ranger, and his partner, Monica, the hostess, were some of the most wonderful people we have ever met, and they found a place in our heart forever!  The Victoria Falls Hotel was a perfect finish.  Thank you! thank you! I will be back to have you book my clients on this same adventure.  It was truly a trip of a lifetime and I appreciate all your insights to make it happen!
Happy new year!

Pinakin S

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a marvelous time one of the best holidays after a long time, everything without an exception was great Thanks to Hillari Ross who got us the perfect combination to stay, travel and commute. Will be recommending this unique experience to others as well. Keep up the good work and am tempted to do it again.
Thank you all once again and do keep me in the loop for any new offerings.
Pinakin

Castelo

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

What a great value for the two weeks!!
Your sending us to Thornybush was EXCELLENT and the staff at that site was incredible.  Would definitely return to enjoy Cape Town and the environs further east.

Ernesto L

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks Tom, this is the best experience in my life.  Never encounter so much thrill with those wildlife especially walk with the Lion. Please inform me any especial offer for next year, will bring my son with me. Thanks

Sveum

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

This was an amazing trip! We loved every aspect of it! Staying at Thornybush Game Lodge was the highlight of the trip. The staff at Thornybush were amazingly attentive!

Crystal K

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you very much for helping us to plan the best vacation ever!  I’m still basking in the glory of our trip to South Africa.  It was truly amazing!  Everything was first class and exceeded our expectations.
Arlene and her husband Hilton were amazing.  They took excellent care of us from the time we arrived until the time we left. For example, one day after our tours we were in the mood for a good hamburger.  Arlene and Hilton told us about a great restaurant that had excellent burgers and milk shakes; but they didn’t stop there, they actually drove us to the restaurant, and allowed us to go in and check the menu to see if it was something we wanted to come back for later.  When we checked in at the airport, Arlene stood at the security line until each of us made it through and waved at us as we headed to the gate.  The little touches were special, and will never be forgotten.
The Waterfront hotel in Cape Town was fantastic.  The staff learned our names, and were extremely pleasant.  The breakfast they serve is awesome as well as the cooks and servers.  The Kapama Lodge really exceeded our expectations.  From IP who picked us up at the airport, to Daron that checked us in, to our housekeeper Gift, and our safari driver Shanae and Stanley, we were never disappointed.  The food was great and the spa was amazing!!!
By far the most exciting point of the trip was the school visit.  The children at Moshesh will forever be in our hearts.  It was a blessing to be a blessing to the students and teachers.  We had so much fun, and made lasting relationships.  Arlene and Hilton made the experience even better by helping us to select the appropriate things for the school, and making sure we met their needs.  They even took us back to the school on our way to the airport so that we could hand deliver our cash donation.
As you can see, I can elaborate for hours about this trip.  I have shared the highlights with anyone who is willing to listen and look at my pictures.  We would be proud for you to share our photos, and will most definitely be a solid reference for SAA.  I will definitely complete the survey.
Crystal, I would like to personally thank you for helping to make our dream come true.  You were always professional and patient, even when my own patience was challenged.  I will definitely call you when I have the opportunity to plan another South African vacation, which may be soon.  My father-in-law was so impressed he has offered to take our family back to Cape Town.  I will let you know when we are able to secure dates 🙂
Best regards / Mit freundlichen Grüßen,
Crystal K

Ron M

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was terrific!  All the arrangements were impeccable.  Every driver who was supposed to show up did so at the right time.  The accommodations were luxurious.  We have nothing but good things to say about the places where we stayed.  We had a wonderful time at the Thornybush Reserve and got to see all the animals we hoped to see.  The Cape Town and the Victoria Falls tours were also excellent.
We would rate the trip a 10 out of 10 and are happy to recommend SAA Vacations to our friends.
Thanks again.
Ron M.

Ed & Sue

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Mark, Thanks to you and Maritza for putting together a trip of a lifetime for us. The flights were great, as were the tours. Our thanks to both Hylton and Wild Horizons, as well as Magic Bus. The hotels and lodges chosen were perfect for our needs. As you promised, the pickups were all on time and all waiting for us. The tour options chosen provided a perfect introduction/overview, for first time visitors. We did ride the elephants in Zambia.
We will glad to give you organization and both of you a five star rating for a job well done. In the future, if you have any clients or potential clients who our on the fence or apprehensive about the trip, we would be glad to talk to them on your behalf.
We are already starting to plan our next trip to South Africa.
Again thanks for all your help.
Sincerely,
Ed O. & Sue D.

Joyce B

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

My note is to express my appreciation for the patient, courteous, and informed help that I received from Mr. Mark Black.
He listened to my requests, regarading travel, and planned an interesting trip for me and my four, teenaged Grandchildren.
Mr. Black has excellent Customer Relation Skills.
Peace,  Joyce B  (AKA Grammy Joyce!)

Susan L

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

It truly was a trip of a lifetime, down to the very last detail!!! Thank you so much for all your planning and for the good care you took of all of us.

Arthur O

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hello Tom, Yes, we made it back safe and sound. Overall we would rate our journey as a “trip of a lifetime”.  We confirmed our memory that the South African people are the most genuine, open, caring people in the world!  We met people from all walks of life and found them all to be very gracious.  Our waistlines also attest to the fact that the food in South Africa is the world’s best!  The scenery, wildlife flowers, etc. all exceeded our expectations. Best regards,  Arthur O.

Tom & Holly S

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sherry! We had a GREAT trip!  Thanks so much for all that you did.  We will certainly refer you to friends, family, and colleagues.  In fact, around the water cooler today in the office I started to do just that. We did the “Devils Pool” excursion and the helicopter excursion over the falls.  Both were well worth it!  The Kariega Reserve was great too.  The guide, Victor, did an excellent job finding the elephants, rhinos, lions, etc for us.  A few photos are attached. The drivers were all on time, and the accommodations beat expectations! We thank you again and we’ll remember you and SAA the next time we go to Africa…maybe the East side next time, to see the migration from the Serengeti?  We’ll see…. Best Regards, Tom & Holly S.

Peter C

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, I wanted to thank you for the great work you did on arranging our tours and hotel in South Africa.  The tours where great, the guides excellent, the transportation perfect, and the hotel was awesome! Thank you so much for taking such great care of us! -Peter

Bob and Mary-Ann J

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, What a nice surprise. The notecards arrived to-day and they just brought back wonderful memories of our trip. Thank you so much. Of all the trips we have taken, this last trip to South Africa was the best. I cannot rave enough about the hotels, having our own personal driver and tour guide, and of course Kapama. Being in our 70’s and both being two times survivors of Cancer makes us especially appreciative of being able to go back to South Africa. Don’t know how many more Big trips we will be able to take, but the memories of this one will last forever. I will recommend you highly. Again, thank you for setting up our wonderful trip and again for the notecards – Bob and Mary Ann J

 

Carolyn D

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Crystal, Want to thank you for arranging the most glorious trip to SA.  Everything was perfect. I feel as though I spent 2 weeks being transported from place to place on a velvet pillow!! Every accommodation was excellent, every tour was fabulous. Would not hesitate to recommend.  Again, thank you!!

Steve H

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Just want to thank you for all your help with our  wonderful Africa trip.  Flights were all on time, drivers prompt.  Nice treat to have transfers prearranged.  Breakfasts all excellent everywhere.  Victoria and Albert offered upgrade to presidential suite for last 2 nights in Cape Town for small up-charge.  That was very nice – huge apartment.  Weather lousy in Cape Town but nice the day we drove out to Cape Point – beautiful.  Serondella was fabulous in every respect – service, personal attention, food, game drives.  Could not have been better.  Victoria Falls was gorgeous as expected.

Gregg C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for everything!  We had a fantastic time, and thought the trip was great. I wanted to say that our guide, Chris, at Tour D’Afrique, was fantastic…  he deserves some recognition… All the best! Gregg

Isabelli D.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesburg and Joburg.Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation. We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger. Again Thank you.

Jonathan H.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We just got back this morning. We had such an incredible time. We saw some fantastic things over there. Thanks for all your help getting this set up. -Jonathan.

Woodward Family

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

On the whole, our trip was wonderful. All of the places we stayed were nice and the guides assigned to us were wonderful.

Albin C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

The holiday was outstanding in every way!  Certainly there was the exoticism of the destination; the natural beauty of SA, catching a glimpse of the fauna — baboons, ostriches, kudu, et al (safe to say, there are none of these wandering around Miller Place) and simply the constant shift of the landscape were all winners. The Table Bay was an excellent hotel with exceptional staff.  The three of us were especially impressed by the quality of our guides; Enrico and Avril.  They were both knowledgeable with delightful personalities.  It was a pleasure to spend a day with them. In addition, everything was on time.  From the pick up for our tours, to the transfer driver there to greet us at CPT. We all know that SA has had a difficult history, but one leaves there with hope for tomorrow and a deep desire to return. As I’ve said many times before, you and Maritza are first rate professionals; knowledgeable, efficient, helpful and unfailing pleasant.  I hope your boss knows he/she is lucky to have both of you.

Len R.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks to your help, our trip was truly epic! The itinerary was perfect and the accommodations were 4 to 5 star with great value. Our 7 and 9 year old grandchildren were enthralled throughout! We saw all the big 5, plus hippos, jackals, hyenas, cheetah, and even a civet on a nighttime safari! We also saw about 150 species of birds! The boat rides in Chobe and at Victoria Falls were amazing! This is a great time to travel to South Africa because of the very favorable exchange rate — many meals were included on our trip, but now a reasonable restaurant meal is only about $10 U.S. — we had ostrich, zebra etc. in waterfront restaurants in Cape Town. Cape Town is an amazingly beautiful and sophisticated city, and our trips to visit a township, Mandela’s prison cell, and the Botanical Garden were all great.  Two small issues were quickly resolved by your South African counterparts and all the connections and pick-ups were seamless, in spite of the fact that we had 5 internal flights! We travel frequently, but this trip ranks at the top! Please express our gratitude to all involved! -Len

Michelle F.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Trip was fantastic! Everything was set up perfectly! Hotels were great, transportation was always perfectly on time! Great job! Thank you!I will recommend you to anyone wanting to go to SA! Best, Michelle

Chris H.

June 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great time in South Africa and I want to Thank you for your diligence in the planning of our itinerary – there were no issues at all! Everything went according to the plan and everyone was on time and ready to pick us up when they were supposed to. I was very impressed
The food and wine tour was GREAT – the guide was very knowledgeable about the area and shared some art places with us as well as the local food places. I would highly recommend that for first timers to South Africa. You may also want to look into adding the drumming/restaurant into your planned itinerary because it was so awesome. Besides the drumming lesson, they fed us traditional African food and entertained you with African song and dance throughout dinner.
Thank you again for planning our trip and being available to answer ALL my questions!

Jill K.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for the notecards!  We had a wonderful time in South Africa, everything went exactly as planned, no problems at all.  We enjoyed all of it but I think my favorite thing in Cape Town was a cooking class that my daughter and I took in the Langa township.  It was also nice to be so close to the waterfront.  We took the shuttle there every night to eat and buy gifts.  I managed to bring back 7 bottles of wine 🙂
We saw so many animals on safari, it was incredible!  The first time we went out we saw so many lions including cubs and we also saw lions hunting.
I guess I have to save up my money for another trip, I’d love to go back.  Thanks so much for all your help in making it possible.

E.L.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely notecards. We did see all the animals in the pictures. It was very wonderful vacation but much too short. Everything was perfect, accommodates were wonderful tours were great and on time, even the weather cooperated. Looking forward to more material from you about Botswana and Victoria Falls.
Thanks again,
E. L.

T. Ortega

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

All the guides, crew and staff were very knowledgeable. Their guide (Chris) in Cape Town provided an excellent overall insight into the history of South Africa. He was very accommodating and took the time to answer all their questions, took their pictures, etc.. The shark cage dive was also an excellent experience with friendly crew and staff. They have outstanding knowledge of the great white sharks and seals. Their safari guide (Owen) and his assistant (Federica) were also excellent and did their best to show them as many animals as they could find. They were very accommodating and knowledgeable about the animals and the terrain. Owen even gave them a lesson in star gazing and showed them the constellations that could be seen in South Africa. The accommodations were very nice and comfortable. They would highly recommend this trip to families and friends.

I. Desrosiers

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesberg and Joburg.
Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation.
We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger.
Again Thank you.

J&E Rock

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Eli and I want to THANK YOU so much for everything! Our trip was absolutely INCREDIBLE, and all of the plans were perfect, down to every detail!

South African Airways was by far the best airline we have ever flown, and the flight attendants were so friendly and went out of their way to make sure everyone was comfortable. The hotels were absolutely amazing, the staff went above and beyond to make us feel special on our honeymoon. The Victoria Falls hotel was beautiful, and the staff were so friendly to us. We thoroughly enjoyed all of our activities, especially the tour of the falls and the sundowner cruise. The One and Only surprised us with an upgrade to a suite, and with Champagne, chocolates and wine in our room upon arrival. We also had the most gorgeous view of Table Mountain. The second night we were there, we came back to a room with rose petals, candles and a note just saying they hope we were enjoying our stay. The staff was so genuine and always greeted us by name when coming and going. The concierge was extremely helpful with arranging plans and transportation on our free day, which we went up to Table Mountain and also did the Robbin Island tour. Katie our driver/guide for the wine tour and the tour of the Cape was FANTASTIC. She was so knowledgeable of the area and took us to a lot of great spots, both touristy and local. We had so much fun exploring Capetown and the wine lands with her. We did not think our trip could possibly get any better after Capetown, but Simbambali proved us wrong. From the time we arrived, everything was incredible – the food, the staff, the lodge and the game drives. They even surprised us with a private dinner in our room! We did not want to leave!

We truly enjoyed every second, and cannot thank you enough for helping us plan the most perfect honeymoon that neither of us will ever forget! We look forward to planning another trip to South Africa in the next few years with your help!


T. Deery

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black 

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Mark, your planning was fabulous.  Monwana was perfect, Chobe river safari/cruise was fabulous.   In KwaZulu Natal we spent our first night in Durban with a great view of the ocean, 3 days in St.Lucia ( Cape Vidal, kayaked with Hippos and Crocs, visited a Zulu school ), one night in Ballito at Salt rocks. Will send some photos when  we get them together. Please use us for referral.

S. Benito

May 2015
trip created by Africa specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

The whole trip was absolutely amazing in every respect – everything we saw and experienced, the accommodations, the food, the transportation- air, land and sea-, the weather and the people. Your professionalism and responsiveness in working with us to arrange all that was magnificent and Robin, the boys and I thank you so much for your patience and hard work in making it all happen.

Pam B.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

You did a fantastic job on all our accommodations.  Our drivers, Sun City, the lodge, the safaris were all fantastic and we had a wonderful time.   Thanks so much for everything.  I would highly recommend your services.

Diana W.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely cards…what a great surprise!  The trip was incredible and I want to take my husband.
Everything about the trip was wonderful.  I needed one last day to rest up.  We did see the Big Five in a day and a half.  I did have a treatment the last day at the spa which was half what I pay in the U.S.
All of the day trips were great. We had only one other couple with us.  Weather was wonderful.
Best trip we have taken.

D & R Rice

April 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

To all you at SAAV, thank you for planning a fabulous trip.
A few comments: all the transfer, pickups, hotels were great. Everyone was on time, courteous and knowledgeable. We could have spent more time in Cape Town. Beautiful city. The tours were great; small and intimate. Shark dive was amazing, although we had to leave hotel at 2:30AM to do the trip because of the weather.
The accommodations chosen for us were perfect. We enjoyed Serondella the most. The folks there were spectacular. The food in every accommodation was over the top!
I will recommend you all to friends planning a SA adventure.
Again, thank to you all.

Nicole C.

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline 

Travelled to:

South Africa

I am writing to express my appreciation of one of your employees. Tom Cline was very patient with me as I planned my trip to Africa. He suggested several safari lodges that were small upgrades to the lodge that was included in our package. After reviewing the options I was so pleased Tom went out of his way to make this suggestion since the lodges he chose will be a much more intimate and luxurious experience. He also was always kind when I needed to make changes in the dates of the trip. He called me to provide the opportunity to respond to questions I had about the itinerary. If I was expecting a quote to be prepared that was not finished he always sent me a message communicating the delay.
 In comparison to other travel specialists I’ve worked with Tom Cline is one of the best. He has excellent communication and interpersonal skills and has worked hard to make our anniversary trip to South Africa and Seychelles memorable.

William B. & Harold H.

February 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

I would like to echo the sentiments that Harold expressed in his email noted below.  The trip was simply amazing.  Everything went off as planned.  We did not encounter any difficulties.  I will share photographs as soon as possible.
Mark, as I have mentioned to you previously, you did an outstanding job and provided excellent customer service while planning the vacation package for Harold and myself.  I appreciate all of the timely responses and efforts you put forth in making sure we were satisfied with the details of the vacation.
Thank you so much putting together an incredible vacation package for William and myself.  The trip was exhilarating and filled with adventure and wonder.  There wasn’t one snag in the itinerary that you put together for us.  The hotels were fabulous and our driver/van was waiting to pick us up at every location.   I will tell friends about SAA and definitely use your service again when I travel to South Africa.
I have pictures and videos that I cannot wait to share with friends and family.

S. Greenwood

January 2015
trip created by Mark Black and Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South Africa

The Southern Sun in Cape Town was perfect: friendly staff, great room and breakfast, and the location was perfect for walks to both City Center and the Waterfront.
The two tours were also perfect. We were able to get up to Table Mt on the cable car, and then it closed for 2 days due to high winds so we were very lucky. We loved the full day Cape tour. We had the same guide, Iggy, for both days and he did a great job. We really enjoyed our 3rd day on our own since there were many places we learned about and wanted to visit: Castle of Good Hope, District Six Museum, Slave Lodge, Company’s Garden, and lots of time and bargaining fun at Green Market Square and then dinner at the Waterfront.
Monwana Game Lodge was really great. Jacques, Morris, Emma, Kelly and the rest of the team were incredible. We loved the size (only 8 guests) and the daily routine of safari, breakfast, rest, high tea, safari and cocktails before dinner. The food was superb. They made a special fireside New Year’s Eve dinner on the back deck. Jacque was a great host and educator on safari. We saw the Big 5 and plenty of other wildlife. Each outing was different and special.  We filled two cameras daily.
We would have loved to have been able to spend another day at Monwana ( our decision), but other than that, the mix of 4 nights in Cape Town and 2 at Monwana was perfect. We hope to return again, perhaps during August for even better viewing.
We would like to thank Mark and everyone at SAAV for putting such a memorable trip together for us

Sable S.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We visited Cornelia’s friend’s place in SA, the weather was great! We could not take the cable car to view the mountain as it was very windy. The hotel in Cape Town was not great, the rooms were very small, in fact Susan asked to move; I should have asked too as sharing the tiny room with Aziza my sister was very cramped.
The trip to Mowana was GREAT! We enjoyed the game and the meals at the lodge. That was a great place you recommended. I highly recommend it for other travelers.
Zambia was beautiful! We visited Livingstone but the waterfalls were not at peak. The Zambezi Sun was GREAT! My brother sent a driver with an SUV, we drove to Lusaka, stayed a night there and then drove to Sinda where my family stays. We spend a night there, and then drove to Chichele lodge at Mfuwe in Eastern province. We stayed there 2 nights. My brother paid for the trip!
Cornelia and Susan took the flight to Lusaka from Mfuwe; they stayed one night in Lusaka before they came back.
I want to thank you and your staff for the tremendous patience and all your help with all our trip coordination. You were particularly patient with us as we made all our changes. The trip was expensive but worth it.
Thanks again!

Elizabeth C.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Upon conducting an internet search for South Africa vacation planners, I randomly and happily connected with Sherry Lankin, beginning what was a wonderful experience in creating a first trip to this part of the world for my family.
We returned from our adventures last week, having had an incredible time. I called Sherry today, to thank her for her stellar work and excellent recommendations. However, I felt compelled to reach out to you, to commend your organization and to sing the praises of Sherry.
In her quiet way, she guided me through the intricacies of planning such a trek. She really listened to me when I talked about where I wanted to spend money and where I wanted to conserve money. She shared her experiences and made recommendations. I felt as though I was working with a friend, rather than an employee out to make a buck for the company. It became very natural to trust her judgement.
She is an effective communicator; I knew that a return phone call or email would be quickly forthcoming. Again, her dependability was impressive.
Kudos to Sherry Lankin. She is the first person I will call when we schedule our next trip to that part of the world.

A. Jones

November 2014 
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline  

Travelled to:

South Africa

Tom _ thank you for your welcome note. I must tell you that everything went so very well on our African trip, thanks to you. As for worries about ebola, thank goodness there was no trouble at all with stopping in Senegal. They certainly have it all under control.

The safaris went beyond our expectations — we saw a live game oil of a Bull by 5 lions — talk about learning about the killer instinct up cole! WOW is all I can say. The staff at Simbambili knows me, and We were greeted at the airport and the service at the lodge couldn’t have been better. As for the Chobe Game Lodge, well, I have a big fan there, and we were treated a bit like royalty, especially on my birthday, which they somehow already knew about!
All is all, it was the best trip we’ve ever taken to Africa and John and I wish to thank you for all of your efforts !!!!
PS: I also did TV & radio while in JoBurg so the Sandton Sun was the right call!

James and Ellen

trip created by Travel Expert Maritza Valenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Hi – we are back from South Africa/Zambia. It was the best vacation EVER!!! We loved every minute of it – the accommodations, food, Safari, Cape Town, and Victoria Falls. It was a vacation to remember.
Apparently, I can only send you six pictures at a time, so I will send you too additional emails. These pictures are from the Cape of Good Hope. We took (no kidding) over 1,000 pictures. Our only disappointment (very minor) was that, other than the mist in the distance, we couldn’t see Victoria Falls from Stanley Safari Lodge. The Lodge was further from the falls than we had expected. The falls were spectacular and a must see this time of year.
We had dropped Johannesburg from our trip (except for one night), and that was a good idea. Johannesburg, from the little we saw of it, was disappointing and a bit scary as security accompanied us from our car to the restaurant.
Thank you so much for putting this once-in-a-lifetime vacation together. It was perfect. If you have another must see vacation, please give me a call. We are ready for the next one of your adventures. Thanks again for all your work and for the beautiful cards.

Kristen M

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South Africa

Joanne Elam and Maritza were fantastic to work with. Joanne listened carefully to our thoughts and ideas for our honeymoon and planned the perfect trip for us. Joanne was always very responsive and explained all of our package in detail. Everything in South Africa went very smoothly and just as she had described. The arranged tours in Cape Town were great and very informative but the highlight was our safari at Monwana Game Lodge. We cannot rate Monwana and its staff highly enough. We plan on going back for our five-year wedding anniversary!
Thank you, Joanne, for planning a honeymoon for us that exceeded all of our expectations.

M Smith

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We would like to thank Joanne Elam for having organized the trip of a lifetime! Everything went according to schedule from the moment we landed to the time we departed. In two weeks we were able to experience 3 different unique places, each with its own distinct feel. Not having to worry about any aspect of the organization allowed us to enjoy our African adventure to the full. Joanne’s grand finale was our stay at the Stanley Safari Lodge in Zambia, a place of mystical beauty with open views to the mist rising from the Victoria Falls! The only disappointment of our trip was having to say farewell to Africa, a place we have fallen in love with. Thanks again Joanne, already looking forward to working with you to plan our next trip.

Mr & Mrs Hochberg

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Will write you later with more info but to summarize, I must say it was an awesome experience…from Shamwari to Cape Town!!! Every voucher pickup was on time, professional and helpful. Radisson Blu was fabulous and Shamwari makes us want to go back again next April. Thank you for all you did to facilitate this wonderful experience for us. Mickey Hochberg

Penelope A

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our group, all seasoned travelers, had a wonderful time. The venues were better than we expected. The service provided by the guides were exceptional. We were very very happy. And Crystal Allen was great as our overall advisor. I will definitely work with her again. Thank you!

Donna L

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialst Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a fantastic trip to South Africa. Thanks to you, everyone at South African Airways Vacations, Tour d’Afrique, Monwana Game Lodge and Hylton Ross for a wonderful trip.
South Africa was a truly gorgeous country, with friendly people. The Cape Town area was fantastically clean with no litter, which is unusual for a major city and very nice. He real highlight of the trip was the Monwana Game Lodge. It was fantastic. It is very small, the entire staff greats you when you arrive and they go to great lengths to make sure your visit is wonderful. Our room was very large with our own deck looking out on the watering hole which had lions, antelopes (not at the same time!), and a variety of other animals which we could watch from our chairs. The Game Drives were wonderful, the tracker and ranger were very good and we saw lions, leopards, rhinos, giraffes, water buffalos, hippos, and many, many other animals. We stopped for tea in the morning and a sun downer in the evening during the game drives, which was fun.
I cannot recommend Monwana highly enough. I think everyone should experience it. The food was fantastic and Emma took great care of us.
It was a perfect trip. The only thing we missed was Robbins Island since we planned to do it on our own and it was sold out so the advice is to buy tickets to it ahead of time if you intent to do it independently. It gives us something to add to our next trip.
Thanks for all your efforts for a flawless trip.

Margaret H

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

The March trip was awesome & special memories for a lifetime! I would like to thank you for your efforts in coordinating So Africa Zambia & Botswana for us. Honestly, the safari exceeded my expectations! The owners & staff at Shumbalala were exceptional…our guide Wayne & tracker Herman were first class & the meals delicious. Loved the outdoor shower & fireplace every night.
In Zambia my guided walk to the wettest part of Victoria Falls was magnificent just the two of us. I really liked Stanley Lodge open air concept …again warm service from staff. Finally Chobe was the frosting on the cake … Enjoyed buffet food concept at all meals & the game rides & Chobe River boat expedition were great fun. Also the free laundry service was a nice surprise. I enjoyed a massage & relaxed for the trip home…unbelievable terrific weather all 2 weeks. My ONLY suggestion would be the direct flight on Sat from Shumbalala area to Livingstone avoiding Joberg night & airport transfer. Mark, I would like to close my thoughts by stating the crews on ALL my So African Airways flights were professional & the JHB to JFK crew a 10!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 2019

Trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina 

 

Our African adventure was beyond amazing! Kristina was there every step of the way assisting us with our plans. Her expertise and guidance was invaluable… from accommodations, to transfers, activities and even best times to visit the spa. Each day we thought could not possibly get any better, and it did! If I could give her a 10 on a scale of 1-5, I would. Our room At Thornybush was upgraded to a 3 bedroom, 3 bath unit. It was beautiful!!! Our dream trip was above and beyond anything we ever imagined.

N. Van Etten

Saunders

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Lacy Hill

Travelled to:

South Africa

 Dear Lacy,
Thank you for your email. We arrived back home safe and sound after thoroughly enjoying our holiday. Ligia was an excellent guide, punctual and with a wealth of information. She was great with our children and we loved her company. 
We had hoped we would be closer to beach and would actually have enjoyed more time at Boschendal. Hopefully next time!
Thanks and Regards,
A. Saunders

Young

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

Each leg of the trip was more impressive than the next. Victoria Falls, Cape Town and Timbavati accomodations, staff, meals and tours were all at least what was promised if not moreso. South African Airways surely sets a new standard in providing a pleasant experience for an extraordinary amount of travel. We were never so well cared for nor so well fed. And I’m writing this after having just arrived home upon completing 40 plus hours of travel!
Bravo!

A. Saunders

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Lacy Hill

Travelled to:

Mozambique

Dear Lacy,

Thank you for your email. We arrived back home safe and sound after thoroughly enjoying our holiday.
Ligia was an excellent guide, punctual and with a wealth of information. She was great with our children and we loved her company.
We had hoped we would be closer to beach and would actually have enjoyed more time at Boschendal. Hopefully next time!

Thanks and Regards,

Amanda Saunders

D & A Ripley

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Richard Schwartzel

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hello, Richard,
We returned from our cruise and South Africa trip last Thursday. I just wanted to tell you how much we appreciated and enjoyed all the arrangements you made for us in South Africa. Everything was perfect and we had a wonderful time. We definitely want to return for a longer South African visit but need to decompress from the most recent  experience before deciding on details, etc.
Best wishes,
Doug and Arlene Ripley 

M. Cabalona

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

Fantastic from start to finish.  Accommodations were great, unique boutique style.  Loved Cape Town, wine country and safari.  Kristina created a vacation that checked every box on our South African vacation.

L. Pineda

April 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was awesome, the best vacation I have had. SAA kept us moving (great landings) and on time departures. The varied experiences were great as well. The safari was fabulous. Hands down – it was the highlight of our trip. Kristina was fantastic to work with and she gave us a very good vacation plan. She was flexible and always ready to assist. Will definitely do another safari.


M. Moore

March 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Cathy Lenox

Travelled to:

South Africa

Please excuse this belated thank you. I had the best time on my trip to SA! You did a wonderful job. Found great hotels that were convenient, fun and safe. The airport transfers also provided ease and comfort. Great tours and the safari was amazing. I couldn’t have done it without you! I will always be grateful for this once in a lifetime experience.
Many thanks,
Megan

M. Lampedecchio

March 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

Fantastic from start to finish.  Accommodations were great, unique boutique style.  Loved Cape Town, wine country and safari.  Kristina created a vacation that checked every box on our South African vacation.

Roger & Stephany

February 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Cathy Lenox

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Cathy,
We just wanted to thank you for planning such a wonderful trip for us. Beck’s safari was fantastic. The guide, the room, the personnel, the food, the setting…..everything was unbelievable. We saw the Big 5 all on one day!! The wild life was unforgettable. And the Victoria Falls Safari Lodge was such a wonderful location. We were disappointed at first because there were no animals at the water hole. However….the next day the elephants came, and came and came and came!!! We counted 70!! What a thrill. And everything there was great too.

This is the first time we have ever used a travel agent to plan a trip for us and we are so glad we did. The flights were also very good with the exception that the flight home had a plane with a different configuration so we were in the very back with the seats that were very close together unlike the flight over where we were in the next section up with a little more room.

In any event. we will certainly recommend you to anyone that asks us about planning a trip to Africa!!

Thanks for your patience with us and for providing us with one memorable trip!!

Roger & Stephany


Stewart

February 2019
trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Valenzuela

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was incredible! Thank you so much for all your work. The safari was amazing, we saw the big 5 multiple times, Beck’s Safari Lodge was 5 star! Lovely, people, service and facilities. We could not have done this trip without your help. Having the guide from Johannesburg airport to get us on our connecting flight to Cape Town was crucial… I don’t think we would have made our flight with out him. Also, we took your advice and stayed in the Bidvest Lounge at Johannesburg on the way home. It was really worth it to have a place to lounge before our long flight home. We had such an terrific time, I’ve been sad to be home.

E. Feuer

July 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaBotswana

Just as she did 2 years ago, Kristina did a wonderful job customizing this trip for us, and we had a great time. Staff at camps were great, from the guides to the waitstaff. Chefs did an admirable job accommodating my dietary issues.
E. Feuer

Jones

June 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

This experience was great. The lodges we stayed in and the excursions we’re awesome. All my wife and I had to do was wake up, eat and be at a certain place at a certain time and the rest of the day handled itself. I would definitely like to travel to Africa again and I would definitely use Kristina and SAA. I appreciate you making this trip for my wife and I the best ever…
-Jones

D. Thompson

May 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Cheryle,
I wanted to thank you for the “best” trip ever!
I was taken back by my experiences and just loved South Africa.
– D. Thompson

Christie & Peter

April 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!!  Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in it’s own way.  We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time.  Both lodges were wonderful.  The rooms were great and the staff so helpful.  Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet.  All the food  was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it.  The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were  also a lot of fun to spend time with.  My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old!  Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us.  It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
Christie and Peter

J. Mackin

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

For me, it was a little daunting travelling to South Africa and Zimbabwe with my family. Mostly, because of the unknown. Upon arrival however, EVERYTHING worked out flawlessly. The hotels were great, the guides were personable and interesting, the transfers were all there when we arrived. I am sure you have an idea of how comforting this is for a traveler(s) far from home. I would also like to point out that whenever I emailed Kristina (with all of my questions over the course of 6+ months), her responses were lighting fast. It was clear that she truly had our best interests at heart. I would recommend her in a heartbeat.
Thank you to SAA Vacations for contributing to a lifetime of good memories!
Best Regards,
J. Mackin

Holly

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hey Mark,
Thank you so much for everything! I know I’ve said that many times before but I really do mean it. You have been so invaluable. I reached out to several companies for quotes but none of them felt right and provided me with the level of service you did!
Thanks!
Holly

C. Rutherford

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sylvia,
Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!! Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in its own way. We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time. Both lodges were wonderful. The rooms were great and the staff so helpful. Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet. All the food was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it. The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were also a lot of fun to spend time with. My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old! Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us. It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
C. Rutherford

T. Rosengart

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
Stan and I are back from our incredible trip to South Africa. Thanks for all of your help putting it together. Everything went very well and all the details worked seamlessly. We were very pleased with the accommodations, transfers and tours that you arranged. Thanks again. The Cape Grace Hotel and Thornybush Waterside Lodge, both far exceeded our expectations.
Incredible pictures, great memories!
T. Rosengart

Barbara

February 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
We are having the most fabulous time. As you said it would be, everything has been seamless. The people are the warmest, kind and helpful I have ever met. The game drives are incredible. Yesterday, was a banger day. Even the guides had never seen anything like it and couldn’t stop talking amongst themselves. We ran to see a zebra giving birth. When we got there on the other side of our jeep, sat two cheetahs. Within minutes they took off on a kill of another young zebra. It was the full cycle of life; birth on one side and death on another of the same species.
So hard to leave the tented camps, each camp is better than the next… We are now off to Ngorongoro.
Thanks for everything.
Best, Barbara

Laura W

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Hilari!!
Just finally settling in to being back home after the most amazing vacation I have ever had. I want to first thank you for your help with this trip. From start to finish every detail of this trip was perfect. The arrangements you put in place for us, could not be better organized. We actually cannot pick a favorite moment, since it was all so perfect. Cape Town was the most beautiful city I have ever traveled too and WILL visit again at some point in my life. The Kwa Maritane Bush Lodge was a lifetime adventure. My husband, who normally is very low key was like a little kid all over again, upon our arrival and with every Safari Drive we were on it just became more exciting. The guides could not be more inviting or knowledgeable. We all were truly satisfied with every aspect of our vacation. I cannot thank you enough for making our arrangements so perfectly!! I will forward pictures as soon as I get my act together. If you ever need a recommendation please feel free to use myself or any of my travel companions.
Regards Laura Williams

Lee

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful trip if a lifetime! Hilari did a great job making arrangements and booking our itinerary. The flights to SA were no problem. We did have a glitch from Phoenix to JFK where they split up our seats so we were all sitting separately (includlng the kids sitting by themselves next to strangers) so we had to purchase upgraded seats at the last minute to get us all together. Our experiences in Cale Town and Shameari were exceptional. The Accomodations at both locations were terrific and we would recommend them again. Our driver for our Cape Tour was one of the best we have ever had. We are recommending him to others we know who will be traveling there. Our safari guide was also fabulous – became like a family member to us. We loved the whole experience. Only downside was on the way home, SAA flight was subpar- seats were broken including my husband’s entertainment system which made a long flight a lot longer. Otherwise, we cannot wait for the day when we are able to go back!!

Buckley

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We couldn’t be happier with you and your company’s service and the trip as a whole! Have already passed your name on to a few others! Truly was the trip of a lifetime and should be on everyone’s bucket list that loves to travel. Every step of the way exceeded our expectations and the service was top notch at all accommodations, tours, tour guides, etc. We also felt your suggested must-do’s as well as suggested time-frames at each spot to get the most out of the trip were right on. We really appreciated all of the special little “honeymoon” touches that you and the various accommodations set up for us! It made everything that much more special and romantic, so thank you SO much for that. And in general for just working through the modifications to the itinerary with us, being so responsive to our inquiries, etc.
Our one suggestion with regard to Cape Town would be to tell the travelers in advance that the tour companies you pair with offer both half day and full day tours. For our wine day and cape peninsula day, we did not know that half days were an option and would have chosen a half day at one or both to enable us to have a bit more “free time” in Cape Town.
I forwarded a number of pictures to Kristina. Feel free to use! We have a ton more, so if you are looking for something specific, just let me know.
Thank you again! Should we ever safari again we would certainly work with you to plan it.

Pam P

November 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We got home last night as we spent overnight in NY recovering from the flight. We had a wonderful time and my husband describes it as “one of the best trips he has ever been on.” That says it all. The hotel One&Only was outstanding and the location was great. We were spoiled. On arrival they gave us a glass of sparkling wine and that set the tone for the whole trip. Thorny Bush Lodge was great and the animals we saw seemed almost surreal.
Thanks Sherry for all your help. We have done a lot of travelling over our lifetime but you have to be the best travel agent we have ever dealt with. In a short time you managed to put together a fabulous trip and answer every question we had with speed and efficiency. We would recommend your services to anyone who might ask and have already told our kids to put South Africa on their ‘to do and must see’ list.

Morris

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari planned the perfect customized trip for me to South Africa and Mauritius. We chatted by phone twice, and by email a couple of times, yet she knew precisely what kinds of tours and accommodations would suit my personality and tastes. What an amazing adventure I had! Something I have been thinking about doing for many years has been realized. I will never forget the experience. Thank you, Hilari!

Lani & Matt B

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Elizabeth,
Thank you so much for the sweet package in the mail!
We wanted to tell you how appreciative we are for your hard work to make our trip as special and amazing as it was. Every day was exciting and successful, making it truly a trip to remember. All hotels were luxurious and had great service, far exceeding our expectations.
Sending you all our thanks,
Lani and Matt Bettinger

Strunk

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience traveling in South Africa. It was truly one of the best vacations of all time. Elizabeth did a wonderful job putting the itinerary together. She was endlessly patient with us as we tweaked here and there and added on more experiences to maximize our trip. All of the accommodations were brilliant – top notch. We especially loved the Kariega Game Reserve. It was a perfect first safari experience for our children. We also loved Oddshorrn and the ostrich farm more than we expected – we could have spent another night in that area. We can’t wait to go back to South Africa again and would definitely book through you guys. All of the services and recommendations were fantastic. Special thanks to Elizabeth for putting it all together for us!

Stachiw

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

It was a trip of a lifetime. Elizabeth is a fantastic consultant who worked closely with me to put together the perfect itinerary for our family. Cape Town was wonderful and we absolutely loved Rovos Rail. We ended the trip with a safari that exceeded our expectations. All of the transfers and tours were on time with no issues. I could not have imagined a better vacation. Thank you SAA!

Scott F

July 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa Zambia

Hi Elizabeth,
Well, we are finally back home, recovering from our AWESOME  South Africa trip!!
I just want to let you know that the trip you put together for all of us was OUT OF THIS WORLD!!  It was probably our best trip that we have been on in our life!!
I want to THANK YOU for putting this trip together!!!  Everything that you suggested, we did, and glad that we did it!!  There is not one thing that we can complain about!!  That is how smooth and great the trip was.
It was a trip of many “FIRSTS”: First time in South Africa, First time on safari, First time seeing many of the animals that we did, First time at the Falls, First time on a big vacation with Bruce and Mel (and they still like to hang with us), First time I had to carry around an additional 35lb sculptor where-ever we traveled to that Jo bought the 2nd day of our trip, etc…..and the list goes on and on!! All of it a great time!!
All the accommodations, from the hotel in Cape Town and Joburg, to the unbelievable Buffalo Camp in Kruger, to the hotel in walking distance to Victoria Falls, these were way above what we expected!!  Especially at the Camp!!  Besides the awesome cabins they put us in and the safaris we participated in, the food was out of this world as well!!  Everyone there treated us like royalty. We are not use to that at all and it was such a wonderful experience!! All of the transportation to and from hotels, airports, even on the tours in Cape Town, were again tremendous and all ON TIME!!  Amazing!!
You really out did yourself and we appreciate all the time and effort you put into making this an AWESOME trip for all of us!!!  One that we will never, ever forget!
Thank YOU…THANK YOU….THANK YOU!!!

Dunn

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was AWESOME! Sherry did a fantastic job tayloring the tours to our varied interests. The only thing I would do differently next time would be to add more days in Cape Town and slow down the pace, to afford more free time for exploration!
Thanks Sherry!

Vicki S

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark–we have arrived home safely from our incredible trip. Now trying to adjust body clocks 🙂
Just had a little something emailed to you from Starbucks to say thanks for all you did for the last six months to get us organized and ready to go! Please let me know it arrives safely in your “inbox.”
We now face the daunting task of going through all the photos we took so that our friends will indulge us when we ask, “Want to see our pictures from Africa?”
Both my husband and I agree that we want to make a return trip to another part of the continent someday and will certainly be in touch if you are still available to help!
Thanks again for everything!

Adams

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great experience due to Kristina doing such ardent planning to meet our financial goals as well as making sure that we were seeing what we wanted to see in Africa. She was delightful in her delivery of the itinerary that met our needs and expectations. The properties were great and most important the people of Africa were welcoming and most helpful. Her choice of properties made the trip memorable as we had some fine dining under the stars on many occasions. The safari program was superb with an excellent guide for just the two of us with our own tracker as well. We saw the big five and much more. South African Airways was a superb airline in service and in hospitality. They truly served good meals in the air as well as making us comfortable. I will in the next few weeks upload to Kristina some photos of our experiences.
Thanks to Kristina for her dedication and love for Africa.

Judy H

May 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Mark,
Thank you for the thoughtful gift of safari note cards……another way to remember our fabulous trip.
The vacation was perfect. We saw so much and learned so much. The staff at all the lodges we stayed at couldn’t have been more welcoming and fun. I will remember this trip always.
Also we owe a big debt to you. You were so very helpful before we went and thoroughly prepared us for the trip. So all in all thank you so much. If we decide to do another African trip you will be the first person we talk to.

Flavio A

April 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari,
WOW WOW WOW, My wife and I have set foot in four Continents and have visited 17 different Countries and other than my Native Country if I were to recommend one it will be SOUTH Africa.
What a beautiful Country not only for the Breathless and Speechless moments over and over we had for the Beaches , the mountains, the wild animals but more importantly their people.
If I were to rate my experience from one to ten, one being the lowest rating and ten the highest I would give an ELEVEN to South Africa.
Did I say that the food quality and presentation is great and the prices are even better????? Well they simply are.
I went to do the South Africa IRONMAN in Port Elizabeth and the prices I paid for one week at the Radisson Blue, wouldn’t even have three days in USA, needless to say that the service is the best.
While riding my bike the day of the event a monkey got across the road in front of me and in my way back there were two little monkeys sitting at the edge of the road watching us go by. What a spectacle. I was expecting to see wild life until I went to the Safari not knowing that on race day we had them as spectators.
Gino The Tour Guide in our City tour in Cape Town was very knowledgeable, very friendly and had us in AWE for the entire day.
I was thinking that that was the best thing we were going to have in our trip not knowing that Tyrone our Safari Tour Driver was ten times better than Gino.
We went four times in the Safari and every single time we got to see the Wild Animals over and over, but every single time was like a completely new show.

Tony D

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Elizabeth,
Before I say anything else about how great the trip was–at the Portswood we were greeted with a bottle of champagne on ice with a 40th anniversary congratulation handwritten note, yellow roses on the bed and in the room on turn down, and at the Monwana reserve, Emma upgraded us to the Zulu suite, offering us congratulations on our 40th.
So special, thanks to you and to everyone else who was so thoughtful!

Angie T

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Cheryle,
We had a wonderful time. It was more than we could have hoped for. All of the arrangements that you made were terrific.  Thank you again.

Juby B

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark, we came back  on Sunday and just wanted to let you know, trip was great we had a blast. I will get back to you as there are many other places I would like to visit. Tks for putting together a great itinerary and the hotels and the service was incredible.

Janice & Dirk J

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Hi Maritza:
Dirk and I wanted to let you know about our wonderful trip. Unfortunately due to the storm in New York we missed a day in Cape Town, but all in all it was a fabulous vacation. The hotel in Cape Town was very nice and we enjoyed some time on the nice patio. The day trip to Cape of Good Hope was excellent and the penguins were fun to watch. We also visited the water front and Table Mountain.
The highlight of our trip was our stay at Thornybush Serondella Lodge. We were amazed at how close we were able to get to the animals and we saw the Big 5 within 1 day.! The lodge itself is very luxurious and we were fortunate to have a room overlooking the watering hole and saw many animals there every day.
The Safari Lodge in Victoria Falls was very nice. We enjoyed our dinners overlooking the valley and the watering hole.
We were so impressed at the level of organization. All our flights were on time and we were met everywhere as arranged. We would certainly recommend SAAV to anyone looking for a great holiday. Thanks for all your assistance in putting this together for us.

Daniel C

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience. We loved Cape Town and everything that was arranged for us there from the hotel to the tour, which was a lovely experience. The transfers were prompt and delivered us where we needed to be. The Pilanesberg reserve was incredible and we got to see so many animals up close! The hotel that we stayed at their was so gorgeous and the service was perfect.

Andrew H

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Thanks to Hilari and her efficiency and knowledge, we enjoyed a trip that was a once in a lifetime experience.
The resorts and events set up, especially at the Bakubung Bush Lodge and the Victoria Falls Safari and Lodge were unforgettable.
Thanks again for everything and would definitely look to you again for future destinations.

Janet H

January 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

Our guide made our time in Tanzania perfect; he was so knowledgable, helpful, cheerful, and we were SO impressed by his information, his driving skill (in conditions that were kind of challenging), and his alertness helped us spot the animals frequently. He really made our safari the truly spectacular experience.

Catherine F

January 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

This was a terrific trip! Lori Visser, our agent, helped us in a thousand ways–sometimes in areas where we didn’t even know we needed help.
Our guide, SP, was the best: he knows about the land, the animals, and the birds and wants to continue learning. He’s also personable and an excellent driver. Please give him a raise! In your publicity, include the absolute necessity of having an experienced guide.
Also, include the Masai in what you say about the trip! We enjoyed them (the men) so much, also liked how the Lake Natron lodge was situated between two Masai villages. We could see people going about their business, children going to school, etc. Sadly, the women were more difficult to relate to. We had no language in common. They were interested only in selling us their beadwork.
I liked the variety in the lodging. Please encourage the people at Lake Natron to upgrade their facilities. They don’t need to be fancy, but put the thatch on the roofs, fix the broken lights, install safer showers/baths. Toilets are new–nice. One over-the-top place was more than enough (Serena Serengeti). Acacia Farm Lodge is stunningly beautiful, but details need to be attended to. I don’t need rose petals on my bath mat. I’d rather have the blown-out bulb replaced in the bathroom, an electrical outlet there, and an adapter so I could use the hairdryer provided. The staff was most welcoming.
Again, a trip of a lifetime!

Jim & Hazel S

December 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Sherry
 Hazel and I wanted to thank you for organizing our recent, wonderful vacation in South Africa. Everything worked out perfectly travel wise and we really enjoyed it. Cape Town is a beautiful city and the three tours you set up for us were really excellent, we saw a lot and learned a lot. The subsequent time on Safari also was excellent. The accommodation was small and outstanding, the ranger and other staff were excellent and looked after us well. We saw lots of animals including all of the “big five” and enough giraffes to keep even Hazel happy (she loves them!)  Many thanks once again.
 Jim and Hazel S.

Latasha F

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Gabe Greenberg

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Gabe,
Thank you so much for the cards.  They were the bees knees.  It was comforting to have you walk me through my trip after I missed my flight.  By you rearranging everything, I didn’t miss a beat.  I know I will visit South Africa again and will be sure to use your vacation services.  I will also tell my friends to contact you if they travel to Africa.
Matter of fact, do you plan trips to Gahna?  My sister wants to go in the month of June.  I will copy her on this e-mail to possibly help with her planning.
Cheers!
Latasha

Linda H

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark! I wanted to thank you for the AMAZING South African adventure you planned for my family! It was PERFECT in every way! I honestly could not believe that with so many moving parts, that everything went off without a hitch! All the transfer pick-ups arrived EARLY to meet us.  There was never question about what was happening next. The shark dive was cancelled due to poor weather and boating conditions.  But they were quickly able to accommodate us on the following day.  What an amazing adventure!  We LOVED the Sun Cullinan hotel and its perfect location to the waterfront. The tour guide, Jason, who led us on the full day Cape Tour was AWESOME. And we met some cool families along the way following in our footsteps! The Serondella Lodge was so wonderful, that we literally cried when we left! Chewie, the Ranger, and his partner, Monica, the hostess, were some of the most wonderful people we have ever met, and they found a place in our heart forever!  The Victoria Falls Hotel was a perfect finish.  Thank you! thank you! I will be back to have you book my clients on this same adventure.  It was truly a trip of a lifetime and I appreciate all your insights to make it happen!
Happy new year!

Pinakin S

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a marvelous time one of the best holidays after a long time, everything without an exception was great Thanks to Hillari Ross who got us the perfect combination to stay, travel and commute. Will be recommending this unique experience to others as well. Keep up the good work and am tempted to do it again.
Thank you all once again and do keep me in the loop for any new offerings.
Pinakin

Castelo

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

What a great value for the two weeks!!
Your sending us to Thornybush was EXCELLENT and the staff at that site was incredible.  Would definitely return to enjoy Cape Town and the environs further east.

Ernesto L

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks Tom, this is the best experience in my life.  Never encounter so much thrill with those wildlife especially walk with the Lion. Please inform me any especial offer for next year, will bring my son with me. Thanks

Sveum

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

This was an amazing trip! We loved every aspect of it! Staying at Thornybush Game Lodge was the highlight of the trip. The staff at Thornybush were amazingly attentive!

Crystal K

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you very much for helping us to plan the best vacation ever!  I’m still basking in the glory of our trip to South Africa.  It was truly amazing!  Everything was first class and exceeded our expectations.
Arlene and her husband Hilton were amazing.  They took excellent care of us from the time we arrived until the time we left. For example, one day after our tours we were in the mood for a good hamburger.  Arlene and Hilton told us about a great restaurant that had excellent burgers and milk shakes; but they didn’t stop there, they actually drove us to the restaurant, and allowed us to go in and check the menu to see if it was something we wanted to come back for later.  When we checked in at the airport, Arlene stood at the security line until each of us made it through and waved at us as we headed to the gate.  The little touches were special, and will never be forgotten.
The Waterfront hotel in Cape Town was fantastic.  The staff learned our names, and were extremely pleasant.  The breakfast they serve is awesome as well as the cooks and servers.  The Kapama Lodge really exceeded our expectations.  From IP who picked us up at the airport, to Daron that checked us in, to our housekeeper Gift, and our safari driver Shanae and Stanley, we were never disappointed.  The food was great and the spa was amazing!!!
By far the most exciting point of the trip was the school visit.  The children at Moshesh will forever be in our hearts.  It was a blessing to be a blessing to the students and teachers.  We had so much fun, and made lasting relationships.  Arlene and Hilton made the experience even better by helping us to select the appropriate things for the school, and making sure we met their needs.  They even took us back to the school on our way to the airport so that we could hand deliver our cash donation.
As you can see, I can elaborate for hours about this trip.  I have shared the highlights with anyone who is willing to listen and look at my pictures.  We would be proud for you to share our photos, and will most definitely be a solid reference for SAA.  I will definitely complete the survey.
Crystal, I would like to personally thank you for helping to make our dream come true.  You were always professional and patient, even when my own patience was challenged.  I will definitely call you when I have the opportunity to plan another South African vacation, which may be soon.  My father-in-law was so impressed he has offered to take our family back to Cape Town.  I will let you know when we are able to secure dates 🙂
Best regards / Mit freundlichen Grüßen,
Crystal K

Ron M

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was terrific!  All the arrangements were impeccable.  Every driver who was supposed to show up did so at the right time.  The accommodations were luxurious.  We have nothing but good things to say about the places where we stayed.  We had a wonderful time at the Thornybush Reserve and got to see all the animals we hoped to see.  The Cape Town and the Victoria Falls tours were also excellent.
We would rate the trip a 10 out of 10 and are happy to recommend SAA Vacations to our friends.
Thanks again.
Ron M.

Ed & Sue

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Mark, Thanks to you and Maritza for putting together a trip of a lifetime for us. The flights were great, as were the tours. Our thanks to both Hylton and Wild Horizons, as well as Magic Bus. The hotels and lodges chosen were perfect for our needs. As you promised, the pickups were all on time and all waiting for us. The tour options chosen provided a perfect introduction/overview, for first time visitors. We did ride the elephants in Zambia.
We will glad to give you organization and both of you a five star rating for a job well done. In the future, if you have any clients or potential clients who our on the fence or apprehensive about the trip, we would be glad to talk to them on your behalf.
We are already starting to plan our next trip to South Africa.
Again thanks for all your help.
Sincerely,
Ed O. & Sue D.

Joyce B

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

My note is to express my appreciation for the patient, courteous, and informed help that I received from Mr. Mark Black.
He listened to my requests, regarading travel, and planned an interesting trip for me and my four, teenaged Grandchildren.
Mr. Black has excellent Customer Relation Skills.
Peace,  Joyce B  (AKA Grammy Joyce!)

Susan L

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

It truly was a trip of a lifetime, down to the very last detail!!! Thank you so much for all your planning and for the good care you took of all of us.

Arthur O

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hello Tom, Yes, we made it back safe and sound. Overall we would rate our journey as a “trip of a lifetime”.  We confirmed our memory that the South African people are the most genuine, open, caring people in the world!  We met people from all walks of life and found them all to be very gracious.  Our waistlines also attest to the fact that the food in South Africa is the world’s best!  The scenery, wildlife flowers, etc. all exceeded our expectations. Best regards,  Arthur O.

Tom & Holly S

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sherry! We had a GREAT trip!  Thanks so much for all that you did.  We will certainly refer you to friends, family, and colleagues.  In fact, around the water cooler today in the office I started to do just that. We did the “Devils Pool” excursion and the helicopter excursion over the falls.  Both were well worth it!  The Kariega Reserve was great too.  The guide, Victor, did an excellent job finding the elephants, rhinos, lions, etc for us.  A few photos are attached. The drivers were all on time, and the accommodations beat expectations! We thank you again and we’ll remember you and SAA the next time we go to Africa…maybe the East side next time, to see the migration from the Serengeti?  We’ll see…. Best Regards, Tom & Holly S.

Peter C

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, I wanted to thank you for the great work you did on arranging our tours and hotel in South Africa.  The tours where great, the guides excellent, the transportation perfect, and the hotel was awesome! Thank you so much for taking such great care of us! -Peter

Bob and Mary-Ann J

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, What a nice surprise. The notecards arrived to-day and they just brought back wonderful memories of our trip. Thank you so much. Of all the trips we have taken, this last trip to South Africa was the best. I cannot rave enough about the hotels, having our own personal driver and tour guide, and of course Kapama. Being in our 70’s and both being two times survivors of Cancer makes us especially appreciative of being able to go back to South Africa. Don’t know how many more Big trips we will be able to take, but the memories of this one will last forever. I will recommend you highly. Again, thank you for setting up our wonderful trip and again for the notecards – Bob and Mary Ann J

 

Carolyn D

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Crystal, Want to thank you for arranging the most glorious trip to SA.  Everything was perfect. I feel as though I spent 2 weeks being transported from place to place on a velvet pillow!! Every accommodation was excellent, every tour was fabulous. Would not hesitate to recommend.  Again, thank you!!

Steve H

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Just want to thank you for all your help with our  wonderful Africa trip.  Flights were all on time, drivers prompt.  Nice treat to have transfers prearranged.  Breakfasts all excellent everywhere.  Victoria and Albert offered upgrade to presidential suite for last 2 nights in Cape Town for small up-charge.  That was very nice – huge apartment.  Weather lousy in Cape Town but nice the day we drove out to Cape Point – beautiful.  Serondella was fabulous in every respect – service, personal attention, food, game drives.  Could not have been better.  Victoria Falls was gorgeous as expected.

Gregg C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for everything!  We had a fantastic time, and thought the trip was great. I wanted to say that our guide, Chris, at Tour D’Afrique, was fantastic…  he deserves some recognition… All the best! Gregg

Isabelli D.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesburg and Joburg.Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation. We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger. Again Thank you.

Jonathan H.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We just got back this morning. We had such an incredible time. We saw some fantastic things over there. Thanks for all your help getting this set up. -Jonathan.

Woodward Family

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

On the whole, our trip was wonderful. All of the places we stayed were nice and the guides assigned to us were wonderful.

Albin C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

The holiday was outstanding in every way!  Certainly there was the exoticism of the destination; the natural beauty of SA, catching a glimpse of the fauna — baboons, ostriches, kudu, et al (safe to say, there are none of these wandering around Miller Place) and simply the constant shift of the landscape were all winners. The Table Bay was an excellent hotel with exceptional staff.  The three of us were especially impressed by the quality of our guides; Enrico and Avril.  They were both knowledgeable with delightful personalities.  It was a pleasure to spend a day with them. In addition, everything was on time.  From the pick up for our tours, to the transfer driver there to greet us at CPT. We all know that SA has had a difficult history, but one leaves there with hope for tomorrow and a deep desire to return. As I’ve said many times before, you and Maritza are first rate professionals; knowledgeable, efficient, helpful and unfailing pleasant.  I hope your boss knows he/she is lucky to have both of you.

Len R.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks to your help, our trip was truly epic! The itinerary was perfect and the accommodations were 4 to 5 star with great value. Our 7 and 9 year old grandchildren were enthralled throughout! We saw all the big 5, plus hippos, jackals, hyenas, cheetah, and even a civet on a nighttime safari! We also saw about 150 species of birds! The boat rides in Chobe and at Victoria Falls were amazing! This is a great time to travel to South Africa because of the very favorable exchange rate — many meals were included on our trip, but now a reasonable restaurant meal is only about $10 U.S. — we had ostrich, zebra etc. in waterfront restaurants in Cape Town. Cape Town is an amazingly beautiful and sophisticated city, and our trips to visit a township, Mandela’s prison cell, and the Botanical Garden were all great.  Two small issues were quickly resolved by your South African counterparts and all the connections and pick-ups were seamless, in spite of the fact that we had 5 internal flights! We travel frequently, but this trip ranks at the top! Please express our gratitude to all involved! -Len

Michelle F.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Trip was fantastic! Everything was set up perfectly! Hotels were great, transportation was always perfectly on time! Great job! Thank you!I will recommend you to anyone wanting to go to SA! Best, Michelle

Chris H.

June 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great time in South Africa and I want to Thank you for your diligence in the planning of our itinerary – there were no issues at all! Everything went according to the plan and everyone was on time and ready to pick us up when they were supposed to. I was very impressed
The food and wine tour was GREAT – the guide was very knowledgeable about the area and shared some art places with us as well as the local food places. I would highly recommend that for first timers to South Africa. You may also want to look into adding the drumming/restaurant into your planned itinerary because it was so awesome. Besides the drumming lesson, they fed us traditional African food and entertained you with African song and dance throughout dinner.
Thank you again for planning our trip and being available to answer ALL my questions!

Jill K.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for the notecards!  We had a wonderful time in South Africa, everything went exactly as planned, no problems at all.  We enjoyed all of it but I think my favorite thing in Cape Town was a cooking class that my daughter and I took in the Langa township.  It was also nice to be so close to the waterfront.  We took the shuttle there every night to eat and buy gifts.  I managed to bring back 7 bottles of wine 🙂
We saw so many animals on safari, it was incredible!  The first time we went out we saw so many lions including cubs and we also saw lions hunting.
I guess I have to save up my money for another trip, I’d love to go back.  Thanks so much for all your help in making it possible.

E.L.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely notecards. We did see all the animals in the pictures. It was very wonderful vacation but much too short. Everything was perfect, accommodates were wonderful tours were great and on time, even the weather cooperated. Looking forward to more material from you about Botswana and Victoria Falls.
Thanks again,
E. L.

T. Ortega

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

All the guides, crew and staff were very knowledgeable. Their guide (Chris) in Cape Town provided an excellent overall insight into the history of South Africa. He was very accommodating and took the time to answer all their questions, took their pictures, etc.. The shark cage dive was also an excellent experience with friendly crew and staff. They have outstanding knowledge of the great white sharks and seals. Their safari guide (Owen) and his assistant (Federica) were also excellent and did their best to show them as many animals as they could find. They were very accommodating and knowledgeable about the animals and the terrain. Owen even gave them a lesson in star gazing and showed them the constellations that could be seen in South Africa. The accommodations were very nice and comfortable. They would highly recommend this trip to families and friends.

I. Desrosiers

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesberg and Joburg.
Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation.
We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger.
Again Thank you.

J&E Rock

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Eli and I want to THANK YOU so much for everything! Our trip was absolutely INCREDIBLE, and all of the plans were perfect, down to every detail!

South African Airways was by far the best airline we have ever flown, and the flight attendants were so friendly and went out of their way to make sure everyone was comfortable. The hotels were absolutely amazing, the staff went above and beyond to make us feel special on our honeymoon. The Victoria Falls hotel was beautiful, and the staff were so friendly to us. We thoroughly enjoyed all of our activities, especially the tour of the falls and the sundowner cruise. The One and Only surprised us with an upgrade to a suite, and with Champagne, chocolates and wine in our room upon arrival. We also had the most gorgeous view of Table Mountain. The second night we were there, we came back to a room with rose petals, candles and a note just saying they hope we were enjoying our stay. The staff was so genuine and always greeted us by name when coming and going. The concierge was extremely helpful with arranging plans and transportation on our free day, which we went up to Table Mountain and also did the Robbin Island tour. Katie our driver/guide for the wine tour and the tour of the Cape was FANTASTIC. She was so knowledgeable of the area and took us to a lot of great spots, both touristy and local. We had so much fun exploring Capetown and the wine lands with her. We did not think our trip could possibly get any better after Capetown, but Simbambali proved us wrong. From the time we arrived, everything was incredible – the food, the staff, the lodge and the game drives. They even surprised us with a private dinner in our room! We did not want to leave!

We truly enjoyed every second, and cannot thank you enough for helping us plan the most perfect honeymoon that neither of us will ever forget! We look forward to planning another trip to South Africa in the next few years with your help!


T. Deery

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black 

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Mark, your planning was fabulous.  Monwana was perfect, Chobe river safari/cruise was fabulous.   In KwaZulu Natal we spent our first night in Durban with a great view of the ocean, 3 days in St.Lucia ( Cape Vidal, kayaked with Hippos and Crocs, visited a Zulu school ), one night in Ballito at Salt rocks. Will send some photos when  we get them together. Please use us for referral.

S. Benito

May 2015
trip created by Africa specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

The whole trip was absolutely amazing in every respect – everything we saw and experienced, the accommodations, the food, the transportation- air, land and sea-, the weather and the people. Your professionalism and responsiveness in working with us to arrange all that was magnificent and Robin, the boys and I thank you so much for your patience and hard work in making it all happen.

Pam B.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

You did a fantastic job on all our accommodations.  Our drivers, Sun City, the lodge, the safaris were all fantastic and we had a wonderful time.   Thanks so much for everything.  I would highly recommend your services.

Diana W.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely cards…what a great surprise!  The trip was incredible and I want to take my husband.
Everything about the trip was wonderful.  I needed one last day to rest up.  We did see the Big Five in a day and a half.  I did have a treatment the last day at the spa which was half what I pay in the U.S.
All of the day trips were great. We had only one other couple with us.  Weather was wonderful.
Best trip we have taken.

D & R Rice

April 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

To all you at SAAV, thank you for planning a fabulous trip.
A few comments: all the transfer, pickups, hotels were great. Everyone was on time, courteous and knowledgeable. We could have spent more time in Cape Town. Beautiful city. The tours were great; small and intimate. Shark dive was amazing, although we had to leave hotel at 2:30AM to do the trip because of the weather.
The accommodations chosen for us were perfect. We enjoyed Serondella the most. The folks there were spectacular. The food in every accommodation was over the top!
I will recommend you all to friends planning a SA adventure.
Again, thank to you all.

Nicole C.

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline 

Travelled to:

South Africa

I am writing to express my appreciation of one of your employees. Tom Cline was very patient with me as I planned my trip to Africa. He suggested several safari lodges that were small upgrades to the lodge that was included in our package. After reviewing the options I was so pleased Tom went out of his way to make this suggestion since the lodges he chose will be a much more intimate and luxurious experience. He also was always kind when I needed to make changes in the dates of the trip. He called me to provide the opportunity to respond to questions I had about the itinerary. If I was expecting a quote to be prepared that was not finished he always sent me a message communicating the delay.
 In comparison to other travel specialists I’ve worked with Tom Cline is one of the best. He has excellent communication and interpersonal skills and has worked hard to make our anniversary trip to South Africa and Seychelles memorable.

William B. & Harold H.

February 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

I would like to echo the sentiments that Harold expressed in his email noted below.  The trip was simply amazing.  Everything went off as planned.  We did not encounter any difficulties.  I will share photographs as soon as possible.
Mark, as I have mentioned to you previously, you did an outstanding job and provided excellent customer service while planning the vacation package for Harold and myself.  I appreciate all of the timely responses and efforts you put forth in making sure we were satisfied with the details of the vacation.
Thank you so much putting together an incredible vacation package for William and myself.  The trip was exhilarating and filled with adventure and wonder.  There wasn’t one snag in the itinerary that you put together for us.  The hotels were fabulous and our driver/van was waiting to pick us up at every location.   I will tell friends about SAA and definitely use your service again when I travel to South Africa.
I have pictures and videos that I cannot wait to share with friends and family.

S. Greenwood

January 2015
trip created by Mark Black and Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South Africa

The Southern Sun in Cape Town was perfect: friendly staff, great room and breakfast, and the location was perfect for walks to both City Center and the Waterfront.
The two tours were also perfect. We were able to get up to Table Mt on the cable car, and then it closed for 2 days due to high winds so we were very lucky. We loved the full day Cape tour. We had the same guide, Iggy, for both days and he did a great job. We really enjoyed our 3rd day on our own since there were many places we learned about and wanted to visit: Castle of Good Hope, District Six Museum, Slave Lodge, Company’s Garden, and lots of time and bargaining fun at Green Market Square and then dinner at the Waterfront.
Monwana Game Lodge was really great. Jacques, Morris, Emma, Kelly and the rest of the team were incredible. We loved the size (only 8 guests) and the daily routine of safari, breakfast, rest, high tea, safari and cocktails before dinner. The food was superb. They made a special fireside New Year’s Eve dinner on the back deck. Jacque was a great host and educator on safari. We saw the Big 5 and plenty of other wildlife. Each outing was different and special.  We filled two cameras daily.
We would have loved to have been able to spend another day at Monwana ( our decision), but other than that, the mix of 4 nights in Cape Town and 2 at Monwana was perfect. We hope to return again, perhaps during August for even better viewing.
We would like to thank Mark and everyone at SAAV for putting such a memorable trip together for us

Sable S.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We visited Cornelia’s friend’s place in SA, the weather was great! We could not take the cable car to view the mountain as it was very windy. The hotel in Cape Town was not great, the rooms were very small, in fact Susan asked to move; I should have asked too as sharing the tiny room with Aziza my sister was very cramped.
The trip to Mowana was GREAT! We enjoyed the game and the meals at the lodge. That was a great place you recommended. I highly recommend it for other travelers.
Zambia was beautiful! We visited Livingstone but the waterfalls were not at peak. The Zambezi Sun was GREAT! My brother sent a driver with an SUV, we drove to Lusaka, stayed a night there and then drove to Sinda where my family stays. We spend a night there, and then drove to Chichele lodge at Mfuwe in Eastern province. We stayed there 2 nights. My brother paid for the trip!
Cornelia and Susan took the flight to Lusaka from Mfuwe; they stayed one night in Lusaka before they came back.
I want to thank you and your staff for the tremendous patience and all your help with all our trip coordination. You were particularly patient with us as we made all our changes. The trip was expensive but worth it.
Thanks again!

Elizabeth C.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Upon conducting an internet search for South Africa vacation planners, I randomly and happily connected with Sherry Lankin, beginning what was a wonderful experience in creating a first trip to this part of the world for my family.
We returned from our adventures last week, having had an incredible time. I called Sherry today, to thank her for her stellar work and excellent recommendations. However, I felt compelled to reach out to you, to commend your organization and to sing the praises of Sherry.
In her quiet way, she guided me through the intricacies of planning such a trek. She really listened to me when I talked about where I wanted to spend money and where I wanted to conserve money. She shared her experiences and made recommendations. I felt as though I was working with a friend, rather than an employee out to make a buck for the company. It became very natural to trust her judgement.
She is an effective communicator; I knew that a return phone call or email would be quickly forthcoming. Again, her dependability was impressive.
Kudos to Sherry Lankin. She is the first person I will call when we schedule our next trip to that part of the world.

A. Jones

November 2014 
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline  

Travelled to:

South Africa

Tom _ thank you for your welcome note. I must tell you that everything went so very well on our African trip, thanks to you. As for worries about ebola, thank goodness there was no trouble at all with stopping in Senegal. They certainly have it all under control.

The safaris went beyond our expectations — we saw a live game oil of a Bull by 5 lions — talk about learning about the killer instinct up cole! WOW is all I can say. The staff at Simbambili knows me, and We were greeted at the airport and the service at the lodge couldn’t have been better. As for the Chobe Game Lodge, well, I have a big fan there, and we were treated a bit like royalty, especially on my birthday, which they somehow already knew about!
All is all, it was the best trip we’ve ever taken to Africa and John and I wish to thank you for all of your efforts !!!!
PS: I also did TV & radio while in JoBurg so the Sandton Sun was the right call!

James and Ellen

trip created by Travel Expert Maritza Valenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Hi – we are back from South Africa/Zambia. It was the best vacation EVER!!! We loved every minute of it – the accommodations, food, Safari, Cape Town, and Victoria Falls. It was a vacation to remember.
Apparently, I can only send you six pictures at a time, so I will send you too additional emails. These pictures are from the Cape of Good Hope. We took (no kidding) over 1,000 pictures. Our only disappointment (very minor) was that, other than the mist in the distance, we couldn’t see Victoria Falls from Stanley Safari Lodge. The Lodge was further from the falls than we had expected. The falls were spectacular and a must see this time of year.
We had dropped Johannesburg from our trip (except for one night), and that was a good idea. Johannesburg, from the little we saw of it, was disappointing and a bit scary as security accompanied us from our car to the restaurant.
Thank you so much for putting this once-in-a-lifetime vacation together. It was perfect. If you have another must see vacation, please give me a call. We are ready for the next one of your adventures. Thanks again for all your work and for the beautiful cards.

Kristen M

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South Africa

Joanne Elam and Maritza were fantastic to work with. Joanne listened carefully to our thoughts and ideas for our honeymoon and planned the perfect trip for us. Joanne was always very responsive and explained all of our package in detail. Everything in South Africa went very smoothly and just as she had described. The arranged tours in Cape Town were great and very informative but the highlight was our safari at Monwana Game Lodge. We cannot rate Monwana and its staff highly enough. We plan on going back for our five-year wedding anniversary!
Thank you, Joanne, for planning a honeymoon for us that exceeded all of our expectations.

M Smith

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We would like to thank Joanne Elam for having organized the trip of a lifetime! Everything went according to schedule from the moment we landed to the time we departed. In two weeks we were able to experience 3 different unique places, each with its own distinct feel. Not having to worry about any aspect of the organization allowed us to enjoy our African adventure to the full. Joanne’s grand finale was our stay at the Stanley Safari Lodge in Zambia, a place of mystical beauty with open views to the mist rising from the Victoria Falls! The only disappointment of our trip was having to say farewell to Africa, a place we have fallen in love with. Thanks again Joanne, already looking forward to working with you to plan our next trip.

Mr & Mrs Hochberg

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Will write you later with more info but to summarize, I must say it was an awesome experience…from Shamwari to Cape Town!!! Every voucher pickup was on time, professional and helpful. Radisson Blu was fabulous and Shamwari makes us want to go back again next April. Thank you for all you did to facilitate this wonderful experience for us. Mickey Hochberg

Penelope A

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our group, all seasoned travelers, had a wonderful time. The venues were better than we expected. The service provided by the guides were exceptional. We were very very happy. And Crystal Allen was great as our overall advisor. I will definitely work with her again. Thank you!

Donna L

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialst Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a fantastic trip to South Africa. Thanks to you, everyone at South African Airways Vacations, Tour d’Afrique, Monwana Game Lodge and Hylton Ross for a wonderful trip.
South Africa was a truly gorgeous country, with friendly people. The Cape Town area was fantastically clean with no litter, which is unusual for a major city and very nice. He real highlight of the trip was the Monwana Game Lodge. It was fantastic. It is very small, the entire staff greats you when you arrive and they go to great lengths to make sure your visit is wonderful. Our room was very large with our own deck looking out on the watering hole which had lions, antelopes (not at the same time!), and a variety of other animals which we could watch from our chairs. The Game Drives were wonderful, the tracker and ranger were very good and we saw lions, leopards, rhinos, giraffes, water buffalos, hippos, and many, many other animals. We stopped for tea in the morning and a sun downer in the evening during the game drives, which was fun.
I cannot recommend Monwana highly enough. I think everyone should experience it. The food was fantastic and Emma took great care of us.
It was a perfect trip. The only thing we missed was Robbins Island since we planned to do it on our own and it was sold out so the advice is to buy tickets to it ahead of time if you intent to do it independently. It gives us something to add to our next trip.
Thanks for all your efforts for a flawless trip.

Margaret H

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

The March trip was awesome & special memories for a lifetime! I would like to thank you for your efforts in coordinating So Africa Zambia & Botswana for us. Honestly, the safari exceeded my expectations! The owners & staff at Shumbalala were exceptional…our guide Wayne & tracker Herman were first class & the meals delicious. Loved the outdoor shower & fireplace every night.
In Zambia my guided walk to the wettest part of Victoria Falls was magnificent just the two of us. I really liked Stanley Lodge open air concept …again warm service from staff. Finally Chobe was the frosting on the cake … Enjoyed buffet food concept at all meals & the game rides & Chobe River boat expedition were great fun. Also the free laundry service was a nice surprise. I enjoyed a massage & relaxed for the trip home…unbelievable terrific weather all 2 weeks. My ONLY suggestion would be the direct flight on Sat from Shumbalala area to Livingstone avoiding Joberg night & airport transfer. Mark, I would like to close my thoughts by stating the crews on ALL my So African Airways flights were professional & the JHB to JFK crew a 10!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

E. Feuer

July 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaBotswana

Just as she did 2 years ago, Kristina did a wonderful job customizing this trip for us, and we had a great time. Staff at camps were great, from the guides to the waitstaff. Chefs did an admirable job accommodating my dietary issues.
E. Feuer

Jones

June 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

This experience was great. The lodges we stayed in and the excursions we’re awesome. All my wife and I had to do was wake up, eat and be at a certain place at a certain time and the rest of the day handled itself. I would definitely like to travel to Africa again and I would definitely use Kristina and SAA. I appreciate you making this trip for my wife and I the best ever…
-Jones

D. Thompson

May 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Cheryle,
I wanted to thank you for the “best” trip ever!
I was taken back by my experiences and just loved South Africa.
– D. Thompson

Christie & Peter

April 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!!  Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in it’s own way.  We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time.  Both lodges were wonderful.  The rooms were great and the staff so helpful.  Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet.  All the food  was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it.  The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were  also a lot of fun to spend time with.  My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old!  Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us.  It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
Christie and Peter

J. Mackin

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

For me, it was a little daunting travelling to South Africa and Zimbabwe with my family. Mostly, because of the unknown. Upon arrival however, EVERYTHING worked out flawlessly. The hotels were great, the guides were personable and interesting, the transfers were all there when we arrived. I am sure you have an idea of how comforting this is for a traveler(s) far from home. I would also like to point out that whenever I emailed Kristina (with all of my questions over the course of 6+ months), her responses were lighting fast. It was clear that she truly had our best interests at heart. I would recommend her in a heartbeat.
Thank you to SAA Vacations for contributing to a lifetime of good memories!
Best Regards,
J. Mackin

Holly

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hey Mark,
Thank you so much for everything! I know I’ve said that many times before but I really do mean it. You have been so invaluable. I reached out to several companies for quotes but none of them felt right and provided me with the level of service you did!
Thanks!
Holly

C. Rutherford

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Silvia Conti

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sylvia,
Our trip to South Africa far exceeded all expectations!!! Each of our 14 bush rides was unique and memorable in its own way. We saw so many animals and witnessed a birth of a buffalo, lion family life, and lots of other things that happen in nature all the time. Both lodges were wonderful. The rooms were great and the staff so helpful. Both had plenty of food options for Peter and his gluten free diet. All the food was delicious, beautifully served and there was plenty of it. The guides and trackers were very knowledgeable and experienced and we learned so much about the animal habits, habitats, behaviors, and about the tracks, plants, trees and birds we saw. They were also a lot of fun to spend time with. My plan is to hopefully bring our grandchildren there in about 12 years when they are old enough and hopefully we aren’t too old! Thanks again for all your help in putting it all together for us. It was a perfect and relaxing vacation.
C. Rutherford

T. Rosengart

March 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
Stan and I are back from our incredible trip to South Africa. Thanks for all of your help putting it together. Everything went very well and all the details worked seamlessly. We were very pleased with the accommodations, transfers and tours that you arranged. Thanks again. The Cape Grace Hotel and Thornybush Waterside Lodge, both far exceeded our expectations.
Incredible pictures, great memories!
T. Rosengart

Barbara

February 2018
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark,
We are having the most fabulous time. As you said it would be, everything has been seamless. The people are the warmest, kind and helpful I have ever met. The game drives are incredible. Yesterday, was a banger day. Even the guides had never seen anything like it and couldn’t stop talking amongst themselves. We ran to see a zebra giving birth. When we got there on the other side of our jeep, sat two cheetahs. Within minutes they took off on a kill of another young zebra. It was the full cycle of life; birth on one side and death on another of the same species.
So hard to leave the tented camps, each camp is better than the next… We are now off to Ngorongoro.
Thanks for everything.
Best, Barbara

Laura W

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Hilari!!
Just finally settling in to being back home after the most amazing vacation I have ever had. I want to first thank you for your help with this trip. From start to finish every detail of this trip was perfect. The arrangements you put in place for us, could not be better organized. We actually cannot pick a favorite moment, since it was all so perfect. Cape Town was the most beautiful city I have ever traveled too and WILL visit again at some point in my life. The Kwa Maritane Bush Lodge was a lifetime adventure. My husband, who normally is very low key was like a little kid all over again, upon our arrival and with every Safari Drive we were on it just became more exciting. The guides could not be more inviting or knowledgeable. We all were truly satisfied with every aspect of our vacation. I cannot thank you enough for making our arrangements so perfectly!! I will forward pictures as soon as I get my act together. If you ever need a recommendation please feel free to use myself or any of my travel companions.
Regards Laura Williams

Lee

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful trip if a lifetime! Hilari did a great job making arrangements and booking our itinerary. The flights to SA were no problem. We did have a glitch from Phoenix to JFK where they split up our seats so we were all sitting separately (includlng the kids sitting by themselves next to strangers) so we had to purchase upgraded seats at the last minute to get us all together. Our experiences in Cale Town and Shameari were exceptional. The Accomodations at both locations were terrific and we would recommend them again. Our driver for our Cape Tour was one of the best we have ever had. We are recommending him to others we know who will be traveling there. Our safari guide was also fabulous – became like a family member to us. We loved the whole experience. Only downside was on the way home, SAA flight was subpar- seats were broken including my husband’s entertainment system which made a long flight a lot longer. Otherwise, we cannot wait for the day when we are able to go back!!

Buckley

February 2017
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We couldn’t be happier with you and your company’s service and the trip as a whole! Have already passed your name on to a few others! Truly was the trip of a lifetime and should be on everyone’s bucket list that loves to travel. Every step of the way exceeded our expectations and the service was top notch at all accommodations, tours, tour guides, etc. We also felt your suggested must-do’s as well as suggested time-frames at each spot to get the most out of the trip were right on. We really appreciated all of the special little “honeymoon” touches that you and the various accommodations set up for us! It made everything that much more special and romantic, so thank you SO much for that. And in general for just working through the modifications to the itinerary with us, being so responsive to our inquiries, etc.
Our one suggestion with regard to Cape Town would be to tell the travelers in advance that the tour companies you pair with offer both half day and full day tours. For our wine day and cape peninsula day, we did not know that half days were an option and would have chosen a half day at one or both to enable us to have a bit more “free time” in Cape Town.
I forwarded a number of pictures to Kristina. Feel free to use! We have a ton more, so if you are looking for something specific, just let me know.
Thank you again! Should we ever safari again we would certainly work with you to plan it.

Pam P

November 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We got home last night as we spent overnight in NY recovering from the flight. We had a wonderful time and my husband describes it as “one of the best trips he has ever been on.” That says it all. The hotel One&Only was outstanding and the location was great. We were spoiled. On arrival they gave us a glass of sparkling wine and that set the tone for the whole trip. Thorny Bush Lodge was great and the animals we saw seemed almost surreal.
Thanks Sherry for all your help. We have done a lot of travelling over our lifetime but you have to be the best travel agent we have ever dealt with. In a short time you managed to put together a fabulous trip and answer every question we had with speed and efficiency. We would recommend your services to anyone who might ask and have already told our kids to put South Africa on their ‘to do and must see’ list.

Morris

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari planned the perfect customized trip for me to South Africa and Mauritius. We chatted by phone twice, and by email a couple of times, yet she knew precisely what kinds of tours and accommodations would suit my personality and tastes. What an amazing adventure I had! Something I have been thinking about doing for many years has been realized. I will never forget the experience. Thank you, Hilari!

Lani & Matt B

September 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Elizabeth,
Thank you so much for the sweet package in the mail!
We wanted to tell you how appreciative we are for your hard work to make our trip as special and amazing as it was. Every day was exciting and successful, making it truly a trip to remember. All hotels were luxurious and had great service, far exceeding our expectations.
Sending you all our thanks,
Lani and Matt Bettinger

Strunk

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience traveling in South Africa. It was truly one of the best vacations of all time. Elizabeth did a wonderful job putting the itinerary together. She was endlessly patient with us as we tweaked here and there and added on more experiences to maximize our trip. All of the accommodations were brilliant – top notch. We especially loved the Kariega Game Reserve. It was a perfect first safari experience for our children. We also loved Oddshorrn and the ostrich farm more than we expected – we could have spent another night in that area. We can’t wait to go back to South Africa again and would definitely book through you guys. All of the services and recommendations were fantastic. Special thanks to Elizabeth for putting it all together for us!

Stachiw

August 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

It was a trip of a lifetime. Elizabeth is a fantastic consultant who worked closely with me to put together the perfect itinerary for our family. Cape Town was wonderful and we absolutely loved Rovos Rail. We ended the trip with a safari that exceeded our expectations. All of the transfers and tours were on time with no issues. I could not have imagined a better vacation. Thank you SAA!

Scott F

July 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa Zambia

Hi Elizabeth,
Well, we are finally back home, recovering from our AWESOME  South Africa trip!!
I just want to let you know that the trip you put together for all of us was OUT OF THIS WORLD!!  It was probably our best trip that we have been on in our life!!
I want to THANK YOU for putting this trip together!!!  Everything that you suggested, we did, and glad that we did it!!  There is not one thing that we can complain about!!  That is how smooth and great the trip was.
It was a trip of many “FIRSTS”: First time in South Africa, First time on safari, First time seeing many of the animals that we did, First time at the Falls, First time on a big vacation with Bruce and Mel (and they still like to hang with us), First time I had to carry around an additional 35lb sculptor where-ever we traveled to that Jo bought the 2nd day of our trip, etc…..and the list goes on and on!! All of it a great time!!
All the accommodations, from the hotel in Cape Town and Joburg, to the unbelievable Buffalo Camp in Kruger, to the hotel in walking distance to Victoria Falls, these were way above what we expected!!  Especially at the Camp!!  Besides the awesome cabins they put us in and the safaris we participated in, the food was out of this world as well!!  Everyone there treated us like royalty. We are not use to that at all and it was such a wonderful experience!! All of the transportation to and from hotels, airports, even on the tours in Cape Town, were again tremendous and all ON TIME!!  Amazing!!
You really out did yourself and we appreciate all the time and effort you put into making this an AWESOME trip for all of us!!!  One that we will never, ever forget!
Thank YOU…THANK YOU….THANK YOU!!!

Dunn

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was AWESOME! Sherry did a fantastic job tayloring the tours to our varied interests. The only thing I would do differently next time would be to add more days in Cape Town and slow down the pace, to afford more free time for exploration!
Thanks Sherry!

Vicki S

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark–we have arrived home safely from our incredible trip. Now trying to adjust body clocks 🙂
Just had a little something emailed to you from Starbucks to say thanks for all you did for the last six months to get us organized and ready to go! Please let me know it arrives safely in your “inbox.”
We now face the daunting task of going through all the photos we took so that our friends will indulge us when we ask, “Want to see our pictures from Africa?”
Both my husband and I agree that we want to make a return trip to another part of the continent someday and will certainly be in touch if you are still available to help!
Thanks again for everything!

Adams

June 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Kristina Kowalczewski

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great experience due to Kristina doing such ardent planning to meet our financial goals as well as making sure that we were seeing what we wanted to see in Africa. She was delightful in her delivery of the itinerary that met our needs and expectations. The properties were great and most important the people of Africa were welcoming and most helpful. Her choice of properties made the trip memorable as we had some fine dining under the stars on many occasions. The safari program was superb with an excellent guide for just the two of us with our own tracker as well. We saw the big five and much more. South African Airways was a superb airline in service and in hospitality. They truly served good meals in the air as well as making us comfortable. I will in the next few weeks upload to Kristina some photos of our experiences.
Thanks to Kristina for her dedication and love for Africa.

Judy H

May 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Mark,
Thank you for the thoughtful gift of safari note cards……another way to remember our fabulous trip.
The vacation was perfect. We saw so much and learned so much. The staff at all the lodges we stayed at couldn’t have been more welcoming and fun. I will remember this trip always.
Also we owe a big debt to you. You were so very helpful before we went and thoroughly prepared us for the trip. So all in all thank you so much. If we decide to do another African trip you will be the first person we talk to.

Flavio A

April 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hilari,
WOW WOW WOW, My wife and I have set foot in four Continents and have visited 17 different Countries and other than my Native Country if I were to recommend one it will be SOUTH Africa.
What a beautiful Country not only for the Breathless and Speechless moments over and over we had for the Beaches , the mountains, the wild animals but more importantly their people.
If I were to rate my experience from one to ten, one being the lowest rating and ten the highest I would give an ELEVEN to South Africa.
Did I say that the food quality and presentation is great and the prices are even better????? Well they simply are.
I went to do the South Africa IRONMAN in Port Elizabeth and the prices I paid for one week at the Radisson Blue, wouldn’t even have three days in USA, needless to say that the service is the best.
While riding my bike the day of the event a monkey got across the road in front of me and in my way back there were two little monkeys sitting at the edge of the road watching us go by. What a spectacle. I was expecting to see wild life until I went to the Safari not knowing that on race day we had them as spectators.
Gino The Tour Guide in our City tour in Cape Town was very knowledgeable, very friendly and had us in AWE for the entire day.
I was thinking that that was the best thing we were going to have in our trip not knowing that Tyrone our Safari Tour Driver was ten times better than Gino.
We went four times in the Safari and every single time we got to see the Wild Animals over and over, but every single time was like a completely new show.

Tony D

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

Elizabeth,
Before I say anything else about how great the trip was–at the Portswood we were greeted with a bottle of champagne on ice with a 40th anniversary congratulation handwritten note, yellow roses on the bed and in the room on turn down, and at the Monwana reserve, Emma upgraded us to the Zulu suite, offering us congratulations on our 40th.
So special, thanks to you and to everyone else who was so thoughtful!

Angie T

March 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Cheryle Velsor

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Cheryle,
We had a wonderful time. It was more than we could have hoped for. All of the arrangements that you made were terrific.  Thank you again.

Juby B

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Mark, we came back  on Sunday and just wanted to let you know, trip was great we had a blast. I will get back to you as there are many other places I would like to visit. Tks for putting together a great itinerary and the hotels and the service was incredible.

Janice & Dirk J

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Hi Maritza:
Dirk and I wanted to let you know about our wonderful trip. Unfortunately due to the storm in New York we missed a day in Cape Town, but all in all it was a fabulous vacation. The hotel in Cape Town was very nice and we enjoyed some time on the nice patio. The day trip to Cape of Good Hope was excellent and the penguins were fun to watch. We also visited the water front and Table Mountain.
The highlight of our trip was our stay at Thornybush Serondella Lodge. We were amazed at how close we were able to get to the animals and we saw the Big 5 within 1 day.! The lodge itself is very luxurious and we were fortunate to have a room overlooking the watering hole and saw many animals there every day.
The Safari Lodge in Victoria Falls was very nice. We enjoyed our dinners overlooking the valley and the watering hole.
We were so impressed at the level of organization. All our flights were on time and we were met everywhere as arranged. We would certainly recommend SAAV to anyone looking for a great holiday. Thanks for all your assistance in putting this together for us.

Daniel C

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a wonderful experience. We loved Cape Town and everything that was arranged for us there from the hotel to the tour, which was a lovely experience. The transfers were prompt and delivered us where we needed to be. The Pilanesberg reserve was incredible and we got to see so many animals up close! The hotel that we stayed at their was so gorgeous and the service was perfect.

Andrew H

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Thanks to Hilari and her efficiency and knowledge, we enjoyed a trip that was a once in a lifetime experience.
The resorts and events set up, especially at the Bakubung Bush Lodge and the Victoria Falls Safari and Lodge were unforgettable.
Thanks again for everything and would definitely look to you again for future destinations.

Janet H

January 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

Our guide made our time in Tanzania perfect; he was so knowledgable, helpful, cheerful, and we were SO impressed by his information, his driving skill (in conditions that were kind of challenging), and his alertness helped us spot the animals frequently. He really made our safari the truly spectacular experience.

Catherine F

January 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

Tanzania

This was a terrific trip! Lori Visser, our agent, helped us in a thousand ways–sometimes in areas where we didn’t even know we needed help.
Our guide, SP, was the best: he knows about the land, the animals, and the birds and wants to continue learning. He’s also personable and an excellent driver. Please give him a raise! In your publicity, include the absolute necessity of having an experienced guide.
Also, include the Masai in what you say about the trip! We enjoyed them (the men) so much, also liked how the Lake Natron lodge was situated between two Masai villages. We could see people going about their business, children going to school, etc. Sadly, the women were more difficult to relate to. We had no language in common. They were interested only in selling us their beadwork.
I liked the variety in the lodging. Please encourage the people at Lake Natron to upgrade their facilities. They don’t need to be fancy, but put the thatch on the roofs, fix the broken lights, install safer showers/baths. Toilets are new–nice. One over-the-top place was more than enough (Serena Serengeti). Acacia Farm Lodge is stunningly beautiful, but details need to be attended to. I don’t need rose petals on my bath mat. I’d rather have the blown-out bulb replaced in the bathroom, an electrical outlet there, and an adapter so I could use the hairdryer provided. The staff was most welcoming.
Again, a trip of a lifetime!

Jim & Hazel S

December 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Dear Sherry
 Hazel and I wanted to thank you for organizing our recent, wonderful vacation in South Africa. Everything worked out perfectly travel wise and we really enjoyed it. Cape Town is a beautiful city and the three tours you set up for us were really excellent, we saw a lot and learned a lot. The subsequent time on Safari also was excellent. The accommodation was small and outstanding, the ranger and other staff were excellent and looked after us well. We saw lots of animals including all of the “big five” and enough giraffes to keep even Hazel happy (she loves them!)  Many thanks once again.
 Jim and Hazel S.

Latasha F

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Gabe Greenberg

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Gabe,
Thank you so much for the cards.  They were the bees knees.  It was comforting to have you walk me through my trip after I missed my flight.  By you rearranging everything, I didn’t miss a beat.  I know I will visit South Africa again and will be sure to use your vacation services.  I will also tell my friends to contact you if they travel to Africa.
Matter of fact, do you plan trips to Gahna?  My sister wants to go in the month of June.  I will copy her on this e-mail to possibly help with her planning.
Cheers!
Latasha

Linda H

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark! I wanted to thank you for the AMAZING South African adventure you planned for my family! It was PERFECT in every way! I honestly could not believe that with so many moving parts, that everything went off without a hitch! All the transfer pick-ups arrived EARLY to meet us.  There was never question about what was happening next. The shark dive was cancelled due to poor weather and boating conditions.  But they were quickly able to accommodate us on the following day.  What an amazing adventure!  We LOVED the Sun Cullinan hotel and its perfect location to the waterfront. The tour guide, Jason, who led us on the full day Cape Tour was AWESOME. And we met some cool families along the way following in our footsteps! The Serondella Lodge was so wonderful, that we literally cried when we left! Chewie, the Ranger, and his partner, Monica, the hostess, were some of the most wonderful people we have ever met, and they found a place in our heart forever!  The Victoria Falls Hotel was a perfect finish.  Thank you! thank you! I will be back to have you book my clients on this same adventure.  It was truly a trip of a lifetime and I appreciate all your insights to make it happen!
Happy new year!

Pinakin S

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Hilari Ross

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a marvelous time one of the best holidays after a long time, everything without an exception was great Thanks to Hillari Ross who got us the perfect combination to stay, travel and commute. Will be recommending this unique experience to others as well. Keep up the good work and am tempted to do it again.
Thank you all once again and do keep me in the loop for any new offerings.
Pinakin

Castelo

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Elizabeth Bradford

Travelled to:

South Africa

What a great value for the two weeks!!
Your sending us to Thornybush was EXCELLENT and the staff at that site was incredible.  Would definitely return to enjoy Cape Town and the environs further east.

Ernesto L

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks Tom, this is the best experience in my life.  Never encounter so much thrill with those wildlife especially walk with the Lion. Please inform me any especial offer for next year, will bring my son with me. Thanks

Sveum

November 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

This was an amazing trip! We loved every aspect of it! Staying at Thornybush Game Lodge was the highlight of the trip. The staff at Thornybush were amazingly attentive!

Crystal K

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you very much for helping us to plan the best vacation ever!  I’m still basking in the glory of our trip to South Africa.  It was truly amazing!  Everything was first class and exceeded our expectations.
Arlene and her husband Hilton were amazing.  They took excellent care of us from the time we arrived until the time we left. For example, one day after our tours we were in the mood for a good hamburger.  Arlene and Hilton told us about a great restaurant that had excellent burgers and milk shakes; but they didn’t stop there, they actually drove us to the restaurant, and allowed us to go in and check the menu to see if it was something we wanted to come back for later.  When we checked in at the airport, Arlene stood at the security line until each of us made it through and waved at us as we headed to the gate.  The little touches were special, and will never be forgotten.
The Waterfront hotel in Cape Town was fantastic.  The staff learned our names, and were extremely pleasant.  The breakfast they serve is awesome as well as the cooks and servers.  The Kapama Lodge really exceeded our expectations.  From IP who picked us up at the airport, to Daron that checked us in, to our housekeeper Gift, and our safari driver Shanae and Stanley, we were never disappointed.  The food was great and the spa was amazing!!!
By far the most exciting point of the trip was the school visit.  The children at Moshesh will forever be in our hearts.  It was a blessing to be a blessing to the students and teachers.  We had so much fun, and made lasting relationships.  Arlene and Hilton made the experience even better by helping us to select the appropriate things for the school, and making sure we met their needs.  They even took us back to the school on our way to the airport so that we could hand deliver our cash donation.
As you can see, I can elaborate for hours about this trip.  I have shared the highlights with anyone who is willing to listen and look at my pictures.  We would be proud for you to share our photos, and will most definitely be a solid reference for SAA.  I will definitely complete the survey.
Crystal, I would like to personally thank you for helping to make our dream come true.  You were always professional and patient, even when my own patience was challenged.  I will definitely call you when I have the opportunity to plan another South African vacation, which may be soon.  My father-in-law was so impressed he has offered to take our family back to Cape Town.  I will let you know when we are able to secure dates 🙂
Best regards / Mit freundlichen Grüßen,
Crystal K

Ron M

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

The trip was terrific!  All the arrangements were impeccable.  Every driver who was supposed to show up did so at the right time.  The accommodations were luxurious.  We have nothing but good things to say about the places where we stayed.  We had a wonderful time at the Thornybush Reserve and got to see all the animals we hoped to see.  The Cape Town and the Victoria Falls tours were also excellent.
We would rate the trip a 10 out of 10 and are happy to recommend SAA Vacations to our friends.
Thanks again.
Ron M.

Ed & Sue

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Mark, Thanks to you and Maritza for putting together a trip of a lifetime for us. The flights were great, as were the tours. Our thanks to both Hylton and Wild Horizons, as well as Magic Bus. The hotels and lodges chosen were perfect for our needs. As you promised, the pickups were all on time and all waiting for us. The tour options chosen provided a perfect introduction/overview, for first time visitors. We did ride the elephants in Zambia.
We will glad to give you organization and both of you a five star rating for a job well done. In the future, if you have any clients or potential clients who our on the fence or apprehensive about the trip, we would be glad to talk to them on your behalf.
We are already starting to plan our next trip to South Africa.
Again thanks for all your help.
Sincerely,
Ed O. & Sue D.

Joyce B

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

My note is to express my appreciation for the patient, courteous, and informed help that I received from Mr. Mark Black.
He listened to my requests, regarading travel, and planned an interesting trip for me and my four, teenaged Grandchildren.
Mr. Black has excellent Customer Relation Skills.
Peace,  Joyce B  (AKA Grammy Joyce!)

Susan L

October 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

It truly was a trip of a lifetime, down to the very last detail!!! Thank you so much for all your planning and for the good care you took of all of us.

Arthur O

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hello Tom, Yes, we made it back safe and sound. Overall we would rate our journey as a “trip of a lifetime”.  We confirmed our memory that the South African people are the most genuine, open, caring people in the world!  We met people from all walks of life and found them all to be very gracious.  Our waistlines also attest to the fact that the food in South Africa is the world’s best!  The scenery, wildlife flowers, etc. all exceeded our expectations. Best regards,  Arthur O.

Tom & Holly S

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Sherry! We had a GREAT trip!  Thanks so much for all that you did.  We will certainly refer you to friends, family, and colleagues.  In fact, around the water cooler today in the office I started to do just that. We did the “Devils Pool” excursion and the helicopter excursion over the falls.  Both were well worth it!  The Kariega Reserve was great too.  The guide, Victor, did an excellent job finding the elephants, rhinos, lions, etc for us.  A few photos are attached. The drivers were all on time, and the accommodations beat expectations! We thank you again and we’ll remember you and SAA the next time we go to Africa…maybe the East side next time, to see the migration from the Serengeti?  We’ll see…. Best Regards, Tom & Holly S.

Peter C

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, I wanted to thank you for the great work you did on arranging our tours and hotel in South Africa.  The tours where great, the guides excellent, the transportation perfect, and the hotel was awesome! Thank you so much for taking such great care of us! -Peter

Bob and Mary-Ann J

September 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Mark, What a nice surprise. The notecards arrived to-day and they just brought back wonderful memories of our trip. Thank you so much. Of all the trips we have taken, this last trip to South Africa was the best. I cannot rave enough about the hotels, having our own personal driver and tour guide, and of course Kapama. Being in our 70’s and both being two times survivors of Cancer makes us especially appreciative of being able to go back to South Africa. Don’t know how many more Big trips we will be able to take, but the memories of this one will last forever. I will recommend you highly. Again, thank you for setting up our wonderful trip and again for the notecards – Bob and Mary Ann J

 

Carolyn D

February 2016
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Hi Crystal, Want to thank you for arranging the most glorious trip to SA.  Everything was perfect. I feel as though I spent 2 weeks being transported from place to place on a velvet pillow!! Every accommodation was excellent, every tour was fabulous. Would not hesitate to recommend.  Again, thank you!!

Steve H

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Just want to thank you for all your help with our  wonderful Africa trip.  Flights were all on time, drivers prompt.  Nice treat to have transfers prearranged.  Breakfasts all excellent everywhere.  Victoria and Albert offered upgrade to presidential suite for last 2 nights in Cape Town for small up-charge.  That was very nice – huge apartment.  Weather lousy in Cape Town but nice the day we drove out to Cape Point – beautiful.  Serondella was fabulous in every respect – service, personal attention, food, game drives.  Could not have been better.  Victoria Falls was gorgeous as expected.

Gregg C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for everything!  We had a fantastic time, and thought the trip was great. I wanted to say that our guide, Chris, at Tour D’Afrique, was fantastic…  he deserves some recognition… All the best! Gregg

Isabelli D.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesburg and Joburg.Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation. We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger. Again Thank you.

Jonathan H.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

We just got back this morning. We had such an incredible time. We saw some fantastic things over there. Thanks for all your help getting this set up. -Jonathan.

Woodward Family

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

On the whole, our trip was wonderful. All of the places we stayed were nice and the guides assigned to us were wonderful.

Albin C.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

The holiday was outstanding in every way!  Certainly there was the exoticism of the destination; the natural beauty of SA, catching a glimpse of the fauna — baboons, ostriches, kudu, et al (safe to say, there are none of these wandering around Miller Place) and simply the constant shift of the landscape were all winners. The Table Bay was an excellent hotel with exceptional staff.  The three of us were especially impressed by the quality of our guides; Enrico and Avril.  They were both knowledgeable with delightful personalities.  It was a pleasure to spend a day with them. In addition, everything was on time.  From the pick up for our tours, to the transfer driver there to greet us at CPT. We all know that SA has had a difficult history, but one leaves there with hope for tomorrow and a deep desire to return. As I’ve said many times before, you and Maritza are first rate professionals; knowledgeable, efficient, helpful and unfailing pleasant.  I hope your boss knows he/she is lucky to have both of you.

Len R.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks to your help, our trip was truly epic! The itinerary was perfect and the accommodations were 4 to 5 star with great value. Our 7 and 9 year old grandchildren were enthralled throughout! We saw all the big 5, plus hippos, jackals, hyenas, cheetah, and even a civet on a nighttime safari! We also saw about 150 species of birds! The boat rides in Chobe and at Victoria Falls were amazing! This is a great time to travel to South Africa because of the very favorable exchange rate — many meals were included on our trip, but now a reasonable restaurant meal is only about $10 U.S. — we had ostrich, zebra etc. in waterfront restaurants in Cape Town. Cape Town is an amazingly beautiful and sophisticated city, and our trips to visit a township, Mandela’s prison cell, and the Botanical Garden were all great.  Two small issues were quickly resolved by your South African counterparts and all the connections and pick-ups were seamless, in spite of the fact that we had 5 internal flights! We travel frequently, but this trip ranks at the top! Please express our gratitude to all involved! -Len

Michelle F.

August 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Trip was fantastic! Everything was set up perfectly! Hotels were great, transportation was always perfectly on time! Great job! Thank you!I will recommend you to anyone wanting to go to SA! Best, Michelle

Chris H.

June 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a great time in South Africa and I want to Thank you for your diligence in the planning of our itinerary – there were no issues at all! Everything went according to the plan and everyone was on time and ready to pick us up when they were supposed to. I was very impressed
The food and wine tour was GREAT – the guide was very knowledgeable about the area and shared some art places with us as well as the local food places. I would highly recommend that for first timers to South Africa. You may also want to look into adding the drumming/restaurant into your planned itinerary because it was so awesome. Besides the drumming lesson, they fed us traditional African food and entertained you with African song and dance throughout dinner.
Thank you again for planning our trip and being available to answer ALL my questions!

Jill K.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thanks for the notecards!  We had a wonderful time in South Africa, everything went exactly as planned, no problems at all.  We enjoyed all of it but I think my favorite thing in Cape Town was a cooking class that my daughter and I took in the Langa township.  It was also nice to be so close to the waterfront.  We took the shuttle there every night to eat and buy gifts.  I managed to bring back 7 bottles of wine 🙂
We saw so many animals on safari, it was incredible!  The first time we went out we saw so many lions including cubs and we also saw lions hunting.
I guess I have to save up my money for another trip, I’d love to go back.  Thanks so much for all your help in making it possible.

E.L.

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely notecards. We did see all the animals in the pictures. It was very wonderful vacation but much too short. Everything was perfect, accommodates were wonderful tours were great and on time, even the weather cooperated. Looking forward to more material from you about Botswana and Victoria Falls.
Thanks again,
E. L.

T. Ortega

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

All the guides, crew and staff were very knowledgeable. Their guide (Chris) in Cape Town provided an excellent overall insight into the history of South Africa. He was very accommodating and took the time to answer all their questions, took their pictures, etc.. The shark cage dive was also an excellent experience with friendly crew and staff. They have outstanding knowledge of the great white sharks and seals. Their safari guide (Owen) and his assistant (Federica) were also excellent and did their best to show them as many animals as they could find. They were very accommodating and knowledgeable about the animals and the terrain. Owen even gave them a lesson in star gazing and showed them the constellations that could be seen in South Africa. The accommodations were very nice and comfortable. They would highly recommend this trip to families and friends.

I. Desrosiers

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

All went very well. We had a great time in Cape Town, Pilanesberg and Joburg.
Thank you to you and your team for a well organized vacation.
We are already thinking of going back to visit Port Elizabeth, Durban and Kruger.
Again Thank you.

J&E Rock

July 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

Eli and I want to THANK YOU so much for everything! Our trip was absolutely INCREDIBLE, and all of the plans were perfect, down to every detail!

South African Airways was by far the best airline we have ever flown, and the flight attendants were so friendly and went out of their way to make sure everyone was comfortable. The hotels were absolutely amazing, the staff went above and beyond to make us feel special on our honeymoon. The Victoria Falls hotel was beautiful, and the staff were so friendly to us. We thoroughly enjoyed all of our activities, especially the tour of the falls and the sundowner cruise. The One and Only surprised us with an upgrade to a suite, and with Champagne, chocolates and wine in our room upon arrival. We also had the most gorgeous view of Table Mountain. The second night we were there, we came back to a room with rose petals, candles and a note just saying they hope we were enjoying our stay. The staff was so genuine and always greeted us by name when coming and going. The concierge was extremely helpful with arranging plans and transportation on our free day, which we went up to Table Mountain and also did the Robbin Island tour. Katie our driver/guide for the wine tour and the tour of the Cape was FANTASTIC. She was so knowledgeable of the area and took us to a lot of great spots, both touristy and local. We had so much fun exploring Capetown and the wine lands with her. We did not think our trip could possibly get any better after Capetown, but Simbambali proved us wrong. From the time we arrived, everything was incredible – the food, the staff, the lodge and the game drives. They even surprised us with a private dinner in our room! We did not want to leave!

We truly enjoyed every second, and cannot thank you enough for helping us plan the most perfect honeymoon that neither of us will ever forget! We look forward to planning another trip to South Africa in the next few years with your help!


T. Deery

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black 

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

Mark, your planning was fabulous.  Monwana was perfect, Chobe river safari/cruise was fabulous.   In KwaZulu Natal we spent our first night in Durban with a great view of the ocean, 3 days in St.Lucia ( Cape Vidal, kayaked with Hippos and Crocs, visited a Zulu school ), one night in Ballito at Salt rocks. Will send some photos when  we get them together. Please use us for referral.

S. Benito

May 2015
trip created by Africa specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South AfricaZimbabwe

The whole trip was absolutely amazing in every respect – everything we saw and experienced, the accommodations, the food, the transportation- air, land and sea-, the weather and the people. Your professionalism and responsiveness in working with us to arrange all that was magnificent and Robin, the boys and I thank you so much for your patience and hard work in making it all happen.

Pam B.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South Africa

You did a fantastic job on all our accommodations.  Our drivers, Sun City, the lodge, the safaris were all fantastic and we had a wonderful time.   Thanks so much for everything.  I would highly recommend your services.

Diana W.

May 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Thank you for the lovely cards…what a great surprise!  The trip was incredible and I want to take my husband.
Everything about the trip was wonderful.  I needed one last day to rest up.  We did see the Big Five in a day and a half.  I did have a treatment the last day at the spa which was half what I pay in the U.S.
All of the day trips were great. We had only one other couple with us.  Weather was wonderful.
Best trip we have taken.

D & R Rice

April 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

To all you at SAAV, thank you for planning a fabulous trip.
A few comments: all the transfer, pickups, hotels were great. Everyone was on time, courteous and knowledgeable. We could have spent more time in Cape Town. Beautiful city. The tours were great; small and intimate. Shark dive was amazing, although we had to leave hotel at 2:30AM to do the trip because of the weather.
The accommodations chosen for us were perfect. We enjoyed Serondella the most. The folks there were spectacular. The food in every accommodation was over the top!
I will recommend you all to friends planning a SA adventure.
Again, thank to you all.

Nicole C.

December 2015
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline 

Travelled to:

South Africa

I am writing to express my appreciation of one of your employees. Tom Cline was very patient with me as I planned my trip to Africa. He suggested several safari lodges that were small upgrades to the lodge that was included in our package. After reviewing the options I was so pleased Tom went out of his way to make this suggestion since the lodges he chose will be a much more intimate and luxurious experience. He also was always kind when I needed to make changes in the dates of the trip. He called me to provide the opportunity to respond to questions I had about the itinerary. If I was expecting a quote to be prepared that was not finished he always sent me a message communicating the delay.
 In comparison to other travel specialists I’ve worked with Tom Cline is one of the best. He has excellent communication and interpersonal skills and has worked hard to make our anniversary trip to South Africa and Seychelles memorable.

William B. & Harold H.

February 2015 
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South Africa

I would like to echo the sentiments that Harold expressed in his email noted below.  The trip was simply amazing.  Everything went off as planned.  We did not encounter any difficulties.  I will share photographs as soon as possible.
Mark, as I have mentioned to you previously, you did an outstanding job and provided excellent customer service while planning the vacation package for Harold and myself.  I appreciate all of the timely responses and efforts you put forth in making sure we were satisfied with the details of the vacation.
Thank you so much putting together an incredible vacation package for William and myself.  The trip was exhilarating and filled with adventure and wonder.  There wasn’t one snag in the itinerary that you put together for us.  The hotels were fabulous and our driver/van was waiting to pick us up at every location.   I will tell friends about SAA and definitely use your service again when I travel to South Africa.
I have pictures and videos that I cannot wait to share with friends and family.

S. Greenwood

January 2015
trip created by Mark Black and Maritza Velenzuela

Travelled to:

South Africa

The Southern Sun in Cape Town was perfect: friendly staff, great room and breakfast, and the location was perfect for walks to both City Center and the Waterfront.
The two tours were also perfect. We were able to get up to Table Mt on the cable car, and then it closed for 2 days due to high winds so we were very lucky. We loved the full day Cape tour. We had the same guide, Iggy, for both days and he did a great job. We really enjoyed our 3rd day on our own since there were many places we learned about and wanted to visit: Castle of Good Hope, District Six Museum, Slave Lodge, Company’s Garden, and lots of time and bargaining fun at Green Market Square and then dinner at the Waterfront.
Monwana Game Lodge was really great. Jacques, Morris, Emma, Kelly and the rest of the team were incredible. We loved the size (only 8 guests) and the daily routine of safari, breakfast, rest, high tea, safari and cocktails before dinner. The food was superb. They made a special fireside New Year’s Eve dinner on the back deck. Jacque was a great host and educator on safari. We saw the Big 5 and plenty of other wildlife. Each outing was different and special.  We filled two cameras daily.
We would have loved to have been able to spend another day at Monwana ( our decision), but other than that, the mix of 4 nights in Cape Town and 2 at Monwana was perfect. We hope to return again, perhaps during August for even better viewing.
We would like to thank Mark and everyone at SAAV for putting such a memorable trip together for us

Sable S.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We visited Cornelia’s friend’s place in SA, the weather was great! We could not take the cable car to view the mountain as it was very windy. The hotel in Cape Town was not great, the rooms were very small, in fact Susan asked to move; I should have asked too as sharing the tiny room with Aziza my sister was very cramped.
The trip to Mowana was GREAT! We enjoyed the game and the meals at the lodge. That was a great place you recommended. I highly recommend it for other travelers.
Zambia was beautiful! We visited Livingstone but the waterfalls were not at peak. The Zambezi Sun was GREAT! My brother sent a driver with an SUV, we drove to Lusaka, stayed a night there and then drove to Sinda where my family stays. We spend a night there, and then drove to Chichele lodge at Mfuwe in Eastern province. We stayed there 2 nights. My brother paid for the trip!
Cornelia and Susan took the flight to Lusaka from Mfuwe; they stayed one night in Lusaka before they came back.
I want to thank you and your staff for the tremendous patience and all your help with all our trip coordination. You were particularly patient with us as we made all our changes. The trip was expensive but worth it.
Thanks again!

Elizabeth C.

December 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Sherry Lankin

Travelled to:

South Africa

Upon conducting an internet search for South Africa vacation planners, I randomly and happily connected with Sherry Lankin, beginning what was a wonderful experience in creating a first trip to this part of the world for my family.
We returned from our adventures last week, having had an incredible time. I called Sherry today, to thank her for her stellar work and excellent recommendations. However, I felt compelled to reach out to you, to commend your organization and to sing the praises of Sherry.
In her quiet way, she guided me through the intricacies of planning such a trek. She really listened to me when I talked about where I wanted to spend money and where I wanted to conserve money. She shared her experiences and made recommendations. I felt as though I was working with a friend, rather than an employee out to make a buck for the company. It became very natural to trust her judgement.
She is an effective communicator; I knew that a return phone call or email would be quickly forthcoming. Again, her dependability was impressive.
Kudos to Sherry Lankin. She is the first person I will call when we schedule our next trip to that part of the world.

A. Jones

November 2014 
trip created by Africa Specialist Tom Cline  

Travelled to:

South Africa

Tom _ thank you for your welcome note. I must tell you that everything went so very well on our African trip, thanks to you. As for worries about ebola, thank goodness there was no trouble at all with stopping in Senegal. They certainly have it all under control.

The safaris went beyond our expectations — we saw a live game oil of a Bull by 5 lions — talk about learning about the killer instinct up cole! WOW is all I can say. The staff at Simbambili knows me, and We were greeted at the airport and the service at the lodge couldn’t have been better. As for the Chobe Game Lodge, well, I have a big fan there, and we were treated a bit like royalty, especially on my birthday, which they somehow already knew about!
All is all, it was the best trip we’ve ever taken to Africa and John and I wish to thank you for all of your efforts !!!!
PS: I also did TV & radio while in JoBurg so the Sandton Sun was the right call!

James and Ellen

trip created by Travel Expert Maritza Valenzuela

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

Hi – we are back from South Africa/Zambia. It was the best vacation EVER!!! We loved every minute of it – the accommodations, food, Safari, Cape Town, and Victoria Falls. It was a vacation to remember.
Apparently, I can only send you six pictures at a time, so I will send you too additional emails. These pictures are from the Cape of Good Hope. We took (no kidding) over 1,000 pictures. Our only disappointment (very minor) was that, other than the mist in the distance, we couldn’t see Victoria Falls from Stanley Safari Lodge. The Lodge was further from the falls than we had expected. The falls were spectacular and a must see this time of year.
We had dropped Johannesburg from our trip (except for one night), and that was a good idea. Johannesburg, from the little we saw of it, was disappointing and a bit scary as security accompanied us from our car to the restaurant.
Thank you so much for putting this once-in-a-lifetime vacation together. It was perfect. If you have another must see vacation, please give me a call. We are ready for the next one of your adventures. Thanks again for all your work and for the beautiful cards.

Kristen M

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South Africa

Joanne Elam and Maritza were fantastic to work with. Joanne listened carefully to our thoughts and ideas for our honeymoon and planned the perfect trip for us. Joanne was always very responsive and explained all of our package in detail. Everything in South Africa went very smoothly and just as she had described. The arranged tours in Cape Town were great and very informative but the highlight was our safari at Monwana Game Lodge. We cannot rate Monwana and its staff highly enough. We plan on going back for our five-year wedding anniversary!
Thank you, Joanne, for planning a honeymoon for us that exceeded all of our expectations.

M Smith

trip created by Operations Manager Joanne Elam

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

We would like to thank Joanne Elam for having organized the trip of a lifetime! Everything went according to schedule from the moment we landed to the time we departed. In two weeks we were able to experience 3 different unique places, each with its own distinct feel. Not having to worry about any aspect of the organization allowed us to enjoy our African adventure to the full. Joanne’s grand finale was our stay at the Stanley Safari Lodge in Zambia, a place of mystical beauty with open views to the mist rising from the Victoria Falls! The only disappointment of our trip was having to say farewell to Africa, a place we have fallen in love with. Thanks again Joanne, already looking forward to working with you to plan our next trip.

Mr & Mrs Hochberg

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Will write you later with more info but to summarize, I must say it was an awesome experience…from Shamwari to Cape Town!!! Every voucher pickup was on time, professional and helpful. Radisson Blu was fabulous and Shamwari makes us want to go back again next April. Thank you for all you did to facilitate this wonderful experience for us. Mickey Hochberg

Penelope A

trip created by Africa Specialist Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

Our group, all seasoned travelers, had a wonderful time. The venues were better than we expected. The service provided by the guides were exceptional. We were very very happy. And Crystal Allen was great as our overall advisor. I will definitely work with her again. Thank you!

Donna L

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialst Crystal Allen

Travelled to:

South Africa

We had a fantastic trip to South Africa. Thanks to you, everyone at South African Airways Vacations, Tour d’Afrique, Monwana Game Lodge and Hylton Ross for a wonderful trip.
South Africa was a truly gorgeous country, with friendly people. The Cape Town area was fantastically clean with no litter, which is unusual for a major city and very nice. He real highlight of the trip was the Monwana Game Lodge. It was fantastic. It is very small, the entire staff greats you when you arrive and they go to great lengths to make sure your visit is wonderful. Our room was very large with our own deck looking out on the watering hole which had lions, antelopes (not at the same time!), and a variety of other animals which we could watch from our chairs. The Game Drives were wonderful, the tracker and ranger were very good and we saw lions, leopards, rhinos, giraffes, water buffalos, hippos, and many, many other animals. We stopped for tea in the morning and a sun downer in the evening during the game drives, which was fun.
I cannot recommend Monwana highly enough. I think everyone should experience it. The food was fantastic and Emma took great care of us.
It was a perfect trip. The only thing we missed was Robbins Island since we planned to do it on our own and it was sold out so the advice is to buy tickets to it ahead of time if you intent to do it independently. It gives us something to add to our next trip.
Thanks for all your efforts for a flawless trip.

Margaret H

October 2014
trip created by Africa Specialist Mark Black

Travelled to:

South AfricaZambia

The March trip was awesome & special memories for a lifetime! I would like to thank you for your efforts in coordinating So Africa Zambia & Botswana for us. Honestly, the safari exceeded my expectations! The owners & staff at Shumbalala were exceptional…our guide Wayne & tracker Herman were first class & the meals delicious. Loved the outdoor shower & fireplace every night.
In Zambia my guided walk to the wettest part of Victoria Falls was magnificent just the two of us. I really liked Stanley Lodge open air concept …again warm service from staff. Finally Chobe was the frosting on the cake … Enjoyed buffet food concept at all meals & the game rides & Chobe River boat expedition were great fun. Also the free laundry service was a nice surprise. I enjoyed a massage & relaxed for the trip home…unbelievable terrific weather all 2 weeks. My ONLY suggestion would be the direct flight on Sat from Shumbalala area to Livingstone avoiding Joberg night & airport transfer. Mark, I would like to close my thoughts by stating the crews on ALL my So African Airways flights were professional & the JHB to JFK crew a 10!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Wooden

May 2019                                                                                              Travelled to:

Trip created by Africa Specialist Kari Boys                South Africa

Good Morning!

Got your gift on Saturday, with pictures better than and I could have taken. Thanks!

I would rate my trip 4 of 5 stars and recommend it readily. Logistics were good and reliable, the accommodations fine and even better than expected, and the activities what I wanted.

Why not 5 stars, then? Small things that were likely unknown to you and me.

For example, both hotels had very limited wifi – not access but limited to 350-500 MG daily of data which goes by real fast.

The Cradle of Humankind deserves more time, and perhaps a visit to Stenkfontein as well. The Lesedi Cultural Tour would probable be better in the afternoon, and might include a night’s lodging there. (I also found it disconcerting as it involves black people in tribal clothes, which in the US would be seen as racist. But this was South Africa after all.)

Let me lift up the tour of Soweto as very effective, marred only by having too little time to take on the Apartheid Museum which truly requires 3 hours. Consider a day that starts with a gold mine, which is why so many migrated to the city, and then Soweto. Bundle the Museum with the Constitutional Court and Prison 4 (which my guide added and was fascinating and had too little time to take in).

District 6 in Cape Town, worked well with the Townships as they were related. A little more context would have helped bring it all together. On my own I went to the Slave House which added to that story in helpful ways. Doing all three in one trip would make a full day. The Cape Peninsula was very good, well paced and would have been enough without Kirstenbosch, which we saw very late and could only taste. It deserves more. Maybe pairing it with Lion’s Head or the Company Garden would work better.

I took myself to Pretoria for a day, just to walk around and had a fine time. The Sandton hotel was close to the Gautrain and it took less than 40 minutes to get there. The Natural History Museum is small and easy, but also very dated. The Burgers Garden is beautiful and Melrose House across the street would have been fun but it is closed on Mondays, which is when I went.

I think that covers the bits and pieces. It was a memorable and very enriching visit, perhaps my only one to Southern Africa. The toughest part was flying there and back, as that is one loooooong flight. Of course, any others flights would be longer. South Africa is far away!

Thanks for the cards and all the help. If you need a recommendation, I will happily supply one.