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11 day- Photo Safari Untouched Africa

A luxury photo safari for fans of wildlife and nature!


This trip was developed by photographers for photographers. You will be enchanted by the natural treasures of Zimbabwe. The majestic Victoria Falls are among the largest waterfalls in the world. The Hwange and Mana Pools National Park are two of the best and most animal-filled parks in southern Africa. Both are still relatively unknown to mass tourism and are off the beaten track.

15. to 25. September 2019 (fully booked)

28. August to 7. September 2020

11 days/10 nights from/to Victoria Falls

Minimum of 5, maximum of 6 people

Victoria Falls – Hwange National Park – Mana Pools National Park – Lake Kariba – Victoria Falls
This unique photo safari offers a number of extraordinary photographic highlights!
  • You will be accompanied by wildlife photographer, James Gifford. Learn how to take pictures like a pro!
  • This trip will give you far more chances to photograph animals and landscapes than a conventional safari. Travelling by safari vehicles as well as on foot will give you whole new perspectives.
  • Mana Pools National Park, the jewel of Africa and a UNESCO world heritage site, attracts a great number of animals during the dry season from May to October, who come to drink from the natural lagoons and the Zambezi river. The scenery is simply enchanting and the park is well known for its outstanding atmospheric light.
  • Hundreds of elephants gather at the waterholes of the Hwange National Park during the dry season.
  • The magnificent Victoria Falls offer a stunning photo opportunity.
  • Beautiful moods and a boat trip on lake Kariba.
  • After you put down your cameras you can return to the pretty camps and lodges and put your feet up. They are also known for their great food.
  • Very small group with a maximum of 6 participants.

Itinerary

Breath-taking photography opportunities
Day 1 - Arrival Victoria Falls
You will be collected from the airport at Victoria Falls and driven to the legendary Victoria Falls Hotel. You can then spend a pleasant afternoon around the hotel till you’ve settled in. Enjoy the surroundings overlooking the spray of the Victoria Falls or walk through the beautiful gardens of this historic hotel. In the early evening, we board a small exclusive boat to take a pleasant sunset cruise across the Zambezi river. Here, you will get an informal introduction from our photography guide, James Gifford. Then we head back to the Victoria Falls Hotel where a delicious evening meal will await us.
Victoria Falls
Victoria Falls
Day 2 - From Victoria Falls to Hwange National Park
Today we get up early. We are off to visit the mighty Victoria Falls. The natives call the waterfall ‘Mosi-oa-Tunya’, or ‘Smoke that Thunders’. The waterfall drops to a depth of 110 metres and is a spectacular photo opportunity. We wait till we get the right light before taking pictures. After eating breakfast in the lodge, a charter flight will take us from Victoria Falls to the Hwange National Park.

This is the largest national park in Zimbabwe and is best known for its extensive elephant population. There are also large populations of giraffes, zebras, buffaloes and, of course, lions. You will spend the next three days in a beautiful lodge in the middle of the national park. Although small, the camp offers excellent infrastructure. From your deck, you will be able to observe the animals as they come to the lodge’s waterhole. Our exclusive safari vehicle will set off in the afternoon to take the group on their first game drive.
Lions in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe
Little elephant, Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe
Day 3-4 - In Hwange National Park on the edge of the Kalahari Desert
You will spend two whole days in Hwange National Park under the supervision of our photography guide. We will set off early each morning and late afternoon to go on a game drive so that we get the best light. You will have a good chance to photograph predators such as lions, cheetahs, hyenas and leopards, in addition to elephants, buffaloes, zebras and various species of antelope.

Your photography guide, James, will always be on hand to offer tips and tricks. You can relax in the lodge between game drives. James will also offer short tutorials on various topics concerning photography if requested/required. Of course, he will also discuss pictures you have already taken and help you to shoot even better pictures on your next game drive.
Roan Antelope, Hwange National Park Zimbabwe
Zebras in Hwange National Park Zimbabwe
Day 5 - From Hwange to Mana Pools National Park
After a final game drive in Hwange National Park, we head back to the park entrance. We then fly directly to the legendary Mana Pools National Park. Mana Pools, in our opinion, is one of the most beautiful and spectacular wildlife reserves in southern Africa. You will love it! We will spend the first few days in a comfortable tented camp right on the banks of the Zambezi. The comfortable tents feature twin beds, toilets and showers.
Elephant in Mana Pools
Mana Pools Sunset
Day 6 – 8 - On the trail in Mana Pools along the Zambezi
We will spend three whole days along the Zambezi river going on safari photography tours by vehicle, walking safaris or even canoe trips. Mana Pools is not only known for classic wildlife photography but also for the enchanting and even magical natural light it offers photographers. You will be able to spend your time together with the guide exploring landscape photography and taking pictures of the awe-inspiring starlit sky at night.
Lions in the shade, Mana Pools Zimbabwe
Wild Dog in Mana Pools National Park, Zimbabwe
Day 9-10 - Further to Lake Kariba
In the morning we will fly to Lake Kariba where we will spend two following nights in a beautiful Lodge. Enjoy the fantastic views of the impressive lake. We will lead you to other great photo opportunities with boat- and safari vehicle. You have good chances to photograph a stunning sunset or elephants and antelopes wading through the water.

Our lodge is a perfect place to slow down and gather together all the great experiences and impressions of the tour.
Elefant in the fairy tale woods, Mana Pools
Famous Boswell of Mana Pools, Zimbabwe
DAY 11 - Back to Victoria Falls
In the morning we will fly back to Victoria Falls. Here is where you get on your international flight or continue on your holiday under your own steam.
Leopard at Kanga Pan, Mana Pools
Lion, Mana Pools National Park Zimbabwe

Accommodation

Enjoy an ‘Out of Africa’ experience
Victoria Falls – Legendary Colonial-style Hotel
You will spend the night in the legendary Victoria Falls Hotel, which is now more than 100 years old and has an eventful history. Today, this historic establishment has become one of the world’s leading hotels with its strikingly beautiful garden and lounges from the colonial era. The hotel complex features a lovely swimming pool, 2 restaurants, a bar, a souvenir shop as well as free internet access. Victoria Falls can be reached after a walk of 10 minutes or so.
Hwange National Park – Luxury Lodge
You will spend the night in an authentic yet luxurious camp in the heart of Hwange National Park. It lies in a secluded location on an acacia island with breath-taking views across the savannah and offers guests the perfect mix of old African charm and elegance. There is a spacious recreation tent and a swimming pool to relax in. There are also good spots to observe the camp’s own waterhole. The camp consists of six elegantly appointed tents with en suite bathrooms, toilets, showers and large terraces.
Mana Pools National Park - Tented Camp
You will spend the first three nights in an exclusive tented camp on the Zambezi river. This mobile, rustic camp is built right on the banks of the Zambezi, which is the route by which guests arrive. One of the main attractions are the game drives in open safari vehicles along the river’s edge, taking you deep into the heart of Africa. With a bit of luck, you will be able to see eland antelopes, elephants, African hunting dogs, waterbuck, herds of buffaloes, kudu, lions and leopards.

The camp consists of 5 tents with en suite bathrooms, toilets and open air bush showers. The camp gives the term ‘glamping’ new meaning through its attention to detail, the 12-volt lighting and the charging stations for cameras. A well-appointed main tent offers a dining and seating area.
Lake Kariba
This beautiful and comfortable Lodge is located on the hill with great views of Lake Cariba. The rooms have private bathroom and lake views. WiFi is available in the Lodge. Batteries can be recharged in your room.

Photo Guide

Take pictures like a pro with James Gifford
James Gifford takes responsibility for leading this scheduled photo tour, or if he is unwell/unavailable, another guide from our team will take over.

James Gifford
Always an avid traveller, it was the continent of Africa and its wildlife that first captivated me from an early age, beckoning repeatedly until it could eventually be called home. Combining much enthusiasm and a smattering of technical knowledge, I eventually managed to ditch the London life and settled into what is a photographer's dream location in Africa.

I now spend much of my time in the bush, either photographing wildlife for editorial features, running specialist photographic safaris or shooting stills and videos for safari lodges for their marketing campaigns.

Like any wildlife photographer worth their salt, I would like to hope that in some small way my work makes a difference in highlighting the diminishing availability of the planet’s wildlife, whilst also illustrating the fact that raw beauty and true wilderness locations do still exist, if you look hard enough. It is not too late.

learn more about James

We talked to James about his passion for photography: read more here
Who is this photo safari suitable for?
This trip is perfect for both beginners and advanced photographers. Our photography guide, James, will be supported by another Amazing Views photography guide, so that we can provide assistance in both English and German. The small group sizes give the photography guides leeway to attend to the various needs of beginners and advanced photographers. You will be on the trail with like-minded people who love photography and the great outdoors, as well as want to expand their knowledge of the art of taking pictures.

This trip will also be a unique experience in nature for partners who do not share your love of photography as they will get the chance to view animals from the safari vehicle, canoes and on foot.

Tour Price

Included in the price
  • Photographic supervision by an English-speaking professional photographer
  • Guided tour in English & German
  • Workshops and discussions on pictures on location
  • Transfers from/to Victoria Falls airport
  • All transfers to the camps
  • 1-night overnight stay in the legendary Victoria Falls Hotel
  • 9 overnight stays in exclusive lodges and safari camps in the national parks and by the Lake Kariba
  • All meals starting from dinner on the first day to breakfast on the day of departure
  • Sunset cruise on the Zambezi
  • Entry fee to the Victoria Falls rainforest
  • Exclusive use of the safari vehicles
  • National park fees
  • Local drinks in the safari camps/lodges
  • 2 game drives/activities per day
  • Laundry service in the lodges
Not included in the price
  • Journey to and from Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
  • Personal expenses
  • Any lunch/snacks or drinks at Victoria Falls
  • Premium and imported drinks
  • Optional transfers and excursions
  • Tips/gratuities
  • Any visa application fees
  • Travel insurance/cancellation cover
  • Any airport fees

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  • A very impressive and well organised photography holiday. Fantastic accommodation with excellent food, extremely friendly/gracious people and new wildlife discoveries on every drive which enabled me to make excellent progress with my photography skills. The support from James (whether it be the basics, tips and tricks and ideas for good shots ‘the shot you actually want to take here ...’) resulted in perceptible progress and a sense of achievement on a daily basis. (There is actually no quicker way to improve your photography than this type of trip with a local expert).

    Ralf, photo tour Untouched Africa 2016
  • The trip was very well organized, and the accommodations were great. The guidance of James Gifford was again very good. He knows how to give good tips in a pleasant way and makes every effort to ensure that everyone in the group gets his money's worth. The bushwalks were a new but sensational experience for me. Being able to get close to a bull elephant at about 2 m and take pictures will probably leave me with a lifelong impression. Many thanks to James and Amazing Views for this exciting trip!

    Sue; photo tour Untouched Africa 2018
  • I very much enjoyed the photo tour Untouched Africa. It was well organized and excellently guided by James Gifford. The Victoria Falls are impressive and the biodiversity in Hwange and Mana Pools large. A highlight was a short bushwalk in Mana Pools, which allowed to photograph a passing bull elephant from two meters distance! Thanks a lot to James and Amazing Views for this great trip!

    Urs, Photo Tour Untouched Africa 2018

Good to know
  • Every guest is guaranteed a ‘window seat’ in the safari vehicles throughout the trip.
  • You will regularly have the opportunity to charge batteries or devices during the trip.
  • The luggage weight limit for our photo tours is 30 kg per person, including hand baggage and camera equipment, which is high for the sort of small planes used for our flights (The normal limit is 20 kg). Baggage may only be in the form of soft sports bags or duffel bags.
  • The trip is not particularly physically demanding. You will only go on easy to moderate walks during our walking safaris.
  • As you may be aware, your accommodation is often in national parks, which are quite far away from civilisation.
  • We recommend taking malaria tablets and getting the usual vaccinations when travelling to Zimbabwe. Please consult with a doctor specialising in tropical medicine, or your GP.
  • We strongly advise you to purchase insurance for cancellation and return journey costs, which will be needed in the event of a secluded region being evacuated, a local hospital stay or return travel costs to your home country in an emergency.
*) strictly limited, availability must be checked
We reserve the right to change prices (especially due to exchange rate fluctuations)

Terms & Conditions
The Terms and Conditions of Amazing Views & Adventure Tours apply, as well as all other conditions which are listed in the descriptions for the respective trips.