This tour was organised in conjunction with ‘The Save African Rhino Foundation’ in Perth, to help raise funds towards the conservation of these magnificent animals which are now in danger of becoming extinct.
The groups first stop was Musango Safari Camp on the shores of Lake Kariba in Zimbabwe, where the incredibly beautiful surroundings offered an abundance of wild life, birds and picturesque scenery.
Each day was an adventure of sights and sounds. The group also visited a local BaTonga fishing village and were transported there in a catamaran. We were given a guided tour by the village chairman. The people of this village lead a subsistent lifestyle yet seem so happy. The children delighted at having their photos taken, each vying for a position in front of the camera. This visit was a very humbling experience and we were all deeply touched.
The next stop was the Victoria Falls Safari Lodge where the group were able to view elephants, kudu, warthog, and buffalo plus many more species, coming and going at the lodges very own waterhole.
The mighty Victoria Falls cascaded into the gorge below creating a misty froth and some of the artists took this opportunity to rest on a fallen log to make a quick sketch.
The group then set off to visit the Hwange National Park and were lucky to make a quick stop at the Painted Dog Conservancy, where great efforts are being made to save these animals which are now also in danger of becoming extinct.
Staying at the luxury tented Safari camp called ‘The Hide’ proved a great success and even the sounds of a roaring lion could be heard in the early hours of the morning!
The last stop was the Amalinda lodge in the region of the Mtopos National Park. Nestled up against the granite rock, the thatched roof building blended perfectly into the surroundings. The ethnic and unique decor reminiscent of ‘Fred Flintsones’ abode, delighted all!
One of the many highlights of the Safari was a guided walk accompanied by two armed guards to see the white rhino. Only when you get up close to these animals do you realise their sheer bulk and power. It was a truly stirring experience for all. To know that these animals are being wiped out at an alarming rate seems so senseless, when the horns are of no medicinal value at all. How can man be so greedy and stupid?
This was a trip of a lifetime and the tour raised $6,000 donated to the ‘Save African Rhino Foundation,’ Perth, Western Australia, which over the last 20 years have made an incredible effort towards conservation.
Due to the success of this tour, I have once again offered to donate my time in the effort to help save these majestic animals. “I don’t want to get to the end of my life and know that I didn’t try to make a difference”, “I hope that my grandchildren and the generations to come will have the privilege of seeing these animals safely roaming free in their natural habitat.”
I personally took over 6,000 photos and now have an abundance of reference material for my painting. Needless to say everyone on tour clicked away furiously and have memories and references in abundance.
This tour is suitable for artists, photographers and sightseers so everyone is welcome!
If you wish to join me on my 2014 Safari and help to stop wildlife crime, please contact me to book a spot asap as places are limited – email: email@example.com