If you’ve been on more than one long-haul vacation, you know there’s travel, and then there’s Travel. That capital ‘T’ comes from being comfortable and at ease throughout your journey. It means exploring at your own pace with all the benefits of insider expertise and smooth logistics.
We love creating once-in-a-lifetime journeys. What these unforgettable vacations have in common is luxury that is worth paying for – not the number of stars in your hotel rating but how much of your daily schedule is under your control and planned around your tastes and interests.
A private tailored African safari vacation is highly recommended for families and small groups, especially if they value having a high degree of control over meals, the comfort of private facilities wherever they stay and a flexible daily schedule.
This is our expert selection of Africa’s best private travel experiences.
Best Private African Safari Residences & Villas
Different travellers enjoy different levels of privacy and Africa’s best private residences range from totally private, stand-alone villas to independent abodes adjoining a larger resort or safari lodges. The level of luxury ranges from standard hotel service to personalized menus created by your own chef and activities customized for you by a dedicated guide.
In Kenya, Nyati House is ideal for families or small groups and set in the spectacular Mara North Conservancy bordering the Masai Mara. Africa Safari Expert Lauren Johansson says, ‘Nyati house is absolutely perfect for small groups travelling together. I love the exclusive location and personal service.’
In Tanzania, Singita Serengeti House is set in the Serengeti's private Grumeti Reserve. Expect signature Singita luxury with some of Africa’s best game viewing in the backyard - this is an ideal private retreat from which to experience the Wildebeest Migration.
In Zamibia, Sanctuary Chuma House (named after one of David Livingstone's travelling companions) is set on the banks of the Zambezi River just nine kilometres (six miles) upstream from Africa’s adventure capital, Victoria Falls with privately guided game viewing in Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park.
In South Africa, Royal Malewane Africa House offers a super-stylish, private base from which to explore the famous Kruger National Park. A superb setting for the best game viewing in South Africa, Royal Malewane combines beautifully with Cape Town and the Victoria Falls.
In Botswana, Zarafa Dhow Suites overlook the shores of Zibadianja Lagoon in the private Selinda Reserve. Tracy Payne, Africa Safari Expert, calls it ‘a great option for small groups wanting complete exclusivity in one of the best game viewing areas in Botswana.’
In Zimbabwe, opt for a truly unique private experience - cruising the shores of Lake Kariba in your very own exclusive houseboat. The Matusadona Lake Luxury Cruiser accommodates up to six guests and comes with a private chef, a game-viewing pontoon and speedboat, and an on-board Jacuzzi.
African’s Best Private Beachfront & Island Residences & Villas
One of the most valuable benefits of a private vacation residence is the generous flexibility it allows. You don’t need to follow the timetable of a resort or hotel, or fit in with scheduled activities, or share your swimming pool with strangers. Private travel in Africa means each day unfolds as you want it to – wake up when you wish, eat when it suits you best, set off on an excursion that’s tailor-made for you, or simply relax without wondering if you’re missing out on anything.
In Mozambique, Vamizi Villas, like Suluwilo, are a handful of private, eco-friendly residences adjacent to the only lodge on pristine Vamizi Island, set in the indigenous forest your neighbours are resident turtles, 112 bird species and samango monkeys.
In Seychelles, the Four Seasons Resort is on a lush peninsula on Mahé and offers private, treetop villas set on a lush hillside looking out over the balmy blue waters of the Indian Ocean. Specialist product manager Liesel van Zyl says: ‘This is very special hideaway boasts unbelievable natural beauty and a pristine beach straight off a postcard!’
In Zanzibar, Dar House is a secluded and private beachside villa comes with a dedicated chef and household staff, who take excellent care of you from preparing surf-fresh seafood to organising excursions around the island. As Africa Safari Expert Maureen Stover says: ‘If you want to be treated like royalty who lives on an idyllic beach, this is the villa for you!’
Private Rewards: Africa Most Exclusive Travel Experiences
Nothing opens up the very best of a destination quite like exploring with a private guide at your own pace. Our private tailored journeys feature a private guide and vehicle in each location or an independent expert guide who accompanies you throughout your safari. Where possible we make your transfers completely private – by road, air or boat.
Most importantly, we believe in finding out what really interests you and tailoring your activities around that – for example, going beyond a Cape Winelands tour to exploring a selection of vineyards that specialise in your favourite varietal. It's about going beyond taking photos on a game drive to game drives in a purpose-built vehicle with a professional wildlife photographer coaching you to capture the winning shot.
How you travel determines what you experience
Why go private? Because it’s the best way to get the most out of your once-in-a-lifetime safari vacation. Talk to a safari expert about the places and attractions you really want to see. She'll create a custom itinerary based your dates and preferences, and when she makes recommendations, she'll take into account factors like travelling with children or grandparents, or celebrating a special anniversary.
Her expert service doesn’t cost you anything extra – it’s the value you get when you book through a quality travel company like Go2Africa. Whether you choose to go private or not, we'll make sure you get the best value for your time and money.