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Sandy Wood talks to Tamara LePine-Williams on Classic FM about some fantastic safari and activity ideas in East Africa.
Listen to the podcast here
Meet Wendy, a seasoned professional diving headfirst into the world of travel. Her diverse career path shows she’s a pro at switching gears, bringing a fresh perspective to understanding what our clients need and helping our team deliver top-notch service.When she’s not at work, Wendy’s all about the simple joys. She loves being outdoors, hiking, and spending time with her kids, grandkids, and close friends.Wendy’s zest for new experiences, whether in her career or personal life, perfectly aligns with our team’s spirit. We’re all about embracing change and delivering unmatched service and support to our clients!
Wendy’s Favourite Place: HermanusTop Travel Tip: Never be late and make sure your passport is validWendy Never Travels Without: Your cell phoneHer Favourite Pastime: Walking and spending time with her grandchildren
Meet Lisa de Swardt, Pulse Africa’s Jill-of-all-trades.
Born and raised in Kenya, Lisa has a deep seeded passion for all things African. Pursuing a career in the travel industry seemed an obvious route to follow and now, many years later, Lisa has evolved from consulting to marketing and all things IT.
Lisa’s Favourite Places: The Kenyan coast and Laikipia.Top Travel Tip: Ask the locals where to eat, shop and watch the sunset.Lisa Never Travels Without: Her many kikoisHer Favourite Pastime: Making jewellery
Meet Lisa Seinker, Pulse Africa’s Southern Africa Travel Specialist.
Hailing from the vibrant city of Cape Town, Lisa maintains a deep affection for her hometown. Boasting a career spanning over three decades in the industry, she possesses unparalleled knowledge and expertise in Southern Africa. Lisa’s true passion lies in meticulously crafting unforgettable, bespoke experiences for her clients.
Lisa’s favourite place to visit: Cape Town
Top travel tip: Check your passport well in advance and make sure it has not expired.
Never travel without: Your camera, binoculars and some good books to read.
Favourite pastime: Tennis
WHERE CAN I GO?
Blessed with towering elephants, zebra crossings and enigmatic landscapes, Botswana is one of the great safari destinations in Africa.
With hauntingly beautiful landscapes supporting an abundance of wildlife, impossibly beautiful weather and the most friendly, welcoming people, Kenya is the quintessential safari destination.
From the moment you arrive in Madagascar, a sense of the unusual envelops you. Explore one of the most biodiverse places in the world as most of what you’ll see here is like nothing you’ve ever seen before.
Nowhere else can you indulge in flaky croissants for breakfast and seafood curry for dinner, or admire pastel-coloured Hindu temples on the road alongside French colonial mansions. With a hypnotic blend of Indian, African and French influences, Mauritius is a gem that enchants all who visit.
Mozambique is no ordinary holiday destination. It uniquely combines not only spectacular beaches, but also impressive colonial architecture and fascinating local culture.
Namibia is a land of incredible contrasts and colours where dry, arid desert meets the roaring Atlantic Ocean.
Prepare to be left in awe as you adventure into mist-shrouded forests and lush tea plantations. Holidays in Rwanda offer a heart-stopping adventure and wonderful wildlife encounters.
When the going gets tough, the tough get going; whilst the rest of us conjure our ideal escape, dreaming of the Seychelles with golden beaches, secluded coves, and tropical coco de mer palms.
From city getaways to safaris and beach holidays, South Africa is a world in one country, accommodating all types of travellers. Fondly known by locals as the 'Rainbow Nation', this is an extraordinary country to which you will want to return again and again.
The name Tanzania conjures up images of wildebeest stampeding across vast savannah, rain forests teeming with monkeys and birdlife, and great plains full of legions of game. All of these natural wonders and more are on offer in this exceptionally diverse African nation.
Uganda is one of the most beautiful countries in Africa. With its dense misty forests, snow-peaked mountains, glassy lakes and sprawling savannas, it’s no wonder this beautiful country is dubbed the Pearl of Africa.
A holiday in Zambia bursts with adventure and natural beauty. From awe-inspiring walking safaris and exhilarating white-water rafting, to seeing one of the world’s largest waterfalls, there are very few places left in the world where such wild experiences are still possible.
The archipelago of Zanzibar comprises several islands in the Indian Ocean that bead their way down the shores of East Africa, just off the coast of Tanzania. This group of islands, surrounded by beaches that rate among the world’s most beautiful, will allow you to discover peace and serenity unlike anything you've ever experienced.
Bungee jump over Victoria Falls, white water raft down the Zambezi River, canoe beside fish eagles swooping over Lake Kariba or soak up the magic of the bush in Hwange National Park. A safari holiday in Zimbabwe piques all the senses.
Meet Bronwen, Pulse Africa’s Eastern and Southern Africa Travel Expert.
Bronwen has travelled extensively around the countries that she sells and has developed a special love for each of them.
She loves nothing more than sharing her passion for these countries with her clients.
Bronwen’s Favourite Place:Old Mdonya River Camp, Ruaha National ParkiTop Travel Tip: always smile and be nice.Bronwen’s Never Travels Without: A good book and her cameraHer Favourite Pastime:waking up before everyone else and enjoying a strong coffee whilst listening to the birds chatter
Meet Vanessa, Pulse Africa’s Southern Africa Travel Specialist.
Vanessa was born and raised in the Mpumalanga Lowveld, which is one of her favourite places in South Africa. She spent her entire 20’s travelling the globe and in her thirties, she settled down and started working in the travel industry, which she’s been doing for the last 15 years.
Vanessa’s passion is travel and her favourite book is an atlas! She is raising a beautiful little girl and they live – together with their 3 dogs – in Johannesburg.
Vanessa’s favourite place: Prague
Top travel tip: Immerse yourself in the culture of the country you’re travelling in.
Vanessa never travels without: a good book, a diary and an open mind.
Her favourite pastime: writing, reading, gardening, cooking.
Having stepped away from the travel industry for a few years, Kath Robins is returning to her passion. As an avid traveller with a now empty nest, Kath is looking forward to sharing and experiencing the destination expertise offered by Pulse Africa.
Favourite Place(s) :Seychelles and Yorkshire
Top Travel Tip :Expect the unexpected
Never Travel Without :A sense of humour and wonder, a camera
Favourite Pastime :Painting and reading
Bronwen’s Favourite Place: Old Mdonya River Camp, Ruaha National ParkTop Travel Tip: Always smile and be niceBronwen Never Travels Without: A good book and her cameraHer Favourite Pastime: Waking up before everyone else and enjoying a strong coffee whilst listening to the birds chatter
• Watch a large breeding herd of elephants walk across a dry lake in Amboseli• Canoe on the Zambezi River in Lower Zambezi NP where I got very close to the largest crocodile I have ever seen• Trek gorillas in Uganda, nothing ever prepares you for that moment seeing them up close• White water rafting in Victoria falls• Watch a herd of elephants dig for water in a dry river bed in Ruaha National Park• Walking on foot in the Selous and being followed by an elephant who stopped to smell everything we touched• Walking Safari in Hwange National Park and getting close to an elephant …safe distance, excellent guide very thrilling and educational• Camel trekking and camping under the stars from Sabuk• Watching the sunset from a house boat on Chobe River listening to hippo and fish eagles (with a cold beer in hand – you might not want to add that part)• Snorkeling off a dhow in the bay in Mafia• Bird watching in Lake Manyara National Park from Wayo Camp
• Spend time in Katavi National Park for remoteness and large herds• Walking in Kafue National Park• Self drive and camping in the Kgakagadi Transfrontier Park• Night desert walk in Swakopmund• Orange River Canoe trip• Camp in the Central Kalahari• Visit and camp in Namaqualand in Spring• Camp in the desert in Morocco under the stars• Spend a night in a tree house in Hwange National Park and sleep under the stars
Meet Leandra Hanger, Pulse Africa’s Supplier and Rates Guru.
Leandra is our product and rates guru and coffee connoisseur. Her organisational skills are second to none and subsequently we have a highly sophisticated product information system. Not only does she negotiate some fabulous rates for our clients, but she ensures that the consultants are always up to date with the latest product training.
Leandra’s Favourite Place: South AfricaTop Travel Tip: Always trust to travel expert at Pulse Africa, and research your destination…this will prepare you to be blown away!Leandra Never Travels Without: Passport, travel insurance, camera and bottled up excitement!Her Favourite Pastime: Spending time with my family and sharing special memories with family and friend….over coffee!
Meet Nancy Wood, Pulse Africa’s Marketing Guru and Africa Travel Specialist.
Our resident Canadian, Nancy Wood came to Johannesburg in 2001 for a 3-year posting … and never left! She has travelled extensively on the continent and offers a foreign perspective in planning African travel for her clients.
Nancy’s Favourite Place: Sabi SandsTop Travel Tip: When deciding what to pack: Take half the clothes and twice the money!Nancy Never Travels Without: A patient attitude- it goes a long wayHer Favourite Pastime: Dancing and tennis. Not at the same time
Meet Lia Tynan, Pulse Africa’s Financial Manager.
Lia is our feisty, Greek financial manager. She works with our numbers all day, every day and ensures that every cent is where it should be. Her sense of humour keeps us all smiling.
Lia’s Favourite Place: San FranciscoTop Travel Tip: Pack lightLia Never Travels Without: A face towelHer Favourite Pastime: Shopping and reading a good crime novel
Meet Melanie Lowe, Pulse Africa’s Southern Africa and Indian Ocean Island Travel Specialist.
Melanie Lowe has been an enthusiastic traveller from a young age exploring a vast array of countries across the world and many throughout Africa. Melanie has an extreme passion for the African bush and is excited to share her experiences with her clients.
Melanie’s Favourite Place: Kruger National Park and MozambiqueTop Travel Tip: Never miss the opportunity to experience new adventures and local experiencesMelanie Never Travels Without: A good book and her cameraHer Favourite Pastime: Horse riding
Meet Sandi Elkington, Pulse Africa’s East Africa Travel Specialist.
Sandi Elkington has a passion and reverence for her work like no other. She is in charge of the East-African destinations, including Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda and the spice island of Zanzibar. Sandi has a genuine love for her job and Africa and brings this passion to the forefront in planning safaris for her clients.
.Sandi’s Favourite Place: Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, KenyaTop Travel Tip: Take a smile, good manners and general common sense. Learn a few local words before you travel. Oh, and tip your shoes upside down before putting them on in the mornings!Sandi Never Travels Without: Her passion for adventure and funHer Favourite Pastime: Swimming
Meet Nicci Lenferna, Pulse Africa’s Director & Group Travel Specialist.
Nicci Lenferna was the first to join Pulse Africa with Sandy Wood. Her attention to detail and lively attitude have earned her a reputation for major group event planning and coordination. Nicci plans small, medium and large scale private and corporate group trips around the world, all year long, each one boasting a unique success.
Nicci’s Favourite Place: MadagascarTop Travel Tip: Visit fewer places for longer periods of timeNicci Never Travels Without: A kikoiHer Favourite Pastime: Exploring new destinations
Meet Sandy Wood, Pulse Africa’s Managing Director.
Kenyan-born Sandy Wood has been at the helm of Pulse Africa since she started the business in 1991. Her expertise spans across all regions that Pulse Africa offers as destinations and she is constantly pushing these borders, exploring new regions and countries to offer her clients.
Sandy’s Favourite Place: Laikipia, KenyaTop Travel Tip: Research the country you are visiting before departureSandy Never Travels Without: A sense of humourHer Favourite Pastime: Entertaining friends at home
Meet Natasha Jericevich, Pulse Africa’s Southern Africa Travel Specialist.
Natasha Jericevich has been an avid traveller her entire life. Encouraged to do so from a young age by her father, she set out exploring different regions of the world before settling into African tourism. Sincere and imaginative, Natasha is able to empathise with her clients, creating dream safaris they will never forget.
Natasha’s Favourite Places: Okavango Delta, Botswana & SeychellesTop Travel Tip: Take the opportunity to experience new thingsNatasha Never Travels Without: Her Nikon cameraHer Favourite Pastime: Photographing new places
• Trekked with the gorillas in Rwanda• Joined a walking safari in Mana Pools, Zimbabwe• Swam in Devil’s Pool in Livingstone, Zambia• Gone on safari in the Serengeti & Ngorongoro Crater• Cycled in Lake Manyara National Park• Island hopped in the Seychelles, visiting Mahe, Praslin, La Digue, Fregate & North Island• Ticked off numerous safaris to Botswana. Some of the highlights included mokoro trips in the Okavango Delta, helicopter flips over the Linyanti Reserve, quad biking and having a meerkat interaction in the Magkadikgadi Salt Pans• Visited Dead Vlei & Damaraland in Namibia• Explored Mozambique, including historical sites such as Ibo Island and Ilha de Mozambique, island hopping from Benguerra Island, Bazaruto Island, Medjumbe Island, Matemo Island and Quilalea Island, and a safari in Gorongosa National Park• Gone paragliding in Mauritius
• Visit Antarctica• Visit Argentina & Chile• Visit Venice & Rome
WHAT CAN I DO?
The palm-lined, white-powdery beaches of Africa are those that dreams are made of. Whether you’re looking for the perfect island holiday, or an adventure-packed water sports paradise, there is a spot for you on the continent.
East Africa is where safaris were born and the rest of Africa is where they have grown-up. Whether you are keen on day or night safaris, walking safaris, specialised photographic or ornithological safaris, there is definitely a safari to suit you.
A trip to Africa is, more often than not, planned around animals. Be it the Big 5, the great migration, gorillas or lemurs, there is no question that the animals take centre stage.
Second possibly only to the animals, the landscapes in Africa are to be marvelled at. From jungles to deserts, mountains to oceans and the wide open savannas of East Africa, the enormity of these landscapes will leave you speechless.
Africa is not short of adventure, in fact it is the ultimate adventurers’ playground. Whether you’re looking for water adventures, animal adventures or adrenaline pumping adventures, you’ll find something to thrill you in Africa.
There is no shortage in Africa of world-class spas, golf courses or yoga retreats. If you’re looking for a wellness holiday, then we have a place for you.
South Africa is a country that lends itself to long, fascinating road trips. The landscapes are breath-taking and the routes full of interesting little stops. If you’re looking for a self-drive adventure, then this would be the place to do it.
There is no shortage of art nor culture in Africa. With over 3,000 tribes spread across 53 countries there is so much to see, learn and experience.
Arts & Culture
The history of Africa is certainly colourful. It begins with Ancient Egypt then the discovery of hominids in East Africa and continues with slavery, tribal wars, colonialization, and political unrest. The continent is a patchwork quilt of stories and legends like no other.