24 responses

  1. Jimmy Cook
    November 7, 2014

    Phinda lodge feel as if I am a somewhere else. I feel all the natural things but it is self guided.

  2. NZbackpacker
    August 6, 2014

    Just a hint for anyone trying to do safari-ing on the cheap (ish), did a bit of travelling around africa recently on a student budget and SA and Namibia have so many national parks you can self drive and camp. Buy a cooler bin and stock up on food at supermarkets on the way to the parks to save on expensive food costs inside the parks. It’s also super easy to organise yourself. Highly recommend Kruger, it can be very crowded in some parts but it’s so big you can lose yourself easily, and the game viewing is great. While you aren’t as guaranteed to see all the big game compared to a private reserve, there is tons of game and I found it great fun planning what routes to take and spotting things yourself. Heard lots of people thinking you had to go on a tour to see the national parks, so thought I’d put it out there that it can be done by yourself cheaply and easily!

    • Matthew Karsten
      August 30, 2014

      Thanks for the tip!

  3. scottwharton
    February 6, 2014

    So would this be over $2k/night for 4 people? It sounds amazing but wondering how to accomplish this without spending $10-$20k without losing the quality of the experience. Any thoughts?

    • leyla
      February 17, 2014

      Scott, the more i look i am finding other places that are cheaper but you’re going to lose something in the mix. you can go to the Limpopo region (where it is not as established), see the big 5 but not be in such a populated area.

      i’m also looking at kichaka or addo — and finding much less expensive places than Kruger.

  4. Jan T
    December 7, 2013

    Planning a safari with friends sometime soon. Looking at Zulu Nyala and /or Phinda. We were thinking late April/early May but after reading travel guides we are wondering if we should postpone till August. What time of year were these videos shot? Have been told if foliage is too thick in summer, it can be hard to spot wildlife. Your videos are so good I find a renewed sense of excitement over visiting Africa!!

  5. Priscilla
    September 3, 2013

    Great pictures and video! I stumbled onto your site as I was researching for my trip! May I know what equipment did you use for the video?

    • Matthew Karsten
      September 4, 2013

      Glad you enjoyed it Priscilla! I used a GoPro & a Canon 7D for this trip. Rented a 70-300mm lens for the Canon too.

  6. Maria
    September 1, 2013

    Magnificent animals, every second must have been a huge “Wow!” moment
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    • Matthew Karsten
      September 4, 2013

      I had trouble keeping my jaw shut Maria. Africa is wild. Literally.

  7. Nathan @GayTravelHerald
    May 29, 2013

    I came across this article while researching my trip to South Africa next year. I love the story and the photos, it’s definitely inspiration for my upcoming trip. Thanks for sharing.
    Recent Post: Okinawa, Japan in 7 days

  8. Sam D
    May 6, 2013

    Love it! thanks for sharing Matt!
    Africa is my home! (or was – now living in Oz). Wild animals weren’t just in safaris or zoos where I lived – We had family friends who had hyenas as Guard dogs. Fence around the property… hyenas.. fence around the house. Needless to say, they never go broken into..
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  9. Meg B
    December 4, 2012

    Stumbled on your website and found your trip to Phinda. It looks AMAZING. Safari has been on the bucket list for far too long. Guess I better get planning :)

    • Matthew Karsten
      December 5, 2012

      The trip to Phinda blew me away. Big beautiful animals in their natural element. And lots of them.

  10. The Curmudgeon
    April 19, 2012

    Jaw dropping! What’s that? This coming from the great white chipmunk hunter? Great photos, I’ll give you that. What is with the white horses in their PJ’s? Mud wrestling. We have that over here too. The Secret Service has several options on where to go. The king kitty is seen on many old movies just after the credits. I think it has two good eyes.

    • Matthew Karsten
      August 1, 2012

      Hunting the deadly Timber Tiger is a wild experience, but I think safari in South Africa beats it. :D

  11. Red Hunt
    April 14, 2012

    I never get tired of great safari photos and stories…makes me want to return to Africa. Loved the giraffe photo especially…they’re such majestic creatures.
    Recent Post: National Wildlife Week in Canada

    • Matthew Karsten
      August 1, 2012

      The giraffe is one of my favorites too. It’s crazy to look at one up close in the wild! They are majestic, but a bit funny looking too. It was amazing to sometimes only see their heads in the distance, amid a sea of green trees.

  12. Matthew Karsten
    April 14, 2012

    Thanks Brock, definitely one of the coolest things I’ve done. Getting so close to these giant wild animals is a lot of fun.

  13. Brock – Backpack With Brock
    April 11, 2012

    What an amazing experience! Your photos are awesome.
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  14. Melanie@TravelsWithTwo
    April 10, 2012

    Matthew, what a great re-telling of your safari — and such a gorgeous video! (Who performs the wonderful song you used?)

    This all takes me right back to my 2010 safaris with &Beyond in Botswana and Tanzania — they were the most rewarding, exciting, educational trips I’ve ever taken in my life. I’d send any animal lover off into the wilderness with those folks!
    Recent Post: Driving the American West: Jackson Hole & the Grand Tetons

    • Matthew Karsten
      April 10, 2012

      Thanks Melanie! &Beyond certainly know’s how to show people the beauty of Africa in a responsible & rewarding way.

      The song is by Issa Bagayogo. There is an iTunes link to the song on the video’s YouTube page.

  15. John of Travel Rinse Repeat
    April 10, 2012

    Wow this sounds incredible! You have some amazing photos too – I love the one of the one eyed lion.
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    • Matthew Karsten
      April 14, 2012

      He lost his eye fighting with other lions over hunting territory…

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