MalaMala Lions & Leopards Photographic Safari | South Africa | 2022
US$ TBC Sharing
US$ TBC Single
US$ 3,000 Deposit
LOCATION: South Africa
PLACES VISITED: Jock Safari Lodge / Kruger National Park / Mala Mala Private Game Reserve
SKILL LEVEL: Any level from beginner to advanced - photo tuition and guidance is offered on this safari
This 13-day photo safari begins in Johannesburg, South Africa, and takes in three of the very best photographic locations that the Kruger area has to offer.
You will fly into Skukuza Airport where you will be met by Stu Porter. With cameras at the ready we head through the park to a private concession area along the Biyamiti River. Here we will check in to Jock Safari Lodge and head out with their guide on our first afternoon game drive.
The attraction of this private concession is that we will have access to a private area of Kruger as well as the regular tourist roads, this offers the best of both worlds. Southern Kruger is well know for African Wilddog, Lion and leopard.
After 3 nights at Jock Safari Lodge, we head north to Satara Camp for 3 nights followed by Lower Sabi Camp for 3 nights, both camps are located inside the Kruger National Park.
Along with a healthy predator population, Kruger consistently produces some of the best opportunities for photographing "general game”—Zebra, Giraffe, Wildebeest, Impala, Kudu, Elephant, Hippo, White Rhino, and Crocodiles. It also has a fantastic variety of birds. Photographing the great variety of "general game" and exploring this vast untouched wilderness will be the focus of our stay while in Kruger.
Our final destination is the Mala Mala Private Game Reserve. This is the oldest private game reserve in South Africa, and the place where numerous award-winning National Geographic wildlife documentaries have been filmed, such as "Beauty and the Beast", “Predators at War", and "Tjololo the Leopard".
Here our focus changes, as we aim to track down and spend quality time with the reserve's wild Lions and Leopards. This is one of the best places in the world to see these cats and offers unrivalled photographic opportunities. At Mala Mala, we will also have the opportunity to go in search of the predators at night. All of the skills of night photography and how to capture the nocturnal world will be explained by Stu, offering a different set of experiences and photo opportunities.
You will fly from Skukuza Airport to Johannesburg, where the tour will end.
This is our most exclusive small-group photo safari with a maximum of 3 participants in 1 private vehicle. There is plenty of space for equipment and guaranteed access to both sides of the safari vehicle.
Stu will lead the tour and offer photo tuition and guidance.
Being our most exclusive photo safari, each photographer will have the complimentary use of a professional tripod, Wimberley version 2 tripod head, and a Visual Echoes panning plate.
WILD4's specially designed photo bars will attach to the vehicle we use at Mala Mala. These bars offer a very stable shooting platform. (for more information, please see the photos in the "TRANSPORT and LODGING" tab).
Along with an impressive variety of birds, you will also have a good chance to see and photograph the following:
Lion, Leopard, African Wild Dog, Cheetah, Elephant, Cape Buffalo, White Rhino, Hippo, Spotted Hyena, Jackal, Crocodile, Giraffe, Waterbuck, Greater Kudu, Bushbuck, Nyala, Zebra, Wildebeest, Chacma Baboon, Vervet Monkey, and Warthog.
I found Wild4 through an article in Popular Photography magazine about how to choose a photo safari. They were one of five recommended in the article. After checking them all out, I saw that Stu and Wild4 offered the kind of experience that I wanted: 1) Small groups of dedicated photographers 2) Variety in wildlife viewing 3) Tuition on photography and wildlife behavior 4) Good communication and organisation. I can say that Wild4 met and exceeded all expectations on all points (and then some). 1) We used one vehicle for three photographers. Stu is a trained photographer himself, so his goal was always to get us into the best position with the best light. Having only three on the tour meant plenty of room for equipment and the ability to shoot from either side of the vehicle when surrounded by a herd of elephants! It also gave us the flexibility to be patient and wait for the shot. 2) The three places we visited each provided a unique experience and wonderful variety in scenery and wildlife viewing. 3) Stu's tuition was excellent. It was there if we needed it but never pushed. Tips, reminders, anecdotes on wildlife behavior. All given with patience and good humor. 4) From the first email, the communication was timely & clear. Justyna was a joy to work with and handled the back-office part of the tour seamlessly. It can't be as easy as she makes it seem. Wild4 didn't provide the wildlife or the spectacular sunsets that we experienced, but they put us in position to enjoy and capture a little piece of it in our cameras and in our memories. Our Safari was amazing and I would not have changed a thing...well, maybe I would have eaten a little less. If you're looking for a Photo Safari, there is nothing to consider. Just go ahead and contact Wild4 Photographic Safaris. You will not be sorry.
Doug Croft, USA
Kruger North to South 16 days of photo safari gone off like a wink of an eye especially when it was fun and memorable. Like an aciton-packed movie, the opening scene at the Skukuza Airport reception by Wild4 Team : Stefan and Sandrine was delightful and the afternoon game drive was filled with excitements with shots of wildlife encountered as we travelled to our first camp in Satara. The numerous sightings we experienced over the next two weeks were nothing less than thrilling and of course capturing the Big 5 was fulfilling. The teamwork of Stefan and Sandrine was excellent giving the traveling photographers absolutely nothing to worry except to be trigger happy. Each day I shot approximately 1,500 images as each day bought new surprises. As a photographer I used the Sony A9 with the 2x teleconverter on the 100-400mm G Master zoom for distant & fast-moving subjects like eagles' flights, lions, leopards, rhinos and the smaller birds in flights while my Leica SL on a APO Vario Elmarit 90-280mm zoom for intermediate distance subjects like elephants, hippos, zebras, Impalas, Kudus and various animals within close quarters of the vehicle, and finally my Leica Q for the panoramic shots of landscape and daily point and shoot. A memorable trip ending with almost 4 TB of mobile hard disk storage. I will re-live my memories when I sort out the images and I look forward to my next trip with Stu on the Tanzania & Elephants of Amboseli and many other trips with Wild4.
Clifford Yap, Singapore