Accessible Safari in South Africa

11.20.2016
Content via Disability Horizons
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Disability Horizons

“On first glance it would be reasonable to think that more adventurous travel such as an African safari would be out of reach for a person with my level of disability.”

Srin is an avid world traveler and wheelchair user. But when Srin discovered a company called Endeavour Safaris that provides safari experiences to people with disabilities, he booked his adventure and jumped on a plane to South Africa.

Upon his arrival, Srin and his group were met by their guide who took them to a nearby hotel. “The next day we traveled by road in a wheelchair accessible van that we were to use for the entire tour across spectacular countryside to a guest house near a town called Sabie that was about 40km from the entrance to the Kruger National Park,” says Srin.

The family who owned the property placed ramps around the grounds so guests who use wheelchairs could get around with minimal complications. Srin stayed at the guest house for a couple days and was able to explore such sights as the Blyde River Canyon, God’s Window, Lisbon Falls and Bourke’s Luck Potholes.

 

a leopard

The next day, Srin began his safari experience at Kruger National Park. “In the Kruger, each day we would go on two driving tours lasting three hours each at 5am and 3pm. Yes, 5am in the morning!” shares Srin. He stayed in a camp that had wheelchair accessible rooms and a roll in shower.

Mike Hill, founder of Endeavour Safaris, says he started his company in order to provide people living with disabilities the chance to experience some of the wildest parts of Southern Africa. He says that many people thought he was crazy. But he’s proved those people wrong by doing just what he set out to do.

“When Endeavour Safaris was started, we invested much money into vehicles and lifts and wheelchair lock down systems, which meant we had achieved transport. In essence we could travel anywhere there was a road,” shares Mike. He also gives some insight into the unique accessible accommodations his company provides: “We designed our own large and specially adapted tents with en-suite bathroom, to give us freedom to travel into wild areas within the national parks where no accessible accommodation exists.”

With the help of Endeavour Safaris, Srin got to experience lions, leopards, buffalos, elephants, and rhinos up close, not to mention take in the awe-inspiring landscape. “Seeing these animals in the flesh and sometimes within metres of our van was simply breath-taking,” he shares.

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