Our gift to you this year is a little different….an “immersion” into the summer bushveld to bring you closer to the magic of the wilderness.


(Best viewed at full volume)

 

2013 was an extraordinary year for Londolozi! 

 

Busy camps, many returning friends and great guest responses have been the hallmark of 2013.
Chris Kane-Berman and his remarkable operations team continue to deliver daily Londolozi magic and, although it has been our busiest year ever, the Londolozi family has responded to the challenges of ensuring that our guests enjoy fully their time with us and leave wishing to return.

We have had the great honour this past year of hosting a multitude of honeymooner couples, some milestone wedding anniversaries, and a variety of annual multi-generational family pilgrimages to Londolozi. In one case, a family spanning four generations from 80 years old to 8 years old spent a week together in Pioneer Camp which they called their “Home in Africa”.

We also honour our Ambassadors who return year on year and in some cases have been guests of Londolozi for over four decades. May these moments of magic continue into 2014 and beyond.

The exceptional wildlife viewing continues as nature, our enduring partner, delivers endless unusual and unexpected experiences.

Increasing interest is being shown by our past and our future arriving guests, who are now regularly (daily) making use of the Londolozi Blog to keep track of the births, deaths, dramas and sweet moments that is the Londolozi wildlife experience. During 2013 we have marvelled at the fun and enjoyment that we are now having as we interact daily with the global Londolozi tribe. African campfire storytelling is rebirthing as the online digital era explodes.

At Londolozi we have responded to this growing trend by offering our guests an interactive “in studio” photographic experience in which guests and rangers report on the day’s events and critique pictures taken. Hours are spent in dialogue as pictures are touched up, final edits discussed and large canvasses printed, which record the guests memories of time spent close to the animals in 6 million acres of wild wilderness.

We have also made available in the Studio a comprehensive range of superb photographic equipment which guests can hire, thereby saving them the need to carry bulky equipment across the world. The response has been amazing, particularly with our returning guests who are making use of this convenience. The studio at Londolozi also offers, to past and future arriving guests, sneak previews into life at Londolozi, with a range of over 7 new e-books already available in the Londolozi e-library. These books are hugely interactive, extremely informative and very entertaining.

Boyd Varty recently completed his manuscript entitled Cathedral of the Wild – an African Journey Home”.  This book will be released in the USA in March next year.  Boyd also finished off the year in early December when he spoke at TED Women in San Francisco on the subject of Ubuntu. His presentation started 30 minutes after the passing of our beloved Madiba and so Boyd was able to use this auspicious occasion to honour and dedicate his presentation to our great former President who embodied all that is Ubuntu as an example to the world for a more inclusive, gentler approach.

Kate Groch, CEO of the Good Work Foundation (GWF), also spoke earlier this year at a TED conference in Edinburgh. Her subject was “rural education closing the digital divide”, which informed some of the great strides we are making in promoting, within the Londolozi family, the notion of continuous learning as a core value.

It is, therefore, with great pride that we can reflect and celebrate the graduation of 60 learners from within the Londolozi family over the past year, all of whom have applied themselves over and above their full time employment by registering for a variety of online courses at our digital learning centres. We salute each and every one of these graduates who have made the choice to advance their own education. This trend grows ever stronger as young South Africans embrace their future in recognizing that it’s cool to be educated and increasingly we are seeing the next generation take charge of their destiny and becoming digitally literate.

In the same vein we are delighted to celebrate this year’s Christmas with over 1000 learners regularly attending various courses at the Hazyview Digital Learning Centre and its satellite affiliates. GWF has formed a close alliance with Stanford University and together they are developing the “classroom in the cloud” concept. Good Work Foundation is certainly delivering on its promise of providing access to world-class education for rural South Africans.

We salute also the Tracker Academy which, during 2013, recorded 16 more graduates, all of whom have gone on to secure full time employment in the safari industry. During the year, two of the Tracker Academy graduates excelled themselves when they travelled to the Pantanal in Brazil and assisted the owner of the Caiman Ecological Refuge to track and habituate wild, free ranging jaguars. Caiman is the first privately owned jaguar sanctuary in Brazil and the visit by these graduates demonstrated the power of education and skills training as a passport to wider horizons of opportunity.

As this wonderful year draws to a close we reflect with sadness and celebration the passing of our icon leader Nelson Mandela and with love and humility we send to our friends and trade partners around the world our heartfelt Christmas greetings.


Looking forward to seeing you at Londolozi in 2014!

Written by: Dave Varty
Filmed & Produced by: Rich Laburn

Filed under Life

About the Author

Dave Varty

Co-Founder/Owner

Dave's story is too full and rich to tell in a brief blog bio. Suffice it to say that it is due to his passion, hard work and lifelong dedication to conservation that Londolozi is what it is today. One of the co-founders ...

View Dave's profile

29 Comments

on Seasons Greetings

Join the conversationJoin the conversation

Sheena
Guest

Congratulations on a wonderful 2013 – your film is stunning, absolutely wonderful. I am sure that each and every person who experiences Londolozi hopes they can return to once again enrich their lives.
You have exceptional staff who all show a generosity of spirit and make each moment in camp a joy. So here’s wishing you, your family, all at Londolozi, and all those who love this blog, a very Merry Christmas and a healthy, happy and prosperous New Year.

Wendy Hawkins
Guest

Thanks Sheena
I cannot agree with you more & wish you Christmas Blessings & a wonderful 2014

Andrew and Judy Smith UK.
Guest

Absolutely sensational video. It leaves one gasping!!
See you again early May.

Ryan James
Guest

What a video. That’s why I love the bush!

Alexa MacNaughton
Guest

Hectic at work and suddenly a peace and calm and restoration after watching your video. DEEP PEACE
indeed. Wish the giraff’s would not battle for supremacy. God bless the animals and thank you to the
“Three Wise Men” at the end for a very strong and encouraging message!

Dan Harlacher
Guest

Dear Team Londolozi,
Thank you for sharing with your extended family.
Adele and I will be back in May. A Happy and Healthy 2014 to you all.
TO THE BUSH!!! Dan

Sandy Tietjen
Guest

Wonderful video capturing real animal life in Africa.

Susan Nethery
Guest

Oh, be still my heart!!!

Elizabeth D. Evans
Guest

Brought back so many beautiful memories I was so blessed to experience at Londolozi. The Staff, Nikki, trackers Norman and Alfred who guided us through our amazing journey through your beautiful country will forever live in my heart and soul. I will always be eternally grateful for your gracious hospitality!!!

mike
Guest

awesome video

Rae
Guest

Incredible video! Thank you and Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to the Londolozi family.

Suzan Zoukis
Guest

This is wonderful…makes me check my ‘days until’ app to see how soon we’ll be back there…wishing everyone the peace of Christmas and the anticipation of a New Year.

Russell & Anne Skerman
Guest

Our stay at Founders was our first . A truly wonderful experience from the first minute of our arrival to the farewell by Tammy and Phil. Our guide , James , and tracker , Mike , could not have been better . A holiday we will never forget. Our house is adorned with spectacular photos which are admired by everyone. Thank you .

Jill Grady
Guest

What a beautiful video. It transported me back to Londolozi — the most beautiful, peaceful place on Earth. Thank you for such a wonderful gift! I wish everyone at Londolozi peace, happiness and good health in 2014. I will keep you all in my heart and hope to see you very soon once again.

Carol and Larry Ryder
Guest

What a perfect way to countdown to Christmas, we left for South Africa last December 26 so we have come full circle in what was an amazing and tumultuous year . The beauty of Londolozzi remains in our hearts and Africa will always stir our souls. We regularly check in and view updates. Your amazingly video makes us want to return in the future. We recently met our safari friends from Finland in Amsterdam for dinner and reminisced as they were coming back to Londolozzi.
Best wishes for a wonderful Christmas Season and a Happy and Prosperous New Year in 2014.
Carol and Larry Ryder
Calgary Alberta Canada

TED SWINDON
Guest

HI DAVE,
THANKS FOR THE VIDEO AND YOUR GOOD WISHES.
I TOO WISH TO THANK YOU ALL FOR THE WODERFULL MEMORIES I HAVE HAD FROM MY VISITS TO LONDOLOZI.
I WOULD LIKE TO EXTEND TO YOU ALL A VERY BLESSED CHRISTMAS AND A PROSPEROUS 2014.
KIND REGARDS.
TED.

John Holley
Guest

Rich that Immersion is the greatest video you have produced thus far!

Incredible footage and audio!

Rich Laburn

Thanks John, pleased you enjoyed it 🙂 – Have a happy festive season and even better 2014!

Pia Zen
Guest

Beautiful video, thank you….we want to come back soon!

Anna
Guest

Thank you Rich for this amazing video, you have captured the exact magic of the place where i am so fortunate to work.
Thank you Dave & Shan for this great year and i look forward to an even more magical 2014!

Wendy Hawkins
Guest

Thank you to the entire Londolozi Team for making my year such a special one! to Richard for this beautiful video, the sounds of the wild is something no human can match, so long may they last & not be killed by the greedy monsters!

I wish you ALL a Blessed Christmas & a wonderful 2014. Look forward to the many postings you send us homebodies. THANK YOU ALL

JO LYNNE JONES
Guest

James,
Beautiful job. The transitions are lovely and the sound perfect! Brilliant idea to have the bush as the sound track.
Thank you for all your work at giving us the feeling we are but just a click away from Londolozi!
Jo Lynne and Fred

Frank & Charlotte Tueckmantel
Guest

Thanks for sharing this wonderful video with us. Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a great New Year is what we wish our friends at Londolozi. It was wonderful to be back last September and we can’t wait to start planning our next trip. All our best, Frank & Charlotte

Carol Robinson
Guest

Thank you for such a special message. I just love the video and especially the winking leopard! I love it all – you are so clever!

Malcolm Stewart
Guest

Dave
Dave
We visited Londolozi for a once in life time holiday for our 25th wedding anniversary this year only to find paradise on earth. As soon as we left we started saving for our return. What you do there can’t be put into words but it’s just magic of the best kind and if put into star rating would be 6 or 7 at least. See you in February
Malcolm and Laura Stewart

Trevor Patrick
Guest

Seasons Greetings Team Londos! Thinking of you all. Best wishes for a wonderful 2014.
Trevor and Colleen.

Jenifer Westphal
Guest

What a stunning video and beautiful Christmas message! I will never forget our first trip back in 2007 when our family was stung by the “Londolozi Magic” and look forward to returning for a 4th time to my “African home” again this year! I feel honored to be part of your blog tribe – and deeply grateful that I can stay so connected to your incredible part of the world. The entire Westphal family wishes you all a peaceful holiday season, and a happy and healthy New Year! See you soon!

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