Southern Africa extensions

What follows are 6 different extensions which dovetail beautifully with your safari, but which are only booked on a 'per request' basis. The thinking behind these extensions is simply to maximize your time in Africa as you would have flown all the way out to Africa from afar. Since you will be here already, it makes sense to stay longer. Each extension also offers totally different and unique photo opportunities. You can book one or more and any combination of the below 6 extensions, each expertly guided by African wildlife photographer Greg du Toit who will be with you every step of the way.

Meerkat Extension

Our most popular to date is the Meerkat Extension: extend your workshop by three nights and head down to the Kalahari desert which is the best place in Africa to photograph the adorable and highly entertaining meerkats. The time of year is also perfect for this and the travel logistics are easy. Just imagine photographing big cats and meerkats all on one safari! This is also the best chance you have of seeing pangolins and aardvarks in Africa and it is not uncommon to see more than 3 aardvarks per extension during the winter months (May-August).

Okavango Delta Extension

The Okavango Delta in Botswana is only a short flight away and it is the undisputed safari destination for connoisseurs. There is simply nowhere else like it and it offers a wild freedom and exclusivity that cannot be matched. Housing the most pristine savannah wilderness in Africa, it is also one of the most beautiful places left on earth. It is the place where the river, desert and sky meet, offering unique and highly exclusive wildlife photo opportunities. If you wanting to escape the crowds, to get deep into the wild heart of Africa, to do some exceptional photography, then the delta is the place for you. There are a number of incredible camps and concessions to combine, and after over a decade of exploring, I am now offering this new and exciting extension.

Please note that the camps in the delta are 3x the cost of other camps in Africa but they offer 100x the exclusivity. Also please note that this is not a marketing ramble, the Okavango really is the last great wilderness in Southern and East Africa and as such we work for our photo opportunities, they do not just present themselves at every turn. Having said this, it is one of the best places in Africa to combine wild dogs with big cat photography.

This is the perfect addition to your safari and the beauty about the Okavango delta is that it is an all year round destination, so this extension can be added at any time. This extension also dovetails perfectly with a Meerkat extension.

Hoanib Skeleton Coast Extension

Just a short flight from Johannesburg is Windhoek, the capital city of Namibia. From there you take a small plane to quite literally another planet, affectionately called ‘The Hoanib’. This is in fact an ancient river that winds its way through the northern reaches of the Namib Desert, before making its entry into the Atlantic Ocean, on the famed Skeleton Coast. The camp we use gives us exclusive use and entry into Skeleton Coast National Park. You will photograph along the river, which being the only water source in the area attracts the desert-adapted wildlife. In fact you will follow the ancient river all the way through the desert and to the coast. This is the only place in Africa where in the same day I have seen a whale and a giraffe! These are no ordinary giraffe though; everything that you will photograph is desert-adapted.

Over the next few days you will explore one of the remotest and otherworldly destinations on the planet. Desert-adapted elephants as well as desert-adapted black rhino will be on our list of animals to photograph. The elusive brown hyena is an ever-present possibility and you will get to see the king of the dunes, the Oryx. The camp we use is excellent and comfortable. The area is wild and untamed. The environment it totally unique and so are the photo opportunities. Fancy photographing desert-adapted Giraffe in the rolling fog of the desert? Then this is the extension for you.

This is one place you have to see and photograph, because it quite simply is like nowhere else on earth and you will feel like you are on another planet. A 5-night stay is all that is required for this extension and the best times are from June through to Sep.

Your photographic possibilities on these extensions

Any one or combination of the safari extensions can be arranged to make this a safari of a lifetime.

Mana Pools Extension

When I describe Mana Pools to people I describe it as being the place where safari guides go on holiday, which is exactly what it is. Think about it, this says an incredible amount about the place. Just a short flight from Johannesburg is Harare, the capital of Zimbabwe. From there you take a small charter plane into Mana Pools National Park. Based in the heart of the park, you will explore the woodland that is the best place in all of Africa to see and photograph wild dogs. The incredible thing about Mana Pools is that photographing out the vehicle and on foot is allowed and that is exactly what you will do. Imagine sitting on the ground next to a pack of wild dogs. Now imagine the low angle shots you will get!

Our camp is right on the banks of the Zambezi and it is as wild a place as you will get, with elephants often walking right through camp. Canvas and bucket showers are the order of the day in our mobile camp as Mana Pools offers an authentic and wild safari extension. This extension is the perfect addition to your big cat safari and 4 – 7 nights is all that is needed and the season runs from May through to early Nov.

Great White Sharks

The predator workshop coincides with the time of year that the great white sharks breach off the cape coast. We can arrange an extension for you to go photograph great white sharks performing breaches. This is the only place in the world where natural breaches of sharks hunting seals occurs and a good time for this is from April – September.

Sardine Run

Our last exciting extension is to head down to the East Coast of South Africa to photograph one of Nature’s great events, the annual sardine run (best in June and July). This incredible experience involves photographing from the boat plus lots of free diving. Seeing sharks, whales and dolphins with gannets dive bombing, is one of Africa’s ultimate wildlife experiences, so don’t miss it! All that is needed is a wetsuit and a simple waterproof camera housing with a wide angle lens. As the sardines head north they attract marine predators from afar including great white sharks! This is one of Africa’s best kept secrets and featured on the BBC’s ‘natures greatest events’ series.

Guest Testimonials

'Dear Greg, the training and experience with you has been even better than we expected. You bring out the best of Africa as you teach us each day to appreciate the animals and capture the best moments with pictures. You are patient and professional and we look forward to another journey with you. Best to you, Bob 'the camera caddy' and Jacquie.'

Bob and Jacquie Paul (USA)
'Hey Greg, It took three days to download and organize my 5412 files! You blew me away with your kindness, graciousness, and expertise. Okay, so now I am bit and I can't wait to go back. The wild is the only thing that makes sense and I understand what motivates you. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for introducing me to your world and for sharing your experience, strength, and hope for the future of conservation.'

Nell Dickerson (USA)
'Greg, thanks so much for the outstanding private safari in the Okavango Delta, Botswana that you led for us. The itinerary that you and C4 Photo Safaris developed gave us a terrific mix of magical Delta experiences, with fine camps and excellent local guides. The most important ingredient in this terrific experience, however, was you. On the photographic front, we were inspired by your commitment to artistic creativity and excellence, as well as ethical practices, in the capturing of wildlife images and greatly appreciated your graciously shared world class photographic expertise. We were delighted to find that you are also a knowledgeable naturalist, with wide-ranging expertise and engaging stories (and a voluminous reference library on your phone!) about both the fauna and the flora of Africa. We were encouraged by your commitment to conservation and especially to the Rebuilding the Pride project run by Masai landowner group SORALO in the South Rift Valley of Kenya. We look forward eagerly to joining you in the Masai Mara next year and in the South Rift Valley in 2018!'

Mark and Bonnie Overgaard (USA)
'Since our very first contact, Greg gave me lots of advices about safari destinations and about photography. He always answered my hundreds mail (sorry Greg 😉 ) helping me to find and book the best travel for shooting hippos and to buy some photographic stuffs I have never seen before. I have known a man who really loves Africa and wildlife and most important, who knows lot of things about Africa and wildlife, but at the same time you can talk to him as you talk to one of your friend. I dont write about his knowledge of photo gears and technique as it would be superfluous. I can only say that my skill level is increased by several steps. His advices during safaris were, in my opinion, the best part of my entire time spent in Kenya. During my time spent in the bush, I really feel myself like a photographer, not like a tourist. Thank you, thank you so much to the Whole Oryx Team!'

Nicola Cappelletti (Italy)
'I have traveled several times to Africa, but my recent trip with Greg to Mahale and the Serengeti has been a never-to-be-forgotten experience. Greg's photo workshop was amazing. I feel much more comfortable with my camera now. The greatest wisdom I carried away from Greg is this: I am the photographer not the camera, I can be in control and not depend on the  camera's interpretation of what I see. His tips and advice put me on the right direction to being in control! Beyond the camera, Greg's passion for the natural and his immense knowledge of the Serengeti from the predators to the birdlife and to the smallest flower in that never-ending expanse, gave me a privileged glimpse into the heart of Africa. Thank you Greg. See you on the predator tour!'

Punam Anand Kumar (India)
'Good morning Greg. I trust you got home safely. Eric and I had an uneventful journey home. Surprisingly, Eric found his extender in his camera bag! Thanks for being such an incomparable guide and company. See you in February, if not before (maybe October).'

Stephen and Eric Cheek (UK)
'It was such a privilege to spend a week with Greg. On all levels he is a joy to spend time in the bush with. Its really apparent through his passion, knowledge and talent why he was The Wildlife Photographer of the Year. We had some amazing sightings. From following mating leopards for 5 hours on my birthday to packs of wild dogs, cheetahs, and 19 different leopards. Oh, and two snakes! And of course, spending some time with Claire was very special to us.'

Deborah Keener Brown (USA)