Travel on a South African Safari – Episode 429

categories: africa travel

Hear about travel to South Africa on safari as the Amateur Traveler talks to Susan Portnoy from about her recent experience in the Timbavati Game Reserve. This is the 5th time that Susan has traveled to Africa on safari to “shoot” animals… as a photographer.

“Photography is a big part of what I do on my blog. Timbavati is known for dense population of certain types of predators, leopards being one of them. Kruger [National Park], while it’s fantastic, is a big tourist attraction and you can’t get the same experience there in my opinion that you can get in other areas of South Africa.”

“I love safaris because I have a real passion for wildlife in general. I find that countries in Africa and the experience that I have had in Africa, the beauty, the serenity that I find there has been a great antidote to my life in New York City. It is something that has drawn me back. Also the skill that anyone must have to do any kind of decent wildlife photography has me constantly wanting to prove my skills.”

“The best way that I can explain Timbavati is that it has a beautiful stark and rugged quality to it.” Susan explains that this park is very different from the Africa one is familiar with from movies like “Out of Africa” or the National Geographic segments where you see wildlife migrations where you have these wild open spaces and big skies. Timbavati on the other hand is very rugged. Timbavati is filled with sand and dense bushes and dead trees that have these wonderful shapes and thorny Acacia and it just gives this incredible mood and difference to photography than you might see elsewhere.”

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Show Notes
Timbavati Game Reserve
Wide Eyed Tours
Umlani Bush Camp
Marlon Du Toit
Timbavati, South Africa: A Land Of Feral Beauty


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by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast, and a co-host for This Week in Travel podcast.

5 Responses to “Travel on a South African Safari – Episode 429”

Ken Kai


Been trying to hint a safari trip over in Africa with my partner. Sounds really inspiring. Hopefully I can convince her of a trip over there soon!



Having being there a few times myself I agree that Timbavati game reserve certainly offers the wildlife photographer unique photographic opportunities. Africa and especially South Africa with its extreme beauty and diversity of wildlife certainly “gets” into your blood and I am thankful every day to be part of this great continent.

17 Awesome Podcasts to Download Before Your Next Trip


[…] Full disclosure: I had the pleasure of being a guest on Chris’ podcast to talk about Namibia’s Skeleton Coast and going on safari in South Africa. […]

Pieter Theron


Yes, Africa does that to you: “draws you back”. One African visit and you are hooked! I like that you are competitive and constantly want to improve your photography skills. South African wildlife certainly presents new challenges every time you visit.

Louis Schoeman


Always bring your mosquito repellant and read the reviews of the lodges you will be staying at.

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