THE FACTS: HOW TO BOOK THE BEST GUIDES
Many elite safari guides are affiliated with consortiums. U.S.-based tour agents will happily coordinate with them to arrange your entire journey.
South Africa—based Wilderness Safaris (contact Premier Tours, Philadelphia, Pa.; 800/545-1910, fax 215/893-0357; www.premiertours.com) represents many of the top guides who conduct safaris throughout southern Africa.
In East Africa, the legendary high-end Ker & Downey guides (contact Allan Earnshaw, 254-2/891-510; firstname.lastname@example.org)—not to be confused with the Houston-based tour company of the same name—share top billing with Royal African Safaris (www.royalafrican.com; 208/433-8611).
The Safari Guides Co. is a loose confederation of top independents (among them Robin Pope, John Stevens, and Richard Bonham), represented in the United States by Nature Encounters (800/529-9927, fax 323/733-6623; www.nature-encounters.com).
The four guides profiled in this article may be contacted directly or through a few boutique tour agents, listed below, who will make arrangements with them for you. (Camp rates do not include the cost of a safari led by these guides.)
Ralph Bousfield, Uncharted Africa Safari Co. (Jack's Camp, San Camp) Francistown, Botswana; 267/212-277, fax 267/213-458; email@example.com; from $445 a person, per night.
Jackson Looseyia (Rekero) Nairobi, Kenya; 254-2/571-647, fax 254-2/571-665; Rekero1@bushmail.net; from $295 a person, per night.
Calvin Cottar, Cottar's Safari Service (1920's Camp, Bushtops Camp) Nairobi, Kenya; 254-2/884-508 or 254-2/5756-1719, fax 254-2/882-234; firstname.lastname@example.org; from $550 a person, per night.
Ivan Carter, Ivan Carter Safaris (Vundu Camp) Ruwa, Zimbabwe; 263-73/2301, fax 263-4/498-870; email@example.com; from $355 a person, per night.
Uncharted Outposts International Atlanta, Ga.; 404/888-0909, fax 404/888-0081; www.unchartedoutposts.com.
Africa Adventure Co. Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; 800/882-9453, fax 954/491-9060; www.africa-adventure.com.
African Adventures Park City, Utah; phone and fax 435/649-4655; www.safariexpert.com.
Other tour operators with proven track records as safari outfitters include Abercrombie & Kent (Oak Brook, Ill.; 800/323-7308, fax 630/954-3324; www.abercrombiekent.com) and Micato Safaris (New York, N.Y.; 800/642-2861, fax 212/545-8297).