With both her parents born in Africa, Roxy certainly has Africa in her blood. She went on her first safari at the tender age of six, and frequent visits throughout her childhood have kept the African connection strong.
Her gap year between school and university saw her backpacking around South Africa, Australia, Bali, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand. Following a clearly exhausting three years at the University of Newcastle, a second gap year was much needed and she went off to Kenya to work at Offbeat Mara Camp, Offbeat Meru Camp and Sosian Ranch, part of the Offbeat Safaris circuit, and finished the safari stint by teaching tennis in a prep school in the rift valley. It was these experiences, and hosting guests on safari, that led her to becoming an African tour operator, desperate to send people to the camps and lodges she had loved, and for guests to have an exquisite African experience too.
With relatives in Kenya and her second home being a family house Plettenberg Bay in South Africa, Roxy not only travels for work but for holiday too. Her son made his first trip to South Africa at just five months old, and she is of the firm mind set of ‘have children – must travel’. Watching him meet his first elephant was a true wonder, and she hopes as he grows older he will share the same love for these majestic and wondrous creatures as she does.
Favourite African experience
It is tough to pinpoint a favourite experience, so here are a few that are top of my list… Chimp trekking in the Mahale Mountains in Tanzania, a walking safari in the South Luangwa in Zambia, a fly-in safari with Skeleton Coast Safaris in Namibia, a sleep out under the stars in the Makagadikgadi salt pans in Botswana, gorilla tracking through Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda and sundowners anywhere with a view.
The African elephant. No question.
Favourite three camps
Offbeat Mara Camp, Mara North Conservancy, Kenya – A typically East African tented camp with traditional safari bucket showers, wildlife in abundance, game drives, bush walks, night drives and sundowners with no more than 14 guests. I was lucky enough to run this camp when it very first opened over 10 years ago, so it has a special place in my heart
San Camp, Makagadikgadi pans, Botswana –Take a quad bike across the plains into the sunset, sleep beneath the stars, get up close to the habituated meerkats, walk back in time with the bushmen and drive for miles looking for elusive brown hyena before retiring to a beautiful tented camp, enriched with unique artefacts and in the middle of nowhere, literally.
Luangwa Bush Camping, South Luangwa, Zambia – An incredible operation for a walking, simple yet comfortable tents with your very own bush kitchen and bar, and true feeling of being in the wild.
African Countries visited
Botswana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zanzibar.
On arranging holidays
We really do arrange trips of a lifetime, so it goes without saying that hearing guests’ feedback that their holiday not only met, but exceeded expectations, is always one of the thrills of the job.
I’m lucky enough to have explored the continent of Africa extensively, and have travelled wearing many different hats; as a single traveller, honeymooner, mother, and as part of a big family group.
Half the fun is getting to know my clients. Asking questions and listening to their experiences before applying my own knowledge is all part of the process of putting together their trip of a lifetime. We are always looking for ways to go above and beyond expectations to make our safari holidays extra special.