AWF Safaris

AWF Safaris

Africa is home to the most spectacular and awe-inspiring wildlife and landscapes in the world. There is no better way to enjoy these incredible world treasures than by joining a safari to experience the magnificence of the continent first hand. With a presence of six decades on the continent and 20 years of crafting stellar safari experiences, African Wildlife Foundation is uniquely positioned to offer exceptional itineraries that blend outstanding wildlife viewing with chances to see AWF's projects and learn about critical conservation issues from the experts.

Gorilla

About AWF Safaris

Prepare for the experience of a lifetime.

Africa is home to the most spectacular and awe-inspiring wildlife and landscapes in the world. There is no better way to enjoy these incredible world treasures than by joining a safari to experience the magnificence of the continent first hand. With a presence of six decades on the continent and 20 years of crafting stellar safari experiences, African Wildlife Foundation is uniquely positioned to offer exceptional itineraries that blend outstanding wildlife viewing with chances to see AWF's projects and learn about critical conservation issues from the experts.

Conservation travel is now more critical than ever.

COVID-19 has been devastating and its impacts far-reaching, but some industries have been hit harder than others. Tourism, one of the primary drivers of economic growth on the continent, was brought to a virtual halt overnight. The resulting ripple effect is vast, and the effect on wildlife economies is massive.

How can you help? Book your 2021 safari and be one of the first to help pick the tourism industry back off the ground. By booking, communities whose livelihoods rely on tourism will be directly supported. While traveling, you will learn first-hand how AWF is working to make an impact in the areas we travel. 

2021 Safaris

Book now and get ready for your adventure.

Namibia

Namibia Flying Safari

May 20-30, 2021

Embark on this adventure to exquisite desert landscapes of iconic red dunes, track endangered black rhinos on foot, enjoy game drives to find species like the desert elephant, mountain zebra, giraffe, and oryx

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Lions

Tanzania Migration Safari

August 4-15, 2021

Travel on this classic safari to enjoy the very best that East Africa has to offer. VIP visits to a Canines for Conservation site and Manyara Ranch add depth to a superb wildlife adventure in Tarangire, Ngorogoro Crater, and the legendary Serengeti.

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Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe, the Wild Zambezi, & Victoria Falls

September 7-16, 2021

Explore some of the wildest parts of Southern Africa as you take flight to three diverse and wild destinations full of wildlife: Save Valley - one of Africa’s largest private reserves; the wildlife-rich flood plains of the Zambezi river; and the mighty Victoria Falls.

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Uganda

Uganda: Great Apes & Wild Savannas

September 16-25, 2021

EExperience the remote and wild savannas of Kidepo Valley, cruise the Nile river to Murchison Falls, and trek chimpanzees and gorillas on foot with AWF Naturalists. Visit an AWF Classroom Africa School and stay at an AWF Conservation Enterprise lodge.

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Ethiopia

Extraordinary Ethiopia: Highlands & Beyond

November 1-11, 2021

Explore the high plateau of Bale Mountains National Park in search of the Ethiopian wolf, get up close and personal with troops of gelada monkeys, and explore the ancient subterranean rock churches of Lalibela.

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AWF Safari Leaders

AWF Safari Leaders

Craig Sholley

Craig R. Sholley

Craig R. Sholley's experiences with wildlife and conservation began in 1973 as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Africa. He has worked and traveled extensively since that time providing conservation expertise in a variety of world arenas. As an L.S.B. Leakey grant researcher in the late 1970s, Craig studied mountain gorillas at Rwanda’s celebrated Karisoke Research Centre with Dian Fossey. Returning to the U.S., he redirected his interests designing natural history educational programs and wildlife tours for the Baltimore Zoological Society. Concurrently, Craig led nature expeditions and photographed throughout Africa, South America, and Asia.

In late 1987, Craig returned to Africa full time to direct Rwanda's internationally known Mountain Gorilla Project. Turning the project over to the Rwandan government in early 1990, Craig continued in Rwanda acting as Scientific Advisor for the award-winning IMAX film, "Mountain Gorilla." Craig has served as a Senior Associate of the African Wildlife Foundation and on AWF’s Board of Trustees. He has also served on the Board of the Ecotourism Society. Throughout much of the ‘90s, Craig was Director of Conservation and Education for International Expeditions, an organization widely recognized for its ecotourism initiatives.

Craig returned to Rwanda in 1995 on assignment with the National Geographic Society surveying the conservation status of mountain gorillas in Rwanda, DRC, and Uganda in the aftermath of Rwanda's civil war. The findings of that trip are the basis of a 1995 article in the National Geographic Magazine on mountain gorilla conservation. Craig has worked full time with AWF for the last 18 years and presently serves as Senior Vice-President.

Carter Smith

Carter Smith

Carter Smith moved to Kenya in 1994 to pursue her dream of a life in wildlife conservation in Africa, and she never looked back. Her early years in East Africa were spent living in the bush rehabilitating birds of prey while completing her graduate degree in Ecology on the Martial eagle. Following her graduate study, affiliated with Kenya Wildlife Service, National Museums of Kenya, and the University of Leicester, she went from eagles to elephants. She joined Save the Elephants and worked closely with Sir Iain Douglas-Hamilton as Donor Relations Officer. During this time, Carter became one of the first female licensed safari guides with the Kenya Safari Guide Association.

In 2005 Carter started her own safari venture and led private safaris throughout East Africa for 15 years. “I always feel privileged when someone asks me to create a safari for them. I have discovered that the real sense of success I receive is when guests return from their safari. I know that they will be profoundly affected. My favorite comment from a client was that it was not just a trip of a lifetime — it was a trip that changed her life. She had traveled the world, but said there was nothing like her safari experience.”

Carter joined African Wildlife Foundation in January 2019 to manage AWF Safaris and help the program reach and inspire a greater audience. She is thrilled to be continuing on her steadfast path of furthering African wildlife conservation.

Carter is the author of the children’s book "African Tea," which she wrote while living in the bush in Kenya.