Safari and Tours Guests Testimonials
Guided photographic safaris are excellent opportunities to visit the places you always wanted, take some wonderful photos and at the same time have someone on hand to answer all your photographic queries. As your experienced photographic guide with 50 years experience my aim is to help you to take superb photographs to capture for ever these unique locations and their wildlife.
I am a capable and experienced photographer, naturalist and a qualified teacher and tutor able to support everyone from the novice photographer to those who are considerably more experienced. I know the areas I use very well and my goal on all my trips is to help you to capture the magic of the area, bring back some wonderful images and learn more about your camera as well as enjoying and experiencing a very special and unique location.
Please don’t just take my word for it however but instead read the testimonials below from others who have been on such workshops with me before. If you would like to talk in person to someone who has enjoyed a trip with me please let me know and I will put you in touch with them.
You might also want to see reports from previous trips and for that reason I have, since October 2011, started to compile and publish trip reports for all my holiday/workshops. These can be found alongside the detail of the trip. I used to keep details journals for many of my trips pre October 2011 and will also be making these available once I have checked with the people mentioned in them that they don’t mind. If you would like to see one for a trip you are considering before I publish them then please let me know and I may be able to send it to you directly or put you in touch with someone who was on the trip.
If you are interested to know more please contact me either through the contact page on this website or by e-mailing email@example.com and I will be more than happy to discuss any aspect of the tours with you.
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Testimonials and feedback on Natures Photos Safaris.
Andrew and Pat Griffin – Big Cats of the Masai Mara Safari – February 2023
“We have just got back from another one of Bob’s trips to the Mara North Conservancy staying at Kicheche Mara camp. We had an excellent time as usual, but this year there seemed to be so many more animals about. As well as the usual plains animals we were privileged to see a giraffe giving birth, so many various cats that we lost count, a bat eared fox family out in the open for quite some time in broad daylight and nocturnal sightings of spring hare, white tailed mongoose and striped hyena. Add to that the usual excellent service from the guides and staff at Kicheche we could not have asked for more. Bob, and of course, Ann looked after us so well that we wanted for nothing; as usual, photographic advice was technically and artistically outstanding. All being well we hope to be on the same trip again next year.
Pat & Andrew “
Dave Koovits – Following Big Cats of the Masai Mara Safari – February 2022
This holiday was a sudden impulse, offered an opportunity to go on Safari, in Bobs words “one place is available for a male in 4 months time”.
I’ve always wanted to go on Safari, so as you know I went on what I thought would be the holiday of a lifetime. Oh my God, what a holiday. Without doubt the best holiday I’ve ever had, just amazing from the moment I landed in Kenya to the moment I landed back in England. Truly an unbelievable experience, never to be forgotten, so many wonderful memories, beautiful kind friendly people, amazing location, accommodation second to none. As for the wildlife just simply out of this world, breath taking, I could not have wished for more. I still pinch myself about what I’ve seen, the photographs help as I know I took them, me.
Bob uses a specialist company called Safari Consultants to organise everything leading up to the Safari and they were just perfect. There is not one little thing I could complain about, very professional. Everything was on time and there, their organisation worked like clockwork. 100% perfect, from the first contact to this present moment, I’m totally impressed. All the paperwork and advise sheets from them and Bob were spot on. You can see how they and Bob work together hand in glove. A nice touch, the gift of the leather case also the water bottle that was given on safari. I would, without doubt, recommend Bob and Safari Consultants to anyone thinking of going on safari, thinking about it, I actually have already.
What can I say about the camp, beautiful setting, tent if you can call it a tent was fantastic, far beyond my expectations. The main communal tent/marque just outstanding, all the comforts of home, just no television thankfully. The food was once again just brilliant, breakfast out on safari just so good, nobody could ask for more, think of breakfast in the bush, possibly drink of water and bread, oh no everything cereal, cooked food, juices, fruit, tea, coffee. Tables and chairs and a beautiful smiling face serving you. Incredible. Lunch back at camp once again incredible food, cooked to perfection. Everyday different food selection to suit all palettes. Evening meal, well was I at the Ritz, this food was exceptional, once again different food every night, starter, main course, plus a sweet. Cordon blur cooking. Top quality, once again served with a smile.
Ann and Bob, well, just brilliant, the pair are just lovely people and have the patience of a couple of saints. Dedicated to their customers, offering advice and taking time out to assist at every opportunity. This is not a job to them, photography is their passion and helping others improve in their photography and most importantly ensuring that every individual is happy.
Their concern for your welfare and enjoyment is paramount to them, difficult and challenging at times, but somehow, they sail through the day. Almost seems if one person out of 8 has little bad moment they blame themselves as if its their failure, which I can assure you it is not. I can only thank Ann and Bob for so much advise and improving my photography so much, let alone just being so nice and friendly to me.
So all in all, I hope this e-mail lets you know my feelings regarding my holiday in Kenya. As I said Holiday of a lifetime, well no, as I will return with my wife in the near future, so not holiday of a lifetime as I intend on doing it again.
It was, wow wow wow, every second of the day, brilliant, fantastic, amazing.
Kind regards Dave (David Koovits)
DInah – Following Big Cats of the Masai Mara Safari- February 2022
What can I say! The whole trip was amazing. Worth every penny! We saw so many animals and birds thanks to the excellent guides and drivers. Also they were so clever at spotting what was going to happen and we saw a cheetah mother hunting with her two grown up cubs and David positioned our vehicle so that we were right in front of the kill. A bit gory but nature in action!
After our experience of being lockdown in South Africa during the first months of the pandemic we were very nervous of going to Africa again but we were so well looked after and everything was in place for our trip so that we never felt worried at all. The help and guidance for visas and vaccination certificates etc was really excellent.
Bob and Ann really looked after us very well and helped with our photography as we are not wild life photographers. They made sure we came back with some excellent images. I have only just finished downloading my images and I am looking forward to reliving my holiday as I look through them.
Thanks to all at Safari Consultants, who Bob uses for the pre safari preparation, and Kicheche Lodge for a marvellous experience.
I have recommended the trip to all my family and friends.
Best Wishes Dinah
Pat and Gert Svanberg – Mara Big Cats Safari – February 2022
Everything organised by Bob and Safari Consultants went very smoothly indeed. Palacina hotel in Nairobi excellent room and breakfast. Kicheche extremely comfortable – flush loos, hot showers and electricity on Safari. All things appreciated by the more mature generation like ourselves!! ( A far cry from the tent being put up each night)Things like the hot water bottles in our bed at night and also in the jeep in the mornings a loverly touch. All the staff and food very good indeed. Our Safari guide David was lovely and very knowledgeable. We could not have seen more, every time we went out we said we couldn’t beat the sightings of the previous morning or afternoon but we did just about every time. Would very happily repeat.
Best wishes Pat and Gert
Steve Abbott – Mara Big Cats Safari – February 2022
On arriving in Nairobi a young lady from Benroso Safaris was outside to collect us and she was very good. We all eventually managed to get through immigration and jumped into the two vehicles with Ben and Jackson taking us to the overnight hotel where, even though we arrived very late, snacks and drinks were provided. Rooms were great as was breakfast and the staff and our collection was on time to head over to Wilson Airport. All good.
Wilson bush transfer to Mara North airstrip was a little chaotic but the SafariLink flight in the Cessna was great and really quite enjoyable and much more fun than with BA!.
As we came into land I loved seeing the chap on his motorbike roaring along the side of the landing strip to ensure there were no inconveniently sited animals. A good landing and Bob and Ann with our guides Jimmy and David were there waiting for us. We then jumped in the vehicles for our first drive heading towards Kicheche Camp; and then life changed. Just seeing all of these amazing animals that I have long dreamed of seeing was fantastic and all thoughts of Big Airways inefficiencies were soon forgotten.
Arrival at the camp; I didn’t really have an image in my mind of what the camp would be like but I was very impressed. I thought the tents would be closer together and was glad they were so well spaced out. Well appointed, reliable power and full facilities. The mess tent area and veranda were perfect as was the food all during our stay. A massively impressive plus was the friendliness and efficiency of all of the staff which was a feature of our stay. Animals in the camp and walking taxis; the first night I had a lioness right outside my tent. Second night a family of elephants. Third night water buffalo etc etc… What an experience. The guards were attentive, quick to arrive and very welcome after dark. Drives; perfect, full, exciting, exhausting, magnificent. Loved the sundowners and was majorly impressed with Jimmy, our guide for the week.
Bob and Ann; as always, friendly, knowledgeable, encouraging and keen to help us all improve our photography; they succeeded in all ways. The animals; the real stars of the show and delighted the big cats in particular played their part fully in making our stay so amazing. The wide variety of species was just so good and everything I realistically wanted to photograph was achieved.
Return flights; again the SafariLink was a fun flight and getting out of Wilson was easier this time round. The hotel dayrooms worked and Benroso again did a great job for us, this time Jackson and Daniel. They took us around the corner to the departure lounge in good time for the BA desk to open.
So, the most amazing trip I have ever undertaken and for sure I will head to Africa again with Bob, Ann and Safari Consultants. The difficulties involved with the travel are merely incidental and essential if not enjoyable means to an end. In all seriousness, I cannot think of anything that would have improved my experience and enjoyment. As such, chapeau to Bob, Ann and your team at Safari Consultants for organising this amazing holiday.
Mike Duberry – After Wild Bavaria Trip
What an amazing long weekend with Bob, Ann and Gerhard. Everything went to plan, although the weather tried its best to beat us, rain, snow and sunshine, all of which added to the photography. Superb opportunity to photograph animals such as Brown Bear, Lynx, Wolves and Wild Cats to name buts a few in natural surroundings, with Bob and the team on hand to give tips and advice. The trip was well organised and was enhanced by the fact that everyone was really friendly. Came home smiling with many fantastic photographs and memories.”
Diana Gamble – After Gorilla Safari
The opportunity of a lifetime, not to be missed. When we arrived in Rwanda I felt ashamed not to have studied its history more thoroughly and, after our emotional visit to the Genocide Memorial, felt humble and shocked by what had happened there so recently (1994). However, our journey up to the northern hills gave me an insight into the country and the happy, smiling people around. Our treks through the forest to see the Mountain Gorillas were exceptional and spending time with a gorilla family on each occasion was sensational. Watching the huge silverback moving his family along, seeing the teenagers climbing trees and playing, or the babies with their mothers was unique. I believe I have images of them all of which I am quite proud and which will be a permanent reminder of an incredible trip.
Diana Gamble – After Wildebeest Calving Safari
Superlatives can’t really describe our trip to Ndutu and the Ngorogoro Crater. Absorbing the scenery in itself was spectacular but watching and photographing the excitement of nature ‘in the raw’ on the plains of Ndutu was unforgettable. From the births of Wildebeest calves through to the survival of the fittest was exciting and memorable and the drivers did a wonderful job of making sure we were always in the right place at the right time. Seeing the structure of the Crater and the endangered mammals within it – such as the black rhino and tusker elephants – was a privilege as well as everything else happening there on a daily basis. Africa is certainly in my blood, but every time I go back on Bob’s photographic trips I just want more!
Phil Kemp – After Wildebeest Calving Safari
Someone recently told me that they were going on safari with Bob to get a long ambition out of their system, I laughed saying safaris are addictive. Having just returned from Tanzania, my seventh safari with Bob I think I can safely say I am addicted. Each one of these safaris have been expertly planned and executed to give the most enjoyable experience possible. Strongly recommended.
Naomi Saul – Mara Big Cats Safari
What a wonderful privilege to have the opportunity to live with the wildlife in their own habitat for a while – so many memories and photographs to treasure. My second safari, both with you, but this trip to the Masai Mara was truly unforgettable and I cannot wait to return to Kichechi Camp! Thank you for all the hard work you put into the organisation and information provided – excellent to the smallest detail, right from the moment I booked through to the last day of the trip. Being in a smaller conservancy meant we were far from the ‘Madding Crowds ‘ and could watch the animals behaving naturally without any stress, with only a few vehicles present at any one time. Yet the area we covered was still vast with something different to see and photograph every day. Your Guide selection too was brilliant – not only was Jimmie a good spotter, he made sure we were always in the right place at the right time. As a photographer himself he constantly checked the vehicle was manoeuvred so we had the best viewpoint available and that the light was falling in the right direction too.
I have certainly fallen in love with Africa and the Mara in particular – a truly fantastic experience that will have a very special place in my memory for a very long time. Thank you so very much Bob – now looking forward to my next safari – would not even consider travelling with anyone else – nobody could improve on your high standards, superb and thorough organisation which ensured all round perfection.
Phil Kemp – After Botswana and Zimbabwe Elephant Safari
Thanks Bob for another great African adventure – I think I must become quite a regular with you now. The first week in the mobile camp in Botswana was just brilliant we were placed in just the right place for the game and this became all the more evident each day as we drove out from camp seeing things almost immediately. I know that this was called the elephant safari but I didn’t expect to see quite so many nor did I expect to get as close as we did on the boat – 6 feet form a full sized bull elephant and in a boat ! The contrast between the first week in a Botswana mobile camp and the luxury of the permanent camp in Zimbabwe added to the overall experience as did the stop at the Victoria Falls. The guides at both camps were superb I can see the effort you went to too select them – it really paid off. Indeed the meticulous planning you put into all your events showed in this one as once again the photo opportunities and knowledge imparted by you and the guides was perfect and simply invaluable. I think I can safely say that all eight of us had a really great time.
Margaret Cooper – After Wildebeest Calving Safari
My first trip to Africa with Bob was in 2013 to Kicheche Mara and I fell in love – with Africa! Had to go back and in 2014 I went to Tanzania. To see wild animals in their own environment was truly spectacular. Bob’s enthusiasm and knowledge, not just of photography, but of the areas, camps, guides etc. made the trips a truly wonderful experience that I shall never forget. We were able to spend as much time with the animals as we wanted, waiting to get that magical shot, and we were always in the best position to do just that. My photography has improved no end and I still have not had enough. Botswana beckons in 2016.
Rebecca Teague – After Wild Europe Trip
I had a great time and was surprised at how many animals there were to photograph. As usual Bob makes you feel very welcome and puts everyone at ease giving help and advice when needed. It was great to stay at a traditional German family hotel and playing with the beavers was unexpected but so much fun. The accommodation was very clean and friendly. It was really nice to stay somewhere that was family run and traditionally German.
Alistair Webb – After Wild Europe Trip
I am always looking to improve my technique and understanding of my camera’s functions. I also wanted to have the opportunity to visit a part of Europe that I hadn’t seen before. Finally, and not least, I wanted to opportunity to observe and photograph European bears. All of these were fully met!
Having done several of your workshops I did wonder if there was going to be something new to learn. There was; I left with a better understanding of exposure metering and how to adapt my methods to fully exploit the camera’s capabilities.
The whole experience was first class. The others in the group, the accomodation, the scenery, the setting in the parks all contributed to a most enjoyable trip. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to anyone. Excellent, I wouldn’t change anything!
Wendy Collens – After Wild Europe Trip
Thanks again Bob for another great workshop in Bavaria. On Every trip with you, I pick up more and more technical tips and tricks from your incredible knowledge, along with an insight into the interactions between creatures of the animal world. You certainly give up a lot of your own time to help up and coming photographers – so once again a big thanks.
I thought the hotel accommodation was perfect, nice clean rooms and facilities. The owners certainly looked after us well and the breakfasts and evening meals were superb. The hotel was in an excellent location very close to the park.
Joyce Rothschild – Big Cats of the Masai Mara
The whole experience was magical and I really want to go back as soon as I can. I did have high expectations and this trip met them and went beyond as well. It was really good to experience the Mara through the eye of the camera lens as well as just being there, watching the behaviours and habits of the animals, and learning some names of the inhabitants. I saw so many creatures I had never seen before, and to be so close to some of the larger birds of prey and the various animals was such a privilege. I was bowled over by the quality of the camp, the friendly staff who were always there to help and support, the food, the Mara itself, and being so close to the animals. The camp was so well organised and the staff were excellent without exception. Little touches like the biscuits in the morning and the hot water bottles (twice a day) were very welcome. I felt safe and very well looked after. The food was excellent. Francis our driver was really excellent and has the most amazing eyesight and understanding of the environment and animals. Thank you also Bob for the really helpful literature you sent before our trip which was useful in preparing for the it, for both the photography elements and our first trip to Kenya. You had clearly worked really hard before the trip, to ensure that we had everything we needed and were prepared for the experience. The photo tuition and support was really helpful as was the excellent feedback and support you gave us Bob. You were very generous with your time and (your equipment) during the time we were there, from the moment you met us from the plane to saying adieu at Heathrow. Your comments on the techniques of wildlife photography were helpful and I felt my skills improved as the week went on. I learned a lot. It was also really interesting to visit the market and the village and to gain a small insight into the life of the local population. Thank you for setting this up. It gave real variety to the week.
Wendy Collens – Big Cats of the Masai Mara
I simply loved the camp, the staff and this trip. You were always available for everyone and I appreciate your willingness to answer even the most trivial questions even when you had your hands full with other enquiries. Bob, overall many thanks for a wonderful trip to the Mara and for all your hard work and dedication in making it a fantastic trip for everyone. I appreciate your attention to detail and the effort you put in to ensure everyone was happy both with the trip and photographic techniques. I have visited East Africa on several occasions and this was certainly the most memorable. I would have no hesitation in recommending you, so much so that we have already booked for Botswana and Tanzania. Thank you whole-heartedly once again.
Richard and Deborah Allen – Big Cats of the Masai Mara
We had a wonderful and very special holiday which we’ll always remember. This was a fantastic trip and our expectations were fully met and exceeded, we had a fabulous time and we will definitely be going again! Our driver/guide Francis was excellent, it was a pleasure to meet him and to spend time with him. He clearly has tremendous knowledge and was very helpful and good fun. Bob’s support and photo tuition was just right, he was extremely helpful and knowledgeable. The village and market visit was very enjoyable and we would recommend this optional activity. Keep up the good work Bob! We loved our first safari holiday. We’ll certainly be booking another holiday with you and Safari Consultants.
Phil Kemp, Kidlington Oxon – Big Cats of the Masai Mara
I have just returned from my second back to back trip with Bob to the Masai Mara and once again it was brilliant without exception. The camp facilities are first class, the food on par with the best restaurants and the staff unbelievably helpful and friendly. As with all wildlife watching it is unpredictable but due to the knowledge and skill of our guides and of course Bob no drive failed to deliver something. Bob once again showed his patience and teaching skill to both beginners and some of us more experienced photographers. I seem to learn something new each time I am with him.
Tricia Honour – After Wild Europe – Bavarian Predators Tour
Your expectations : I went with an open mind and I was not disappointed. Personally with regards to this workshop, I would have been quite happy if it had been 5 nights instead of 4. I felt I was really getting into it by the last day. I learnt more photographic tips and hope I have improved a bit more. Gerhard and Becky were brilliant. So were you, a very congenial host. I enjoyed the whole trip and the good company and look forward to joining you in Tanzania in 2015
Diana Gamble – After Wild Europe – Bavarian Predators Tour
Bob. Thank you so much for planning such a wonderful trip to Bavaria. The photographic opportunities were endless and that, combined with the pleasure of seeing and ‘absorbing’ the spectacular surroundings, combined to make a truly memorable trip. It was unique to see the wolves, bears, lynx etc. in their natural surroundings as near as possible to the true wild and they proved that patience and wildlife go hand in hand, as we were all rewarded with the opportunity to get the shots! Your help and knowledge, aided by Gerhard and Becky, meant that we came away with an understanding of the area and I know I would love to go back to Bavaria again and see more.
Julie Barry – After Wild Europe – Bavarian Predators Tour
The workshop exceeded my expectations. I set out hoping to improve my photography skills for wildlife photography on animals in a more natural environment than in a normal zoo and certainly managed this. Bob was extremely helpful and patient and explained answers to my questions in an easy to understand way. Most of the animals were more than accommodating and at a quick glance through I have some great shots. My only criticism is that I now have a long and expensive shopping list lol!
The accommodation was spot on, what a lovely hotel.
Thank you for a fantastic time, I’ve only had a quick flick through my huge number of photos but I am very pleased with what I have looked at. The group of people on the course were a great bunch and please pass on my thanks to Becky and Gerhard, both were very knowledgeable, extremely helpful and really friendly.
Phil Kemp – After Wild Europe – Bavarian Predators Tour
Just a quick thank you for once again providing a fantastic photo trip. I know that it’s very difficult to plan and organise things with so many variables but you managed superbly it as usual. Well done. The detailed information given before the course was perfect and exactly as it was “on the trip”. The accommodation, rooms, food and service were first class. Good choice.
I have been on other courses with Bob and once again he has managed to provide a first class course. Each time I go with him I learn something new and get inspired to take more photos.
Peter Duncan – After Wild Europe – Bavarian Predators Tour
My expectations for this workshop/tour were very largely met and the trip as a whole very enjoyable indeed – good company and a group that seemed to gel very well. My particular interests animal-wise were to get good shots of wolves and lynxes and in both of these cases I felt that I succeeded. It applied particularly to the wolves where on two or three occasions we observed and photographed natural looking behaviour, and the appearance of two cubs at Lohberg was a real bonus. The wolves at Lusen in the evening sessions had a truly wild ‘feel’ and atmosphere even if the light conditions were testing. The accommodation and catering was excellent, exceeding my expectations. Clean, comfortable and with good food – and beer !
|Stuart Ball – After Mara Big Cats trip|
My background is entomology and nature conservation and I have been in to wildlife photography since my late teens – so an awful long time, but I have never been to Africa before. What attracted me to this trip was that it was based in one place, actually out in the bush, and was specifically aimed at photographers. So I anticipated like minded individuals who wouldn’t want to be rushing on to the next lion all the time. In the event, it surpassed all my expectations! There was so much to point a camera at – not just the charismatic mega fauna – although there was plenty of that – but things like Hyraxes, Mongoose, Oxpeckers, Kingfishers … and more and different Kingfishers. I think what made it such an exceptional trip was our guides/drivers. It is not only that they know the place intimately and therefore where to find stuff, but they were able to anticipate what animals were likely to do and put you in the right place AND at the same time, they appreciated the needs of the photographer, taking account the light and the background. The hospitality and standards of catering provided by the camp were also quite exceptional and made for a very pleasant stay. I would heartily recommend this trip to any wildlife photographer. Would I go again – certainly! What would I do different another time – not too much. I took two camera bodies and my main lenses where a 17-85mm and a 300mm plus a 1.4x converter. I took about twice as many shots using the 300mm, but sometimes it was a bit much – we were just too close. So, if I was going again, I would take a lens in the 200mm range (maybe a 70-200mm zoom). But I probably wouldn’t take my 100mm macro. I barely used it. There were butterflies and occasional dragonflies about, but hardly any other insects (because this is the end of the dry season – although, this year, it had not been particularly dry). The only mosquito I saw the whole time was in the departure building at Wilson Airfield in Nairobi! So thanks, Bob, for organising such a fantastic trip and I look forward to doing another one someday.
|Maddy Pennock – After Mara Big Cats trip|
This was a holiday of a lifetime; an absolutely breath-taking experience and a wonderful opportunity to take better nature photographs in a perfect environment. I forgot to mention a superb opportunity to meet and make new friends, especially our group leader and workshop tutor, Bob Brind-Surch. From the moment we touched down on the airstrip in the light aircraft our adventure began. We were met by our drivers, George and Benje who drove us to the most impressive Kicheche Mara Camp where we were greeted warmly by the staff. The accommodation maybe a tent, but it was luxury with a flushing loo, a good shower and quality toiletry products. The beds were comfortable, the tents spacious and the food fantastic! The adventure then began! We saw all the animals and birds we expected to see, except of course the rhino, and plenty more. We woke early having had a cuppa and some biscuits and out in the vehicles before dawn, watching the dramas of the early morning unfold in front of our eyes. Breakfast was taken in the bush after our drivers made sure that there were no risk from predators or other dangerous animals. After breakfast we continued observing and taking photographs under the expert guidance of Bob. In our group we had photographers of differing experience and all were helped as and when, at their own level. Nobody felt foolish to ask maybe the simplest of questions. Our driver was George (a Massai Mara guide) who was staggeringly expert on the wildlife and fauna of the area. He could answer every question in perfect English. He could see things none of us could see including birds sitting on far away trees and be able to identify them! He drove cautiously and observed the necessity to give the animals and birds space to behave naturally. This is after all a conservation area! From a photographic point of view, both drivers knew exactly where to position the vehicle to enable us to take the best possible shot! They were able to read the signs that some event had happened. Maybe this was watching the sky for vultures and eagles, or listening to the sounds around or watching movement in the trees and bushes. They communicated with the rangers and other guides by radio.The large off road converted Toyota vehicles were sturdy and safe, and although open sided we never felt vulnerable in front of any animal including the Acacia Pride of lions. We returned to the camp for lunch and then had a few hours off relaxing/sleeping or downloading our images before starting out again at 4pm.At sunset we had ‘sundown’ which was a wonderful opportunity to have a glass of something, mine was wine, but others had a G&T and watch the magnificent sunset, with our cameras at the ready. We then returned to the camp for a shower, dinner and bed, before the next day of adventures started! We were guided by the guards after dusk and before dawn to and from our tents, so never felt any danger. Every day we experienced new drama unfold. Fortunately for me we never witnessed a kill, but saw the pride of lions eating a giraffe and her calf she had tried unsuccessfully to defend, followed by the hyenas, jackals, vultures and eagles. We saw a mother leopard and her two cubs; two cheetah brothers chasing their quarry that fortunately for me got away! I asked to see one of the two adult male lions who ‘service’ both prides; The Acacia Pride and The Off Beat Pride and was amazed at the size and strength of this beast dragging his recently killed wildebeest down a slope into the valley and up the other side. What a magnificent creature he was! There were plenty of herd animals, the names I need to look up including zebras, buffalo, wildebeest and elephants. Hippos and crocodiles in the mara river to enjoy whilst having breakfast! There were an abundance of birds including ostrich to photograph. One of my highlights was watching giraffe give birth, only to watch in horror as the hyenas gathered. It was too dark to see the outcome, but a couple of days later we saw mum and baby alive and well! We had an opportunity to visit a Massai village and the local Aitong Market, so plenty of opportunity to take people shots! You could not fail to enjoy this trip and take wonderful images! The light was perfect, the subject matter was in abundance, the guides imparted their knowledge and with Bob’s expertise helped and guided us to take the best shots possible!
|Dave Hollis – after a trip to Southern Tanzanian|
As a keen photographer I wanted to improve my images. I have been on a good few workshops in the UK. I thought it was time to see animals in the wild.
I wanted to see a Leopard as my key image and capture that magical moment on camera. The entire trip was planned with Bob and his team to get us out there and lodges with all the magic in the trips.
I am glad to say that when I come back and went through my images and found that there were at a new level. I have entered a few images into international competitions. I have now got accepted in to Bristol, Southampton and Evesham international saloons.
I think the trip was a trip of a life time with great guidance and time given to help you understand the camera and how to get the better image. Bob team work hard to get everyone a best view. They tried hard to get the best correct light available. Tell us info and names of each animal seen.
It was so good I am saving up again and do another trip with Bob.
|Douglas Gregor – After Mara Big Cats trip|
“I do take a few photographs which do not have some form of wildlife in them, but not many. I take a lot of insect shots and some are as small as 2mm, weighing-in at a fraction of a gram, but on this trip I did not make a great deal of use of my macro lens – I was captivated by the majesty of the lion and the sheer size and power of the elephant. It is quite different seeing them in the wild and in their own environment when we are caged and they roam free. I have rarely taken a holiday in the same place twice, because there is always something else that I have wanted to see or do. That is not how I felt after my trip to Kicheche Mara Camp. I do want to return and I do want again to experience the hospitality and the opportunities presented on a workshop arranged by Bob. Crucial to these opportunities were the guide/drivers that Bob selected. They knew what we wanted to achieve and set about making certain that we would leave with our ambitions fulfilled. We were left in no doubt about their skill and knowledge, but what was uncanny was when an animal started to move and our driver said ‘hold tight’ then drove in a great arc and waited. Sure enough within a very short time the lion, cheetah or leopard turned up right on cue! “
Sue Totham – After Mara Big Cats trip
“The prospect of a few days in Kenya was a long held dream which I never expected to come true, it took 4 or 5 days of complete amazement and disbelief to believe I was actually there. Bob, the perfect host ensured everything ran smoothly; from the pre-travel arrangements to the goodbyes at Heathrow 10 days later. The staff at Kicheche Mara Camp were professional but very friendly & approachable, the guides/drivers were just amazing and incredibly knowledgeable: they seemed to know which animals we wanted to see, where to find them and where to position the vehicles so that we were able to achieve great images.
Friends have asked me whether I photographed the big cats, the elephants or giraffes. My answer is yes and so much more: we saw a pair of cheetah brothers on our very first morning on the way into camp from the airport and were able to follow them at various times during the trip. We met the local pride of lions many times; in rain & in sunshine and at both sunrise & sunset and all times in between. But my favourite cat was the mother leopard with her two cubs, just 5 mins from camp. She was so beautiful and graceful and yet there was no doubt about her maternal instincts to protect her cubs or her innate strength and power.
One of the highlights of the trip was taking breakfast on the banks of the Mara River watching the hippos wallow in the water below us, another was seeing a baby giraffe being born just as the light disappeared and knowing there were two hyenas nearby – it took two days to confirm it had survived and then there were the sunsets – a fantastic sight to end the day.
Any expectations I set out with were all met and exceeded ten fold. It was halfway through the trip before I stopped standing & looking around with absolute amazement and wonderment that I was there.Both drivers were excellent and knew their country inside out and their knowledge of the wildlife was incredible, they managed to safely drive along rutted tracks while spotting game unseen by us. I felt totally safe within their care.
The camp was 5*, absolutely superb! I couldn’t fault it. The staff were attentive, efficient and very friendly. The food was excellent, I enjoyed every meal, many of which were very inventive, how the chief managed in the facilities available I’ll never know, as I never managed to get that peek behind the door.
I don’t think I’ve come back to earth yet! It still feels like an amazing dream. Thanks again for the best experience of my life, it was truly amazing.
Probably the 100 dollar question – would I go back? Unequivocally, Yes I would go tomorrow if given the opportunity! Thank you Bob for providing a trip of a lifetime.”
Phil Kemp – After Mara Big Cats trip
I have just returned from two remarkable weeks in Kenya with Bob, one of the best experiences I have ever had. It far out passed my expectations. Accommodation and food on par with the finest hotels. What also made it special was the expert knowledgeable guiding and photo tuition given by Bob and the guides the abundance of wildlife was amazing. I strongly recommend this trip to anyone interested in wildlife photography.
Heather Mann – After Mara Big Cats trip
This trip with Bob more than filled all my expectations; it was truly the trip of a lifetime. I have been on safari twice before, but this was by far the best.
The time spent with each site and the knowledge and advice given made all the difference. The Maasai guides were excellent and their knowledge of wildlife was phenomenal. They also understood where to place the vehicle to get the best light.
The service in camp was excellent and food wonderful. I enjoyed walk, made more exciting by encounter with lions, but felt safe at all times.
As someone with very little experience, I found the tuition very useful. I have come back feeling more confident using my camera and have learnt new techniques I can use in other parts of my photography. There is very little that would have improved the experience.Every part of it was designed to help us enjoy and learn. Even the animals seemed to know what to do!!
Thank you so much for a fantastic experience
Paul Searle – After Mara Big Cats trip
Hi Bob, I hope you had a good second week and you have obviously arrived back in the UK safely. I would like to thank you for a wonderful trip thats the first time I have been on an organised trip for many years and my first ever safari. From the moment you came LBPC and booking the trip I was very impressed with the amount of contact and information supplied by yourself it certainly made the trip very easy and most enjoyable.
I was very impressed with the information supplied by Bill and his team and the very attentive staff at Kicheche camp all this made my holiday wonderful.
It was great a start with the first game drive form the airstrip even though we had been up all night on the flight from the UK. The days seemed to get better and better and I am very pleased with the shots I have taken. We seemed to pack so much into the week which was great.
Since getting back most of us have been in contact and have put some of our images on Flickr. I hope to speak to you soon and maybe meet in Suffolk Once again thank you for your time and effort it was very worth while.
Barry Boswell – After Mara Big Cats trip
This was my first experience of a photo safari, so I had nothing to compare it with – but I could not fault it in any way. It is fair to say that I went on the trip with very high expectations my expectations which were surpassed in every respect. The skill of the drivers in putting us in exactly the right place for great photo opportunities was truly amazing. I also wanted to see some normal everyday life and colour among the local people. The Aitong market visit was exactly right for this – not at all stage managed and some great opportunities for a little candid photography.
John Dawson – After Mara Big Cats trip
I must thank you for organizing an amazing Safari at Mara North Conservancy.
As a cat lover I was more than happy with the opportunities we had to photograph and observe the lion and cheetah activity and the sighting of the Serval was an added bonus. I don’t think my images of the leopard will be winning any competitions, but this is an excuse to try again sometime. It was great to learn more about animal behaviour and experience things that I had seen on television. I was very impressed with the accommodation, service and catering at Kicheche Mara. I have learnt over the years that the knowledge/skill of the drivers for getting in the best position for photography is very important and Jimmy was excellent at this.
Thank you again.
Hilary Spurrier – After a trip to Southern Tanzanian
A photo safari with Bob Brind – Surch is an unforgettable experience. It is a real privilege to have expert instruction while seeing an unbelievable range of animals. Bob’s expert knowledge ensures that your safari will be to places teeming with wildlife. He ensures that accommodation is of a good standard and that the guides are in tune with the needs of the photographer. Bob provides excellent advice. He is sensitive to the needs of the individual and pitches his advice at just the right level. He is not over intrusive in his instruction but provides timely reminders and individual help as necessary. Bob works hard to ensure that all the participants have a positive experience and come home with a set of memorable photographs. Bob is an expert wildlife photographer with decades of experience. He has a long experience of Africa and Safaris. He therefore ensures that the experience for the budding photographer is a very positive one as attention to details such as light and composition are used to guide the positioning of vehicles for photo shoots. I can recommend a Bob Brind–Surch safari without any reservations – I am looking forward to booking another before too long!
Many, many thanks Diana Gamble – After a trip to Southern Tanzanian
Dear Bob, I ran out of superlatives some days ago with which to thank you enough for giving us such a wonderful time in Tanzania. A photographic safari is something I have wanted to do all my life, but I had no idea it could be as enjoyable and rewarding as ours was. (Let alone 4,500 images to deal with!)
I don’t think I had expectations in my mind as to what it should be like, but I can comfortably say this was better than I could have imagined! I appreciate you had put in a great amount of groundwork and planning and feel we were very privileged to reap the benefits of your hard work. I also think your ”pre-safari” notes were very useful as we were all “ready to roll” when we arrived. The two camps, in my opinion, were an excellent choice and in both places we were looked after so well. I felt that we were also very fortunate to have the exclusive knowledge of Mpogo, Abdulah and Makomba at Selous Impala and Marius and Lorenzo at Ruaha Kwihala. This seemed to make it possible for us to be in the right place at the right time as well as seeing “life as it happened”. I cannot thank you enough for all your help and knowledge with everything. I learnt so, so much and must now go back again to improve every photograph I took!
Ian Draper – After a trip to Southern Tanzanian
“If you are looking for a really good photo experience in Africa then look no further than one of Bob’s trips. I had the most wonderful time in Southern Tanzania during October – just so much fun and delight and truly fond memories. His advice, guidance, enthusiasm and knowledge were just what the group wanted.
Terry Homewood – After a trip to Northern Tanzanian
“I travelled with Bob to Northern Tanzania in January/February. Firstly, the quality of the accommodation, guides and general organisation was second to none (I have been on many trips to Africa, and this trip was top of the list for quality and overall experience). Bob is a great guy, warm and friendly, always on hand to give advice but never in a way that makes you uncomfortable. He has a deep knowledge of the wildlife and a willingness to share. The stars of the show will always be the wildlife, and with Bob by your side or busy working in the background, you are assured of having a great experience and coming home with far more images that you could have ever imagined. A truly memorable trip.”
David Williams – After a trip to Northern Tanzanian
“I went with Bob to Northern Tanzania and was impressed not only with his photographic skills, but also with his knowledge of the terrain and the wildlife. Putting all three together made a big difference to the experience and the resulting photographs. I would not hesitate to recommend him as a workshop guide or to recommend any of his trips.”
Peter Williams – After a trip to Kenya’s Masai Mara
I have had a wish form childhood to go on safari to East Africa and having recently taken up photography in my retirements the combination of a photographic guided safari to the Masai Mara with a well known and recommended guide seems an excellent opportunity. From the moment I contacted Bon b everything went like clockwork. The briefing prior to the trip was just what I wanted. The notes and guidance very reassuring and the safari – well it passed everything I could ever have expected. I have now done my trip of a lifetime and have the photos plus much better knowledge of my camera to prove it. I will certainly be back.