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Travel Sommelier - Luxury Safari Travel and Bespoke Wine Tourism
Newsletter | July 2015

Time Well Spent

Dear <<Nickname / Preferred Name>>

Engaging in charitable or voluntourism activities while on vacation can take on one of two forms: when travel is all about working on a charitable platform, or when a charitable event or product is a smaller component of a trip. This month we showcase the latter through social and wildlife interaction programs in Southern Africa. Families & couples can discover how bonding these activities are and just how much fulfillment they get from interacting with locals at grassroots level & engaging firsthand in wildlife conservation activities.

We live in cocooned circumstances in many ways and the exposure we get and that we can offer our children is rewarding and impactful. I urge you to consider including some of the options we outline below in your next trip.

In the meantime, travel well, travel often and travel with us!

Best Regards,

Darren & The Travel Sommelier Team


  • Rhinoceros Conservation Program at Kwandwe Reserve, South Africa
  • Volunteering with the Vineyard Hotel
  • How do tourism dollars help?
  • Wilderness Safari’s the 4-C’s
  • My trip to Rwanda
  • Recipe of the Month
  • Pictorial Gallery











Thanks very much for helping us put together the trip of a lifetime. Not sure where to begin. Our Safaris at Mashatu, Mala Mala, touring JoBurg, the wine county, or Cape Town and the Cape. What a trip. Four couples ... and all eight of us loved it. Animals and more animals, many close enough to touch. At one point we were in the middle of a herd of elephants that numbered approximately 600. Another day we watched around 400+ buffalo walk right by our Range Rover. Lions, Rhino, Hippos ... all the big FIVE and so many more ... UNBELIEVABLE! Penguins in the Cape were only 3 feet away from us. The restaurants and the hotels that you recommended were spectacular. Only one meal in 19 days that disappointed us ... and what do you know, it was the only restaurant that you did not personally recommend. You batted 1000.
~ David and Dianne Ambrose

read more | Client Feedback

WHERE TO GO | Rhinoceros Conservation Program at Kwandwe Reserve, South Africa

A staggering statement “The last Rhino to live may already have been born” was made to me during the pre Rhino tagging briefing session. We were in remote bushveld preparing the tranquilizers to immobilize a ~3 ton male Rhino and our respective tasks were being outlined. In short order our small team of 8 would tranquilize the animal and while unconscious take a series of DNA samples, implant a microchip in the horns and notch the Rhino’s ear for visual identification purposes. So may things struck me as we were working over the animal, but one thing stuck out: parts of the skin are soft. This is a soft animal under it’s prehistoric armor. It can hardly see, it has no predators other than man. It has no protectors other than man. We NEED to step up. Be involved if you can and help fund these or we will lose this species in less than 20 years, it is that serious. We have identified the best platforms and channels and I would be happy to offer advice on the best options.

read more | Kwandwe Private Game Reserve

TRAVEL JOURNAL | Volunteering with the Vineyard Hotel

Travel Sommelier has fostered strong relationships with some of the finest properties in South Africa. In addition to the phenomenal services offered to our clients, they are also committed to their local communities. Their commitment to improving the lives of those less fortunate, often allows clients the opportunity, whether financially or hands on, to get involved. One such property is the Vineyard Hotel, located in the beautiful Newlands area, south of Cape Town, at the foot of Table Mountain. The hotel is ideally situated for exploring the Cape Peninsula, the Constantia Wine Region as well as Cape Town itself!

read more | Volunteering with the Vineyard Hotel

TRAVEL JOURNAL | How do tourism dollars help?

Making voluntourism a part of a trip is a personal choice, often guided by experience and time. The great news is that simply by choosing some of the outstanding destinations we serve, you will be benefiting local communities. Most organizations, including those we work with, recognize the need to support both community and wildlife conservation to ensure the sustainability of their product. The money re-invested is used for such efforts as rhino conservation or grass roots efforts such as cultural education turning communities formerly involved in poaching into conservation advocates and more.

read more | How do tourism dollars help?

TRAVEL JOURNAL | Wilderness Safari’s the 4-C’s

Our partner, Wilderness Safaris was founded on the principles of the 4-C: Commerce, Conservation, Culture and Community, a blueprint for a successful business, which benefits both the clients and the countries in which they operate. As a result our clients have the opportunity of participating in multiple experiences that can enhance their African adventure. These include cultural visits into neighboring communities, where you can meet the locals, many of whom work in the tourism industry, as well as visiting local schools and sharing the local traditions.

read more | Wilderness Safari’s the 4-C’s

TRAVEL JOURNAL | My trip to Rwanda

Traveling to Rwanda enabled me to not only to see the natural wonders of this exquisitely beautiful country and visit the Silverback Mountain Gorillas but also an opportunity to meet the locals and see how they live. Through a local charity I was able to visit and work alongside a village family to gather grass for their cow, walk the path to collect water from the stream and lunch with them in their home. Through an interpreter we asked questions of each other and learned about each other’s lives. Visiting a country, to me, is learning about the people.

read more | My trip to Rwanda

Bunny Chow

A Durban favorite, traditional “fast food” dish – a curry based dish served in a hollowed out loaf of bread!

read more | Bunny Chow

Pictorial Gallery | Travel Sommelier's World [view all]

For more information on any of the items above or other travel requests contact:

Darren Humphreys
Travel Sommelier 
+1 203 286 8338
Copyright © 2015 Travel Sommelier, All rights reserved.

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