About us

Testimonials

What our clients are saying about us and our trips...

With web review sites being all the rage these days, it can be a little difficult to sift through the debris to actually find out what a place or hotel is like. From our point of view, having stayed in 99% of the hotels and safari lodges we sell (and quite a few we don't), we think that these reviews can be very misleading as it is impossible to know what the reviewer likes, was looking for, paid etc. etc. In our opinion our job is to find out what you like and match the correct product to you...see how we have done. (please note that ALL of the reviews we feature are 100% real and unedited. If you would like to speak to any of our past clients please let us know)

Hi Gemma,

Arrived back today, a brilliant 3 weeks, ending in style at Ras Kutani. Thank you very much for organizing the beach trip for us. It was really fantastic. .

We had a 4 seater Cessna take us there and, incredibly, a 14 seater plane picked just us up! Simon and Julia are very lovely and run the place so well. We were upgraded to a suite with our own plunge pool and outdoor seating. The food and staff are amazing, a real 5 star relaxing luxury experience.

Many thanks Gemma!

Sue and Michael

Gemma,

I wanted to thank you for all your help in planning this incredible trip. All the connections and air arrangements were on schedule and always there was someone to meet us and transport us to the next location. The food and ambiance at both camps were wonderful. The "tents" were large and the bed soft. Solar showers were fine and we enjoyed the wildlife sounds and views from our "windows". I had been concerned that we would be "safaried out" but the extra days enabled us to see ALL the wildlife and take thousands of photos. It also allowed us the luxury of just riding in the jeep and enjoying the scenery.

Lake Manze was wonderful and Sean and Millie were great hosts. On arrival at the airport we were treated to a sighting of the wild dogs! We were extremely fortunate that we were the only guests on the night of my birthday! We ordered a bottle of Champagne and toasted with Sean and Millie. They were surprised and told us they would have had a cake for me had they know about my birthday. However, the fried coconut and the fact that they had already scheduled a private dinner on our veranda were better than any cake! Zack and Zahoro were fabulous and witty guides and treated us to great displays of wildlife including amazing views of the wild dogs! We took the morning and afternoon boat rides with Abraham and Jackson on Lake Manze and experienced our own birding National Geographic Tour! On the drive and the boat tour we were the only couple and all the guides were knowledgeable and quick to assist with any of our needs.

Ruaha Old River Camp was also special and again we were lucky to be the only visitors for that stay. We had Henri and Edmund as our guide and driver and they shared their knowledge of the area with us. We even hiked to a wonderful waterfall which was a nice break from riding in the jeep. Henri was so disappointed that we didn't see any big cats but the hippos and elephants, zebras and giraffes plus the snake more than compensated. They even helped us battle the tsetse flies! Andreas and Rebecca were great hosts.

The Z hotel was a perfect way to end the trip. Staff were so friendly and accommodating and the facilities spotless. We had one issue at the beginning with drains in the bathroom being clogged but the staff immediately handled the situation. The beach was clean and as you had stated did not disappear at high tide. Food was very good and we ate at the hotel restaurants on numerous occasions. Happy hour on the rooftop overlooking the Indian Ocean was beautiful. We scheduled several tours with the hotel and everything was promptly arranged with wonderful guides.

Again, thank you so much for making this an incredible experience.

Kathleen

Kathleen and Bogdan

Hi Gemma

We had a fantastic honeymoon, thank you so much. Everything went really smoothly and it was an unforgettable experience.

Plantation Lodge, Kusini camp and the Boutique Hotel Matlai were all outstanding. Fantastic food and wonderful staff.

Our 5 day safari was incredible and Abdalla was an excellent guide. We would definitely recommend him - very passionate, patient, knowledgeable, friendly and funny.

The food at all of the hotels was excellent. Kusini camp exceeded our expectations. Lots of personal touches and kind staff.

Our 9 days in Zanzibar was very relaxing. 1 night in Stone Town was about right. Hotel Matlai was perfect. Really attentive staff and idyllic setting. The cooking class was great and one of the butlers even went out and bought us a special vitumbua pan so that we could make them at home! As there were only 6 rooms, we got a great level of service. They organised a private island trip and a visit to the local school for us, which was great. All transfers went smoothly.

We've attached a few pics.

Many thanks for your help!

SEE THEIR GALLERY

Alice and David

Dear Gemma,

I wanted to drop you a note to say how much we enjoyed our recent safari in the Selous. All the arrangements you made for us went smoothly and you always replied to our questions very promptly. We appreciated your excellent service and will surely call upon you again if our travels take us back to Africa!

We particularly enjoyed our stay at the Impala Lodge. It is not a luxurious place, (no air conditioning or hair dryers because they use only solar power) but it is very comfortable and the service and food are 5 star. I particularly liked their attention to detail such as the fresh cloth hand towels in the public bathroom each day. Another advantage of Impala is that the game is right there. You don't have to drive any distance to find animals. For example, one night coming back to our tent with our Masai guide we were greeted by a giraffe and we loved seeing the impala nestled in the grass near our porch! The Masai were always aware of the location of the resident hippo and I soon realized he was more interested in eating grass than caring about us!

Again, thank you for all you help and we will certainly recommend you and your agency to our friends!

Allen and Roseann

Hi Gemma,

Sorry it took so long to reply to you, it's just been crazy busy at work since we returned.

The trip you planned for us was very good.

Coastal Aviation was terrific for both flights. They were superb in every way..There was some confusion with the transfer from the ship to the airport, but that was eventually solved.

Siwandu was excellent. The camp managers (Conrad and Retha) are charming people that run a good show and sincerely try to offer guests the best possible experience. The guides are sensational! Allen was our guide and he was terrific in every way - knowledgeable, intelligent, entertaining, keen and possessing a marvelous sense of humour.

The accommodations are very good (even if a bit dark). The food is surprisingly outstanding. Lunch on the lake was fabulous. All the staff try so hard to please.
Lots of time spent on game drives. We could not ask for more. And if you love giraffes, we have never seen a larger concentration anywhere ; thousands! As for mosquitos, we were there in January and I think I saw one (not sure) in 5 days!

All in all, it was time very well spent and we thank you for your arrangements!

Issie

Dear Gemma & Nick,

We can’t thank you enough for putting together such an amazing itinerary for our honeymoon. Spending the day at Manyara National Park, two days at Ngorogoro Crater and 3 days at Serengeti allowed us to see so much diversity in the wildlife & all the beauty Tanzania has to offer. Our favorite part of the trip was sleeping in the Kichikani Sanctuary Tents in Serengeti- definitely a once in a lifetime experience.

All of the hotels were so accommodating to our dietary needs, and the staff were all amazing. We truly had an unforgettable experience. We ended our trip off in the best way possible - relaxing on the beaches of Zanzibar and touring Stone Town. Our only regret was not staying in Stone Town for the night, as it had so much more to offer. I guess that means we will just have to go back one day!

Sincerely,

Tomer & Gal

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Tomer and Gal

Hi Nick, Gemma,

Happy new year!

Thanks for putting our honeymoon together and for all your help, especially last minute! A really great experience for us both and something we would defiantly do again!

Thanks again!

Tom

Tom and Mel

Hi Gemma

The trip went well and all flights connected with the minimum of delay. The safari was first class! The lodge did there best to make living under canvas as comfortable as possible and we saw lots of animals, including the big 5 of the game drives. The guide provided was also very knowledgeable and a first class driver.

The accommodation was all first class possibly with the exception of Stone Town. Whilst Jafferji House was probably very authentic and was certainly centrally located, it was really only a glorified bed & breakfast. I appreciate we are judging by European standards but it was very dark, had poor and dated plumbing and didn’t live up to the general class of accommodation of the other venues we stayed at.

Matemwe Lodge was a real treat and the last 4 days in the retreat was ultimate luxury. All the staff were very friendly and the manager went out of his way every day to check that everything was OK. I had a minor medical issue with Kidney stones and he personally went into Stone Town and made sure that he obtained the pain killers that I desperately needed.

I can strongly recommend both the places that we stayed at and the choice provided by yourselves and would have no trouble recommending your services to others.

My wife took hundred’s of photographs which she will enter into a dedicated album but I have attached just a few that I took on my telephone.

Once again many thanks for putting together such a memorable itinerary!

Regards
Andy

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Andy and Linda

Gemma,

What a fantastic trip of a life time, everything was perfect from our first conversation with Gemma who managed to fulfil all our wishes and awkward ask's. No request was too large for Gemma to sort for us, from fear of small planes to missed departure.

We managed to see wilder beast migration, a kill and big 4 (no rhino), with the help of our friendly and experienced guides in both Naibor and Kicheche camps in Kenya.The camps were authentic and luxurious at the same time.

Our adventurous week on safari was followed by a beautiful and relaxing week in Zanzibar.

We cant recommend Gemma at The Africa Specialists enough. Best trip ever.

Lisa and Rob

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Lisa and Rob

Hi Nick

Thank you I did get home safely on Monday.

The gorilla trekking was amazing and Lucky was very helpful. The 5 Volcanoes hotel was lovely and the staff were exceptionally helpful. What was really nice is that after the gorilla trekking you are able to go back to your room and have a shower and then pack. You also have a lovely lunch before you leave.

A very nice touch

Thanks

Alison

Alison

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