Operating for 24 years, EcoTraining is the pioneer and leader in safari guide and wildlife training in Africa.
EcoTraining is widely recognised by the safari industry for its credibility and standard of excellence in nature guide training.
- Accredited safari guide career courses,
- Gap year and Sabbatical programmes,
- Nature programmes for nature enthusiasts,
- High school and University study abroad programmes,
- Custom courses and On-site professional field guide training at safari lodges.
All courses are run directly from EcoTraining’s unfenced bush camps in prime wilderness areas across South Africa,
Botswana, Kenya and Zimbabwe. To date EcoTraining has trained over 11 000 people from 33 different countries around the world.
S 22 21.464
E 031 10.293
Karongwe Game Reserve
S 24′ 16 .008
E 030′ 37 .672
Selati Game Reserve
Mashatu Game Reserve – Botswana
S 22 13.685
E 28 58.523
Borana Conservancy – Kenya
N 0 14.3090
E 37 19.782
Victoria Falls – Zimbabwe
S 17° 59′ 57.98″
E 25° 48′ 36.11
PROFESSIONAL FIELD GUIDE - 1 year
01 October 2018 – 15 September 2019
04 January 2019 – 16 December 2019
01 February 2019 – 22 December 2019
FGASA FIELD GUIDE NQF2 - 55 days
|Dates: 04 October – 27 November 2018|
|07 October – 30 November 2018|
FGASA TRAILS GUIDE - 28 days
|Dates: 26 November – 23 December 2018|
KENYA SAFARI GUIDE: KPSGA Bronze - 28 days
|Dates: 14 September- 11 October2018|
|02 November – 29 November 2018|
ECOQUEST - 7 or 14 days
|Dates: 01 November- 14 November 2018 – 14 days|
|23 September – 29 September 2018 – 7 days|
|29 October – 04 November 2018 – 7 days|
|14 November – 20 November 2018 – 7 days|
|22 November – 28 November 2018 – 7 days|
|10 December – 16 December 2018 – 7 days|
ECOTRACKER: ANIMAL TRACKS AND TRACKING - 7 or 14 days
Dates: 10 February – 16 February 2019 – 7 days
04 June – 10 June 2019 – 7 days
15 July – 28 July – 14 days
01 August – 07 August 2019 – 7-days
SAFARI GUIDE - 28 days
Dates: 02 September – 29 September 2018
WILDERNESS PHOTOGRAPHY - 6 days
Dates: 02 March – 08 March 2019
24 August – 30 August 2019
BIRDING IN THE BUSH - 7 days
|Dates: 17 September – 23 September 2018|
|29 November – 05 December 2018|
WILDERNESS TRAILS SKILLS - 6 days
Dates: 01 October – 06 October 2018
MASAI MARA ECOQUEST - 5, 7 or 14 days
|Dates: 15 December – 21 December 2018 |
- SOUTH AFRICAN CAMPS
- MAKULEKE CAMP, Kruger National Park, South Africa:
- KARONGWE CAMP, Karongwe Game Reserve, South-west of the Kruger Park, South Africa: https://www.ecotraining.co.za/camps/karongwe-game-reserve/
- SELATI CAMP, Selati Game Reserve, west of the Kruger Park, South Africa: https://www.ecotraining.co.za/camps/selati-game-reserve/
- MASHATU CAMP, Northern Tuli Game Reserve, Botwana:
- MASAI MARA CAMP, Enonkishu Conservancy, Kenya:
- BORANA CAMP, Borana Conservancy, Kenya: https://www.ecotraining.co.za/camps/borana-conservancy-kenya/
- VICTORIA FALLS CAMP, nestles alongside an “oxbow” of the Masuie River, Zimbabwe: https://www.ecotraining.co.za/camps/victoria-falls-zimbabwe/
Makuleke Concession, Kruger National Park, South Africa
Twenty students are accommodated in comfortable thatched, tented rooms, placed on wooden decks in the shade of large nyala trees. Each room has an en-suite bathroom consisting of a shower and washbasin with hot running water and a flush toilet, as well as a veranda overlooking the surrounding bush.
The camp is not fenced, which means that animals do move through it from time to time.
Karongwe Game Reserve, South Africa
The camp consists of 10 walk-in Meru tents, with twin beds (students share tents) and supplied bedding (a duvet and one pillow); although you might want to bring an extra blanket for the winter months and an additional pillow should you require. There are also shared ablution facilities and a central communal area. We have mosquito nets in camp.
There are viewing decks in the central area of the camp, which many students choose to make their “bedroom” for part of or for the duration of the course. The camp itself is unfenced.
Selati Game Reserve, South Africa
The camp consists of 10 simple dome tents, each with two mattresses and single pillows (two learners per tent). There are shared bathroom facilities and a central communal area overlooking the Selati River.
Please bring a sleeping blanket, additional blanket and pillow should you require them. There are no mosquito nets available at Selati.
Mashatu Game Reserve, Botswana
The camp consists of 10 simple dome tents, each with two mattresses with pillows (two learners per tent). Please bring along your sleeping bag and an extra blanket/pillow if required. There are shared bathroom facilities, and a central communal area overlooking the river bed.
Mara Training Centre
The Mara Training Centre has the following very comfortable accommodation overlooking the Mara River
- 3 twin bandas (sleep 6 pax)
- 3 bunk bed bandas (sleep 12 pax)
Groups of up to 18 can stay at the centre
Borana Conservancy, Kenya
Borana Fly Camp:
The camp consists of dome tents, each with two mattresses and bedding (two learners per tent). There are shared bathroom facilities. Please bring a sleeping bag for sleep-outs.
There is no electricity at the Borana Fly Camp – paraffin lamps are used for all lighting, and a generator is used to charge batteries. Studying at night with paraffin lanterns can at times be challenging, so a headlamp for this purpose is recommended, as well as an extra battery-operated lamp should you wish to study in your tent at night.
Borana Lodge consists of a total of eight cottages, four of which have large double beds and four that have twin beds. All cottages have a phenomenal view over the dam. The cottages are quite modern, including open fireplaces and stylish bathrooms.
There is electricity at Borana Lodge – the voltage is 220/240V AC and the plugs are the UK-type, round two-pin or flat three-pin. There are adaptors available and there is also complementary Internet (WiFi) access, though it may be slow and intermittent due to the remote location of the lodge.
Most of the time will be spent at Borana Fly Camp, and lodge accommodation is dependent on availability.
Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Accommodation consists of dome tents (students share tents) with shared ablutions and supplied bedding (sheets and pillows).
What Students should bring
- As many reference books as you have (course notes are supplied)
- Bring at least 2 sets of khaki uniform, for bush excursions (shirts essential)
- Binoculars – essential
- Car cell phone charger.
- Flashlight (Torch) (Headlamp very NB!)
- Pens, pencils, exam pad (make sure you write on both sides of your paper!).
- “Bush clothes” (neutral coloured clothing) – bright and white do not belong in the bush.
- PLEASE ONLY BRING CLOTHING FOR 1 WEEK AS SPACE IS LIMITED. WASHING FACILITIES ARE AVAILABLE.
- Something warm to wear.
- Walking boots/shoes (plenty of walking)
- Water bottle, sunblock, hat.
- Soft drinks, snacks etc. ( Three meals per day are provided )
- Toiletries and Towel
- Your own bedding (Sleeping bag and pillow or similar)
- Swimming clothes
- Insect Repellent
How old should I be?
In terms of age restriction we will accept participants from 12 years of age (accompanied by an adult), and 16 years of age unaccompanied. Please understand that our unfenced bush camps are all in dangerous game areas, and it is with the participant’s safety in mind that this restriction is in place. There is no cut-off age to our courses, provided participants are of a reasonable level of fitness.
In order to attempt the FGASA qualifications, participants are required to be 18 years or older and be in possession of a valid driver’s licence.
What is the general age and nationality of the other students on the course with me?
The age ranges of students tend to be from 18-65 … We have a wide variety of people, from a wide variety of countries. Be assured that you will meet and study alongside interesting people who are passionate and enthusiastic about conservation, and more specifically about the bush.
What are the criteria for joining a course?
- Must be 18 years or older (FGASA courses)
- Must be in possession of a valid driver’s licence (FGASA courses)
- Must enjoy a reasonable level of fitness (all courses)
Can I bring along my partner as a non-paying participant?
We only have 20 beds available at each camp and these are reserved for paying participants only. We also accommodate our past students with volunteering positions in camp. We are fully allocated in terms of staff and volunteers at the camp, and will therefore not be able to accommodate an accompanying non-paying participant on course.
By when should I book my course?
We book on a first come, first served basis and therefore it is tricky to advise as to when you should book for your course. We can’t guarantee availability at any time, but can suggest that the sooner you book the stronger the likelihood will be that we can offer you a space on a course. Some courses are more popular than others, and certain times of the year are also busier. Our advice is that as soon as you are ready to commit, please make your booking.
We would typically require the registration forms completed and returned within seven days of making your booking, and payment of the deposit within two weeks from then.
How do I get to camp?
Please arrange flights into Johannesburg (OR Tambo International Airport). From there you are welcome to make use of our own Bush Bus transfer service, which runs between Johannesburg and our four camps in southern Africa.
Alternatively, you can arrange a connecting flight to smaller airports nearer to our camps (Hoedspruit Airport for Karongwe and Selati Camp/Polokwane Airport for Mashatu or Makuleke Camp), with private transfers to the camp meeting point (arrival).
Please bear in mind, though, that these connecting flights and private transfers are quite pricey. We feel the Bush Bus transfer is a far more affordable and practical option, in terms of getting to the camps.
Our logistics department will be able to best advise you on your transfer options to and from the camp. Please make contact on firstname.lastname@example.org, should you require further assistance.
What steps should I take to prevent contracting malaria?
As none of us are health facilitators, it is best for you to contact your GP or travel doctor to glean their opinion on the matter. As all our camps are situated in malaria areas, we suggest you impart that knowledge to your doctor when asking for advice.
Is there WiFi connectivity at the camps?
It is hugely limited – most of the time there is nothing at all, thus we suggest you let your family and business friends know beforehand about the limited contact.