The lynchpin for our entire experience was the guide – and Greg de Klerk was simply brilliant. He was extremely skilled in knowing where the birds might be, and finding them once we got there. He carefully made sure that we all saw the bird. He was very knowledgeable about bird and mammal behaviour, and shared a lot of information with the tour members. He smoothly handled logistics, is a good driver, and patient with non-nationals who are unfamiliar with South African customs. He has a wonderful sense of humour; and a very warm and outgoing personality, which stimulated good relations between tour members. We would be very excited to go on another Rockjumper trip with him!
Our Kruger Extension to our South Africa Mega Birding tour takes us to one of Africa’s most famous and fabulous reserves – The Kruger National Park! On this birding and wildlife safari we will explore the area’s superb road system in our quest to locate some of the most iconic birds and big game in Africa, including the legendary “Big 5” – Lion, African Elephant, Leopard, African Buffalo and both Black & White Rhinoceros. Kruger provides an excellent opportunity to photograph these spectacular beasts in their natural habitat, and some of them we will encounter in staggering numbers and at very close quarters. The park’s rich bushveld will also provide us with amongst the most exciting and rewarding birding to be had anywhere in Africa. Of special note here are species requiring vast areas of wilderness, including Common Ostrich, Kori Bustard, the incomparable Southern Ground Hornbill, Martial Eagle, Bateleur, up to five species of vulture, and an incredible diversity of other raptors and spectacular African birds. This is a brief yet thoroughly rewarding addition to our SA Mega Birding Tour, and comes highly recommended!
Common Ostrich, Kori Bustard, Red-crested Korhaan, Southern Ground Hornbill, Bateleur, Martial, Crowned, African Hawk- and Tawny Eagles, Dark Chanting Goshawk, Lizard Buzzard, Lappet-faced, Cape, White-backed, Hooded and White-headed Vultures, chances for the elusive African Finfoot, White-crowned Lapwing, Swainson’s and Natal Spurfowls, Coqui Francolin, Bronze-winged Courser, Double-banded Sandgrouse, Verreaux’s Eagle-Owl, Southern White-faced Owl, Pearl-spotted and African Barred Owlets, Southern Red-billed and Southern Yellow-billed Hornbills, Brown-headed Parrot, Bennett’s Woodpecker, Grey-headed Bushshrike, Burchell’s and Cape Starlings, Magpie and Southern White-crowned Shrikes, Red-headed Weaver, White-throated Robin-Chat, Acacia Pied Barbet, Burchell’s Coucal, Southern Boubou, Chestnut-vented Warbler, Southern Black Tit, Stierling’s Wren-Warbler, Violet-eared Waxbill, Burnt-necked Eremomela, African Pygmy and Giant Kingfishers, Black, Woolly-necked, Saddle-billed and Yellow-billed Storks, African Openbill.
The ‘Big 5’, Cheetah, African Wild Dog, Side-striped Jackal, Greater Kudu, Giraffe, Spotted Hyena, Nyala, Common and Central African Large-spotted Genets, Wild Cat, African Civet, Serval, Cape Porcupine, White-tailed Mongoose, Klipspringer, Thick-tailed Greater Galago, Honey Badger, Caracal.
acacia savanna, bushveld, terminalia woodland, riverine forest, grasslands, rivers, wetlands
subtropical with occasional rain, warm to very hot
vast, pristine wilderness
What our clients say about tours to South Africa
- WB & BB, South Africa
A first rate, very satisfying…tour that met all expectations. We missed two species we were especially interested in but our guide made an extra effort to find them and we were very pleased with him. A first rate birder. He is a great addition to the Rockjumer Team.IT, Private South Africa
Gareth was very considerate of all tour member and kept everything on schedule. He went out of his way to find bird species of particular interest to those on the tour and very enthusiastic about birding.South Africa 2015
Both Eliza and I really enjoyed our trip with you. Great birds, animals, landscape and people. Your dedication and sincere interest in our wishes exemplify the perfect guide. It has been such a great pleasure getting to know you and traveling with you. I hope that we can do it again.E, Private (Eastern) South Africa
My wife and I were part of a six person tour of South Africa that was led by David Hoddinott. Our trip was excellent and seamless. David was the perfect guide for our group and, as I’m sure you’re aware, is an extraordinary birder and bird finder…. Thank you to Rockjumper, and David especially, for taking the time to create such a wonderful trip for our group.
As always, I’m sure that it’s a challenge to accommodate numerous personalities within a group and David was great at it. We all liked him from day one and he was always positive and up for anything. He was an absolute joy to be with.
We’d previously been to Zimbabwe, Uganda, and Botswana and South Africa was a totally different experience. We really enjoyed the people that we got to meet and the sheer beauty of the country is breathtaking. David’s enthusiasm and pride of his homeland was inspiring and infectious. We can’t thank him enough for making it come alive for us.
And thanks to all who had a part in setting it all up. We’d happily recommend Rockjumper to anyone thinking about a trip led by you.EB, South Africa 2014
We were very happy to have Heinz Ortmann as our guide. He operated the tour very skilfully in every way and with flexibility when needed to try to get all possible targets. We were also very positively surprised that he had such a great knowledge about mammals, butterflies, reptiles and amphibians beside the birds. Since we also are very interested in all these groups this was a most welcome bonus. A great tour that we will remember for a long time. We would be very happy doing another private trip with Heinz as our guide.JM, South Africa 2016 (Private)
Our guide, Gareth Robbins was excellent. His knowledge of the area covered was exceptional, sometimes down to the rock the bird might land on. His repertoire of the bird calls and songs was impressive. He was adamant about getting each of us on the bird, and his delight when we saw it was transparent.AE, Eastern South Africa VIII 2015
The [Eastern South Africa] trip has become even more exciting and memorable in retrospect, and we can’t thank you enough. It was planned particularly well, giving us a great idea of the varied terrain and landscape across eastern South Africa, and it would be hard to choose the best of the places we stayed in – they were all so good and yet so varied. The birds were tremendous, and the animals scarcely behind; I don’t think we shall ever forget the elephants in the mudbath. Nor shall we forget the Sani Pass and the rockjumpers, not to mention the hail! It really was a magnificent trip, and we enjoyed it enormously.EE & RE, South Africa
Gareth was really good value – nice bloke, very knowledgeable and expert bird guide, and handled some fairly tricky situations during the tour very well. We really enjoyed the tour and would have no hesitation recommending Rockjumper and travelling with you again.SH & PB, South Africa
Wayne Jones is one of the most incredible bird and wildlife guides I have ever encountered. Always helpful and professional.AM, Budget Eastern South Africa
Glen’s pacing of the tour was particularly good – relaxed whenever possible and upping the pace when necessary. His responsiveness and attention to client requests was admirable, as was his general demeanor throughout. Nice to spend such a long trip with someone so enthusiastic and sociable.AC, South Africa Mega
Jeremy was fabulous – great general natural history knowledge and laid-back attitude.EG, South Africa
Gareth studiously worked to meet each participant’s individual needs without sacrificing the overall experience of the group. His audio sense and grasp of song probably even exceeded his other birding skills (which were quite formidable in the own right). His sense of humour and engagement with people was excellent.DH, South Africa Comp V 2015
Wayne Jones is one of the best tour leaders I have been with… He is great at making we all see the birds. He knows their songs and call and the habitats where they occur.VP, South Africa
The faster pace of the tour (South Africa Mega) was just what I wanted, and maximized chances for as many endemics as possible without adding more days. Markus was on top of things throughout, his timing and logistics were flawless, and his spotting skills are excellent. His precision served the group well and the group size (6) was ideal. He also was great with the many mammals, positioning the vehicle for the best viewing and photography, and sharing information about life histories. I thoroughly enjoyed the trip and just wish I could do it all over again!RB, SA Mega
Greg de Klerk worked hard to get us the sightings, to ensure everyone got a “good look” and to keep us as safe and as comfortable as possible. I especially appreciated his additional information about field marks, behaviour, the habitat/area, history and culture.CG, South Africa
Gareth was an excellent guide. He was always on hand to give help and advice when needed and didn’t favour one guest over another. His enthusiasm could not be faulted and local and birding knowledge faultless.SM, South Africa 2016
Tour was FANTASTIC and Wayne was a big reason for our enjoyment.MM, Eastern South Africa II 2015
Pre-tour the office staff were superb in sorting out my problems and the personal touches added to our email communications really made a big difference to how I felt about the trip.
The guide, Andre Bernon, was excellent. He was able to quickly and effectively locate and identify birds and get the group onto them. His knowledge of locations and ability to manage things on the ground showed real expertise and experience. His people skills and ability to ensure group dynamics were as smooth as possible was exceptional.PB, South Africa 2017