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My highlights of a first trip to Africa

LAUREN ROBY of Cross Country Tours reports for Traveltalk on her famil to South Africa with Bench

I recently had the wonderful pleasure of travelling to South Africa on an agent famil with Bench Africa. Having never travelled to Africa before, I was thrilled beyond belief; it had been at the top of my bucket list ever since I started working in travel, 12 years ago.



From an agents perspective, working with Bench has always been seamless so I knew I was in good hands. From start to finish, dealing with Bench Africa was a refreshing breeze. They are true professionals, at the top of their game and Bench truly reign supreme as the number one Africa expert. Every small detail is considered and their travel documents are truly destination specific. I could actually smell Africa upon receiving them in the post.


Upon meeting our host, Lara Behrens, at Perth Airport we knew we were in very capable hands, and from here on in the trip went without a hitch.From flying South African Airways, to our numerous transfer providers and our accommodation, Bench ensured all aspects of the trip were thorough, leaving absolutely no margin for error.


Accommodation Camp Jabulani: An extraordinary African Experience! The silver service here somehow seamlessly blends into an experience of genuine hospitality and sensory indulgence. The Hoedspruit


Endangered Species Centre: A must visit! They have established themselves as one of the leading research and breeding facilities for endangered species in South Africa. It is a life altering experience to volunteer and be part of the extraordinary work that this centre does to protect our most endangered animal species.



Makutsi Safari Springs: Set amongst the tropical grounds in complete privacy and serenity and surrounded by wildlife, mineral springs and tranquility. They certainly capture their motto of sharing with you a little African paradise away from home.


Shumbalala Game Lodge: This property exudes sophistication and indulgence. One word... breathtaking.


Thornybush Game Lodge: Remarkable luxury and relaxation is what springs to mind when I think back. Just sit back and admire the views of the reserve and watch the animals in their natural habitat.


The Palace, Sun City: This property has old world charm and luxury and certainly appears to be a world within a city. There are so many options for visitors staying here to explore and a nice way to end our African experience.


A key selling tool for agents is to have first hand experience of a destination and this was all made possible thanks to Bench Africa.



My Top 5 moments in Africa

1. Volunteering with the cheetahs

2. Watching a pride of lion eating a kill

3. Seeing all of the Big Five

4. Experiencing African sunsets on safari

5. Witnessing a tracker spot and pick a chameleon out of a tree in the dark of night on safari


For information on BENCH AFRICA's South Africa journeys, visit or call 1300 AFRICA (237 422).




Written by: Lauren Roby, Cross Country Tours
Published: 17 April 2017

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