Location
  • South Africa
Length
1 to 12 weeks

Program Details

Language
English
Age Min.
18
Timeframe
Year Round
Housing
Tent
Groups
Small Group (1-15)
Travel Type
Solo

Pricing

Starting Price
77
Price Details
Rates are seasonal
The rate is per person per night.
This rate includes 3 meals per day, accommodation, and free Wifi.
What's Included
Accommodation Some Activities Airport Transfers Meals Wifi
What's Not Included
Airfare Domestic Airfare SIM cards Travel Insurance Visa
Feb 15, 2024
Mar 21, 2024
2 travelers are looking at this program

About Program

If you are looking to make a difference by actively participating in the conservation of African wildlife within a fun, safe, stable and stunning environment, Buffelsdrift is the place for you.

Although this may sound similar to many other proudly South African volunteering projects, our dream for every person we come in contact with, is to have a lifestyle change towards thinking and living conservation. We want your time at Buffelsdrift to not only be the experience of a lifetime, but an experience that changes your life! Our aim is to empower ordinary people (like you!) to protect nature by creating a conservation lifestyle upon their return back home.

Video and Photos

Program Highlights

  • Monitoring, cleaning and maintenance of lion and elephant enclosure
  • Tracking and monitoring free roaming cheetahs
  • Researching and observing wild meerkat families
  • Relocating/trans-locating wild-life
  • Contributing to habitat conservation, including planting spekboom

Program Impact

The Buffelsdrift Foundation is a starting point for you to become a conservationist because with your help there can be a better tomorrow. Our planet and specifically the wildlife that abound in it are a special gift that we have the luxury of experiencing and enjoying. We want to share that experience with you and more importantly, we want future generations to have the opportunity to have similar enriching experiences. This can only be achieved through conscious consideration of our current actions and learning new ways to preserve and conserve our greatest gift.

Our conservation projects could not function without the hard work, dedication, and time of our Eco-Ambassadors, officially known by the government here as Voluntourists. By joining us at Buffelsdrift Game Lodge you are becoming part of a generous group of Voluntourists – those who see a country through unique eyes and spend their holiday time and funds assisting conservation around the world. Funds from our Eco-Ambassador program are reinvested into conservation, enabling us to grow and become even more successful in achieving our vision.

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Program Reviews

4.50 Rating
based on 6 reviews
  • 5 rating 50%
  • 4 rating 50%
  • 3 rating 0%
  • 2 rating 0%
  • 1 rating 0%
  • Impact 4
  • Support 4.7
  • Fun 4.35
  • Value 3.85
  • Safety 4.7
Showing 1 - 6 of 6 reviews
Default avatar
Volker Michael
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Very New impressions

Everyone has to make his own experiences, so no special piece of advice. But I can tell you will have a lot of new impressions. Sleeping in a tent, not in a house, listening to nature and the animals in the night, and out of bed in the early morning hours. Working with and for the animals like preparing food, looking after the elephant and lions or cheetahs. Another task, for example, is repairing fences, filling up the water holes or planting spek booms. And to have a good co-ordinator as Tanica and her Daisy (a wonderful old V8 LandRover).

11 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Janina
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

12 weeks of volunteering and not a day too long

I came to Buffelsdrift with the hopes of getting close to the wildlife of South Africa while doing something good for our planet, as well. My experience exceeded these hopes by far. Not only did I get to work very close to and even with the animals, I also learned a lot about conservation and hospitality. The employees are some of the kindest and most attentive people I have ever met, they made me feel welcome from the very first day. Especially our volunteer coordinator, Tanica, always did her very best to combine the (sometimes very hard but necessary) work with fun activities. My volunteering time would not have been the same without these wonderful people.

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
Over the course of twelve weeks, I had a fair amount of spiders that found their way into our tents. As the spiders in Germany are maybe a quarter of the size, it took quite some screaming and squirming to bring our new roommates back outside. However, with time, observation and the lack of other options, you learn to overcome your fears and come back home as a new person. ;)
Pros
  • getting very close to the animals
  • getting involved in special events e.g the vet coming
  • meeting new people from different countries
Cons
  • getting the same food a lot of the times
  • having the camp so far away from the lodge and guides house
  • not seeing much outside of Oudtshoorn
16 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
lucca
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Fantastic Experience! Highly Recommended!

I recently had the pleasure of participating in the African Wildlife Experience, and it was truly incredible. From close encounters with majestic lions to hands-on conservation activities, every moment was unforgettable. I highly recommend this experience to anyone interested in wildlife conservation and adventure. The program not only provided valuable insights into conservation practices but also fostered personal growth and meaningful connections with both fellow volunteers and the remarkable wildlife of Africa. Overall, it was an enriching and fulfilling experience that I wholeheartedly recommend to others.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
One of the most exciting moments during my recent volunteer experience in South Africa was when I had the opportunity to feed animals from the back of a truck, up close and personal. At the top of the vehicle, surrounded by breathtaking African landscapes, I felt a rush of adrenaline as I interacted with these magnificent creatures. Being so close to these incredible animals, witnessing their grace and power, was truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience that I will cherish forever.
18 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Arina
4/5
No, I don't recommend this program

Eco-Ambassading \ Volunteering

I wasn't expecting the low amount of volunteers. But that was actually the best thing about being Eco-Ambassador at Buffelsdrift. You really get to know everyone by heart, they go from being strangers to being friends in no time. Also being so few, all the guides and the workers will know you in an instant, especially if you stay for longer. That makes everything more special. To be honest, more than the 7 volunteers we were would not be fun, as there would be no space or activities. The best part about being here is of course also Tanica, the Volunteer Coordinator. She made sure that our time here was well spend and that we could make the most of it. She is the best, without her it would not be the same. The feeding was honestly the most fun and exciting thing being here. Being so close to the hungry rhinos and buffalos twice a week was exilirating and just beautiful. The reserve in general is beautiful, there is a lot to see. And also being able to be so close to three majestic elephants has its advantages, as they are just unbelievable to walk past.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
We were fortunate enough to be part of the relocating of the two male cheetah cubs. Helping the vetenary team to do what needed to be done to bring those magnificent creatures to their new life was exiting and wonderful. I have never and probably never will come closer to them than at this moment. Being able to do that was....Unbelievable.
Pros
  • Volunteer Team and Coordinator
  • Feeding of the Animals in the Reserve
  • Chickens at Volunteers Camp
Cons
  • Distance of Volunteer Camp to Lodge
  • Some rules about clothing and other stuff that didn't make sense
  • The unability to go somewhere without help or a taxi (not being allowed to borrow a private car)
15 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Esmée
4/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Esmée's view on being an eco-ambassador

This experience overall was unique for me, it was something I have never done. As a law student, I was a little bit unsure about what nature conservation would consist of. But now I can say this experience was an enrichment to my life. I have learned so many things from the little things like cutting up fruit for the elephants and cleaning up their enclosure to the bigger things like building a dam or relocating a cheetah.
I have mostly learned that everything is connected. The little, easy, things may look less important because they are easier but in the end it all contributes to a bigger picture and that is the conservation of nature at Buffelsdrift.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
It was definitely relocating the cheetahs. It was a nice experience and only on our first day! I loved it how everybody worked together and really involved us with everything so that we were really a part of it.
Pros
  • Being outside
  • Learning new things about special animals
  • Getting to know a lot of new people
Cons
  • The food was not what I was used to and somebody chooses your meal twice a day.
  • The waiting I am not really used to between work and stuff
18 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Eva
4/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Experience

It was really cool because we saw a lot of wild animals. The area is very cute and the shower amazing. When we do the feeding all the animals are really near the truck. We walked in cheetahs park and we saw the mother. Sometimes it was more difficult to work because of the sun and the warm. On the weekend we could enjoyed the swimming pool so it was really cool. We’re done a lot of new things and it wasn’t too difficult to understood or to do. We also saw turtles at the camp and there is a lot of spiders in the tent.

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
Ostrich and koudou
Pros
  • Seeing animals
  • The sun
  • The area in general
Cons
  • The food
  • Nothing to drink at the beginning (can’t drink tab water for me)
  • low chedding
18 people found this review helpful.

Questions & Answers