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Zimbabwe

Conservation + adventure combined

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Itinerary Options

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Looking for something more flexible? Get in touch and we'll chat through options more suited to you.

Welcome to Zimbabwe

Out of Africa

Midlifers, this is your chance to experience raw Africa, by immersing yourself in a unique combination of culture, conservation and adrenaline adventures at Victoria Falls, known as the Adventure Capital of Africa and one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. The variety of activities to enjoy here are unlimited, in an area brimming with wildlife as the town borders an unfenced National Park, so it is not uncommon to have wildlife wandering the streets. Elephants, lions and buffalo, warthogs and baboons are daily visitors.

However, as a true Midlife experience the main aim is to contribute to your environment through our partners at the Lion and Wildlife Sanctuary, located just 20 mins outside Victoria Falls town. You will stay in their reserve at the lovingly named Roar and Snore Camp and help with the daily tasks required to conserve and protect their wildlife who are being rehabilitated back into the wild.

This is what we have planned....

Discover Zimbabwe and help with lion conservation, experience an overnight safari, canoe down the Zambezi and hurtle down the rapids white water rafting.


Trip Itinerary

This is a journey which will not only take you to Victoria Falls, a bucket list highlight, and all its adrenaline activities, but also promises to get you up close to lions whilst helping with hands on conservation, before floating down the Zambezi and sleeping under the African stars.

Day 1

Arrive in Victoria Falls Explore

You’ll all arrive in Victoria Falls, where you will be met and transferred to the Roar and Snore Campsite at the Lion and Wildlife Sanctuary - your new home for the next few days which is a stone’s throw away from the Zambezi River and the dramatic Victoria Falls with a thundering 108m drop into the narrow Batoka Gorge below.

To ease you into your adventure, you’ll spend your first day exploring one of the seven wonders of the natural World and the vibrant town, to find your bearings and recover from your flight.

The Roar and Snore camp is nestled in Fuller Forest – 2000 hectares of prime forest estate, surrounded by beautiful flora and fauna. You will sleep in spacious safari tents of 4-6 people with a large ablution block just a few steps away. Down time is spent in the volunteer hub overlooking a water hole.

Accommodation

Roar and Snore Campsite. It’s only a 20-minute drive from the Victoria Falls town and a 10-minute drive from the Victoria Falls International Airport.

Food

3 meals a day included

Days 2, 3 + 4

National Park Conservation and Explore

Your first few days will focus on the conservation aspect of the adventure based at The Lion and Wildlife Sanctuary but inter-twinned into your time will be an overnight safari at the spectacular Stanley and Livingstone National Park and a magical Zambezi Sunset cruise.

Conservation: The Lion and Wildlife Sanctuary covers 2000 acres of the Fuller Forest which was in a rapid state of decline, so the project focuses on both rehabilitating the land and the wildlife it supports. The vision is to aid a rapidly declining lion population by helping to rehabilitate captive lions. The lions, their prey base, and vegetation are clearly interdependent and all need attention to the keep the eco-system intact.

While you are here you becoming part of the volunteering team to help with a mix of the following daily jobs:

  • Assisting with the care and welfare of their captive lions and other sanctuary wildlife. Caring for them, feeding, cleaning and enrichment activities.
  • Snare sweeping and enclosure checks, camera trapping.
  • Tree nursery, planting or invasive plant removal, bush management.

Overnight safari and Zambezi sunset cruise: promises to immerse you into the wild so you can see see flocks of birds skimming the waterline, hippos bathing, crocodiles watching, elephants foraging, and a meddle of birds and cats.

Accommodation

Roar and Snore Campsite

Food

3 meals will be provided.

Day 5

White Water Rafting or Historical Bridge Tour Adventure

2 options available for this day and no one has to decide until you get there...choose to throw yourself down the white water of the mighty lower Zambezi, white-water rafting OR, if that does not appeal, then a gentler historic Victoria Falls Bridge Tour followed by high tea at the Victoria Falls Hotel (a proud member of the Leading Hotels of the World, Edwardian-style hotel built in 1904.)

The Zambezi River is considered to provide one of the best white water rafting experiences in the world. It is a deep channelled, high-volume river with class 3-5 rapids interspersed with tranquil pools. When you are not paddling furiously you can sit back and enjoy the stunning views of the canyon.

Accommodation

Roar and Snore campsite

Food

3 meals a day provided

Day 6 + 7

Canoe safari Adventure

Another day on the water but at the more peaceful end of the Zambezi – we promise this is a bucket list moment as we plan for you to potter down the river wildlife spotting the bird and wildlife on the river, followed by a magical night camping under the stars next to the Zambezi River.

After a hearty breakfast, you will slowly meander your way back. You will love this, this is one of Africa's greatest experiences.

Accommodation

Camping

Food

3 meals a day provided

Day 8

Optional activities and culture Adventure

Adrenaline junkies today will be spent getting your heart rate up, by either bungee jumping, going on the gorge swing, sliding off the famous bridge or choose the more relaxed canopy tour. All can be decided when you are there.

On your last night in this fabulous country, we will be taking you to a Boma Dinner and Drum Show. Taste traditional Zimbabwean dishes while you dance and dine to the sounds of African drums https://theboma.co.zw/

During the feast, the entertainment incorporates mbira music, traditional dancers, a local folk storyteller, a fortune teller, a hair braider, elaborate face painters and souvenir sellers.

But the highlight of the evening’s entertainment is the renowned energetic interactive drumming show beginning after dinner at 8.45pm. It is the only interactive drumming show in Zimbabwe. Guests are each handed a djembe drum and given the opportunity to participate in the drumming show by learning a few rhythms. After the drumming show, guests are invited to the dance floor.

The evening is capped off with a group of acapella singers serenading you at your table.

Tonight you will stay at the rather more luxurious Palm River Hotel to round off the adventure...

Accommodation

Palm River Hotel

Food

3 meals a day provided.

Day 9

Departure

Departure Day


Program Details & Costs

This is a journey which will not only take you to Victoria Falls, a bucket list highlight, and all its adrenaline activities, but also promises to get you up close to lions whilst helping with hands on conservation, before floating down the Zambezi and sleeping under the African stars.

Min 6, max 12 Midlifers.

2022: 7 Nov

Costs

9 days
8 night, 9 day Zimbabwe Adventure
2022: £2158

Dates Don't Suit?

Don't worry - we can work around this, just get in touch and we'll chat through options more suited to you.

Social Life

Guaranteed. You will be part of a tight team of like minded Midlifers from start to finish.

Environments

Wild Africa, where you can contribute and and explore.

Conservation

Contribute to hands on wildliofe projects.

Challenge

Invigorate and reset you body and mind.

Working Hours and Time Out

Each day will vary but prepare to be busy.


Lion and Game Park Management

Your program will be run by Wynand Bosch who works for Lion and Game Park Management. The program was founded on the vision to aid a still rapidly declining lion population across Africa. The project has grown from a world first, albeit untested, captive-wild lion rehabilitation initiative. In partnership with ALERT (African Lion and Environmental Research Trust), they have developed a model that generates long term funding through commercial ventures, providing both physical and financial assistance to various conservation and community development initiatives.

"Meaningful adventure has been a wonderful experience"

Going on The Leap MidLife was a great decision for me: spending time with a very entertaining and engaging group of people in the amazing and ancient landscape of Namibia on a meaningful adventure has been a wonderful experience.

Oana is a very special conservation reserve, and the passion, vision and determination of the camp managers has inspired a long term make-a-difference approach in us all. Although I have left Namibia and am now back in England, the memories of a fantastic and happy community thrown together for a purpose under the African skies will stay with me for ever.

- Carrie Watson

"Quality time with girlfriends, old and new. "

Having not been backpacking at the traditional backpacking age this MidLife Leapers' trip was an opportunity too good to pass up. It was a chance to leave the husband and kids behind, to experience a little bit of what kids do while travelling and to spend quality time with girlfriends, old and new.

I was initially attracted by the opportunity to help conserve the turtles and, despite being there in the turtle ‘low season’, we were exceptionally lucky to be involved in locating and moving a nest of recently laid eggs and to watch newly hatched turtles being released into the ocean. A totally unforgettable experience. At Cirenas we met some inspiring young Ticos and I would love to go back in a year or two to see where their vision and hard work has got them.

Thank you Milly, and Chris on the ground, for organising such a fabulous trip for us. We loved it all - the zip wire, the cloud forest, the baby sloths and the anteater, the turtles, the absolutely delicious food wherever we went, and the scary light aircraft to get us home. An amazing trip.

- LIza Curtis

"Reflect and Reset"

Although I had been promised true wilderness, it wasn’t until we finally arrived in camp that I properly understood that this was exactly what we were getting. Completely off grid, in beautiful surroundings, we were made incredibly welcome by Red and Dre, who then proceeded to put us to work!

What was so extraordinary about the trip was that not only did we feel that what we were doing, along with all the other volunteers, really would make a difference in helping to transform and rewild the landscape in this remote corner of Namibia, but also that by being there as individuals, with no other halves or children to worry about or manage, it was a chance to reflect and to reset. I came home a changed person and cannot recommend the experience highly enough. If you can, just do it!

- Lucy Walsh-Waring

"Extraordinary and inspiring"

On arrival the trepidation and pre-match nerves soon disappeared and I realised it was the best decision I had ever made. The photos are amazing, but to be there is even better. Having never had a gap year, been camping, been away without family, been to Africa or known anyone on the trip beforehand I was taking a big Leap into the unknown…..and I LOVED every minute. It was a wonderful and unique experience.

I now miss waking up in camp every morning, chatting and laughing with a very special group of now lifelong friends, being inspired by the amazing Dre and Red, looking at the beautiful stars, trekking to the top of mountains to admire the never ending breathtaking views.

The white water rafting and camping on the side of the Orange River towards the end of the 9 days enhanced what had already become the most phenomenal trip. I feel everyone should now make that Midlife Leap and then truly understand why it is so extraordinary and inspiring….

- Alice Fisher

"An extraordinary and memorable trip"

If you are feeling motivated to make a difference and looking for an off grid adventure, have a look at The Leap’s website.

If you enjoy a challenge and want to feel intrepid, you can join a group of like minded individuals for an extraordinary and memorable trip, organised for you by experts. I cannot recommend The Leap more highly.

- Penny Mountbatten

"How we laughed .. I felt reinvigorated"

It was all I had hoped for and with much more. I felt I had a glimpse of a gap year which was exactly what I had wanted. I loved staying in the hostel at Monteverde, testing my nerve on the zip wires and finding I could do it. A great mix of fun and learning.

Throughout we were looked after with kindness and thought. Gently pushing us out of our comfort zones from where I feel we all flew away from our cosy safe nests! In all this I think the Midlife Leap is very clever. We were able to experience a country, get under the skin of it and see it properly, feel comfortable without it seeming we were on a ‘holiday’. Which we weren’t . Volunteering and meeting locals and having Chris guiding us through it all made the ordinary extraordinary . Milly you are brilliant and cajoled and encouraged us keeping up any flagging spirit.

- Nicola Hussey

"Their passion and committment was infectious."

Being at Oana really was one of the happiest and best experiences of my life and I am going back in 2020.

The hands on conservation work included removing old fencing to enable wildlife migration, building a wildlife hide, putting out hay mangers and setting camera traps for wildlife monitoring - all of which was great fun. On our last day we visited the local village where we had a soup kitchen and had 90 children come along. The children were unforgettable, singing and dancing with huge smiles on their faces.

- Elaine Mackensie Yates

"Soul and mind rebooted and the most amazing group of new friends"

I wasn’t sure how I was going to cope with the sleeping arrangements and roughing it, especially as I’m a contact user and need clean hands and a mirror to get them in, but it wasn’t a problem and all the things I worried about before I left were forgotten once I was there.

I had to pinch myself that we actually swam with manta rays and whale sharks and saw the most perfect beaches and yet balanced this with making other peoples lives better on ‘work days’, when we painted a school and health clinic and made bricks for a school build project.

- Emma O'Grady

"The trip exceeded my expectations."

When I signed up I was a little apprehensive as I only knew one person and wasn’t sure how the dynamics of the group would work. As it turned out the group could not have gelled better. The trip exceeded my expectations. I felt we had the chance to give something to the local communities as well as have some fun.

I would highly recommend doing a MidLife Leap – super-duper organised, with attention to detail which meant we were all able to relax and enjoy every minute as we had nothing to think or worry about. It was the most fantastic amazing opportunity that I feel blessed to have experienced.

- Nicci Caswell

"It was freedom, stillness, exhilaration"

‘There were a thousand reasons why I absolutely couldn’t or shouldn’t take my ‘Leap' to Namibia. The most pressing and logistical reasons were my two boys at day school (one only 8) and my husband being half way across the world for work at the same time. However I just couldn’t let it go. There would always be reasons why not. I HAD to make it work. I had wanted to go to Namibia for years and was just really desperate for adventure. Needless to say it was worth every second of the UN-like logistics to get myself out of the door. It was a strike out of my comfort zone (in many layers not perhaps immediately obvious), it was switching off into proper wilderness (no phone reception or WIFI here, just miles and miles of echoing desert), it was back to brilliant basics in our sleeping bags and tents, it was physical work and walking and climbing and rafting, and it was with a group of people, some I knew, most I didn’t with whom we laughed and laughed, nattered and confided, supported and explored with.

It was freedom, stillness, exhilaration. What can I say? DO IT, DO IT, DO IT! Strike out, press your reset button, be BOLD. For all us it was life-affirming, for some a game changer.’

- Sacha Kent

"The most rewarding and valuable trip of my life"

My trip to Namibia will be the platform for the rest of my life. It was vitally important for me to be challenged, tested and taken far away from home. The environment in Namibia is so far removed from the privileged life I lead in England and the enormous personal strain from family illnesses and teenage demands. Namibia was so utterly dramatic in its beauty and so humbling in its simplicity. To be ‘unplugged’ from my life was incredible. It made me ‘regroup’ amongst nature that is so pure - I felt honoured to be there.

Living in tents and being part of a group was fantastic fun. Getting to know myself in that environment was valuable and liberating. So many fears were dispelled by the whole experience.

Thank you for organising a fantastic trip with love and laughter! Thank you for letting me rest when I needed to and encouraging me to ‘push on’ when it mattered. Thank you for the most fabulous memories and happy times.

- Sara Koe

"Incredible camaraderie and kindness"

During our time we slept in dorms, washed out of a bucket, painted a school, planted shrubs and trees for nesting turtles, swam with whale sharks and manta ray. What struck me through all of our incredible experiences was the camaraderie and kindness of everyone. No-one thought of themselves first. Mosquito spray was given to your pal before you used it yourself. And we're tough old birds! No whingeing at all which was quite something for a bunch of mums who have got used to a comfortable way of live back at home.

The Leap's people on the ground are vital to the smooth-running of anything so off-grid and they found the dream team who were largely locals and knew exactly how the islands ticked and what would work. I think it's brilliant to 'take the leap', venturing outside your comfort zone and realising that at 40/50/60 you've still got what it takes.

- Emma Cripwell

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